Actually, all self-defeating behaviors (including anxiety) are a response to stress. The explosion of stress related anxiety has become endemic in Westernized society within the last 50 years. Though there are a number of reasons for this phenomenon, it is often due to the heavy burden we put on our cognitive resources, particularly working memory.
The key to managing anxiety is to identify the triggers that overwork one’s cognitive resources, particularly activities associated with multitasking, over scheduling, and over planning. Simplicity is truly the key to effective stress management.
The epidemic of over scheduling for has serious developmental implications for young brains. The explosion of stress related cognitive-over tasking has become endemic in Westernized society within the last 50 years. The often overlooked ramifications is that persistently high stress hormones activate special receptors in the frontal lobe that result in the shut down of working memory and executive functioning—the attributes that make humans human.
For children, the implication of overloading immature frontal lobe persistently is alarming. The ability to plan, direct attention appropriately, and regulate emotions is compromised. So unwittingly, parents may be contributing to their child’s future mental problems, as executive mental functioning in the immature brain has been compromised due to stress.