Are you among the 18.1% of the adult US population, which is roughly 40 million people, that have suffered with anxiety over a 12 month period?

Here are some interesting facts according to NIMH (National Institute of Mental Health) and ADAA (Anxiety and Depression Association of America):

  • Women are 60% more likely than men to experience anxiety over a lifetime.
  • Anxiety disorders develop from a complex set of risk factors, including genetics, brain chemistry, personality, and life events.
  • Anxiety disorders are highly treatable, yet only about one-third of those suffering receive treatment…(now, this is a sad truth).

The workplace brings its fair share of anxiety triggers that need to be managed–both to the employee well situated in her job or the employee eager to climb the corporate ladder.

So, anyone of us at work can suffer a mild to intense range of anxiety with symptoms of excessive worry, heart palpitations, voice shakiness, sweaty palms and faint feelings as well as a tendency to avoid opportunities for fear of feeling embarassed and out of control.

In today’s article…

I will unveil a list of 20 workplace anxiety triggers that ForbesWoman followers shared with psychotherapist and business performance consultant, Jonathan Berent during both interviews and polls on Facebook and Twitter.  Jonathan Berent co-authored the book, Work Makes Me Nervous featuring Amy Lemley, one of the ForbesWoman followers he interviewed.

With my behavioral health background I look forward to future articles when we will discuss the management of these triggers. Mr. Berent has categorized them into these 5 basic issues…

  • Fear of speaking in public
  • Fear of interacting with authority figures
  • Fear of taking on new challenges
  • Fear of being noticeably nervous
  • Perfectionism

For now, let’s look at the list of 20 common workplace anxiety triggers identified by the women Mr. Berent interviewed.

Here’s what they said…

1–  Speaking up during a meeting with anxieties of appearing incompetent.

2–  Believing that I should remember someone’s name and I don’t.

3–  Eating in front of colleagues and fearing they think I look like a “slob” when chewing.

4–  Using a company restroom when others are in there, feeling self-conscious.

5–  Being attracted to a colleague or the opposite-not being attracted and the necessity of interacting with someone of the opposite sex.

6–  Making a presentation, whether it is in front of a few people or large group at a conference.

7–  Being interviewed for a job and fearing rejection.

8–  Keeping up with technology poorly which negatively impacts work performance or the perception by co-workers.

9–  Asking a question and letting others know my lack of understanding, seeing me as weak.

10- Giving feedback to employees fearing a social awkwardness and offending them.

11- Attending team building exercises and feeling ill at ease.

12- Meeting the CEO in the hallway and wondering what to say.

13- Making small talk and fearing being embarrassed or judged.

14- Meetings with the boss stirring up issues with authority and the need to be perfect.

15- Having to talk during a conference call and the fear of appearing incompetent.

16- Being seen on a webcam, uncomfortable with my physical appearance and being put on the spot.

17- Attending company social events.

18- Forgetting something or letting something “slip” because of handling so much.

19- Being seen as incompetent generally. Self-esteem issues of am I good enough surfacing.

20- Being dressed inappropriately, either too formal or casual for the event.

The takeaway is…

You may identify with some of the 20 anxiety triggers or have struggled to manage mild to severe anxiety symptoms while on the job. You’re not alone. There are treatments available and an assortment of strategies to try. I look forward to our next discussion around making presentations with ease.

In the meantime, just breathe. This is a basic strategy for managing anxiety. Listen to one of my favorite meditations and breathe in the relaxation desired. I challenge you to practice it daily. It’s only 3 minutes. Treat yourself.

The 3 Minute Breathing Space

I’d love to know: What is your favorite way to find calm?

Ready to strategize around successfully meeting those challenges and celebrating your WINS? Go to Love My Work Strategy Session and let me know about your interests. I’d love to schedule a no cost 45 minutes with you today!