Second-hand Anxiety

Feb 21, 2023
Do you ever feel yourself leaving lunch with a friend more stressed and anxious than you were prior to meeting that person? This common experience is called second-hand anxiety. Most commonly seen in friendships or relationships where there is one person who excessively vents and complains. These experiences can have a huge negative impact on our mood, behavior, and mental health.
Second-hand anxiety can often be placed on us by family members, significant others, bosses, etc. It is important to evaluate our relationships and eliminate any additional stress or anxiety that is not necessary in your life. Yes, sometimes this means eliminating an entire friendship, but it can also be managed by setting clear boundaries within the relationship. By eliminating toxic relationships and stress, we can decrease our symptoms of anxiety, resulting in a less opportunities to project these emotions on to something (like food) or someone else who is important to us.
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