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This is a great topic, and I really can't believe how much I identify with many of your posts. Like some of you, I have also had strong suspicions for a number of years that I have some sort of anxiety disorder, even if limited most of the time, but I've had a hard time categorizing it. I also attempt to self-diagnose, and had written off GAD until recently. I equated GAD with the fabled worry warts of the world, unnecessarily worrying about every little thing, including work and health. That really didn't seem to fit me...but I think there is more to it than that. I find that I fear anxiety itself, the physical sensations, the dizziness, the mild derealization...and so anytime I experience it either through a real-life stress situation, or a memory or flashback, I can at times freak out about it. It's like a low-level adrenaline rush with dizziness, irritability, etc. It can come on out of the blue or during times of stress. I, like you, fear that it is getting worse at times...and I feel out of control. For me, it is generalized to the extent that it sort of generally shadows some of the symptoms of the other documented anxiety syndromes. I'm not on any medications, but struggle with whether I should once in a blue moon.

I also sometimes wish that I could shave off a few IQ points, and FIRMLY believe that higher intelligence is often the culprit in anxiety cases. It truly is the difference between not caring and caring too much, between seeing the general truth, and delving into the details too deeply. It's about thinking too much -- so much that your head spins. Ignorance truly is bliss.

I also believe that life's path can put you in a more anxious state -- I feel that sense of identity crisis that you all speak of...indecision, a desire to go in too many directions at once, a deep understanding of things without a way to implement the necessary changes to make progress. Things aren't that bad, but I think you get my point. I'm starting to realize that it is this rumination over life's decisions, directions, and desires that sets the stage for the anxiety. It creates that potential by virtue of the tension it creates. It's like you become so consumed with thoughts about life that you are then capable of taking those thoughts to an even higher (or lower?) level of detail. And these details give rise to more details, and you can veer off into anxiety. I think it's easy to get lost in those details. Paralysis by analysis, I guess.

I think that's kind of the common theme for all anxiety sufferers, regardless of the disorder: chasing down details, only to find more questions. In any event, glad to hear that others think and feel the same way.

Keep the posts coming, I'd like to hear more from you all...

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