If you experience anxiety about having enough time to get everything done, you might be living with what some people refer to as time anxiety.

You might have anxiety about having enough time in a day if you can’t stop feeling like time is slipping away too quickly.

You may also find it challenging to find enough time to do everything you need and want to do. If you feel this way, how you feel is valid and you’re not alone.

Understanding what causes you to experience anxiety about having enough time may help you cope and allow you to find ways to prevent and possibly stop anxiety regarding time.

Time anxiety isn’t an officially recognized type of anxiety, but it’s usually part of generalized anxiety disorder (GAD).

Time anxiety occurs when a person experiences worry about not having enough time to get everything done or to complete a task effectively.

It may cause you to feel as though you don’t have enough time to accomplish your goals, or you’re not maximizing your time in the best possible way.

Understanding the impacts of anxiety in regard to time can help you make positive changes and live a meaningful life.

Again, researchers haven’t recognized time anxiety as a type of anxiety, but it most notably occurs with GAD. Some people are more likely to experience it than others, including:

  • the elderly or terminally ill
  • imprisoned people
  • those who experience GAD
  • people diagnosed with other mental health conditions

If you have anxiety about having enough time difficulties may occur, such as:

  • feeling a lack of control over time passing
  • feeling overwhelmed or moving too slowly
  • procrastinating on significant assignments
  • frequently wondering what will happen if you “fail”
  • thinking something bad will happen in every situation

If anxiety regarding time affects your day-to-day life you may notice that you experience feelings, such as:

  • feeling like it’s too late for you to start something new
  • feeling like time works against you
  • feeling like you aren’t doing enough
  • racing thoughts
  • worrying about being late, even well before you need to get ready to go somewhere
  • anger or nervousness about being late, even when there are no consequences
  • feeling uncomfortable when you don’t finish what you planned
  • regret about the things you could have done but haven’t
  • worrying about missing opportunities

Since time anxiety isn’t a known condition, there isn’t research support that clarifies specific techniques that could help you cope.

But coping strategies typically used to reduce symptoms of anxiety and GAD may help you feel better about time.

Practice mindfulness

According to 2019 research, mindfulness can improve well-being and reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety. Mindfulness allows you to become aware of your thoughts, feelings, and surroundings in the present moment.

It can take time for mindfulness to become a daily habit, but introducing mindful habits into your daily routines a little at a time may help. You may consider practicing mindful habits while engaging in activities such as:

  • eating
  • cooking
  • walking
  • gardening

There’s no rush to perfect or master mindfulness. Try to observe how you think and feel without judgment, and if you feel overwhelmed consider breathing deeply to help you regulate your emotions and relax.

Write in a journal

Every time you experience time anxiety, consider writing in a journal to express yourself.

Consider providing details about what you’re doing and how you feel. This may help you understand what causes the feelings of anxiety and help you overcome them.

Address the underlying issue

Changing your habits is helpful, although it doesn’t address the underlying issue. Figuring out why you have a sense of uneasiness regarding time can help you prevent anxiety from occurring.

Start by thinking about your relationship with time. Try to remind yourself that you can’t stop time from moving and can only control what you do in the present moment.

You can also think about what it means to spend your time beneficially. This thought process will help you determine the underlying issue as you recognize what you need to do to live a fulfilling life.

Talk with a professional

If you can’t seem to overcome anxiety about having enough time on your own, don’t hesitate to reach out to a professional.

Therapy, like cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), is beneficial and can help you determine the underlying causes. Plus, they can help you find ways to manage your feelings.

Medication, such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) or serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs), can also help reduce symptoms of anxiety.

A mental health professional may suggest medication, therapy, or both as treatment options to support you during this time.

Time anxiety isn’t an officially recognized type of anxiety, but it’s usually part of GAD. Implementing new habits in your daily life may help you reduce stress regarding the time you have.

You may adopt new habits and coping strategies, such as:

  • mindfulness
  • journaling
  • determining the underlying issue
  • speaking with a licensed professional

If you’re seeking support, consider visiting Psych Central’s resource page to find a mental health professional. You may also consider an online support group to help you find support and encouragement within a community.

Overcoming anxiety can be life changing. You deserve to live the life of your dreams, and you can find happiness with these beneficial changes. You’re not alone.