(This is Part 1 of a multi-part series on Anxiety, its causes and what to do about it)

Anxiety is a normal part of life. Normal anxiety can help us be productive and meet our obligations. Without some anxiety, we might never study for a test, go to work or pay our bills and our lives would probably be a mess. However, in our 2010 stress-filled lives, too little anxiety is usually not the problem. Anxiety becomes a problem when the 4 D’s are present: Disproportion, Disruption, Distress and Duration. (Based on the work of Aureen Pinto Wagner, PhD.)

  • Disproportionate anxiety is when the anxiety exceeds what would be normal in that situation.
  • Anxiety is Disruptive when it substantially disturbs one’s daily functioning and makes it difficult to achieve daily tasks.
  • The third D – Distress - is when the anxiety causes the individual to be very upset and troubled and the anxiety feels like a heavy weight.
  • And 4th - This considerable anxiety lasts over a period of time - The Duration is generally a month or more.

Next in the series, I’ll be discussing the different anxiety disorders. I want to hear from you so if you have comments or questions about anxiety please use the “Speak Your Mind” box below to ask your questions or leave your thoughts on anxiety.