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50 Songs About Anxiety

FlourishAnyway believes there is a playlist for just about any situation and is on a mission to unite and entertain the world through song.

If worry, panic, and stress have a grip on you, make a playlist of pop, rock, country, and R&B songs about anxiety. You're not alone. Anxiety disorders represent the most common mental illness in the US.

If worry, panic, and stress have a grip on you, make a playlist of pop, rock, country, and R&B songs about anxiety. You're not alone. Anxiety disorders represent the most common mental illness in the US.

Hey, Nervous Nellie

Anxiety has invited himself to live inside your mind rent-free, and he brought his best friend, depression. Having unpacked, he's made himself cozy and is now a stale visitor. You're left frazzled, tired, and irritable. He doesn't care.

Late into the night, your unwanted guest robs you of sleep by conversing with you at length about matters monumental or trivial. (It all seems equally important in the wee hours, doesn't it?) He's the uninvited visitor you struggle to evict. What a terrible guest!

Anxiety is the most common mental illness in the United States, and the pandemic has significantly added to these levels. Almost one-third of American adults have had an anxiety disorder at some point in their lives. If worry, panic, and stress have a stranglehold on you, seek help for your illness because it's a very treatable condition, and make a playlist of pop, rock, country, and R&B songs about your feelings to remind yourself that you're not alone.

Reader Poll

1. "Anxiety" by Anna Clendening

In this catchy 2019 pop ballad, YouTube star Anna Clendening describes the irony of looking emotionally pulled together on the surface but falling apart inside. Under her painted smile, her anxious mind races. Anxiety is the unwanted center of her world that has brought her panic attacks, pills, and therapy bills. Clendening suffers from anxiety and panic attacks and appeared on NBC's America's Got Talent in 2014.

2. "Overwhelmed" by Royal & The Serpent

Indie-pop artist Royal & The Serpent (otherwise known as Ryan Santiago) perfectly captures pandemic angst in this 2020 tune, although ironically the song was written two years before. Job loss, social isolation, and the threat of eviction/running out of money, all contribute to rising anxiety levels.

"Overwhelmed" describes being riddled with anxiety as a result of being overstimulated with excessive sights and sounds. As a result, you're emotionally incapacitated, feel out of control and outside your body, and it seems like you can't catch your breath. People without anxiety will tell you to just "calm down," "relax," or "chill out." If it were just that easy!

3. "In My Blood" by Shawn Mendes

The walls are caving in on the guy in this 2018 pop tune, and he's sprawled out on the bathroom floor, scared he might give up. As much as his anxiety is screaming for him to surrender to his fears, another part of him resists because it's not in him to give up or give in.

Get up off the floor and kick anxiety's butt! At one point in 2020, Shawn Mendes lost the ability to sing due to unrealistic expectations for himself and debilitating anxiety.

4. "OK (Anxiety Anthem)" by Mabel

English singer-songwriter Mabel has dealt with anxiety all of her life, and in this 2019 anxiety pop anthem she provides reassurance that "it's okay not to be okay" because it's something we all feel. The artist describes how anxiety makes you feel tearful and tense and causes sleepless nights. Some days you may even have trouble getting out of bed. The world, however, may not understand the pain you feel because you hide your hurt with a smile. Stop the charade.

5. "Crawling” by Linkin Park

This Grammy Award-winning rock song from 2001 describes the rolling boil panic experienced by the narrator. Experiencing too much emotional pressure and lacking the self-control to comfort himself, he's reaching freak out levels of anxiety. His walls are closing in. His skin crawls in fear, and he feels like he's drowning in worry.

For many years, lead singer Chester Bennington struggled with depression, anxiety, and PTSD, after having been a survivor of childhood sexual trauma. Bennington died by suicide in 2017.

6. "Light It Up" by Luke Bryan

The guy in this 2017 country song is consumed with worry and calls himself a "neurotic." He might be right. While his girlfriend is out with her friends, his obtrustive thoughts about her possibly cheating shake him and won't let him go. He loses sleep churning over the possibilities and repetitively calls his honey, but she has had enough of his insecure, anxious behavior. Nobody needs this kind of jealous behavior

7. “Inner Demons” by Julia Brennan

Under the surface, an epic battle rages within the narrator in this 2016 piano ballad as angels struggle to defeat inner demons. The narrator encourages her protective forces to stay. She asks her angels to keep fighting on her behalf, to take the pain and fear and protect her from the damage that her inner demons are inflicting.

