Let's talk about anxiety

 Well hello to you my reader chums! Anxiety is something many of us live with whether mild or severe and it's a condition that can be managed and understood with the right type of care and attention.

If you've recently been diagnosed with anxiety, struggling to deal with it, or need some advice, let's talk about anxiety.

Let's talk about anxiety

What is anxiety?

By definition, anxiety is a feeling of worrying, unease, or fear and can vary from being mild to severe. There are many types of anxiety such as social anxiety disorder, generalised anxiety disorder, panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder. 

What's anxiety like for me?

Anxiety is something I've always lived with and has been a part of me in some way since I was little but grew a lot worse in my teens and early adulthood, where I spent those years trying to figure it out and overcome it. I have generalised anxiety, social anxiety and suffer from panic attacks, so a mix of it all and for me, they can vary in being mild to severe depending on when I'm triggered. 

Anxiety isn't easy for me, it never has been and it's still a daily battle. However, I'm at a point in my life that now I have more of an understanding of my anxiety. I know my triggers, I know how to cope with them or I've put things in place to prevent being triggered and have explained to those around me about it so they understand me and my anxiety a lot more. Although that makes it easier to deal with on a day to day, when the panic attacks happen or I'm triggered badly, it can still be hard to come to terms with and makes me feel like a failure that I'm backtracking all the progress I've made. But in the same breath in dealing with the ups and downs of anxiety, I'm learning that with any mental health problem, that is what happens: at times I'll be on top of the world and other days, my mind is in an anxious spiral and that's okay.

For me, it's about spreading awareness that anxiety looks different for everyone (and people can show that differently too) and my anxiety can be triggered in different ways. My main trigger is not feeling good enough (which is what the crux of anxiety is anyway) and not feeling safe, and it can spiral me into a negative thought process of thinking horrible thoughts about myself.

Examples of what anxiety can look like:

  • Asking for constant reassurance - When someone has anxiety, they have a mindset where they'll question everything they do and what they have around them including their self worth, relationships and friendships. This is why quite often, they'll ask for reassurance. It may seem unnecessary to you but to them, they have this constant pattern in their mind telling them they're not good enough - so offering them the reassurance time and time again can really help.
  • Fiddling with their hands - Have you ever noticed someone fiddling with their hands? It could be picking at their fingers or moving their jewelry around: that's usually a sign of anxiety. This is because when someone feels jittery, they need something to focus or distract with to help that feeling subside slightly. I have a massive habit of doing this and biting my lip too.
  • Needing external validation - This is similar to asking for reassurance. Those with anxiety often struggle with self love and self worth as it's not something that comes naturally to them when they're fighting with their mind everyday. This is why they may ask things like 'am I a good person?', 'do I look okay?, 'does x like me?' Questions like this linger in our mind and securing external validation can silence them in some way.
  • Cancelling plans last minute - Anxiety isn't something that comes at one time, it can be triggered at any moment. This means when someone has it, if they cancel plans last minute, it could be because they've been triggered of they've overthought the situation and worked themselves up so much that they feel too anxious to attend. It's a common problem for someone with anxiety and feelings of guilt also prevails afterward, which make that said person more anxious.
  • Avoiding social situations - This also leads onto avoiding social situations. When someone has anxiety, especially social anxiety, social situations are their worst nightmare. There can be nothing worse than being a room full of people and having to talk to them. This is why, they'll often avoid them instead of putting themselves in an uncomfortable situation of being social and then overthinking every small thing that happened.
  • Making excuses - Making excuses comes easy when you have anxiety. It can be easier to say you can't come or you're busy to see someone than actually explain the extent of how anxiety is making you feel.
  • Oversharing or undersharing - I find it's either all or nothing with someone talking about themselves when they have anxiety. Oversharing is something I do as I find it easier to overshare and make people realise the way I am rather than not say anything. It all depends how that person is and where they're at in terms of understanding their anxiety.

How can I deal with anxiety?

Dealing with anxiety isn't one given cure. One thing could work for me but not for someone else and as there are five types, there isn't a definite answer. However, there are many tips and pieces of advice I can share with you. I've previously spoken about the tips and tricks that work for me and shared bloggers' advice on the topic. Here are my top 3 tips:

Understanding your anxiety - My top tip for anyone with anxiety is to understand yours. As I've previously mentioned, anxiety is different for everyone so you need to figure out what your triggers are. Once you know your triggers, you can think of preventative way to stop yourself from being triggered or avoid those situations, then you can discover the things which help your anxiety. When I'm triggered for example, it depends to what I'm triggered about to how I cope with it. Sometimes, I need to be around people, other times I need to feel the emotion until the anxiety passes or utilise distractions, and working out for example can help. It's about finding the solution for you. 

This too shall pass - I talk about this quote in every post about mental health as it has really impacted me since a good friend once told it to me. This too shall pass. Whatever you're feeling right now isn't permanent. It's a temporary emotion and you will feel better - and that hope can help you get out of an anxious episode ever so slightly.

Talking to those you're comfortable with - Our support system does us wonders, especially when it comes to talking about anxiety. Not everyone will understand your anxiety and that's okay, as you'll find the right people who will give you the time and energy, and want to understand and help. Once you find that support system, confide in them, the way they would for you and it'll offer the support you need.

How can I help someone with anxiety?

