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Anxiety and Worry

Anxiety often doesn’t get taken as seriously as it should. If you experience a lot of anxiety you can probably attest to this. I was talking to a friend who suffered from anxiety.

“Everyone gets anxious,” he said. “That what’s everyone tells me. Last night the pizza guy knocked on my door and I felt like I might die. I knew it was probably the pizza guy. I had just ordered pizza. But I still thought I might die. That sounds crazy doesn’t it?”

While it is true that everyone gets anxious, it is not true that everyone experiences anxiety in the same way to the same degree. On the more intense end of the spectrum, anxiety can be a debilitating condition.

It is also surprisingly common.  According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America18% of the population suffers from an anxiety disorder. When it comes to anxiety, everyone seems to have ideas on how to "cure" it.  These range from the well-meaning "just stop drinking coffee" to the "why don't you just get over it?" kind of comments. It generally isn't that simple. Counseling can be an excellent alternative, or adjunct, to medication when it comes to anxiety. Counseling's efficacy with anxiety has been well researched and documented. It has been described as a "first-line treatment" and has been shown to be highly effective for many types of anxiety in a multitude of peer reviewed studies. (Hunot, Churchhill, Texeira 2010; Stewart & Chambless 2009; Acarturk, Cuijpers, van Straten, & de Graaf 2009).

Counseling can help

  • Reduce and manage anxiety
  • Alleviate physiological symptoms
  • Get to the root of the anxiety
  • Differentiate between helpful and unhelpful worry
  • Learn skills that can be used long after counseling is complete

Links and resources

There is a wealth of helpful information on anxiety online. Below are the websites for two excellent starting points for researching anxiety:
American Association for Anxiety and Depression
National Institute of Mental Health


Acarturk, C., Cuijpers, P., Van Straten, A., & De Graaf, R. (2009). Psychological treatment of social anxiety disorder: A meta-analysis. Psychological Medicine, 39, 241-254.
Hunot, V., Churchill, R., Teixera, V., & Silva de Lima, M. (2010). Psychological therapies for generalized anxiety disorder. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, 4.
Stewart, R., & Chambless, D. (2009). Cognitive-behav- ioral therapy for adult anxiety disorders in clinical practice: A meta-analysis of effectiveness studies. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology 77, 595-606.