16 Ways I Was Surprised To See Anxiety Manifesting In My Life

    Alexa, play "Overwhelmed" by Royal & the Serpent.

    Hey, everyone! I'm Hannah, and anxiety plays a pretty significant role in my life. I've dealt with varying degrees of anxiety for my entire life, but I was formally diagnosed with a generalized anxiety disorder when I was 19.

    cartoon of an anxious woman with thoughts swirling her head

    Before I had a diagnosis and a greater understanding of my own anxious behaviors, I really only ever understood anxiety as a state of mind that left me on constant high alert and a predisposition to bouts of panic and full-blown panic attacks. Now that I've been working with professionals (and with myself!) on coping and treatment, I've learned so much more about the ways anxiety has manifested in my life. If you also have anxiety, results may vary!!! But these are just some of the ways I never really expected to see anxiety play roles in my life.

    a balloon about to be punctured by a nail

    Note: Some of the experiences I discuss are also linked to my OCD diagnosis, and I'll talk about the intersection of these two conditions in my life. My experiences, while potentially relatable to others, are my own. I am only speaking to my own personal experiences and am in no way an expert.

    1. Hypersensitivity to sound:

    volume dial turned up

    2. Tummy troubles:

    woman holding her stomach in pain and lying in bed

    3. Caffeine sensitivity:

    a steaming cup of something warm

    4. Intrusive thoughts:

    human head with an infinity symbol in the brain and a small person running around that infinity symbol like an endless track

    5. Hypochondria:

    silhouette of a person with a rain cloud in their head

    6. Food allergy fears:

    an x over an avocado, then an x over watermelon

    7. Chronic earliness:

    a clock that reads 10:40

    8. A bladder that just won't quit:

    stalls in a public bathroom

    9. Driving stress:

    cars on a road

    10. Escapism:

    close-up of an eye

    11. Overachiever/perfectionist syndrome:

    hands holding up five stars

    12. Nightmares:


    13. Fidgeting:

    hands outstretched to reveal many rings

    14. TMJ:

    person clutching their jaw in pain

    15. Yawning:

    dalmatian puppy yawning

    16. Finally, comedy:

    three laughing camels

    Thanks for taking the time to read about my angsty little brain!! Anxiety is not a "one size fits all" sorta thing, but I wanted to share my personal experiences in hopes of helping others with anxiety feel seen, or to give folks without anxiety a "peek behind the curtain" at some of the ways anxiety can impact people.

    Remember to always consult with your doctor about your personal health and wellness. BuzzFeed posts are for informational purposes only and are no substitute for medical diagnosis, treatment, or professional medical advice. To learn more about anxiety and resources that may help, visit: https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/anxiety-disorders.