The Impact of Generalized Anxiety on Daily Functioning: Navigating Work, School, and Relationships

While everyone experiences worries and stress from time to time, anxiety disorders cause a chronic, persistent, and often debilitating sense
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While everyone experiences worries and stress from time to time, anxiety disorders cause a chronic, persistent, and often debilitating sense of worry, overwhelm, and fear. Living with generalized anxiety disorder presents unique challenges and difficulties to manage and overcome.

Thankfully, anxiety disorders are highly treatable conditions with the right intervention and care. Although anxiety and relationships, work, and school are not the easiest to mix, there are things you can do to regulate your symptoms and live a fulfilling life.

What is Generalized Anxiety Disorder?

Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is one of the most common mental health disorders. An estimated 6.8 million people, or 3.1% of the adult population, live with generalized anxiety disorder every year.1 It causes excessive worry that is hard to control and creates moderate to severe disruption in daily activities.

Some psychological symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder include:

  • Inability to relax
  • Feeling on edge or restless
  • Difficulties focusing
  • Continual worry or anxiety about areas that are disproportionate to the seriousness of the situation or event
  • Over-analyzing things to expect and prepare for the worst possible outcome
  • Perceiving events or situations as threats even if they are not
  • Difficulties handling uncertainty
  • Extreme fear of making the wrong decision
  • Struggling to release or let go of fear or worries

People living with generalized anxiety disorder also experience numerous physical symptoms, such as:

  • Fatigue or exhaustion
  • Difficulties sleeping
  • Muscle aches or tension
  • Trembling
  • Irritability
  • Nervousness
  • Being easily startled
  • Sweating
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea

People with GAD experience extreme anxiety surrounding real-life situations and struggle with anxiety for no particular or obvious reason. For example, they may worry that they are in danger or that something bad will happen without apparent external cause. Learning to manage this anxiety is crucial for anyone who wants to live a productive, enjoyable life.

Managing Anxiety and Relationships, Work, and School

Living in a near-constant state of fear, worry, and anxiety creates difficulties in various areas such, as work, school, and relationships. School and work are two areas where everyone feels pressure to perform well; GAD only makes this pressure more prominent.

People with generalized anxiety disorder often feel an overwhelming sense of perfectionism, making it seem impossible to start on any one project or task. They often fear the response of their bosses or teachers, which makes it difficult for them to perform as well as they’re capable of.

Anxiety and relationships are another difficult area to manage. People who love someone with an anxiety disorder must understand that they can’t always help them overcome their worries. There is only so much they can do; the responsibility for living with generalized anxiety disorder falls on the person with the condition.

Finding Help for Generalized Anxiety Disorder

Trying to manage anxiety and relationships, work, or school alone is a difficult uphill battle. Thankfully, specialized mental health treatment programs are available to help. Mental health treatment is oftentimes the first step to finding freedom when living with generalized anxiety disorder. Facilities like Clearview Treatment Programs are the perfect option for those looking to overcome their GAD. Call us at 310-455-5258 or submit an online contact form to speak with an admissions specialist and learn more about the services we offer.


  1. Anxiety & Depression Association of America. (2022). Anxiety Disorders – Facts & Statistics.
  2. National Institute of Mental Health. (2023). Generalized Anxiety Disorder: When Worry Gets Out of Control.
  3. AAmerican Psychological Association. (2016). Beyond worry: How psychologists help with anxiety disorders.

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