8. "I Will Fear No More" by The Afters

Some people find relief from anxiety by handing over their troubles to a higher power. If you're one of them, consider this 2019 Contemporary Christian song. In it, the narrator is burdened by a heavy chest and a storm that rages within. The man seeks solace in Jesus to calm his fear, lift his worldly woes, and shelter him from all that threatens him.

9. "Breathin" by Ariana Grande

In this danceable 2018 pop hit, the song narrator feels like the sky is falling and the room is spinning. She can't catch her breath because her mind is a mess. As a simple but effective solution to her anxiety, a supportive friend suggests controlled breathing. Just keep breathing.

Ariana Grande has struggled with anxiety throughout her life. Additionally, the Grammy Award-winning singer has suffered from PTSD in the aftermath of the Manchester terrorist attack at her 2017 concert that killed 22 people in the United Kingdom.

10. "Fear Is a Liar" by Zach Williams

You know that little voice in your head that tells you that you're worthless, weak, unlovable, unworthy, and that you'll never be enough? Tell it to shut up. That's your anxiety talking. This powerful 2016 Contemporary Christian song proclaims that fear is a liar. Make it your go-to tune when you're feeling like you don't measure up. Why not prove your fears and insecurities wrong and flourish anyway?

11. "Anxiety" by Blackbear (featuring FRND)

Aww. The poor guy in this 2017 R&B number has separation anxiety. When he's not with his girlfriend, he cannot eat or sleep. Sounds like the perfect cure for that is marriage.

Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the US, affecting over 18% of the American population. Common anxiety disorders include generalized anxiety disorder, specific phobias, social anxiety, panic disorder, PTSD, OCD, etc.

Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the US, affecting over 18% of the American population. Common anxiety disorders include generalized anxiety disorder, specific phobias, social anxiety, panic disorder, PTSD, OCD, etc.

66 Famous Musicians Who Have Struggled with Anxiety

Now are you convinced you're not alone?

Selena Gomez

Demi Lovato

Zayn Malik

Lady Gaga

Ariana Grande

Big Sean

Adele

Carly Simon

Kesha

Taylor Swift

Missy Elliott

Alanis Morisette

Britney Spears

Justin Timberlake

Josh Groban

Camila Cabello

Brian Wilson

Dave Stewart (of the Eurithymics)

Cardi B

George Michael

Hunter Hayes

Adam Levine

John Meyer

Sam Smith

Aretha Franklin

Brett Eldredge

Barbra Streisand

Thomas Rhett

Carly Pearce

Kelsea Ballerini

Harry Styles

Liam Payne

LeAnn Rimes

David Bowie

Bonnie Raitt

Michael English

Sheryl Crow

Deanna Carter

Eric Clapton

Janet Jackson

Meghan Trainor

Donny Osmond

Kendrick Lamar

Billie Eilish

The Weeknd

Cher

John Cougar Mellencamp

Wynonna Judd

Ozzy Osbourne

Axl Rose

Mariah Carey

Shawn Mendes

Chester Bennington

James Taylor

Lana Del Rey

Justin Bieber

Kelly Clarkson

Carrie Underwood

Brian Kelley (of Florida Georgia Line)

Miranda Lambert

Noah Cyrus

Willow Smith

Chance the Rapper

Jewel

Eminem

Lil Wayne

12. "Anxious" by Sarah Reeves

The ill at ease narrator in this searching pop song from 2019 tucks herself away from the world in her bedroom. Her inner voices taunt her with mean-spirited lies and she is afraid to join in with friends. However, she resists her impulse to hide from others in an effort to move forward:

I don't wanna live my life like this, anxious
I gotta lot of good in me to give, but I'm anxious
So many things I know I miss, 'cause I'm anxious
I wish I could shake this, I don't wanna be anxious.

13. "Happy & Sad" by Kacey Musgraves

And I'm the kind of person
Who starts getting kinda nervous
When I'm having the time of my life.

Are you a Nervous Nelly who gets doesn't trust the highs because you think about the lows that must surely lie ahead? If so, the girl in this 2018 country song knows how you feel. She can be having the time of her life and be on top of the world, but she has a case of the jitters and feels both happy and sad all at once, anticipating that her luck will head south.

14. "Doubt" by Twenty One Pilots

The guy in this 2015 electropop song is running scared, feeling true trepidation about his image, his immaturity, and even his ceiling (yikes). Feeling as if he's coming unglued, the narrator calls out for help, hoping to be rescued from his shaking hands and dark thoughts. The distraught man begs not to be forgotten.

