Your brain is an expert in detecting danger, and it has been like this for a long time! We know that our ancestors’ lives depended on how well they were able to protect themselves from predators and any other dangers in their environment. The more they were able to “be prepared and vigilant”, the better their chances of survival were.
“Anxiety” helped them reach that vigilance. Because they were feeling stressed, they became mentally and physically prepared to either fight, flee or freeze in the face of danger. Imagine what would happen if they never felt forced to be ready, and just sat around comfortably while a predator was nearby!
Even though there might not be a predator around the corner anymore, there are still exams, interviews, meetings, and competitions that we need to be prepared for. The right amount of “Anxiety”, in these cases, helps us be more appropriately prepared. Sometimes though, our brain might feel anxious more than we need it to be. That’s why it’s helpful to learn to use strategies that “regulate” or “manage” our anxiety.