Can you experience anxiety around certain people?


Can you experience anxiety around certain individuals?

It is natural for people to experience a sense of anxiety and discomfort around specific individuals in some situations.

Many individuals complain about feeling fearful or uncomfortable in the presence of another individual. This individual can be someone who they are aware of or a complete stranger.

In the first case, the reason for anxiety might be hidden in the history of their relationship involving any negative or discomforting experiences or memories.

In the second scenario, individuals might feel fearful in the presence of another due to other anxiety-related comorbid conditions such as social anxiety.

Anxiety about certain individuals can also be a product of one’s anxious personality.

under such circumstances, it is not the individual themselves who triggered the anxiety rather the environment which is triggering the anxiety.

What are the symptoms of anxiety experienced by individuals around certain people?

Some signs and symptoms typical of anxiety experienced by an individual in the presence of another are:

  • Sweating
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sense of joking
  • Complaints of chest pain
  • Shaking or trembling
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Dizziness or Lightheadedness
  • Fear of losing control over oneself and their environment
  • Fear of impending doom
  • Hot or cold flashes
  • Tingling or numbness
  • Increased heart rate

These symptoms vary in severity from person to person depending on other environmental and personal factors.

This might include the challenges posed by the situation involving the concerned person or the kind of relationship one share with the concerned person.

What are the main triggers of anxiety that might surface in the presence of certain people?

Health issues

An unacceptable health diagnosis such as cancer might trigger one’s anxiety. When individuals come in contact with certain people who share a similar diagnosis it might refresh their negative thoughts, emotions, and fears associated with the diagnosis triggering anxiety in the presence of that individual.


certain over-the-counter medications make an individual more vulnerable to the symptoms of anxiety. this underlining anxiety can be heightened in the presence of certain individuals due to various situational factors.


studies indicate that an overdose of caffeine leads to a high risk of anxiety. As all humans are social beings when an individual experiences anxiety due to the overdose of caffeine in the presence of another individual they might relate the two forming a relationship between anxiety and a particular person.

Negative thinking

An individual’s emotions and behaviors are predominantly controlled by one’s thoughts. When an individual holds relatively negative thoughts about a particular individual they are more vulnerable to experiencing anxiety in their presence.

 Personal triggers

Individuals might experience anxiety in the presence of another person not because of the person itself or the environment but due to other personal triggers.

Personal triggers usually remind an individual about a negative memory taken place in their life either consciously or unconsciously.

What are three tips for identifying triggers of anxiety caused in the presence of another person?

Start a journal.

Write down when your anxiety is noticeable and record what you think might have led to the trigger.

Work with a therapist.

Some anxiety triggers can be difficult to identify, a mental health specialist can help you. They may use talk therapy or other methods to find triggers.

Be honest with yourself.

Anxiety can cause negative thoughts and poor self-assessments. This can make identifying triggers difficult because of the anxious reactions. Be patient with yourself and be willing to explore things in your past to identify how they may affect you today.

What are some ways to manage the anxiety that occurs in the presence of certain individuals?

Identify and acknowledge the triggers

The most significant strategy that can be used to control one’s anxiety caused in the presence of certain individuals is by identifying and acknowledging those triggers.

Being able to recognize what makes an individual anxious makes them better equipped to take action.

Relaxation techniques

Even though anxiety attacks can be bought under an individual’s control they cannot be predicted. In such situations, it is necessary that an individual actively carries out relaxation techniques.

These might include meditation, yoga, and deep breathing which helps to reduce the intensity of anxiety within a short period.


A key to reducing the frequency and intensity of anxiety attacks caused by the presence of another person could be spending time with close family and friends.

The kind of emotional and practical support provided by these social and personal groups help the person feel connected and aid in distracting one’s mind from negative and recurring thoughts that lead to anxiety.

Apart from friends and families, individuals can also consider speaking to groups of people that are experiencing similar problems.

Set realistic goals

When an individual is feeling overwhelmed setting goals and targets keeping in mind priorities can help resolve overwhelming feelings of anxiety caused by the presence of other individuals.

Setting goals provides structure and routine to an individual’s life reducing space for uncertainty which can be a major trigger for anxiety attacks in many cases.

