Understanding Your Three Types Of Anxiety


three types of anxiety

Anxiety is a complex phenomenon that takes many forms. There are three basic types. The first, as the most familiar and perhaps the most intense, is what is commonly called “anxiety”. This type manifests itself as a feeling of dread or fear. It may be coupled with a feeling of impending doom.

Anxiety can take many forms. In some cases, it can be generalized anxiety which is essentially the same thing but involves fear of any future stress or anxiety. A second type is “reflexive anxiety” which involves an intense reaction to a specific event such as the death of a loved one or a car accident. Reflexive anxiety is also related to phobias.

An Overview

A third type is “id” anxiety. This type is related to bodily sensations such as heart palpitations, sweating, numbness or tingling in the hands and feet, and even dizziness. Id anxiety is often associated with excessive self consciousness. It is frequently accompanied by other symptoms such as panic attacks. When one or more of these types manifest themselves, it is usually because of the egos of those involved.

You see, in our societies today, people are generally taught to think that there are two kinds of beings in the world-the fearful ones and the greedy ones. Everyone feels threatened by those who are greedy and fearful. Therefore, everyone feels threatened by feelings such as anger, hatred, fear, and grief. All three types of anxiety are caused by the fears and phobias that society feeds them.

Types Of Anxiety

A desk with a laptop computer sitting on top of a chair

One type of anxiety is the psychoanalytic kind. People with these feelings live in fear of having unresolved psychological conflicts that will erupt into real life. These unresolved issues will then cause feelings such as anxiety, fear, and guilt. People with these feelings also have strong defenses mechanism for protecting themselves from having “unresolved” conflicts.

The second type of anxiety is the physical symptoms kind. People who feel physical symptoms due to their anxiety attack will experience things such as sweating, shaking, heart palpitations, nausea, shortness of breath, upset stomach, diarrhea, headaches, and a host of others. This type of anxiety is caused by their bodies’ reactions to traumatic events. For example, if a person is about to have a surgical procedure, he or she might experience a great deal of anxiety, even though they are fully aware of the safety of the procedure. The procedure itself could have been very harmful if it had been carried out then, so the body’s reactions were felt all throughout the ordeal.

Lastly, the third type is the psychosexual stages type. People with this feel most comfortable in one or several sexual acts. The trauma that causes this is either a rape sexual abuse, or similar ordeal that occurred in the past. When children are involved, the trauma is even more powerful since they have no knowledge or concept of the world outside of the safe confines of their own home. This type of anxiety can actually drive them to perform exceedingly well in school and beyond, but in terms of work, they can be devastating.

Bottom Line

All three types of anxiety are deeply rooted in our ego. Ego is essentially your interpretation of yourself, your emotions, and your needs. When we are frightened or faced with an immense challenge that requires tremendous courage, we will act to protect ourselves at all costs. That is how we become most vulnerable to the defense mechanisms that are designed to keep us safe and whole. It is our reaction to danger, and to events that we do not understand or can’t control.

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