Generalized Anxiety Disorder

I am generalized anxiety disorder

People question the strength of the humans that I reside in

Parents tell their kids “you’re overreacting”

People tell their friends “it’s not that deep”

I have to tell you that I can drive a person mad

Don’t underestimate my power

I have so much control over a person’s actions

I can keep you up until 3 in the morning

I can keep you from going out to see your friends

I can keep you from speaking up about how you really feel

I completely alter your perspective on the world around you

I’m sorry for making you fear things that you should not fear


Generalized anxiety is a fairly common emotion which can be felt at different levels by different people. About 3.1% of the population in the US (about 6.8 million people) has been formally diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder, with women being twice as likely to get it. This disorder is most often characterized by people being in constant fear that something bad will occur, even if there is no reason to believe so. What’s more, they are usually very concerned with their future regarding their career, family, friends, etc. Those with generalized anxiety find it difficult to control their fear that their life will suddenly take a turn for the worst, and this idea makes it challenging to carry out daily tasks. It can make it difficult to focus and can cause insomnia. Those with this form of anxiety feel that they have very little control over their lives and that each decision can make or break their future. Often times, people feel that by being in a constant state of panic makes them more conscious of their surroundings and decisions so they can more easily fix any problems that may arise, thus making it difficult for them to stop worrying. 

Though the exact cause of generalized anxiety is unknown, research suggests it has to do with a person’s surroundings, family background, and any life experiences that may have been traumatic. Environmental factors that can affect anxiety would be growing up or living in a city that has a high crime rate or hostile residents. Though more evidence needs to be found to support this claim, researchers suggest that anxiety could be partially genetic, so if your family members have generalized anxiety it is likely that you may have it as well. Generalized anxiety can be alleviated with psychotherapy, medication, or both. During therapy, you would be taught how to effectively control your anxiety and relaxation techniques such as yoga, meditation, or exercise. [1]