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London: We live in a stressful world and one that makes us increasingly anxious. More employees than ever before are reporting feelings of anxiety and depression, while one in six children will experience an anxiety condition at some point in their lives.

And anxiety doesn’t discriminate about who it strikes. Indeed, a host of celebrities have spoken out about having the condition The Crown actress Claire Foy, model Gisele Bundchen, and Lady Gaga, to name just a few.
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We’re also becoming more aware of it as a condition. In August this year, for example, Barnes & Noble, the largest book retailer in the US, announced a huge surge in the sales of books about anxiety; a 25 percent jump in June 2017. Now, research commissioned by wellness brand Healthspan has found that more than 40 percent of people believe they suffer from anxiety, with more than 20 percent saying they are more anxious now than they were five years ago.

A poll of 2,000 adults found that 62 percent of people believe life is becoming increasingly more anxiety-provoking. The average adult rated their anxiety levels at almost three out of five, with five being very severe. Furthermore, the survey found that 57 percent of us have become more anxious about our health in recent years while 36 percent worry more about sleeping properly.

Finances came a close second, with 54 percent of those polled saying they have become more anxious about money in the last five years. Getting older (40 percent), physical appearance (32 percent), and career progression (30 percent) were the other big sources of anxiety.
We’re glued to our smartphones:

We live in a highly connected digital world. Worldwide events are being streamed into the phone in the palm of our hands and it’s so hard to ‘switch-off, which our brains need to rest and stay calm. Also, while we communicate more than ever, many of us are lonelier than ever.

Indeed, just last week’s research for the BBC revealed that young people – who are arguably the most technologically connected group in society – feel loneliness more intensely and more frequently than any other age range.
We’re leading ‘double lives’:

The Healthspan survey found that 62 percent of people believe life is becoming increasingly more anxiety-provoking – and I agree.

As a clinical psychologist, I’m seeing an increase in the number of people who are leading double lives – need to present a ‘together’ image at work or socially, but behind closed doors are relying heavily on less helpful ways to manage their anxiety drugs, but also comfort/binge eating and sex outside of their relationship, in order to escape and try to cope