If you have anxiety, then you already know the symptoms can be tough to ignore. You might feel your armpits sweating as you step onto public transportation, or experience a pounding in your chest as you walk down the street. But other times, habits caused by anxiety can show up in small ways that may not be so obvious.
Now let's take a look at those:
#1: Excessively Playing With Your Hair
It's a self-soothing behaviour to calm anxiety. While it's fine to occasionally play with your hair, an ongoing habit of twisting and pulling at your strands may be a sign of anxiety.
In its extreme form it's called Trichotillomania, which is a hair pulling compulsions. If you can't stop playing with your hair, or are noticing bald or thin patches forming on your scalp — which is a side effect of Trichotillomania — It's time to speak to a therapist.
#2: Going To The Toilet Frequently
While there are multiple health issues that can explain frequent trips to the bathroom, anxiety may very well be one of them. Many people with anxiety report "that they constantly feel the urge to use the restroom, worry about not being able to find a toilet when they are outside, or even get diarrhea as a result of excessive worrying and/or stressing". If this is you, it may be time to speak with a psychologist.
#3: Always Arriving To Places Excessively Early
Although it is great practice to be on time, if you find yourself always being the first person arriving at a social venue, or that you tend to arrive more than half an hour early when meeting friends, that might be a sign of anxiety.
Many people with anxiety report "that they always plan their journey excessively early ahead, searching up the same routine multiple times, and often thought of every possible way where things can go wrong". They might start stressing the day before a social event, or felt unease and hard to focus all morning when they have a dinner appointment.
#4: Apologising Excessively When You Haven't Done Anything Wrong
Knowing how and when to apologise is obviously a good and admirable trait. But it is possible to go overboard — especially if you have anxiety.
Many sufferers "feel guilty for things that are not in their control and have a habit of taking things personally, which results in them feeling the need to say 'sorry' for almost anything."
#5: Not Being Able To Sleep Through The Night
If you suffer from anxiety, you might find that you have trouble sleeping, staying asleep, or that you always wake up early. It's easy to brush it off, since pretty much everyone complains about being tired. And yet, since it's often a sign of anxiety, an inability to sleep isn't something you should ignore.
Anxiety can keep us up at night, literally, and also wake us up from sleep preventing us from being able to go back to sleep. It is a vicious cycle as the sufferer often feel tired and unproductive during the day - if you struggle with your sleep, it's time to let your doctor know.
If a few of the above hidden signs resonate with you, it does not necessarily mean that you suffer from anxiety, however if you are worried; it might be a good idea to speak to a mental health professional about it.