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Wednesday, March 24, 2010 Lilykitten, Community Member, asks

Q: Anxiety vs excitement

My anxiety symptoms (fast breathing, stomach upsets, headaches, nausea etc.) seem to be worse when I am looking forward to an event like a Birthday or Christmas day. If my anxiety is being caused by problems at work, I can face the issues and feel better. What do I do went I am prevented from enjoying days I love by these physical symptoms?

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Answers (2)
Jerry Kennard, Health Pro
3/25/10 9:46am

Thanks for your question. The reason you feel this way is because anxiety and excitement are two sides of the same coin. Both are states of arousal and whilst one is welcome the other is not. I suspect you have established your own coping mechanisms for work. The other thing about work is that you know you will leave at the end of the day - very different from your personal life which of course is never left behind.


Anxiety is circular. As the next event comes on the horizon so your brain thinks 'I've been here before, and this is how I react'. To break into this cycle it would be useful to use relaxation or meditation techniques so you don't get too aroused and the event is then spoiled for you.

Merely Me, Health Guide
3/27/10 12:12pm

Hi there


I want to add on to what Jerry has said by letting you know that others experience this too.  My husband has suffered from asthma his whole life and quite often his episodes would be triggered by excitement like you are talking about.  He had to learn to take a look at the thought processes which were leading up to the feelings of excitement which triggered the asthma attacks.  What thoughts are you having before you experience anxiety symptoms?  


Before the feelings...are thoughts...and so if you can alter these thoughts...you can probably change the outcome some.  


Those relaxation techniques Jerry suggested are a good start.  


I hope things get better for you.  Let us know if we can offer any more suggestions.  Anxiety is so hard to deal with...but please know that you are not alone.

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By Lilykitten, Community Member— Last Modified: 12/27/10, First Published: 03/24/10