15. "Unwell" by Matchbox Twenty

The fretful narrator in this 2003 alternative rock song is losing sleep, ruminating about his problems, and has a fear of others' reactions to him. Although he's not exactly ready for the psych ward, he's not running on all cylinders either, and he believes everyone notices. Truth be told, most people are just trying to stay in their lane. The song exemplifies the illusion of transparency, a common cognitive bias involving overestimating how much others notice your internal mental state.

12 Signs and Symptoms of Anxiety Disorders

If you are having difficulty with anxiety symptoms, please consult a mental health professional or your family doctor.

Feeling nervous, restless or tense

Having a sense of impending danger, panic, or doom

Sweating

Increased heart rate

Rapid breathing

Trembling

Feeling weak or tired

Excessive worry that is difficult to control; trouble concentrating on anything else

Gastrointestinal problems

Avoidance of what triggers the worried thoughts (e.g., social situations)

Trouble sleeping

Irritability

16. "Heavy" by Linkin Park (featuring Kiiara)

In this 2017 pop song, the narrator's mind is racing and they feel worried to the point of panic and paranoia. The distressed narrator feels like the universe is spinning around them and they're losing control. "Heavy" performed well on the mainstream charts but represented a departure from Linkin Park's harder, alternative metal sound. Diehard fans and critics vocally disapproved.

Lead singer Chester Bennington died later that year by suicide after suffering from anxiety and other mental illnesses for years. Additionally, Kiiara, the first-ever female artist to be featured on a Linkin Park studio album track has also acknowledged struggling with anxiety issues and panic attacks.

17. "Anxiety" by Julia Michaels (featuring Selena Gomez)

Singers Julia Michaels and Selena Gomez understand anxiety personally, and in this 2019 pop song they banter about their mental health challenges. You can feel the unease in the song narrator's voice. She feels ornery, restless, and suffers insomnia. Her thoughts race, and she avoids social situations, canceling plans with friends while lamenting that people don't understand what it's like to experience anxiety like this. Time to get help. Anxiety is very treatable.

18. "The Archer" by Taylor Swift

It seems as if Taylor Swift's music is growing more toxic in theme as she gets older and more experienced with romance. In this mournful 2019 pop ditty, she exudes anxiety about making herself vulnerable to love and being left. As a self-protective measure against heartbreak, she chooses to see relationships as combat (which clearly they're not).

Swift is a Grammy Award-winning artist who was named Woman of the Decade (2010s) by Billboard and Artist of the Decade (2010s) by the American Music Awards. However, not even these honors are insurance against self-doubt. They also don't guarantee genuine friendships or faithful love, hence her relationship insecurities.

19. "Be OK" by Ingrid Michaelson

When you're worried, tired, and broken, all you want to do is feel normal and functional again. This song is a remedy for the anxiety-ridden among us. The poppy, upbeat 2008 tune features a narrator who hopes that today holds restoration to her previous mental state. Perhaps she's seeking therapeutic treatment and is telling the doctor what she wants—not a medical miracle, just to be OK.

20. "Beginning of the End" by Weezer

Stage fright is the topic of this high energy track from the 2020 Bill & Ted Face the Music soundtrack:

My head is spinning, it's the beginning of the end
The people freak out when I walk out there, so scared.

A manifestation of social anxiety disorder, symptoms of stage fright involve a racing heart, lightheadedness, blushing, trembling, sweating, a dry mouth, a shaky voice, and nausea. Stage fright is a common performance-related anxiety and is experienced by even prominent entertainers like Adele and Barbra Streisand.

Panic disorder involves repeated, unexpected episodes of intense fear accompanied by physical symptoms, such as chest pain, heart palpitations, shortness of breath, dizziness or abdominal distress. Symptoms may feel like a heart attack.

Panic disorder involves repeated, unexpected episodes of intense fear accompanied by physical symptoms, such as chest pain, heart palpitations, shortness of breath, dizziness or abdominal distress. Symptoms may feel like a heart attack.

Even More Songs About Anxiety

Know a song about anxiety that should be on this playlist? Make a suggestion in the Comments Section below.

