Am I becoming paranoid?
It is not unusual coming out of a major traumatic event, that persons develop feelings of anxiety or even paranoia about life. Paranoia is the feeling that you’re being threatened in some way, such as I am going to contract a life-threatening disease or that there are persons against me trying to hurt me, even though there’s no proof that it’s true. It happens to a lot of people at some point. Even when you know that your concerns aren’t based on reality, they can be troubling if they happen too often.
Clinical paranoia is more severe. It’s a rare mental health condition in which you believe that others are unfair, lying, or actively trying to harm you when there’s no proof. You don’t think you’re paranoid at all, because you feel sure it’s true. As the old saying goes, It isn’t paranoia if they’re really out to get you.
Paranoia is a type of thought process known as a delusion. People who are paranoid have suspicions or even beliefs that are not truly grounded in reality, that they are being watched, or that other people, organizations or forces are acting against them or out to get them. Understanding what is paranoia can help you decide how to cope with or get treatment for it.
Symptoms Paranoia can take many different forms, but the most common are:
Suspicion of other peoples’ motives or actions, why people are doing what you observe them doing, or what you believe they are doing, but have not observed.
Unrealistic or exaggerated mistrust of strangers, acquaintances, or loved ones.
Questioning what other people are up to, either in your own mind or out loud.
Thinking there is a special meaning in the way people look at you, their tone of voice or other aspects of their behaviour that do not actually have any special meaning in reality.
Believing that special hidden messages, other than advertising, are being transmitted to you through the TV, newspapers, mailings, mass emails, or the internet. These thoughts are known as ideas of reference.
Believing you have a special role or significance in the world that is unrecognized, unacknowledged or is being thwarted by others.
These are just examples of how paranoia can be experienced so you might have an experience of feeling that someone else, or some other force, is acting against or undermining you, which is not on this list but is still a type of paranoia.
Continued next week!!!