A recent NYT article speaks very profoundly on the subject of living with Anxiety. http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/08/11/the-anxious-idiot/?src=recg
The central message in this article is the idea that just because one has been diagnosed with an anxiety disorder (or struggles with anxiety), does not necessarily mean that one has to be defined by it. Essentially, the author argues that acting in accord with one's anxieties and neurosis is a choice that one makes everyday. While it is, in some ways, easier to do what is habitual and conditioned, purportedly in order to keep oneself feeling safe, those very behaviors and thoughts are reinforcing the anxiety n the first place. Engaging in the behaviors and thoughts that are defined by one's fears often inhibit the individual from having novel, corrective emotional experiences, thereby deepening the maladaptive neurological and self-fulfilling loop.
Thankfully, there are many methods that help break this often-devastating loop of anxiety and ensuing depression, i.e., various forms of therapy, mindfulness, deep breathing and yoga. The first step is usually the realization that while it may not feel like it, one often has a choice in how one thinks, behaves and even feels. The next important step is to remember to chose to engage in those behaviors that will ameliorate the anxiety and not perpetuate it. While some of us may be constitutionally, culturally or by conditioning more anxious and neurotic than others, we certainly have a choice in becoming the neurotic self-loathing caricatures we laugh at (or with) on the screen.