Anxiety is one of the most common mental health issues. According to a three-year study by the Office of National Statistics, women are more likely to feel anxious compared to men and those who registered as the most anxious were aged between 50 and 54. (The ONS is unable to collect information on clinically diagnosed cases of anxiety and depression.)
Brian Keane suffered from anxiety while working as a school teacher. He found himself having sleepless nights and consistently worried about his performance at work. For four years Brian worried about his sleep pattern and his working life, which resulted in him consuming sugary foods and drinks to maintain his energy.
Brian said, “I always thought anxiety meant that you didn’t have your life together – regardless of what you may see, nobody has every area of their life together – and my only experience with anxiety was when colleagues would get signed off work due to stress.
“I didn’t have enough self-awareness to realise that it’s something that all of us face at some time or another and for some people, it’s chronic and affects them every single day. For others, it can be chemically induced – too much caffeine, alcohol and drugs. Regardless, the more people I meet, the more I realise that everyone experiences anxiety in some way, shape or form”