A girl struggling with anxiety in a crowd

Anxiety Advice – Self Help

At East Dunbartonshire Citizens Advice Bureau in west-central Scotland, we are here to help. If you live or work in the East Dunbartonshire area, we can give you personalised advice on getting the right support for mental health and wellbeing. Please contact us herechat online or call us on 0141 775 3220. If you reside outside of East Dunbartonshire, please contact your own local Citizens Advice Bureau for assistance. Find them here.

Anxiety help, advice and resources

Anxiety is the feeling you get when you are worried that something bad might happen. It’s when you are wound up, and can’t think of anything else. It might be distracting you from your daily tasks, and find it hard to concentrate on anything else. It can keep you awake at night, and make it hard to rest. If you are looking for anxiety advice, then we can help. In this article, we will look at some of the main causes of anxiety, and ways to overcome this debilitating problem. 

Symptoms of anxiety

If you think you or someone you know is suffering from anxiety, there are symptoms to look out for. This will help you decide what to do next. 

Symptoms can include: 

  • Feeling on edge or nervous. Feeling nervous about something you have to do, for example a presentation or exam, is normal. However if you are on edge all the time, worrying about things that may not happen, this could be a sign of anxiety. 
  • You might be highly stressed and irritable all the time. You might lash out at those around you.
  • Anxiety can appear in many different forms, and at various levels of severity. 
  • Physically, your body might feel as though it has been tightly would up in string and that you can’t breath. You might sweat more, and find your heart racing. You may have difficulty keeping focus on tasks. 

Symptoms can vary from person to person and even day to day. If they last for a period of time, it’s important to look at the causes and see if there is an underlying reason for it.

A girl struggling with anxiety in a crowd

Understanding anxiety

Anxiety can affect us all in different ways. To further understand the problem, take a few minutes to watch this video:


If a constant feeling of anxiousness is making it difficult for you to live your life normally, then it is a mental health problem. It may be that you are worried about your job, or worried that you can’t find work. It may even be that you worry about ‘what-ifs’, and create worst-case scenarios in your head. For example, this could be if a family member doesn’t come home at the usual time, you might imagine they have been in an accident instead of simply being delayed at work. If you are looking for ways to start overcoming these challenging thoughts, this guide from Therapist Aid may help.

Social anxiety is the worry people have over going out and meeting new people or talking in front of a group. This has become increasingly common after the Coronavirus lockdown. You can also feel anxiety when scared of something – this is called a phobia. Phobias can be about anything, from spiders to heights to holes.

Overcoming anxiety

If you think you may suffer from anxiety, there are a few steps to take which will help get you leading a regular life again:

A woman looking happy and free as Autumn leaves fall around her.
  1. It is important to first see your GP about your concerns. They will be able to confirm a diagnosis and help you get on the right track to getting your life back to normal. 
  2. Read through NHS Inform’s anxiety self-help guide which you can download here.
  3. The doctors may refer you to us at the Citizen’s Advice Bureau. That’s because we can help with many of the issues that are causing your anxiety and help you with some mindfulness exercises.
  4. Take a look at our information pack which goes into more detail about anxiety. It’s a long read, but will put you in a great place to tackle the problem. They are broken down into sections below or click here to download all anxiety factsheets.
    1. What is anxiety?
    2. Analysing your thinking
    3. Unhelpful thinking styles
    4. Behavioural experiments / negative predictions
    5. Situational exposure
    6. What are safety behaviours?
    7. Breathing retraining
    8. Progressive muscle relaxation
    9. Coping with stress
    10. Stress and anxiety
    11. Anxiety and exercise
    12. The vicious cycle of anxiety

Additional resources to help you

There are also many other online resources to help you overcome the challenges of anxiety. The NHS has a great introduction to anxiety and some of the ways to start dealing with its issues. The charity Anxiety UK has, for over 50 years, been helping people who struggle with anxiety to overcome it. From positive thinking to stress management, it has anxiety advice and resources for all the family.

And remember, if you are worried about something in your life work-related like bullying, or problems with gambling that is causing you stress, we have resources here for those local to East Dunbartonshire. We can help guide you towards more anxiety advice. If we can help in any of these matters, please make an appointment.

East Dunbartonshire CAB is here to help

If you need any specific advice on getting support for your mental health and wellbeing, your local Citizens Advice Bureau can help. Residents of East Dunbartonshire can contact us herechat online or call us on 0141 775 3220. If you live outside of East Dunbartonshire, you can find your local CAB here.

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