#ThingsThatGiveMeAnxiety – How a trending hashtag has opened up the conversation about anxiety

The hashtag #ThingsThatGiveMeAnxiety has been trending on Twitter over the past 24 hours, raising awareness of anxiety and offering coping strategies to achieve positive mental health. 

With over 40.5K tweets using the hashtag, the topic encourages Twitter users to share the specific triggers for their own anxiety. 

Several charities have also taken to adopting the hashtag offering information and advice, both for those experiencing anxiety and those concerned about the mental health of a family member or a friend. 

ANXIOUS

According to the NHS, anxiety is a feeling of unease, such as worry or fear, that can be mild or severe. 

Everyone will experience some form of anxiety at a point in their life, but it can become debilitating for people when their feelings of anxiety become constant, affecting their day-to-day activities.

Anxiety can cause physical, behaviouraland psychological symptoms, such as an increased heart rate and nausea, in some cases people are known to experience panic attacks. 

Young Minds is just one charity speaking out with the hashtag to promote raised awareness of anxiety. Offering coping techniques for managing feelings of anxiety, continued discussions on mental health are assisting in breaking down stigma. 

Coping methods when experiencing high levels of anxiety can include:

Find a way to get the worries out 

Share your struggles with people you trust 

Stop and focus on your breathing 

The Mental Health Foundation and MS Society also used the hashtag to provide information and free guides to those experiencing anxiety. 

TALK ABOUT IT

This isn’t the first time Twitter users have used a hashtag to help de-stigmatize discussions around anxiety and mental health, encouraging improved awareness and knowledge. 

In 2017, the hashtag #TalkingAboutIt started a trend with users on the social media platform opening up about their own personal experiences with mental health issues, such as depression and anorexia.I

With hundreds of thousands of people talking about #ThingsThatGiveMeAnxiety, the hashtag provides people experiencing, and living with anxiety a platform upon which to share their stories and reminds users that they are not standing alone. 

If you, or someone you know, is experiencing anxiety, the NHS website offers several links for advice and support, which can be found here.

Words: Olivia McCann