What Causes Anxiety? Isn’t that the first thing we search for, when we find ourselves overcome with fear? When things happen that seem beyond our control, we want the answers to why. Why us? Why now? What’s wrong with me?
I recently visited a forum on anxiety, and a man was asking what he could have done spiritually wrong to have caused his anxiety. I have heard others tell people that perhaps it’s a generational curse and they need to repent, or to go through spiritual deliverance from anxiety. Some will tell you that it’s all physical, and the serotonin in your brain is deficient. Some may even tell you it’s all ‘in your head’ (go figure).
After searching for the answer to what causes anxiety, you find yourself feeling pretty confused and almost anxious about why you’re anxious.
A lot of my fear in the beginning was centred around this question, and after much searching, and eventually finding the path to freedom, this is what I discovered….
God does not cause anxiety
If God is a loving Father, then He would never torment, or punish his children with fear. Nor would he ever inflict an anxiety disorder on someone because of their disobedience, or sin. God is a loving God, and that never changes…ever. So anytime you mull over in your mind that perhaps God is the cause of your anxiety, you can cross that off. I wrote about this topic on my first day in my Fearless in 21 Day series, called Understanding Fear.
If there are any spiritual causes, it’s often wrapped in the physical and emotional
What if I were to tell you that sometimes physical problems can cause spiritual problems. So often we hear it the other way around, that the reason we are in physical or mental torment is because our spirits are weak or cursed. However, a weakened body, or an ill mind is the perfect in for lies that this is your ‘spiritual fault.’ I remember that all too well. In fact, that was probably the first question I asked myself when I became sick. Oh, my faith must be bad. However, it was the opposite. Neglecting my physical needs, like rest, and neglecting my emotional needs, like taking time to grieve is what caused my spiritual life to suffer.
It’s not all physical, but it is
If anxiety didn’t manifest itself so physically all the time with shaking, sweating, stuttering, heart palpitations, dizziness, and more, we probably wouldn’t be googling what causes anxiety. Anxiety is just as much a physical disorder as it is a mental disorder, and sometimes the physical sensations can be more unsettling than the thoughts of anxiety. Physical deficiencies like lack of vitamin D, or serotonin, or thyroid issues, or hormonal imbalances can all be a significant contributor to anxiousness. However, even if the causes are triggered from physical issues, we still have immense power to heal our bodies, and keep our minds at ease.
Exhaustion is a HUGE cause of anxiety
This was a huge link for me, and something I really guard now in my recovery. Lack of rest affects the whole person, body, mind and spirit. I can usually peg down a common trait in people who struggle with anxiety, they don’t know how to rest or say no well. They are a doer for others, they work past their physical comfort, and they place men’s opinion and expectation over their limits. This is a classic cause of anxiety.
All this said, it can sometimes do more harm than good to over analyze how we got here. The truth is, you may be here, and God knows that, and has a path out. Accepting that we are where we are and moving forward is a great first step to recovering from anxiety.