Relationship anxiety can be frustrating and ironic. At times, the one relationship that should provide you the most comfort does just the opposite. For various reasons, you may become a ‘bundle of nerves’ as your most foundational relationship worries and stresses you out. During these times, you badly need anxiety relief, but it often evades you.

There can be seasons of life when high anxiety in a relationship feels challenging to bear. If your anxiety levels have spiked lately and you feel your significant-other relationship is the primary trigger for your stress, this article is for you. Let’s look closer at how to stop anxiety in a relationship.

Remember That Some Relationship Anxiety Is Normal

Even healthy relationships experience significant stress and anxiety at times. One relationship myth is that only uniquely dysfunctional romantic bonds go through relationship anxiety. The reality is that all couples struggle with how to manage anxiety in their relationship to some extent. The fact that relationship anxiety is normal should give you some comfort. 

Some of your worries may include the following or many more.

“What if I’m not good enough for her?”

“Is he working long hours to avoid spending time with me?”

“Does he still find me attractive?”

“Is he keeping big secrets from me?”

“Does she want out of the relationship?”

“Why doesn’t she laugh at my jokes anymore?”

Worse than these worried queries, your inner critic may answer “yes” to these questions even when there isn’t ample evidence to support such fears. The result is you could believe self-defeating lies about your relationship and act on your fears instead of understanding what’s really happening.

Sometimes those anxieties seemingly come from nowhere. You can’t always prevent them from popping into your mind. What you can do, however, is choose your response. Left unchecked, the insecurities brought out by relationship anxiety can lead to an unhappy marriage or relationship, but they don’t have to.

Start with a ‘Clean Slate’ in Your Relationship

Did you know that much of your relationship anxiety may have little to do with your current romantic bond? Instead, your insecurities may stem from growing up with a demanding parent who was never satisfied with even your best efforts. 

You also may be dragging baggage from previous romantic relationships into your current one. Were you betrayed in a big way, or do you worry that past relationship disappointments will happen again? It also may be that you have broken trust to overcome in your current relationship (not from past relationships but from the one you’re currently in).

Previous breaches of trust in your closest relationships can make coping with anxiety in your current bond difficult. Because of this, it’s essential to give your partner ‘a clean slate.’ It’s not healthy for your spouse or partner to bear the weight of previous hurts you’ve experienced. At the same time, if you’re currently experiencing significant breaches in trust, those need to be addressed and shouldn’t be ‘swept under the rug.’

Don’t Hold Back in Your Commitment

Even for the most well-adjusted people, insecurities can lurk right around the corner. The reality is that every choice in life comes with risks. If you choose to avoid a relationship because of insecurities, fears, or chronic anxiety, risk is involved. If you decide to go forward with a particular relationship, risk and uncertainty show up there too.

In Her “Psychology Today” article entitled How to Get Over Relationship Anxiety, Lisa Firestone Ph.D. shares the following advice:  

“We can invest in a person even when we know they have the power to hurt us. Keeping one foot out the door only keeps the relationship from becoming as close as it can and may even undermine it altogether.”

For that reason, don’t hold back in your love and commitment. Yes, it’s risky, but so is getting out of bed in the morning. You certainly want your significant other to go all-in on the relationship too. Try your best to do the same because marriage problems and relationship challenges are inevitable if you don’t fully take the risk.

Consider Couples Counseling for Your Relationship Anxiety

This article is a good starting point on how to reduce anxiety in a relationship, but the causes of relationship anxiety can be complicated and nuanced. Everyone’s situation is different and it can often be challenging to know how to help anxiety as a couple. This is especially true if your relationship anxiety is an ongoing challenge or is severe. 

If you’re struggling with relationship anxiety, the Relationship Center of Orange County is here for you whether you need individual therapy, relationship counseling or marriage counseling. We offer confidential and professional counseling to get you where you want to go in your relationship and life. We provide counseling in Mission Viejo, CA and counseling in Newport Beach, CA. The OC Relationship Center also does teletherapy.

Scheduling an appointment with us is easy, confidential and quick. We look forward to meeting and working with you soon!