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  • Key Counselling Training

Subtle Signs You Might Be Struggling With Your Mental Health

Updated: Nov 28, 2023

Looking after your mental health has been enforced more regularly nowadays than ever before. With so many people struggling with their mental health, self care and seeking help has been more prominent on social media and in the news. Mental illness differs from person to person, and everyone has an individual experience. While there are some similarities across some mental health disorders, symptoms and causes can always vary.

We are breaking down some symptoms of anxiety and depression you could be completely overlooking in your mental health journey. This is not an official diagnosis, and if you suspect you are struggling with a mental health condition, you should speak to your GP or a loved one to start seeking help.

man speaking to doctor about depression

Anxiety & Depression

These are two extremely common mental health disorders that 1 in 6 people will experience in their lifetime. Anxiety and depression are both often seen in people, however, you can experience them individually too.


Anxiety is a mental health condition that causes a state of worry and difficulty concentrating. While this can vary from person to person, the common symptoms of anxiety disorder include a feeling of fear or dread, rapid heartbeat, feeling stressed, tense or difficulty breathing. The body often goes into fight or flight mode, causing a sense of anxiousness. Physical symptoms as a result of the anxiousness.

These are some uncommon signs that you might be struggling with anxiety:

  • Being Forgetful & Scattered - If you notice a loved one or even yourself feeling scattered and inattentive, anxiety could very well be the culprit. Anxious feelings have a tendency to dominate people’s mental spaces, distracting them and taking their attention away from the present.

  • Tummy Pains & Nausea - We are conditioned to think of mental disorders as only impacting our brains, but mental illness can take a physical toll on the body too. Stomach pains, nausea and other kinds of physical pain could be caused by anxiety. Your gut can play a huge role in your mental health by responding to your emotional well-being. Problems with anxiety can trigger issues in your stomach.

  • Fight Or Flight - A common response to feelings of anxiousness are the flight or flight feelings. Uncommon ways this is seen in anxiety could be flight responses ushering you to leave a place, situation or relationship. Anxiety can drive people to seek a feeling of safety and so flight responses can appear as someone who is avoiding things, like picking up the phone or going out. On the fight side of things, anxiety might trigger a person to be aggressive and irritable due to the fact they don’t feel safe.

  • Crying - It might sound obvious, but tears, and unexpected tears can be a result of anxiety. While crying is commonly associated with sadness, high emotions such as anxiety can cause you to burst into tears too. If you find yourself overwhelmed and crying unexpectedly, this could be a sign that something is triggering that response.

It is important to remember that everyone’s mental health experience is different. What may apply to some people, may not apply to others.


Depression is a mental disorder that can appear as a result of anxiety, or simply occur on its own. It typically looks like periods of feeling down, and persistently sad for weeks or months. The symptoms of depression can range from mild to severe and will range from person to person. Stress and anxiety can cause you to feel depressed, however, clinical depression is a serious mental health condition that should be diagnosed by a professional. These are some symptoms of depression you may not be aware of:

  • Weight Change - You may find that your depression is reducing your appetite and want for food. This will result in a significant weight loss over time which can become unhealthy and dangerous. On the flipside, you may be finding comfort in eating, and seeing weight gain as a result of your depression.

  • Insomnia - Changes to your sleep routine can occur when you are depressed. You may struggle to fall asleep, leaving you even more fatigued. Sleep deprivation can potentially make your depression worse too, creating a negative cycle through a lack of sleep. On the other hand, sleeping a lot is a common sign of depression. It is usually a tell tale sign when someone is experiencing many of these symptoms and additionally sleeping a lot more than they regularly would.

  • Physical Pain - Much like anxiety, depression can take a physical toll on your body too. It can coincide with weight changes and fatigue, but people with depression can suffer from backache, stomach problems, chronic pains and headaches.

  • Personality Changes - Depression can cause people to isolate themselves, become quiet and withdrawn. Someone who may have been outgoing and extroverted could very suddenly start to embody the very opposite as a result of their mental health. Other negative mood changes might start taking place too, such as anger and irritability. If you are noticing lots of fluctuating moods in a loved one or in yourself, it might be a hidden sign of depression.

Other Common Disorders

Anxiety and depression are common, however there are other mental disorders that are also extremely prevalent in people. If you suspect you are struggling with one or more of the following mental health conditions, seeking help from your GP may be a good next step:

  • Bipolar Disorder

  • OCD

  • ADHD

  • Eating Disorders

  • PTSD

  • Phobias

If you suspect that you are struggling with one of these conditions, you should seek a professional diagnosis from your doctor before moving forwards.

Seeking Help

Reaching out and seeking help for your mental health can be a challenge for lots of people suffering with a mental health condition. If you or a loved one is going through a difficult time with their mental health, talking to friends and family can be a good way to open up a dialogue and start considering more substantial treatment options.


Speaking to your GP for an official diagnosis can be a good place to start taking small steps. Your GP will be able to give you a definitive diagnosis and recommend the best course of action. They will be able to suggest a treatment plan and may end up referring you to a therapist or counsellor.


Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, also known as CBT is a form of psychotherapy that is commonly used to treat disorders such as anxiety, depression, eating disorders and OCD, just to name a few. Unlike therapy, CBT focuses on your present problems, and works to help people tackle things in a more positive way. It focuses on improving daily life and changing negative thought cycles.

This can be a good option for people who are struggling with their daily routine, and can help break negative thought patterns.


Counselling is a talking therapy that is associated with broader approaches, and offers short term solutions to problems. It can be extremely useful in those going through grief or bereavement. It involved listening to individuals carefully and empathetically to help people overcome the issues that are causing them to struggle day to day.


Therapy is quite similar to counselling in terms of a talking therapy, however, therapy tends to explore the past more, looking for triggers and causes of diagnosed mental health problems. It can be a great tool for a long term solution, and much like counselling, it offers a personal service that caters to the individual.

Key Counselling Training

We understand that the demand for talking therapies and dedicated counsellors has increased over recent years. Here at Key Counselling Training, we offer a range of counselling courses, including online counsellor training. We offer a wide range of courses, from a level 4 therapeutic counsellor diploma through to couples counselling.

Working as a counsellor is a great way to make a difference in other people’s lives. If you seek fulfilment out of your career and want to work with people, this could be the right avenue for you. Being a counsellor will enable you to help people who are struggling with their daily life and create real positive changes.

If you are thinking of training to be a counsellor, feel free to get in touch with us here at Key Counselling training and get started on our courses now. For any questions or queries, contact us and speak to one of our team members for more information.


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