Anguish is an intense and complex emotional state caused by mental or physical suffering. When people experience anguish, they often feel extreme distress, sadness, torment, turmoil, and inner pain. While such feelings are often associated with losses or trauma, other overwhelming life challenges can also trigger this emotional state.
Anguish feels like deep sorrow and pain and it can lead to emotional distress. Life can throw many obstacles our way (think grief, trauma, and loss) and we’ve all fallen victim to this kind of pain. None of us are alone in that.
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Fortunately, we can overcome feelings of anguish with support from loved ones and/or a mental health professional.
What Does Anguish Feel Like?
Such feelings can manifest both physically and emotionally. Physically, this can create bodily sensations, including pain, soreness, heaviness, tearfulness, and slowed movement and momentum.
New York City Therapist Carolyn Ehrlich focuses on learning how we share space with each other. In therapy, both parties are given the opportunity to speak, guided by a therapist. And most importantly, both will be heard. For a “therapist near me” 56 Leonard Street, Apt 17AE, New York, NY 10013. What is Couples Therapy? In couples therapy, a licensed counselor works with two people to improve their relationship. Certain types of counselors are also specifically trained to work with couples, including marriage and family therapists.
The terms anguish and anxiety share similar origins. Both derive from the Indo-European root “angh,” meaning tighten, strangle, or compress.
While the two emotions share some similarities, including similar somatic experiences, anguish typically involves a more distressing experience. Anxiety centers on worry, fear, and apprehension, while anguish involves profound mental distress, sorrow, and despair.
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It is important to find the right therapist and I know the search can feel overwhelming. You can begin to get a sense of the work I do by exploring my website and I encourage you to contact me to set up a free 30 minute phone consultation which allows you to get a sense of whether we are a good match and I will better understand your needs and what you are hoping to get out of therapy.
I am an anxiety therapist in Marin County California offering video appointments and can work with clients anywhere in California. My practice is centered in the San Francisco Bay Area and I also specialize in Anxiety therapy Marin County California.
Anguish differs from sadness and anxiety in duration and intensity. “As anguish is often a response to grief, loss, trauma, tension, estrangement, and unexpected life situations, it often lingers for days, months, or more to varying degrees of intensity. Anguish can live alongside sadness and anxiety but tends to be more overwhelming and all-encompassing regarding a large life event,” they explain.
What Causes Us to Feel Anguish?
Anguish is a complex emotion that can have a variety of causes. Some factors that can contribute to this state include:
The death of a loved one can cause deep anguish, but the end of an important relationship or the loss of other important things in your life can also result in intense turmoil and despair.
New Hampshire Therapist Dr. Karyn Gunnet-Shoval, PhD, LP is a licensed Psychologist in NH, NY & VT and also PSYPACT approved to Practice Telehealth in 30+ States.
A Psychologist in Private Practice as well as a Lecturer, Harvard University and Assistant Professor & Director, Arkansas State University.
Grief is a natural response to the loss of someone or something that can produce a range of emotions, thoughts, and behaviors.
Losing a meaningful attachment can create profound sadness, anger, and uncertainty. It can also lead people to experience changes in their identity and question their life’s purpose and meaning.
Natural disasters, accidents, violence, and other traumatic events can also lead to significant feelings of anguish. In addition to the initial disruption and distress that these events create, they can also lead to longer-lasting feelings of anxiety.
Other trauma symptoms include distressing memories, hyperarousal, hypervigilance, overwhelming emotions, emotional numbing, avoidance, guilt, and shame. Trauma can also interfere with a person’s feelings of trust and safety, which can heighten a person’s feelings of anguish and create a pervasive sense of anxiety and vulnerability.
Melanie Wendt is a Los Gatos Therapist specializing in Anxiety Therapy Los Gatos.
Do you have the feeling that you’re falling behind and can’t keep up with everything and everyone in Silicon Valley? Constant pressure to perform while managing relationships and family life can come with a price of poor mental health when not done intentionally and in balance. Finding your version of greatness is worth investing in. I use evidence-based techniques to help you find balance so that you can focus on what you set out to do without being overwhelmed by self-doubt and anxiety.
