What is the relationship between self-demand and anxiety?

Self-demanding is defined as an attitude of self-demanding, always wanting to improve and achieve new goals; this can be adaptive, but when it increases excessively, it can lead to the onset of an anxiety condition or disorder.

A person with a high degree of self-demand will show low self-esteem, always focused on achieving unattainable and frustrating goals, will constantly perceive negative aspects, with a high degree of self-criticism and no ability to delegate responsibility or say no. All these traits cause different alterations in him, as is the case with the presence of anxiety.

In order to reduce his discomfort and make him more adaptive and functional, it would be advisable to train different skills and abilities, working on irrational and negative beliefs, teaching the patient to relate appropriately to others and to himself so that he gets to know himself and spends more time, with the aim of reducing your anxiety and being happier.

In this article, we will focus on how anxiety and self-demand are related and what problems may arise.

What are self-demand and anxiety?

Anxiety is defined as a combination or set of emotions that appear before the possibility of future danger, that is, it appears without an external stimulus that causes it, the subject anticipates the possible consequence negative that can happen.

This emotional state is composed of a triple response system: the subjective, referring to the cognitive part; the physiological, which would be the somatic and the motor, referring to the behavioral, although the cognitive component is the one that stands out the most as an answer.

On different occasions, the most used term to compare with anxiety and thus better understand its characteristics is fear. In the case of anxiety, the response given is more diffuse and as we have pointed out, there is no external stimulus which is at the origin of such a reaction, but it is an anticipation of a possible danger in the future. Instead, fear is a reaction where biological and automatic components are activated to a greater extent, appearing when danger is present, in the present moment.

Anxiety won’t always cause problems; It is common for it to appear in situations that give us respect to face, as it may be before taking an exam, the problem will occur when it does not decrease and if it continues to appear, it can even lead to the onset of an anxiety disorder.

In reference to self-demand, this is defined, as the term clearly indicates, as an attitude of demand and criticism, specific to oneself. This attitude can be positive if we know how to control and regulate it because it encourages us to grow and continue to improve as people. Although it is also true that when this self-demand is excessive, it can have a serious impact on the person, affecting their mental health and being able to generate pathological symptoms typical of disorders such as depression, anxiety or stress. .

How are self-demand and anxiety related?

In the previous section, when we defined self-demand, we emphasized that this attitude towards oneself can be beneficial, making us better and guiding us to achieve the desired goals. But when it exceeds the appropriate levels, alterations can appear, which can lead to serious disorders.

When self-demanding begins to be pathological or negative, we detect characteristics such as setting unattainable goalswhich he understands as obligations, a very rigid mentality and only focused on achieving the desired objectives, he likes to be recognized for his work, he finds it difficult to delegate tasks and his own conception, about himself, will depend on achieving desired results, he has a low tolerance for frustration with high self-criticism, always focusing on the negatives and being afraid of failing.

In the same way, it is also characteristic that very demanding people present dichotomous thoughts, this means that for them everything is good or bad, white or black, there are no intermediate grays. In the same way, related to this reflection, it is centered on the results, they do not value or take into account the process to achieve them.

All these typical characteristics maintained in the long term have negative consequences or effects on the person who presents them, since it will enter a loop where nothing will ever be enough, ever more demanding. Thus, it is common for the self-esteem of such individuals to be impaired and it only depends on the successes achieved, and it will also not benefit the self-esteem that their thoughts focus only on the negative things. , always analyzing and evaluating what has not been done. went well, in what failed.

On the other hand, he often wants to cover more than he can, always saying yes to everything that is asked of him, because as we have said, he wants to feel good, valued by others. In the same way, it will be typical to show somatic states, pains in different parts of the body such as the muscles or the head given the accumulated tensions and pressures.

Given the characteristic and habitual traits exhibited by individuals with a high degree of self-demand, if this is maintained over time, it can lead to alterations in the psychological state of the subject, in particular in his state of spirit. If we keep in mind the definition of anxiety that we described in the first section, we see that this unease and anticipation of negative consequences is also present in self-demanding people.

It is for this reason, because the two terms have similar traits, that it will be common for people with high demands on themselves to also show symptoms and may even be diagnosed with a anxiety disorder.

The subject will enter a vicious circle of more self-demanding and therefore more anxiety, that will never be enough, he will always want more, but paradoxically this constant thought of always giving several times himself will not let us not acting, it paralyzes us and therefore leads to a greater feeling of anxiety because we see that we are not moving forward and that we are moving away from our objectives.

How to control self-demand and reduce anxiety

There are many factors which influence our degree of self-demanding, it is true that there is a predisposition of the person to present more or less of it, but the society in which we live also produces effects which always ask for more, it is a constant to get results and be successfuland this, as is obvious, does not help at all to be able to control our request and it is common that it leads to anxiety disorders.

For this reason, it will be important to treat it as soon as possible and try to control this psychological trait so that it has the least possible impact on the subject’s health. Asking for help is the first step and it is very important, because we recognize that there is something that makes us uncomfortable and we want to change, it is a fundamental point so that improvements can be brought.

Currently, the type of therapy most used and which normally shows greater effectiveness in different disorders, anxiety being one of them, is cognitive behavioral therapy, which, as its number indicates, uses cognitive techniques to modify and regulate the maladaptive and negative beliefs that the patient has and behavioral techniques to improve the behavior of the subjects and make them feel more functional and better with themselves.

The therapist accompanies and teaches the patient tools so that he can cope with the situation favorably and improve their quality of life. Thus, working on the subject’s self-esteem, raising a new focus and a new way of valuing it without success or results being the only ones to influence it and learn to know your limits and strengths to reinforce them and know what can realistically be required

Cognitive techniques can also be used to work on these subjects’ maladaptive thoughts and beliefs, trying to make them more flexible and less catastrophic and negative about themselves. In the same way the person will be trained to learn how to positively self-evaluate and self-reinforcement, being aware of the good aspects you have and thus being able to reward yourself for them.

In the social or relational field, we can work so that they assert themselves more, know how to defend their rights and know how to say no without thinking that they are letting others down. Por otro lado is, as already mentioned, usually they do not delegate work and end up doing everything themselves, so to reduce the workload they will have to trust others and delegate responsibilities, know doing it right, knowing how to lead, is even more functional than doing it all yourself.

finally it is essential to devote time, that we listen, that we know our thoughts, what we feel, because in this way we can organize them and act preventively if we see that something is not going as it should. That way, take your time during the day to relax, disconnect from work, and do the things that really make you happy and feel good, live in the present.

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