Do You Have High-Functioning Anxiety?

High-functioning anxiety is a term used to describe individuals who appear to function well in their daily lives despite experiencing significant levels of anxiety. While they may seem calm, composed, and successful on the outside, internally, they are battling with constant worry, fear, and apprehension.

People with high-functioning anxiety often possess a strong work ethic and strive for perfection in everything they do. They are driven by a fear of failure and are highly self-critical, setting unrealistically high standards for themselves. This relentless pursuit of excellence can lead to chronic stress and burnout, as they find it difficult to switch off and relax.

Despite their achievements and outward success, those with high-functioning anxiety are plagued by self-doubt and a persistent fear of making mistakes. They tend to overanalyze situations, obsessing over every detail and potential outcome, which can be mentally exhausting. This constant state of hyper-vigilance can make it challenging for them to make decisions, as they are constantly second-guessing themselves.

In social settings, individuals with high-functioning anxiety may appear confident and outgoing, but beneath the surface, they are often consumed by worry about what others think of them. They may overprepare for social interactions, rehearsing conversations in their mind and worrying about saying the wrong thing or appearing foolish. This can lead to feelings of isolation and loneliness, as they struggle to form genuine connections with others due to their fear of judgment.

Physical symptoms such as insomnia, muscle tension, headaches, and gastrointestinal issues are common among those with high-functioning anxiety. These symptoms can further exacerbate their anxiety, creating a vicious cycle of stress and physical discomfort.

Despite the challenges posed by high-functioning anxiety, many individuals are able to maintain successful careers and relationships. However, this often comes at a cost to their mental and physical well-being, as they are constantly pushing themselves to meet their own unrealistic expectations.

Treatment for high-functioning anxiety typically involves a combination of therapy, medication, and lifestyle changes. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) can be particularly effective in helping individuals identify and challenge the negative thought patterns that contribute to their anxiety.

Self-care practices such as mindfulness, meditation, exercise, and adequate sleep can be beneficial in reducing anxiety levels and improving overall well-being. Building a trusting working relationship with CBT therapist has shown to be highly effective in lowering functioning anxiety. CBT therapist has the training and experience to help women and men understand and navigate their anxiety differently, so it no longer has a firm grip on them.

High-functioning anxiety is a complex and often misunderstood condition characterized by outward success and internal struggle. While those affected may appear confident and in control, they are battling with constant worry, self-doubt, and physical symptoms that can significantly impact their quality of life. With the right support and treatment, individuals with high-functioning anxiety can learn to manage their symptoms and lead fulfilling, balanced lives.

Tampa Anxiety Therapist

At Hanson Complete our therapists are specially trained in helping with and minimizing high-functioning anxiety symptoms. We use a toolkit of CBT therapy, mindfulness, ACT therapy, trauma-informed care, along with other evidence-based approaches. When you’re ready to stop letting anxiety run your life, our therapists are here for you. Interested in more information? Great! Just call us today and we’ll discuss how our therapists can help you on your journey towards healing your anxiety.