Workplace Anxiety: What It Is and How Therapy Can Help You Overcome It

Susan Halsey - Writer for Top10
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Workplace Anxiety What It Is and How Therapy Can Help You Overcome It
Do you feel a pit in your stomach when you think about going to work? Learning what fuels job-related stress and seeking therapeutic support could provide the relief you need to overcome your daily struggles.

From sleepless nights to troubled relationships—I've seen firsthand how workplace anxiety can negatively impact mental health and job performance. Fortunately, online therapy services can empower us with practical methods to pinpoint our stress.

With over 20 years of experience as a clinical psychologist, I can guide you in understanding the causes and symptoms of your anxiousness. With professional support and your determination, we can improve your well-being.

» Take control of workplace stress with these online therapy services for anxiety.

What is Workplace Anxiety?

Workplace anxiety refers to excessive worry related to your job. It can make you feel overwhelmed by responsibilities, unable to concentrate, irritable with co-workers, and dread going to work each day.

Experiencing nervousness at work from time to time is expected. In fact, 83% of US workers suffer from work-related stress. However, continuous panic that interferes with daily life might indicate a more serious underlying issue.

Common causes include:

Symptoms of Workplace Anxiety

If you've been anxious for weeks or months because of work, you might be dealing with symptoms of anxiety disorders. This ongoing stress can hurt your job performance, causing you to miss deadlines and even impact your confidence and relationships outside of work.

If you have work-related anxiety, you may:

  • Experience a constant feeling of worry, dread, or hopelessness
  • Find it difficult to concentrate on tasks and make decisions
  • Be irritable or impatient over minor nuisances at work
  • Have sleep problems causing fatigue
  • Show physical signs like headaches, jaw clenching, and neck and shoulder pain
  • Avoid projects, procrastinate, and call in sick frequently
  • Often experience/have panic attacks

Anxiety-induced insomnia is just one of the ways mental health can affect your physical health and performance. Without help, this could lead to more serious issues like depression or turning to substances.

Symptoms of Workplace Anxiety

How to Deal With Workplace Anxiety

Instead of getting stuck in thinking traps that affect your mental health, try these strategies:

Talk About It

Talking about workplace anxiety can be a transformative step towards understanding and managing your feelings. Opening up to someone you trust, like a close friend, family member, or therapist, makes it easier to put your thoughts into perspective and tackle the problem.

Platforms like Thriveworks emphasize the importance of confronting job-related stress through confrontation techniques like face-to-face conversation. Voicing your experiences allows you to explore strategies tailored to your unique situation, fostering resilience and personal growth.

Break Tasks Into Smaller Chunks

Feeling anxious about a big work project? Break it down into smaller pieces. This makes it less scary. Focus on one small task each day and reward yourself when it's done. Establishing little goals gives you control and direction over your work day.

Checking things off your to-do list builds confidence to keep going. It also helps you establish realistic goals. And if you don't complete everything you planned for the day, that's okay—give yourself some grace.

Consider Therapy

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) services can be particularly helpful in dealing with workplace anxiety. Platforms like Cerebral equip you with tools and strategies like self-reflection statements to pinpoint your stress triggers to increase emotional resilience.

With this knowledge, you can change how you respond to overwhelming situations. As you progress, you'll build a toolkit of coping mechanisms and be able to tackle work challenges with confidence and calm.

Take Care of Your Body

Eating healthy and staying hydrated can boost your mood and energy, helping to reduce workplace anxiety. Dr. John Saito explains that alcohol before bed can disrupt restorative sleep. Similarly, caffeine may reduce the duration of shut-eye and increase anxiety. Consider trying therapy techniques designed to promote better sleep.

Exercise and movement are also essential for reducing work-related tension and frustration. Yoga apps offer a convenient way to incorporate stress-relieving practices into your daily routine.

How to Deal With Workplace Anxiety

Stay Mindful and Relaxed

Using meditation apps can calm your mind, reduce stress, and keep you in the present moment when you notice anxiety symptoms. Deep breathing exercises, focusing on breathing through your stomach instead of the upper chest area, can also help relieve tension.

Journaling helps eliminate racing thoughts about your work situation and puts things into perspective. It builds self-awareness around what triggers you. Another helpful strategy is practicing daily positive affirmations.

You could try, “I can handle any situation with grace and understanding.” Doing this replaces self-doubt with confidence in your abilities.

» Need guidance? Learn how to accept situations you can't change.

Focus on Self-Care

When work life gets too much, it is important to press pause. Make yourself a priority with simple self-care activities like getting enough sleep, eating nutritious foods, and engaging in hobbies you enjoy. Rebuilding your self-esteem takes small, consistent steps of prioritizing activities that nourish you.

Pay attention to the signs of burnout that may be arising. Schedule small breaks in your day to give your mind and body time to rest and recharge. Treat yourself with kindness and compassion—remember, you deserve health and joy.

Speak Up At Work

It's time to take things into your own hands. Start by knowing your limits and setting clear, realistic goals for yourself. Openly communicate with your manager when the work is too intense. Encourage constructive feedback or additional training to boost your skills.

Check if your company offers an employee assistance program (EAP). EAPs give staff access to free guidance sessions. If your workplace doesn't provide this, encourage them to get outside counseling assistance through BetterHelp.

After the EAP intake is finalized, employees will complete a questionnaire, get matched with a therapist, and book their first session within 24 hours. Members can meet with a therapist through texting, phone, video, and live chat.

How to Deal With Workplace Anxiety

How Online Therapy Can Help With Workplace Anxiety

Many people struggle with workplace burnout and job pressures. However, help is available through online counseling services. Sites like connect you with licensed therapists for video chat and phone sessions aimed at relieving anxiety and dealing with depression.

Additionally, platforms like Talkspace offer unlimited messaging. This allows you to get in-the-moment coping skills during stressful events at the office.

The beauty of remote counseling is the flexibility and affordability it offers. You can access private care without taking time off or commuting. Since overhead costs are lower, online professionals can charge much less and still provide personalized care.

I encourage you to research different types of therapy providers to see what resonates with your needs. This can empower you to excel at work and boost your mental health.

Thrive at Work: Online Therapy for Anxiety Relief

Workplace anxiety can be overwhelming, but you don't have to tackle it alone. You can learn techniques to manage stress and keep yourself mentally fit with counseling. Whether through online therapy, self-help strategies, or simply reaching out for support, know that you have options to create a happier you. 

» Struggling to cope? Try these 10 efficient ways to handle stress.

Susan Halsey - Writer for Top10
With 20+ years of experience as a licensed clinical psychologist, Dr. Susan Halsey specializes in anxiety, mood disorders, ADHD, relationships, and sports psychology. She's a certified soccer coach and champions mental wellness through exercise and support networks.

The author of this article has been paid by Natural Intelligence to write this article. Neither the author nor Natural Intelligence provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or your local emergency number immediately.