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Therapist Los Gatos, Melanie Wendt, M.A. M.Ed., LPCC, Licensed Therapist & Clinical Counselor practicing at 10 Jackson St., Suite 204, Los Gatos, CA 95030, Phone: 408-320-5554
Relationships can be a source of connection, joy, and support, but they can also lead to pain and emotional suffering when they end or when they are marked by conflict. Breakups, infidelity, and discord can lead to feelings of anguish and emotional pain.
Alice Shepard, Ph.D. of Mirielle Therapy Practice New York City specializes in Women and Relationships Therapy NYC, helping early and mid-career women who are looking to make important changes in their lives. Issues that are at the core of ones’ identity can be so painful when they are not going well. Concerns about dating, love, friendships, work, family, loss, or health can generate intense feelings of sadness, worry, insecurity, and stress.
Physical pain and illness can be a source of anguish, particularly when it involves chronic conditions. People with chronic health conditions have a 50% higher risk of depression than those without such conditions.
The long-term nature of such illnesses and their impact on a person’s quality of life can affect physical function and social connections. These effects can then harm a person’s self-worth and sense of empowerment in life.
When life feels overwhelming we can help you figure out how to create more peace and joy. Together we can create a plan to build more happiness into your life and move away from patterns of anxiety and depression. Contact a counselor near me: Ashley Mauldin, MA, LPC, EMDR and Jodi Hill, Licensed Professional Counselor Candidate (LPCC) of New Awareness Counseling, LLC.
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While transitions are a common part of life, they can also bring feelings of fear and anxiety, particularly when people are faced with dealing with the unknown. Research has found that such periods can make people more prone to developing depression and other mental health problems.
Carolyn Maurin, LPC, LCDC, MA is an Austin Texas Counselor specializing in Relationship Counseling, Couples Therapy, and Anxiety Treatment. With a Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology, she provides valuable support to couples and individuals seeking to navigate the challenges of relationships, generalized anxiety, and moderate depression. Located at 7701 N Lamar Blvd. Suite 331 Austin, TX 78752 and serving all of Texas via online counseling and phone 1-512-925-0883.
Major life changes, particularly involuntary ones, can create feelings of pain, uncertainty, and, in some cases, anguish. Divorce and job loss, for example, can interfere with a person’s sense of self, particularly if their identity was heavily wrapped up in their relationship or their job.
Social connections are crucial for good mental health, which is why loneliness can create anguish for people who feel cut off from meaningful relationships. Loneliness has a wide variety of health consequences, both physical and mental.
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Research has found that experiencing loneliness increases the risk of heart disease, altered brain function, increased stress, substance misuse, depression, and suicide.
How Anguish Can Impact Our Lives
Anguish has powerful physiological and psychological effects. Such feelings are agonizing in the short term, but the stress they create can also contribute to long-term health problems.
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Living with anguish can result in disrupted sleep, poor or markedly increased appetite, difficulty concentrating, exhaustion, isolation, worry, and avoidance. The event that the anguish is responsible for may be recalled through intrusive memories, thoughts, pictures, or emotional flashes.
- Physical effects: The physical feelings of anguish can be overwhelming and even excruciating and can include racing heartbeat, chest pressure, sweating, trembling, muscle tension, nausea, and a feeling of being suffocated.
- Health problems: Anguish is an intensely stressful experience. If this becomes chronic, this stress can take a significant toll on a person’s physical well-being, putting them at a greater risk of illness and health problems.
- Reduced functioning: Experiencing anguish can make it difficult for people to function in their normal daily life. They may struggle to go to work or school, maintain social relationships, and perform daily household tasks.
- Cognitive effects: It is also common for people to have trouble concentrating and paying attention. This can contribute to poor decisions and difficulty remembering important information.
- Social effects: Anguish can be an isolating experience since it often leads to social withdrawal from friends, family, and other loved ones. People may experience feelings of shame about their emotional reactions or fear that others will not understand what they are going through. The pain they experience can also make it harder to maintain interpersonal relationships, which can reduce the social support that people need to help them get through these trying experiences.