Take up new challenges

Apart from doing activities that an individual is usually fond of and has expertise in, trying new and challenging activities that put an individual outside their comfort zone in a healthy manner may help reduce the stress and anger temporarily.

Signing up for new activities also provides a path to meeting people with similar stories and concerns.

Lifestyle changes

An individual’s lifestyle plays a major role in their experience of anxiety attacks regardless of the presence of an individual. An unhealthy and busy lifestyle usually leads to unhealthy eating, lack of exercise, lack of adequate sleep.

A combination of a well-set diet, exercise, and sleep can help to regulate an individual’s mood and equip them with a favorable coping mechanism.

These coping mechanisms in turn help to get control over once anxiety concerns in a more adaptable manner.

Lack of proper diet, sleep, and exercise can make an individual sluggish, dependent, moody and vulnerable to anxiety attacks.

Making journal entries

Finally having a journal to write down how a person is feeling and thinking when they are anxious about the presence of another individual helps them to reflect upon their thoughts and feelings.

Putting down one’s thoughts and feelings onto a paper helps to provide a sense of temporary relief.

In the case of journal entry, a person does not even have to fear being judged by another person regarding their thoughts and feelings.

What are the therapy options for anxiety caused by the presence of certain individuals?

Cognitive-behavioral therapy

Cognitive-behavioral therapy helps an individual to control their anxiety by using strategies like relaxation and breathing. It works on the principles of replacing negative thoughts with positive ones.

Exposure therapy

Exposure therapy is a kind of therapy in which an individual is exposed to a particular stimulus that they usually fear or are anxious about in a graded order.

As and when the individual gets comfortable with the situation or stimulus introduced or exposed to them with each session individuals get more comfortable with a real-life situation that might have otherwise been a source for triggering anxiety.

Group therapy

It is based on the principle that when an individual interacts with other people who are suffering from the same fears they might not feel left alone or isolated. Group therapy usually involves a group of individuals who are experiencing similar symptoms and problems.


Anxiety can also be treated with the help of medication prescribed by a health care professional.

Though medication alone cannot help in reducing persistent anxiety it can help in restoring a sense of control and bring temporary relief.



Anxiety is a mental health condition that is characterized by feelings of fear, worry, and tension. It is found that in extreme cases anxiety can also lead to a panic attack.

Anxiety can be caused due to various reasons in an individual’s day-to-day life. It is an expression of threat and fear looming over an individual.

Anxiety that arises in the presence of certain people might be a product of environmental factors or personal factors such as the relationship that they share with that specific person and the longstanding history of their relationship involving negative and discomforting experiences.

Though the exact reason for anxiety and anxiety disorders is complex and difficult to understand it is incredibly common.

It can be differentiated from normal levels of fear in that anxiety might hamper an individual’s daily functioning and cause significant distress in various domains of an individual’s life if not dealt with effectively

it is important that the individual address their anxiety about certain individuals in a guided setup with a therapist.

Frequently asked questions

What does it mean when you get anxious around someone?

There can be many reasons why people feel anxious about certain individuals. It might route from the fear of being abandoned or rejected by a certain individual or the negative history that they share with an individual.

How do you stop being nervous around certain individuals?

Some ways to overcome nervousness around certain people are:

  • talking to someone about how you’re feeling
  • actively trying relaxation techniques
  • preparing oneself for facing situations that are potentially triggering
  • facing situations that are challenging than escaping it
  • seeking professional help in cases of severe anxiousness

Why do you feel anxious around your friend?


Feeling anxious around one’s friend might be the result of social anxiety. here individual fear being judged or humiliated by another person.

these negative thoughts of humiliation make an individual avoid or escape social situations even in the presence of established friends

Can you have social anxiety around certain people?

Individuals with social anxiety may have a different set of fears connecting to different situations. Here some individuals might have worries about speaking in public while another person might fear interacting with individuals in certain situations due to the fear of judgment, humiliation, or rejection.

Can being around someone with anxiety give you anxiety?

Behaviorists believe that anxious behavior can also be learned like any other behavior. Thus stress from others can affect one’s stress level and have an impact on their mental health.


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