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Anxiety is not something that we can control on our own. Sure for some medication or meditation might work wonders but the truth is, anxiety doesn’t just go away. 

If someone close to you has some kind of anxiety disorder you as someone who cares about them need to go the extra mile to educate yourself on it. There will be times when you say the wrong thing and of course, that’s not something we can avoid entirely but the more you know about what they’re going through the better you will be at handling it yourself. When someone you care about is suffering or struggling you should step up and that’s just the truth. 

If someone in your life struggles with anxiety, the last thing you should want to do is pressure them into something they’re uncomfortable with. Don’t guilt-trip them for not wanting to go out or perhaps for not being able to even though they want to. Don’t make them feel bad for the way they’re feeling or tell them to just get over it because well, it’s not that simple. 

Anxiety disorders are very common, more-so than you might expect and they don’t just go away. There is no switch that can be flipped and you can’t just pretend that you’re able to fix things when you yourself don’t even ‘get’ them. If your friend or partner or whoever has anxiety in your life is overwhelmed and can’t go out perhaps suggest staying in with them instead. 

While it’s not your place to always spot when they’re uncomfortable as you get closer to them you’ll be able to see when they’re feeling overwhelmed and when that happens there are things you can do. Help them to better understand what they’re going through themselves and work to destigmatize the issues at hand. They already feel like the world is judging them, make sure they know that you at the very least are not. 

One big thing I believe we all need to know about anxiety is it’s not one size fits all. What gets me freaked out in this sense might not bother other people but that doesn’t mean their anxiety is more present than mine or vice versa. We all face things in our own ways and all have our own triggers. If you’re confused on how to help, don’t be afraid to ask. If they need you to help calm them down they’ll tell you how to do it more often than not. 

Don’t be overbearing but also do let them know you’re there for them and that you know they are capable of the things they perhaps are unsure of. While you should encourage them to try more and do more you shouldn’t force it or confront them as a whole. It’s easy to get mad and lash out at them because you don’t understand what they’re going through but the more you try to see things through their eyes the easier it will be for you to truly accept the things before you. 

To learn more about anxiety and those with it take a look at the video below. It’s never easy and the people in your life dealing with it aren’t making things harder on you because they want to. They honestly want nothing more than to be ‘normal’ and when they’re struggling with their anxiety they feel very not ‘normal.’