Easily Irritable? Anxiety Might Be The Reason 

By Heather Matzkowitz, LMSW

We all become irritated from time to time — it’s part of being human!  However, the type of irritability I am talking about is ongoing and regularly occurring. So what's the cause?  While anxiety can manifest in different ways for different people, for many it may lead to irritability. Do you find yourself quick to react? Have you been noticing that smaller issues cause you to feel more annoyed? Do you abruptly snap at other people? Below are some things you can do to ease the irritability: 

Identify the Source
Often times we react so quickly that we do not take a step back to notice what is really going on and why we are feeling irritated. It’s important to ask yourself, ‘Why am I feeling irritated, and what can I do about it?’

Gain Perspective
Irritability usually occurs when we experience minute annoyances, such as someone cutting in front of us at the coffee shop. Try to take a moment to remind yourself of the things that are going well in your life, such as your good health or having a comfortable space to go home to. 

Sit in Solitude
Usually when we are feeling irritated it's because of an outside source. When we feel irritated it's important to carve out time for you to find a quiet place to reflect. Irritability can be your brain's way of telling you that you need some alone time. Meditation or some light stretching can be done during this time to help refocus and ease your mind.

Engage in Physical Activity
Exercise is wonderful for helping you to cope with negative emotions. Studies have shown that it can be beneficial to try and get at least 20 minutes of exercise each day to help reduce symptoms of anxiety. This includes walking or some restorative yoga stretches! 

It’s important to be kind to yourself when you're experiencing negative emotions. You’re allowed to feel annoyed sometimes, and when you're compassionate with yourself it can also help you feel more compassion for those around you.

Heather Matzkowitz is a therapist at Cobb Psychotherapy. If you would like support in prioritizing and taking care of your mental health, contact Cobb Psychotherapy and see how therapy can help.