Anxiety is something many people struggle with. It is not as easy to face as most people think it is and sometimes it can be much worse than it normally would be.

Anxiety disorders here in the US are the most common mental illness, according to the ADAA. It affects about 40 million adults from the age of 18 and up, this meaning the numbers are much higher when you consider how many younger people also struggle with anxiety disorders that are seemingly unnoticed. This is a growing issue and something that needs attention.

Now, if you have anxiety you know that you do some things that other people just don’t get. You don’t function in the way other people do all the time. Sometimes you do things that might be a little odd. There is nothing wrong with this but breaking it down can really help other people to better understand you.

Below I am going to go over some of the things anxious people do and/or signs that they are anxious in general. If you notice someone doing these things perhaps take the time to consider whether or not they might just be feeling anxious. We all go about things differently and that is something we all need to consider.

30 Things You Might Do Because You’re Anxious That Other People won’t Understand:

1. You might be really short with new people.

When you are anxious you don’t want to talk to anyone. You want to give yourself the room to calm down. If you are anxious and in the middle of a conversation being short might happen whether you want it to or not. You just don’t have much to say or any way to really say it.

2. You might question literally everything.

When you are having an anxiety attack it can feel like everyone is against you. You might be questioning literally everything. Everyone who comes to help and everything that happens could mean something different within your mind.

3. You might fidget a lot in different situations.

Depending on the situation you might shake your leg or fidget a bit. The more anxious you get the more you might fidget. This happens a lot more often than you’d think.

4. You might be a bit defensive.

When you are anxious you might become a bit more defensive than you normally would be. You might feel like you are messing up more than you are. You feel like everyone is jumping on your back even if they aren’t.

5. You might be a bit shaky.

You might be a bit more shakey when you are anxious. You might shake your leg or shake your arms or even your whole body. You just cannot be still.

6. You might get sick, literally.

Sometimes when you are anxious you might actually vomit or become sick. It is so much more than a simple ‘mental’ thing. It really has a lot of physical aspects to it as well.

7. You might bite your nails.

If you are an anxious person you most likely bite your nails at least sometimes. This is almost like a safety blanket for some people. I do this a lot more than I want to admit.

8. You might constantly cancel plans last minute.

You might cancel plans last minute because you can’t work up the nerve to leave the house. This is something that a lot of people find themselves doing. You just cannot make yourself get out there and it is nothing to be ashamed of. You’re not being rude, you just can’t do it.

9. You might pretend you don’t notice your phone ringing.

If someone is calling chances are you’re not going to answer unless you have to. You let your phone ring and ring until the person literally stops calling. This is because you would much rather not have to think of something to say or deal with the call itself. Texting is a lot easier for you because you can think out your resposes before sending them.

10. You might literally shut down.

When something really gets you nerved out, you shut down. You might not know how to really process what is going on. When this happens, removing yourself from the situation is often your best option.

11. You might stutter or slur your speech.

You might lose your voice in one way or another. Sometimes when people are dealing with an anxiety attack or even a panic attack their speech slurs or they begin stuttering. They aren’t doing it on purpose, they cannot help it and neither can you if it is something you go through.

12. You might stop making eye contact with others.

When you are anxious you might refuse to make eye contact with the people around you. Making eye contact might just be too much and if you don’t want to make eye contact, don’t. Do whatever helps you cope best.

13. You might crack your knuckles more.

I am also someone who does this. When I am anxious I pop my fingers constantly. You might do this as often as you an depending on the situation. It is not just a bad habit, it is more-so a coping mechanism.

14. You might yawn more or clear your throat constantly.

When we are nervous or anxious we might end up clearing our throat more because we are clamming up. You might yawn a few times or even end up feeling extremely thirsty. It all varies from person to person.

15. You might twist your hair or something of the sort.

Axious people tend to twist their hair depending on the situation. Now, some people do this more than others and of course, some don’t do it at all but it isn’t something that we think much about. You might be doing it because its a habit but you also might be doing it to make yourself more comfortable.

16. You might grind your teeth.

Anxious people tend to grind their teeth. While a lot of people consider this to be annoying they don’t understand why other people are doing it. You aren’t doing it because you want to, it’s just your way of getting through the situation before you.

17. You might have to leave early.

Having to leave early might seem rude but it is what is best for you sometimes. If you are overwhelmed or nervous you should never feel like you are stuck. If you want to leave, leave.

18. You might glue yourself to your phone.

When we are anxious we tend to stay pretty glued to our phones. This keeps some people from approachung us because we appear busy. While it doesn’t work for everyone it helps with most of them.

19. You might pretend to be busy.

Pretending to be busy is easily the oldest trick in the book. When we are anxious we can pretend to be reading, looking at something, or even watching television. We can deflect and relax our minds in doing this.

20. You might turn into the biggest joker around.

You might begin spouting jokes left and right. Sometimes this is the best way for an anxious person to relate to the people around him or her when they are getting worked up. While it might seem a bit odd, if it works, it works.

21. You might become a bit angry.

The more anxious you become the more angry you might also become. When people are making things worse becoming angry is to be expected. This is honestly though, more-so frustration than anger.

22. You might end up seeming rude without realizing it.

You might end up coming off as rude and that is okay. Whether you realize it or not you are doing your best. If others don’t understand you then you can always clear things up later.

23. You overexplain or underexplain.

You might overexplain things when you are anxious or if you are like me you might underexplain. This is something that happens because we are getting ahead of ourselves and trying to make the situation a bit less nervewracking. All in all, it is nothing too terrible and can be corrected later.

24. You might purposefully ignore texts or messages.

You might literally ignore text messages for days on end because you just don’t know how to respond to them. We all have different levels of anxiety and some people are more anxious than others. This is something that can either really ruin your relationships or put a serious strain on them.

25. You might ignore what others are saying.

You might literally ignore the people around you because you don’t want to have to face them. They might be trying to talk to you only for you to say one word and that be it. We all go about this one differently and sometimes you might literally shutdown and end up responding with a bunch of ‘yeah,’ it happens to the best of us from time to time.

26. You might seem a little harsh.

Sometimes we come off as harsh when we are trying to remove ourselves from conversations. This usually being conversations we didn’t want any part of to begin with. Don’t worry if you seem harsh or not, they will get over it.

27. You might just walk away and pretend you didn’t notice someone.

If someone seems to notice you in a store or somewhere in public you might literally pretend you didn’t see them and basically leave the store. This is not because you don’t like that person, it is because you did not prepare yourself to see them Anxiety is not easy to deal with.

28. You might become quite sarcastic.

Sometimes when we are anxious we become overly sarcastic. This is again a coping mechanism for some of us. While I don’t do this I know several people who do.

29. You might end up accidentally staring at someone.

When we are anxious we sometimes tend to stare off in the distance and lose ourselves in a train of thought. When this happens we sometimes come back to and realize we were actually staring at someone all that time. While it is awkward it isn’t too terrible.

30. You might end up coming off as if you really don’t like someone.

Sometimes when we are doing the things mentioned above we come off as if we don’t like the person we are spending time with. This is not our fault or their fault. It is a miscommunication in some sense. You should do your best to explain to them that it isn’t that you don’t like them, you are just someone who deals with anxiety.

Image via A Conscious Rethink

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