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Fear, Stress, and Anxiety: What’s your Threshold?

Fear, Stress, and Anxiety: What’s your Threshold?

First, I think it’s essential to understand the difference between fear and anxiety. Fear can be described as our response to physical and emotional threats. Feeling fear is a vital response because, without it, we’re not able to protect ourselves from dangerous situations. Although most people tend to confuse fear and anxiety because they produce similar responses to certain danger or threats, they are two distinct feelings. Fear is something you feel when you believe you are in an imminent danger. For example, if you are walking your dog and someone points a gun at you in attempt to rob you, this is a definite threat that is most likely going to result to a fear response. Anxiety, on the other hand, can be a response to an uncertain threat. For example, if you are scheduled to go under surgery, you may feel unease and excessively worried that it may not go well without knowing exactly what might go wrong but yet you feel anxious about the anticipation or thought. The thought of something terrible happening is the feeling of anxiety. Anxiety is not as a result of an imminent threat whereas fear, can be linked to a particular threat and can be eminent.

Although fear and anxiety can produce different responses, when faced with fear, most people will experience similar physical symptoms of anxiety. These two feelings are interchangeable, fear produces the feel of anxiety, anxiety can activate fear and stress response.  To read more about anxiety click here

Now that we have cleared the difference between anxiety and fear let’s talk about anxiety and stress threshold. If you have an anxiety disorder or suffer from intense stress, you might have a vivid understanding of what your anxiety or stress threshold feels like or resembles. For me, it feels like I am unable to perform my typical day to day routine, I feel helpless, hopeless, incompetent and incapable of living a healthy life. It’s also imperative to know that everyone has a different threshold because anxiety threshold is measured by the amount of anxiety consistently manifested from situation to situation. To learn more about how anxiety threshold is measured scientifically click here click here

Signs you may have reached your anxiety or stress threshold

You are not able to perform your normal day-to-day routine

Although having an anxiety disorder is not a physical disability, it can affect your mental capacity and ability to perform work by making it challenging to concentrate and stay focus on any task causing you to feel incompetent. The behaviors and feelings accompanied by anxiety and stress can make it hard to interact with people and perform your daily routines. When I start feeling this way, I know that’s my cue to implement my coping skills. To read more about some of my coping skills, please click here

Feelings of hopelessness

Feeling hopeless is the most draining and distasteful feeling to experience. Imagine feeling like giving up; you can’t compete with your struggles, there is no reason to expect good or success because you are overwhelmed by them. That’s what it feels like to be hopeless, because you have reached your stress/anxiety threshold. When I find myself at this stage, I practice grounding skills on myself or think of things in my life that bring hope.

Others can tell you are stressed or anxious

As much as you might try to hide how stressed or anxious you feel, sometimes you are not able to control it by trying to make it less obvious. This is when you start to over-react emotionally, psychologically, a frequent experience of illness, disruptive sleeping and eating patterns. I have done this several times, I have also learned a lesson that hiding your feelings can be overwhelming and a trigger for experiencing more stress and anxiety.

To test your anxiety level  click  – click here

To test your stress level click here

Remember to stay away from wearing your emotional mask, focus on self-awareness, express your feelings appropriately and face your fears. It’s a one step at a time process.

 

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