It can be quite enlightening when you explore the role of control in your anxiety.
Sometimes the urge or need to control causes anxiety and sometimes anxiety appears to use control as an outlet. That is the thinking of “If I keep this from happening, I won’t be anxious”.
This type of thinking never works because by trying to control an outcome, person, or event, you actually increase your anxiety.
I see this manifesting and causing difficultly, especially, in relationships.
Again, awareness and personal insight are where to start. Taking an honest and thoughtful look at your behaviors and emotions and how they interact and may be impacting others puts you in the best position to evaluate for change and/or understanding.
Most often, your partner will respond favorably to you getting a greater handle on your anxiety and keeping it out of the relationship.
These issues can be explored thoroughly in therapy and processed so that they impact you and your loved ones less and less. Benefits include feeling more “in control! But in control of your own reactions, emotions, and behaviors instead of an outcome outside of you, another person, or an event involving others.
When experiencing a negative feeling or becoming engaged in conflict, ask yourself:
- Why am I feeling this way?
- What am I reacting to?
- Is it possible that anxiety is contributing to my feelings or behaviors?
Then, make a note of your answers and any connections that you can draw to your own anxiety.
After assessing this repeatedly, you will begin to notice more awareness of when anxiety is taking over and how it winds its way into different parts of your life, including your relationships.