Helping someone with anxiety can seem like a daunting task, especially if you don't deal with it yourself, but there is always something you can do. I wrote a whole post explaining how to help a friend with anxiety with all my top tips - and my best advice to you is:

Be a listening ear - If someone is dealing with anxiety, sometimes they don't want to hear a solution as often enough, they know what to do to help themselves, they just want someone to confide in. If someone is struggling, simply listen. Hear what they have to say and offer reassuring words.

Don't get annoyed when they ask for reassurance - People with anxiety need constant reassurance and if they've asked you several times, try to not get annoyed but offer them the same level of reassurance. They're not asking to annoy you, but for the validation needed to feel better.

Ask how you can help - Being a listening ear can really help but sometimes they may need more help, and the best way to figure out what that is, is to simply ask what you can do to make them feel better.

Help and support contact details

Living with anxiety can be hard and lonely but there is always help available. If you don't feel comfortable speaking to a family member or friend, or need further help, check out these hotlines:

Text 'SHOUT' to 85258 (UK-wide)

Samaritans - Call 116 123 (UK-wide)

Mind UK - 0300 123 3393

I hope you enjoyed this post. What's your best advice for someone living with anxiety?

Thank you for reading <3


  1. These are some really helpful tips to help people with anxiety and help them realise they are not alone. Thank you for sharing your experience and suggestions.

    Lauren - bournemouthgirl

  2. Thanks so much for sharing this. I feel like I understand anxiety better now. While I don't have anxiety, friends of mine do and it's always great to know the signs so I can be supportive.

  3. Love this! I definitely agree that just listening and asking what you can do to help can make a world of difference to someone with anxiety. Thanks for sharing your story x

  4. Ruth| Ruthiee loves Glamour4 October 2021 at 12:21

    These are fantastic tips to help those struggling with anxiety. Listening and
    letting them know that you are always ready to help can go a long way.

  5. Such a great post about such an open subject - it's so important for people who generally don't feel anxious to know what sort of signs there might be in friends/family/colleagues who are anxious....but also for people who do struggle with anxiety to know that they're not always going to be understood.

    For me, there's some things like public speaking which I'm actually fine with but speaking to someone 1-2-1 gives me massive anxiety. Funny how that works! Dealing with anxiety is never easy but you've given some really good advice which is achievable across a wide range of people. Great post!

    1. Thank you so much, I appreciate your lovely comment!

  6. This is such a helpful post Della! I also suffer from anxiety and this everchanging pandemic world we live in is not helping! Thanks for the tips on dealing with it.

  7. This is an informative post that touches wonderfully on what anxiety can look like, from asking for reassurance to fiddling with one's hands. I do this when I am anxious, but being aware of what my fidgeting means has helped me start to ground myself a bit more.

    Not getting annoyed when someone with anxiety asks for reassurance is an AMAZING tip and one of the best things friends can do.
    Thanks for sharing!

    1. Thank you so much, I'm really glad you enjoyed it xx

  8. I suffer with my anxiety and overthinking and loved reading this. Such a good insight to those who don't suffer or know a great deal x


  9. This is such an informative post. I'd never struggled with anxiety before the pandemic, but the past two years it's really flared. My partner has had it for years, so he was a really good source of support. Posts like this are great because it really helps to raise awareness! x

    mia // https://beautiful-inspiring-creative-life.com/

    1. Thank you so much, I'm really glad you liked the post x

  10. Feeling constant anxiety is really hard. Thankfully, I've never experienced this but I do know some of my friends who do. Those signs are really evident in their behavior too. Thanks for talking about this.


  11. My anxiety has also been an ongoing struggle at times. It would often make me physically ill because I was so on edge all the time. It was also exhausting.

  12. I struggled with anxiety for a long time, and I don't think it ever stops. Sometimes, it feels a bit better and I am able to do so much more, but then it comes back and it's like a smack in the face. I have been riding the wave lately, but I am also looking at getting help. Thank you for yet another great article, Della x

    1. I relate to that so much! I hope you can get the right help for you, you've got this x

  13. Such a important post! I suffer with anxiety myself and it can be a real struggle. I'm literally all of those examples, especially the social situations. Over the years, I've learnt how to deal with it and I've also gotten some help. I hope it will soon pass and for you too. Great post!

  14. I love this post Della, I suffer with anxiety, I probably always have on a low level but about 3 years ago it really spiralled out of control, I hadn't experienced that before and it took 2 years to recognise and deal with. Coping mechanisms and knowing who you can talk to is key and you're right....this too shall pass

    1. For some reason this is anonymous 🤷🏻‍♀️ Sarah Collins @radiosarahc on twitter. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  15. Such helpful tips for anyone dealing with anxiety, including me.

    I feel a lot more in control now I know the triggers and I work hard to not allow my mind to run away with itself. It's still a daily battle, but at the moment I have some control over it.

    Thanks for being so honest in the post. It will help other people x

  16. I've struggled with anxiety all my life. Thanks for these tips and listing what anxiety looks like. Just because I had it all my life, I didn't realize all the signs I displayed. However, I've come a long way in dealing with anxiety.

  17. Wow, such a lovely post, Della! I have waves of anxiety too and it totally feels so overwhelming and a struggle. Thank you for sharing some resources too! xx

    Lynn | https://www.lynnmumbingmejia.com


Thank you for reading my blog! I hope you enjoyed this post and found it helpful in anyway. I'd love to hear any feedback you may have.