Anxiety is characterized by feelings of fear or apprehension, worry, overwhelm, insecurity, restlessness, irritation, distraction, nervousness, and physical changes like increased heart rate or blood pressure. While anxiety is a normal reaction to experiences that cause tension or pressure, or to anticipated events, it can become a debilitating condition when it is persistent, recurring, intense, or chronic, and when it does not arise as a proportional response to a real-life stressor. It can also be a profound teacher.

If you or someone you know is in immediate need of support, please seek professional help. If you are in crisis, here are some immediate free resources.

Do We Need Anxiety?

For many of my patients, and even myself, the recognition that anxiety can be its own toxic comfort has been a lightbulb moment. It can be unsettling to examine our thoughts and our behaviors closely.

How Anxiety Hides in Your Habits

In his new book, Judson Brewer shows how anxiety exists inside the habits that make up our everyday lives, and habits are sticky.

Curiosity Is a Superpower: Here's How to Use It to Combat Anxiety & Addiction

Addiction psychiatrist and neuroscientist Jud Brewer, M.D., Ph.D., has spent over 15 years studying why we make bad habits—and what makes them so difficult to break.