Have you just started seeing someone that makes you happy, but you’re having doubts about longevity? Or perhaps you’re worried that they’re going to break your heart so you’re freaking out? This is completely normal and you’re not alone.
Relationship anxiety is a very real thing, and it occurs when you start to have doubts or insecurities about a relationship, even when things could be going well.
Although you can struggle with relationship anxiety when you’re in a long-term relationship, typically you will experience it at the start of a new relationship because it’s more volatile and more doubts tend to creep into your head because you don’t know your significant other fully yet.
If you are struggling with anxiety surrounding your romantic relationship, this article is going to cover the signs, the causes, and the problems it can cause, so that you’re all clued up.
In addition, we will also be sharing 8 of the best ways you can stand up to your relationship anxiety and move forward with better mental health, a better relationship, and a better sense of self.
You might think that you should be over the moon after just getting into a new relationship with your partner, but instead, your mind is swirling with worries about the level of commitment within the relationship and if you’ll be together forever. You could find yourself always asking your partner about what their future plans are just to make sure you are both on the same track.
You will find that you are constantly thinking about the future rather than living in the present moment. Therefore, the present moment gets ruined by the whirlwind of doubts about the longevity of the relationship inside your head.
This will most likely be one of the most obvious signs of relationship anxiety, particularly if you suffer from low self-esteem. You might constantly be questioning why your partner has chosen to be in a relationship with you. You’ll probably compare yourself to their ex, question whether the compliments they pay you all the time are true and your low self-acceptance and self-worth might even create conflict.
You might yearn for your partner’s love and affection, which is pretty normal for anyone in a new relationship as you will want to soak up every inch of this person every time you’re around them. However, if you’re experiencing anxiety within a new relationship, you won’t only want affection, you’ll need it to reassure your mind that your partner still wants you.
Although this is a sign that you will most likely not realize until you’ve really thought about it, it’s vital to talk about it. You could have really changed yourself and lost yourself by either trying to become what you think your partner wants or by mirroring them and slowly turning into a female version of them. You are seeking acceptance and feel the need to change who you are.
There are an array of causes for relationship anxiety and it really depends on each individual’s previous experiences and mental health. Therefore, there’s no ‘one size fits all’ when it comes to causes, and you should try and determine why you struggle with it so that you can deal with it in an appropriate way.
If you have suffered from some kind of previous relationship trauma such as being cheated on, being heartbroken, or being abused emotionally or physically, you will most likely suffer from anxiety even if you’re now in a new relationship with a kind person that won’t hurt you.
If you have incredibly low self-acceptance, self-belief, and self-love, you will suffer from anxiety because you don’t believe that anyone could ever love you. Of course, this isn’t true, but it’s what you believe.
The truth is, some people just tend to overthink, worry, doubt, and look to the future a lot more than others do. Have you always thought too much about everything, regardless of whether it involves romantic relationships or not? If so, you could just be this type of person.
Not to try and create more relationship anxiety for you by reading this, but if you have an especially intense case of relationship anxiety, it could cause problems within the new relationship.
Depending on how you deal with the anxiety, you might find that your partner is sick of you having no self-belief, gets angry that they have to constantly reassure you that they love you, and doesn’t like the fact you never live in the present moment but rather worry about the future.
Don’t worry though, as long as you deal with relationship anxiety and stop any problems in their tracks, there shouldn’t be any relationship issues because of you suffering from this. So, let’s take a look at the 8 ways you can deal with your anxiety when in a relationship.
One of the most important things you need to do is try and figure out why you feel like you do. Only after you have identified the cause of the anxiety will you be able to try and work through it. Have you suffered from relationship trauma in the past? Or perhaps you’re insecure and have low self-esteem? Whatever the reason is that you’re feeling anxious, you need to pinpoint what it could be.
When dealing with feeling anxious, especially when it comes to feeling that way in relationships, you will probably judge yourself and put pressure on yourself to not feel so negative. You’ll want to push away all of the doubts and the negative thoughts from your head, but the truth is that the more you do that, the more they will stay. Instead, don’t judge yourself. Allow yourself to recognize the emotions you’re feeling and work through it.
One of the most vital aspects of any relationship, especially with a romantic partner, is clear communication. When you’re dealing with relationship anxiety, it’s important that you’re upfront and honest with your partner. Don’t hide how you feel from them, because they are there to love you and support you, and they might be able to do that in a way that you can’t.
A lot of the time, people that deal with relationship anxiety will self sabotage the relationship by doing things like starting arguments, putting down their partner, hanging out with attractive single people, or their exes. Although this might be your head’s way of trying to sort out the issue for you, you could lose your love if you do this, so try to recognize when you’re self-sabotaging and stop it.
If you’re always thinking about the future, try and stay in the present moment more often. You can try and use mindfulness techniques such as mediation, or you can simply try and enjoy exactly what you’re doing at any given moment.
All relationships are important just like how this new relationship is important to you, but the most important relationship of all is the one that you have with yourself. If you’re anxious because of low self-esteem or lack of self-love, start to love yourself. Leave yourself positive notes, stop comparing yourself to other people, join online self-love communities, and try to appreciate yourself in a way you’ve never done before.
If you think that you’re merging into your partner or trying to change to become someone they like (even though they obviously really like you, hence the reason they are with you), doing things you like and spending time with your friends without your partner is a great way to regain who you are. You don’t need to change, you just need to reassert your sense of self and understand how amazing, unique, and loveable you are, just as you are.
If you feel like you are really suffering from relationship anxiety or anxiety of any kind, it might be a good idea to go and see a professional counselor or therapist who can help you through the problems you’re facing. Try not to feel ashamed or embarrassed, as this is something the majority of people will experience at some point during their lives.
It’s completely normal to feel anxious in a new relationship. For starters, you are welcoming someone new fully into your personal life which is daunting. However, on top of that, you are vulnerable with this person, you’re falling in love with them and you might lose your sense of self by becoming what you think they want you to be. It’s a lot to take on, so it’s completely normal to feel anxious.
Hopefully, the 8 ways listed above will help you deal with your relationship anxiety. Take a look at each point in-depth and see what kind of things would be most beneficial to you. Also, bear in mind that relationship anxiety could crop up when you least expect it, so it’s always good to have some sort of plan in place as to how you’ll deal with the sudden appearance of it.
There are many different types of anxiety, but it’s important to note that relationship anxiety and social anxiety, which is what it seems you’re alluding to here, are different. If you are socially anxious you might find it challenging to date. You can make this easier by replacing negative thoughts with positive ones, by having a friend that you can call if things get uncomfortable, by letting your date know how you feel, and by possibly seeking professional help.
The difficult thing to get your head around is that anything can cause anxiety in a relationship, and it’s completely personal as to what a trigger for it is. As mentioned above, some people’s relationship anxiety can be caused by low self-esteem whilst others can be caused by trust issues they have developed from one of their previous relationships. It is useful to figure out what your personal cause or causes are so you can understand and tackle them.
Worrying isn’t a direct sign of love, no. Of course, worrying does indicate that you care about someone enough to think about them and to ultimately worry about them or your relationship with them. However, worrying isn’t a good thing in a relationship, so never fall back on worry to express love.
After reading this, you should be all clued up about pretty much everything that surrounds relationship anxiety, and if you do have it, hopefully, you now understand how best to deal with it and overcome it. It is easy to say, but try to just let the relationship do its thing and enjoy the moment without worry for the future.
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