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The 30 most common psychological symptoms

The 30 most common psychological symptoms

September 4, 2022

The symptoms are manifestations by the patient of a pathological state . There are different types of symptoms, among which we can find physiological symptoms (for example, acceleration of the pulse or rapid breathing), physical (for example, headache or dizziness) or psychological, whether affective, cognitive or perceptual.

Of the latter, the psychological symptoms, we will discuss in this article.

Most frequent psychological symptoms

The psychological symptoms may be different depending on the type of disorder of the person. But, What are the most common psychological signs or symptoms?

Below you can find a list of the 30 most common symptoms of this type, and their characteristics:


1. Apathy

Apathy is the lack of interest and motivation towards external stimuli, for example, towards interpersonal relationships or toward life in general. In extreme cases, this reluctance is typical of depressive states and it causes the person to feel weak and without strength, because it affects their motivation.

2. Catastrophic thinking

Catastrophic thinking is associated with pessimistic people, and shows that something is happening inside the person. It is a distortion of reality in which everything is seen negatively and problems are anticipated even when they are going to happen . It can be a consequence of stress, anxiety and even depression.


3. Blaming others and the situation

When someone does not have enough self-esteem, self-confidence or is too sad, they usually blame others and the situation. This makes the person lose the ability to self-leadership and self-motivation and, as a consequence, it is paralyzed (in addition to harming others in some cases). It is common to be present next to learned helplessness.

4. Problems of concentration

Problems of concentration appear in a multitude of disorders, since when motivation is low, sadness seizes a person or the individual is living a stressful situation, the attention is usually directed towards oneself and towards his recurrent thoughts , which seriously hinders your concentration.

On the other hand, it can also happen that the main symptoms of the disorder have to do with the alterations of the conscience and the attentional focus, which can lead to experiencing inhibition inadequacies and a low control over behavior.


5. Excessive grudge

Acceptance is one of the best ways to overcome painful situations and it is necessary to find emotional stability . When the person is not able to accept the situation, resentment and constant criticism towards others often arise.

6. Feeling of emptiness

The feeling of emptiness is frequent in mood disorders, in which the person seems to live an existential crisis . She feels frustrated for not finding her place in this world.

  • Related article: "Existential crisis: when we do not find meaning in our life"

7. Blaming yourself

A person can constantly blame himself, which shows low self-confidence and self-esteem that needs to be worked on. It is a way to avoid facing problems that are presented

8. Mental exhaustion

When a person suffers from emotional problems, stress or anxiety for long periods of time, your mind seems to reach a limit . It is what is known as psychological, mental or emotional exhaustion. The person needs a rest after so much suffering.

  • Maybe you're interested: "Emotional fatigue: strategies to face it and overcome it"

9. Feeling of failure

This symptom appears intensely and painfully at times when the person does not have high confidence or self-esteem . It refers to a maladaptive emotion.

10. Constant worry

Constant worry is a characteristic symptom of Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD). The person always has a thought of concern in mind, on one or several topics that are considered very relevant. For example, if you are going to be fired from work.

Some physical and physiological consequences of this symptom may be: muscle tension, shortness of breath, rapid heartbeat, dry mouth, etc.

11. Restlessness (anxiety)

Worry can cause the person not to feel calm, because anticipates dangers and has lost objectivity and the ability to think lucidly based on rational criteria.

12. Affective distancing

Affective distancing manifests itself in different disorders (for example, those of mood or schizoid personality disorder) and affects notably interpersonal relationships .

13. Feeling of threat

In some disorders the person feels a constant threat . It is especially common in psychotic disorders, such as paranoid disorder, in which the person may come to think that everyone is against him and wants to harm him.

14. Feeling of inferiority

The feeling of inferiority appears when a person thinks that he is (and feels) less than others permanently. Is a clear indication that the self-esteem of that person is low .

15. Feelings of being out of control

When someone does not have the necessary emotional balance or is going through a bad time in their life, they may feel out of control. That is he does not feel that he has his life controlled .

16. Sadness

Although sadness is not a sufficient symptom to diagnose a depression, it is a characteristic feature of this disorder. The sadness transiently is totally normal, the problem is when this symptom becomes chronic and makes the correct functioning of the person's life impossible.

17. Melancholy

Sadness is a current feeling that makes you feel bad, instead, melancholy has to do with a sad event related to the past and that makes us feel bad in the present . It is also characteristic of depressive disorder.

18. Low tolerance to frustration

This way of thinking is totally maladaptive. It has to do with low self-confidence in oneself and causes us not to face the different situations that arise throughout our life successfully. Low tolerance frustration can cause avoidance of some situations , for example, in social phobia.

19. Disorientation

It is characterized because the individual presents confusion as to the time and place in which you are . It can manifest itself in some psychopathologies such as Delirium Tremens.

20. Emotional lability

The emotional lability is the inadequate affective expression , that is, disproportionate laughter or inappropriate cries. The emotional expression, therefore, does not fit with the situation is exaggerated.

21. Sleepiness

Drowsiness is a feeling of tiredness, heaviness and sleep that usually appears when a person has a low mood . On the other hand, it is also common for drowsiness to be a secondary effect of psychotropic drugs consumed to treat the disorder or pathology.

22. Insomnia

Insomnia is the inability to sleep , and can appear in different situations: when the person experiences anxiety, worry, stress or have problems to solve in their life. In addition, the problems derived from the experimentation of the disorder can cause problems to appear at the time of falling asleep, by the added stress when having more worries.

23. Irritability

Irritability is an exaggerated response to stimuli. The person tends to get irritated by anything and can manifest mood changes . In addition, the interpersonal conflicts that appear as a result of this state of mind and predisposition to anger cause that even more reasons to experience stress accumulate.

24. Irrational fear

It usually appears when a person has a phobia. It is a type of learned fear, which is not real, but rather anticipatory. That is originates in an imaginary, distorted and catastrophic thought . For example, the fear of flying.

  • Related article: "The 16 types of fear and their characteristics"

25. Feeling like the victim

It manifests itself in the presence of a weak self-esteem, so that the person becomes the victim on a regular basis as a way to manage anger and anger . It is an avoidance response that serves as a short-term justification, but in the long run brings interpersonal conflicts and problems when evaluating the results of one's decisions.

26. Feeling lonely

This is because loneliness is a negative mental state, which is linked to feelings of incomprehension, sadness and insecurity. This insecurity makes the person perceive that others do not understand and they do not share their values ​​and their tastes.

This perceived incomprehension on the part of others not only makes a subjective sense of isolation appear, but also makes us more likely to have health problems due to the lack of hygiene and proper nutrition as well as the psychological consequences it generates.

27. Wanting to hurt others

Anger and frustration can manifest with a mental state of revenge or wanting to hurt others. In many occasions it remains in only that, in a mental state, in an idea . In others, on the other hand, an individual may behave violently.

28. Depersonalization

Some mental patients experience a psychic state characterized because they feel strange to themselves , to your body and the environment that surrounds you. This, in turn, makes them more likely to adopt a pattern of decisions and actions that leads to loneliness.

29. Lack of hope for the future

Lack of motivation and lack of life goals makes a person can not visualize the future in a positive way . Something that, in turn, also causes serious problems for the individual.

30. Psychological blockades

The mental block is a psychological barrier that can be imposed on a person and prevents him from understanding clearly in some aspects of his life. The individual has the ability to hinder your own progress when it comes to achieving certain goals in your life.

  • Recommended article: "Emotional blocks: what are they and how can we overcome them?"

Psychological Disorders: Crash Course Psychology #28 (September 2022).


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