Where does it anxiety occur?
For some young people, the fear brain is turned on a lot of times every day. Certain places can turn on anxiety. Sometimes it is turned on in a new or scary place—maybe in school, in the dark or around certain people. Sometimes it is turned on by a thought when you are resting at home, are alone, watching TV or just listening to other kids. Sometimes anxiety happens if you feel or think something about your body. Sometimes it happens if something is not right, like toys are out of place or you feel dirty. When this happens, you may feel you must make something just right or something bad will happen.
When does anxiety occur?
Worry, nervousness and anxiety can be worse when you are tired, in school or doing homework or sports. You might feel better when you are busy or playing outside a lot. Or you might feel worse on vacations or weekends when there is time to think and listen to thoughts or feelings from the fear brain. Many young people feel worse at night and at bedtime. It’s harder when you are tired and relaxing. Being in the dark or sleeping alone can be scary.
Fears can grow bigger
Sometimes you may just try to stay away from things that make you feel anxious. At first that feels good, but then the fear can grow bigger and get worse because you never get used to it. The first day of school is often scary, but you get used to it because you do it over and over, and if it becomes comfortable. It can even be boring!