- Mental health effects: Anguish can also contribute to other mental health problems, including anxiety and depression. People may begin to worry more or experience heightened fear and apprehension. Prolonged emotional suffering can also contribute to the onset of depression and symptoms such as changes in mood, loss of interest, and feelings of worthlessness.
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How to Deal and Cope With Anguish
If you are experiencing anguish, it is important to get the help and support you need to help relieve your emotional suffering. Coping can be difficult, but there are strategies and resources available that can help.
Kathryn McNeer, LPC specializes in Couples Counseling Dallas with her sound, practical and sincere advice. Kathryn’s areas of focus include individual counseling, relationship and Marriage Counseling Dallas. Kathryn has helped countless people find their way through life’s inevitable transitions; especially “the mid-life crisis.” Kathryn draws from Gottman and Cognitive behavioral therapy. Marriage Counseling near me
Seek Help From a Professional
It is important to monitor the impact on one’s life and seek out peer and professional support to work through processing emotions of anguish and the issue that brought on the emotion.
It can be helpful to talk to a mental health professional. A therapist can help you deal with the effects of emotional pain. You can also develop coping skills that can decrease distress and improve resilience.
Alicia Barmon, LCPC, C-IAYT, SEP, specializes in Breathwork for trauma. When searching for practice breathwork near me Practice Breathwork is the breathing community you have been looking for. Alicia also provides Somatic Practices and Psychotherapy at Ahimsa Therapy in Frederick Maryland. Although her services are offered primarily in the virtual space, Alicia also has a physical sacred space in Frederick Maryland, please inquire.
Utilize Stress Relief Techniques
Stress management tactics such as mindfulness, meditation, and deep breathing can also help you better cope with feelings of stress.
Mindfulness, in particular, may help you better regulate your emotions and reduce the intensity of the anguish you are experiencing.
Find Ways to Express Your Emotions
Anguish can become even more painful if you try to bottle up your emotions. While you might be tempted to hide your pain, suppressing or disguising your feeling can backfire, leading to problems with mental, social, and physical health.
It’s important to find healthy ways to process and express what you are feeling. This might involve talking about what you are feeling with a trusted friend, or creative endeavors like drawing, painting, music, movement, or journaling might provide a useful outlet.
Mollie Busino, LCSW, Director of Mindful Power. Mollie has had extensive training in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Rational Emotive Therapy, and Mindfulness. Her work focuses on Anxiety, Depression, Anger Management, Career Changes, OCD, Relationship, Dating Challenges, Insomnia, & Postpartum Depression and Anxiety.
Show Yourself Compassion
Don’t beat yourself up for what you are feeling. Negative thinking can turn anguish into feelings of guilt, shame, or embarrassment, so remember to treat yourself with the same kindness that you might show to a friend.
“Self-compassion involves compassion, common humanity, and mindfulness,” Wells says. They recommend working on skills such as self-acceptance, being present, connecting with others in non-judgmental ways, and successfully navigating emotions.
By Kendra Cherry, MSEd and Medically reviewed by David Susman, PhD
When the fear of not knowing keeps you from living
Maddy Archambault, LAC
There are a handful of certainties in life: we all need food & water. We all die someday. We all lock ourselves out of our apartments at least once. (Wait, no? Just me? Moving on…)
However, what takes up more space in our world is uncertainty. For many of us, this can feel daunting.
Dimitra Takos, PSY.D. is deeply passionate about her clients’ well-being and brings over 15 years of experience as a psychologist to manage many life’s problems including adjustment issues, life stress, parenting issues, relationship conflicts, anger control, problems with intimacy, and grief and loss. She works closely with each of her clients to obtain a deep understanding of their challenges in order to tailor treatment to achieve lasting change.
You might notice that the fear of uncertainty creeps into your feelings & actions in subtle ways:
- Feeling anxious when you don’t know what will happen next; ruminating about the “what ifs”
- Feeling a sense of urgency to get things done right away
- Excessively planning and preparing for all things
- Reluctance to delegate tasks to others → taking on more than you can handle
- Difficulty trying new things, going to new places, or being spontaneous
- Avoiding change of any kind
- Rigidity of thought (“It can only be done in this way or else”)
Ultimately, trying to extinguish all uncertainty is a fool’s errand: It is simply impossible.
