Relationship anxiety refers to the emotions of insecurity, worry, and doubt that get involved in a relationship at times. This may happen even in a secure relationship where you trust each other, have established boundaries, have a certain level of comfort with each other, and understand how you communicate with each other. Despite that, you may question your partner and wonder about whether your relationship holds any future. When this happens often, you are experiencing relationship anxiety.
Is It Normal?
Relationship anxiety can occur at the beginning of a new relationship, among people who have relationship phobia, or those with relationship phobia. It can also happen among people in secure, long-term relationships. And once you experience these feelings, it is likely to cause you emotional distress, lack of interest in life, fatigue, and other health conditions like digestion problems. At times, relationship anxiety may be unexplained as well and, in such cases, it is a result of anxious attachment.
5 Relationship Anxiety Symptoms
If you often catch yourself imagining whether your relationship has a future, wondering whether your partner loves you as much as you do, and over-analysing your partner’s words and actions, you are definitely overthinking. And it is a sign of relationship OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder). This will not only harm your relationship but disrupt the relationship your partner shares with other people.
If you find yourself keeping a tab on every movement of your partner, whether he/she is at home or outside, you are nurturing an unhealthy relationship. Your separation anxiety in relationships will only make your partner feel suffocated, creating a barrier between the two of you, which might turn into an irreparable situation.
3. Looking For Validation
Constantly looking for attention and validation for your partner’s love exerts far too much burden on him/her for you to enjoy a healthy relationship. This anxious attachment is a clear sign of you being insecure with yourself, your partner, and the relationship you share.
4. Worrying About The Future
The importance of communication cannot be emphasised enough. It is necessary that you express your doubts, fears, anxiety, and everything crossing your mind to your partner so that you can establish open channels of communication always. Not communicating what is disturbing you, will create a wedge between the two of you, which in turn will take a toll on your relationship.
5. Identity Loss
A relationship often introduces a complete change in your life. The friends who were an indispensable part of your life gradually recede to the background, as your relationship takes the forefront. Your partner becomes your sole support and your life starts revolving around him/her, so much so that you forget to tend to your needs. This develops into a loss of identity as you struggle to understand the significance of your life.
3 Possible Causes Of Relationship Anxiety
1. Childhood Trauma
Unfounded insecurity and subsequent anxiety in a relationship often have its roots in childhood trauma. The lack of love and attention that a child needs to grow up in a healthy environment determines how he/she will behave in future relationships. This may lead to a lack of trust while developing new relationships or make one excessively dependent on the partner to the extent that he/she loses his/her own identity.
2. A Failed Relationship
A history of a traumatic relationship may have an adverse long-term effect on you. It may inculcate a deep-seated fear in you, manifesting in the way you behave while establishing new relationships. This anxious preoccupied attachment may make you lose self-worth, instilling fear in you that your past experience might repeat itself.
3. Lack Of Communication
The absence of open communication usually always leads to misunderstandings, which may jeopardise the future of the relationship. Discuss everything that might be making you feel uncomfortable or doubt the relationship, to bridge the communication gap.
5 Ways Your Relationship Anxiety May Impact Your Physical & Mental Well-Being
1. Nurture Pent Up Feelings
Sit with the emotions that are troubling you rather than putting them on the back burner, so you can carry on with life as usual. It is best to talk it out with your partner, so it doesn’t create a difference between the two of you.
2. Make The Most Of The Present
If there is nothing seriously troubling your relationship, for insurance, or a cheating partner, there is no cause for worry. But, in case you find yourself unnecessarily worrying about the present and future of the relationship, which is the result of relationship OCD, sit and discuss with him/her so that it does not impact your physical and mental health.
3. Communicate Effectively
It is essential for you to be in sync with your partner regarding how you imagine your future together, your expectations, and everything else that you consider important. Sort out your difference, so it doesn’t snowball into a major concern in the future.
4. Treat Your Anxiety
Try finding out what’s troubling you and dig deep to understand the root cause of it. Once you’re able to do that, you would also be able to overcome the mental blocks that are holding you back.
5. Attend Therapy
If your efforts haven’t been enough to help you move ahead from the past, consult a professional who can guide you through your concerns related to how to deal with an anxious attachment so that it doesn’t affect your physical and mental health any further. And most importantly, affect your present relationship or prevent you from striking up new friendships.
How To Deal With Relationship Anxiety?
1. Don’t Lose Your Identity
Indulge in activities that interest you during your free time and learn new ones – anything that catches your fancy. That apart, don’t miss out on taking care of yourself. Create an individual identity and not just what you are in the relationship.
2. Avoid Being Impulsive
You may want to act out when you’re anxious. Keep a check on yourself, so you don’t act out on your feelings. Because acting impulsively will do your relationship more harm than good. Instead, keep your mind preoccupied with activities that wouldn’t let your mind wander.
3. Seek Help
Visit a therapist who will listen to your concerns and advise you to overcome your anxiety, so it does not affect you physically or mentally, or disrupt your relationship.
Relationship anxiety can occur at the beginning of a new relationship or even in a long-term relationship when you least expect it. The above tips will help you overcome the anxiety and enjoy a healthy relationship.
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