How to Know When It’s Normal Anxiety

How to know when it's normal anxiety

Woman with hands on cheeks pondering

How to Know It’s When Normal Anxiety

It’s important for us to recognize that stress is every day in day-to-day life.  Breaking up with your partner, school exams, doctor appointments, and even your first blog post.  The question is if you feel too much about normal life circumstances, which we will discuss in the closing comments below. For now, here are some examples of everyday life events that can be anxiety-inducing.

Additional situations in which anxiety can be expected may be like the following:

  • Public Speaking: It’s common to feel anxious before giving a presentation or speech, even if you’re experienced. This type of anxiety is known as performance anxiety.
  • Job Interviews: Nervousness and anxiety before a job interview are typical. It’s a natural response to the importance of the event and the desire to make a good impression.
  • Exams and Tests: Many students experience test anxiety before important exams. This anxiety can motivate them to study and prepare adequately.
  • First Dates: Meeting someone new and potentially forming a romantic connection can lead to feelings of nervousness and anxiety. This is a common experience when dating.
  • Travel and New Experiences: Going on a trip, especially to an unfamiliar place, can trigger anxiety. The anticipation of the unknown and adjusting to new surroundings is normal.
  • Moving or Changing Homes: The process of moving to a new home, city, or country can be stressful and lead to anxiety. Adjusting to a new environment is a common source of worry.
  • Health Concerns: Feeling anxious when you’re facing a health issue, awaiting medical test results, or going through a medical procedure is a normal response to the uncertainty of the situation.
  • Financial Stress: Worries about money, budgeting, and financial stability are common stressors that can lead to anxiety.
  • Family Transitions: Major life events such as marriage, divorce, pregnancy, or the birth of a child can bring about anxiety as individuals adapt to new roles and responsibilities.
  • Natural Disasters: Feeling anxious or worried when faced with natural disasters like hurricanes, earthquakes, or wildfires is a natural response to potential danger.
  • Conflict or Disagreements: Tensions and disagreements in relationships or at work can trigger feelings of anxiety as you navigate interpersonal challenges.
  • Time Constraints: Having a lot to do in a limited amount of time, such as meeting deadlines at work or managing a busy schedule, can lead to situational anxiety.

Is My Anxiety Normal?

These life event situations are typical to be anxious about. Although this is not an exhaustive list, anxiety is normal. One question to ask about all the above events is if your anxiety is at a healthy level.  For example, it can be normal to feel anxious about failing an exam while awake, but you can fall asleep at night. Yet, it may not be customary to be up four hours past your bedtime because you are anxious about failing your exam. Additionally, it may be normal to feel anxious at a normal level because you didn’t prepare for the test, and you still can’t control the worry. Something else may be going on within you.

Anxiety is there for a reason, and at healthy levels, we are told it will help us to be active about the problem and perform the task. However, you could be feeling more anxiety than is normal about normal life situations.  Some indicators you may need professional help with your anxiety could be struggling to control the worry or stop the worry and worrying about many different topics in life.  This is discussed more on this blog page, “How to Know When to Seek Help for Anxiety.”



Professionally Reviewed by:
Abraham Hudson, Clinical Mental Health Counselor (CMHC)
Graduated from Johns Hopkins University, School of Education, May 2018
Active Mental Health Therapist with Trauma, Anxiety, & Depression since 2018