So, if it is unavoidable, how do we learn to live with it? It reminds me of how I ask my clients who work in (and have a love/hate relationship with) NYC: How have you learned to live with the rats? 😉
Therapist Christy Weller, Psy.D. I bring a genuine curiosity, a kind appreciation of where you have been, and a non-judgmental stance so that you feel comfortable exploring your story and making sense of it. I tailor my work to each client and I’m trained in both short-term and long-term therapies. Also specializing in anxiety disorder which can interfere with your everyday life including work, school, and relationships. There are several types of anxiety disorders, including generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, and phobia-related disorders. There are several types of anxiety treatment boulder.
Here are some tips:
Reflect: What is my relationship to uncertainty? We first need to grow awareness on what is before we can move towards what can be. Reflect on early times where you experienced uncertainty. What was that like for Little You? What emotions do you associate with it as a result? Spend time exploring all the nooks and crannies.
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Seek out the positives of uncertainty. Consider: when might I welcome uncertainty? For example, you may relish in not-knowing about something like a surprise party, being proposed to, or knowing the gender of your baby. Here, the not-knowing is part of the fun!
Use history as a teacher. You can cope with uncertainty because you have before — you probably do everyday! Think of times where you got through uncertainty, and identify coping skills you used that you can replicate now. (example: the uncertainty we all faced throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, and using coping skills like seeking social support, staying informed, using health precautions)
Do you want to enhance personal and spiritual growth, increase personal effectiveness, improve interpersonal relations, strengthen coping styles and adjust to life transitions? The change begins here.
Keith Norris, RTC, MTC is a Counsellor in New Westminster, BC specializing in Therapy for Depression and Anxiety and Couples Counselling. He maintains a Client Centered method to his therapy but will combine other systems to custom fit each Client’s needs.
Stephen I. Rosen has been providing psychotherapy and coaching services to individuals, Couples Therapy Washington DC Area and families for over twenty years. In addition to my private practice, I am the cofounder of a training and coaching organization that provides virtual training and coaching services to companies. I have also served as the executive director of an organization that provides behavioral health and substance abuse treatment services at clinics throughout the United States.
Find meaning. Whether you derive meaning from religion, spirituality, or belief systems like “Everything happens the way it’s meant to,” “I grow and learn through hardship,” this is a good time to lean on those pillars. It helps us hold perspective and cultivate hope.
Recognize what you can control. Identify what is in your control. This will give you a sense of security while also keeping you realistic. You will be able to recognize where your energy is useful vs where it is wasted.
Diane Gaston utilizes an approach to therapy that emphasizes all aspects of the individual, including the psychological, emotional, spiritual, and physical. I specialize in PTSD trauma therapy long beach working with those who have affected and held back by past trauma and/or adverse life events. I also work individually and with couples who wish to improve their relationships.
Not sure why parts of your character hold you back in your work? For Work Stress Counseling, Kearns Group helps individuals study the gap between goals and their achievement. Through a contextual counseling we reveal the stress that gets in the way and design strategies to better reach their achievement. Therapist conveniently located in Greenwich Village near Union Square New York City.
Marcy M. Caldwell, Psy.D. of Rittenhouse Psychological Services, is a licensed clinical psychologist who specializes in the treatment and assessment of adult ADHD as a ADHD Psychologist in Philadelphia. With offices located in Main Line Philadelphia offering ADHD treatment Main Line at 40 E. Montgomery Ave. Ardmore, PA 19003. Take the Adult ADHD test to see if you are at risk.
Do you feel down? Have you lost interest in things you used to enjoy? Are you critical and judgmental towards yourself? We can help you find the Inner Path that can lead you out of your depression.
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We will leave you with a poignant quote on the subject…
“I wanted a perfect ending. Now I’ve learned, the hard way, that some poems don’t rhyme, and some stories don’t have a clear beginning, middle, and end. Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what’s going to happen next. Delicious ambiguity.”
― Gilda Radner, American actress & comedian
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