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Being in a relationship can make us feel like all the love songs are about us. We find ourselves smiling a lot more, we want to be around that person as much as we can. We feel butterflies just thinking about them. It can give us a wonderful sense of belonging, unconditional support, and happiness. But, sometimes, those butterflies can flap out of control and turn into a persistent feeling of worry and doubt.
Most people experience some anxiety about their relationship, especially in the beginning. This is quite natural since all the expectations and desires are bubbling up. After a while, it is expected that these worries start to subside on their own.
However, the real concern arises when these worries evolve into debilitating anxiety and start to creep into your daily life. If you feel it getting out of control, and even hurting your relationship and well-being, it’s time to take a closer look.
Whether it comes from distrust, fear of abandonment, or questioning the other person’s feelings, it is important to stop yourself from spiraling and understand how to deal with anxiety in your relationship.
What Are the Signs of Relationship Anxiety?
Before you start to dissect the way you act in your relationship, you should know that not all worries are signs of anxiety. Paying attention to your emotions, insecurities, and changes in communication can be a very healthy exercise.
However, if you caught yourself constantly doubting the relationship’s future, deliberately sabotaging things, or being aloof with your partner, it could be a good time to talk with a professional.
Here are some possible signs that anxiety could be taking up too much space in your relationship:
- Continuously doubling the other person’s feelings for you;
- Wanting to be around your partner all the time;
- Looking for constant reassurance from your partner;
- Always putting the other person first, even at your own expense;
- Acting controlling about your partner’s relations and actions;
- Over-analyzing simple words and attitudes for omens of trouble;
- Feeling afraid that your partner will end the relationship;
- Spending more time worrying about the relationship than enjoying it.
All these anxious thoughts can undermine your happiness and make you feel pretty alone. It can lead you to create distance between you and your partner. And at its worst, can even push you to walk away from the person you love.
Understanding relationship anxiety can help you identify the negative thoughts and actions that are hurting your love life. So, what are the steps you can take to improve your well-being and deal with the effects of anxiety in your relationship?
How to Deal with Anxiety in a Relationship
1. Communicate your feelings
Anxiety can make us feel that things are bigger and more threatening than they are. To overcome these feelings, let your partner in on your worries, fears, and expectations for your future together.
Sometimes it can be difficult to start a conversation where you will feel vulnerable, but keeping these things to yourself can make you feel even more alone. Instead, opening up to your partner can strengthen the bond you already have.
Difficult issues don’t go away. Rather, they tend to fester until they reach boiling point. By speaking clearly with your partner, the insecurities that are fueling your anxiety are avoided. Leaving room for a healthier and more intimate relationship.
2. Enjoy the present
When you catch your mind wondering about whether you and your partner will be together in the next years or even months, try to stop yourself and focus on the present moment.
The things you focus on often become the most important, so if you focus on the possible problems they will absorb your energy until they’re big enough to cause you harm. They’ll drain your energy, your well-being, and your mental health.
To manage your anxieties, you need to cherish the present, and savor the happiness of being with a person you love and who also loves and chose you.
3. Confront your anxiety
Questioning the reasons for your anxiety can help you recognize these thoughts and emotions and tackle them more clearly.
Are you anxious because you have been hurt in the past? Are you worried about not being good enough? Do you fear your relationship won’t have a future?
It may sound strange to embrace your anxieties as a way to get over them, but this is one of the most effective ways to get your emotions under control.
4. Cultivate a relationship with yourself
Loving someone can be wonderful but it can take your attention away from taking care of yourself. It is expected that you immerse yourself in the other person and the relationship, at least in the begging. However, it is healthy to dedicate time to your own needs, passions, and relations.
Don’t forget to cultivate your life outside the couple. This personal space helps you feel refreshed and connected to your priorities, and it is also a way to bring you and your partner closer.
5. Talk to a therapist
If you’re having a hard time handling anxiety on your own, talking to a therapist may be the way for getting it under control. It also can help you improve your self-awareness and teach you coping skills to prevent lasting damage to your relationship.
Therapy can help you change negative and dysfunctional thoughts about yourself, your self-esteem, and your attitude toward your partner.
In some cases, a therapist who works with couples can be particularly helpful. Studies suggest that a single therapy session can help couples work through their relationship anxiety.
Anxiety Treatment in Baltimore, MD
Learning how to deal with anxiety in a relationship means having control over your emotions and fears. There’s a direct link between your mental health and well-being and the success of your relationships. For this, it is essential to have a deep understanding of yourself, your feelings, and your behaviors.
Everyone deserves to feel safe and connected in their relationships. If you feel that you are suffering from relationship anxiety, talk to us. At New Connections, our therapists will help you work through your worries and start a new path to a healthier and closer relationship.