SongArtist(s)Year Released

21. Anxiety

Good Charlotte

2009

22. Nervous

X Ambassadors

2015

23. What Now

Rihanna

2012

24. The Way I Am

Charlie Puth

2018

25. Basket Case

Green Day

1993

26. Anxiety

BMike

2018

27. Help I'm Alive

Metric

2009

28. Shake It Out

Florence + The Machine

2011

29. Panic Room

Au/Ra and CamelPhat

2018

30. Anxiety

Black Eyed Peas (featuring Papa Roach)

2003

31. The World at Large

Modest Mouse

2004

32. Social Anxiety

Nicola Elias

2016

33. Anxiety

David Dunn (featuring Aarol Cole)

2020

34. Nervous

The Moody Blues

1981

35. Unhinged

Joe Jonas

2016

36. Panic Attack

Dream Theater

2005

37. Breathe Me

Sia

2004

38. Collide

Skillet

2003

39. Conversations

Juice WRLD

2020

40. Devil

Shinedown

2018

41. Get Well Soon

Ariana Grande

2018

42. Righteous

Juice WRLD

2020

43. The Breakup Song

Francesca Battistelli

2018

44. The Unnamed Feeling

Metallica

2004

45. Gone

Charli XCX & Christine and the Queens

2019

46. Anziety

Logic

2017

47. You've Got Your Whole Life Ahead of You Baby

IDER

2018

48. lovely

Billie Eilish & Khalid

2018

49. Real Friends

Camila Cabello

2017

50. Hold My Hand

Jess Glynne

2015

© 2020 FlourishAnyway

Comments

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on January 03, 2021:

Adrienne - Especially with virus positivity rates being what they are, I'm sure anxiety rates are spiking too. Thanks for the visit. Stay happy and healthy. Happy New Year.

Adrienne Farricelli on January 02, 2021:

Anxiety is something I think all of us have been feeling at some time in our lives. Now with the pandemic, things haven't helped much. It can feel comforting for anxiety sufferers knowing that even many popular singers have gone through it too and even went on to dedicate songs on this topic.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on January 02, 2021:

Mary - I feel bad for your friend. Tell them that the weighted anxiety blankets are awesome (like a soothing hug), even for people who don't have anxiety! Also try pumpkin seeds, magnesium supplements (many people are deficient), and exercise. Someone I love has anxiety. Thanks for stopping by and have a healthy and happy 2021.

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on January 01, 2021:

The songs are not familiar to me but the issue is. I just finished talking to a friend describing a family member with serious anxiety and was a mess last Christmas. It's good that you brought this up. Happy New Year and the best this 2021.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on January 01, 2021:

Chitrangada - I appreciate your sweet comment. How nice of you to spare the time in your schedule to stop by. I hope you have a lovely 2021!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on January 01, 2021:

Linda - There have been a number of suggested links between creatives and mental illness, including anxiety, but no explanations are simple or overarching. Of interest: one recent study found that writers had a 38% more incidence rate in anxiety disorders compared to the general population. Thanks for the kind compliment. Have a wonderful New Year!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on January 01, 2021:

Umesh sorry for the autocorrect on your name.

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on January 01, 2021:

Anxiety is a problem, faced by many people nowadays. The causes may be many—general and individual. It’s good that there are songs to deal with this.

Thank you for providing this wonderful list. Happy New Year to you.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on January 01, 2021:

UNESCO - Thank you.

Umesh Chandra Bhatt from Kharghar, Navi Mumbai, India on December 31, 2020:

Nice compilation.

Linda Lum from Washington State, USA on December 31, 2020:

Flourish, sorry I'm so late to the party. Like our friend Billybuc, I really drew a blank on this topic, and (most of the songs) are out of my demographic, but you listed in your article the artists who have struggled with anxiety. I wonder if perhaps there is a connection--do "right brain" people suffer more from anxiety? As always, you gathered such a wealth of information and music for us here. Thanks for all you do.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on December 31, 2020:

Liza - I’m glad you recognized some of these songs and enjoyed them. Have a great new year.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on December 31, 2020:

Linda- Thanks for stopping by and for the kind comment. Have a calm and relaxing new year.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on December 31, 2020:

Nell - Me too but I roll with it! I tell people when they’re making me nervous or getting on my nerves. Have a fabulous New Year!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on December 31, 2020:

Peggy- The pandemic has made it so much worse for those with anxiety. Let’s believe that brighter days are just around the corner! Happy New Year!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on December 31, 2020:

Devika - I’m glad you enjoyed this. Happy New Year!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on December 31, 2020:

Vidya - Music helps to uplift and inspire and is a good way to relax for those who are high strung. Thank you for stopping by! Happy New Year!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on December 31, 2020:

Ankita - Thank you for the kind compliment. Have a Happy New Year filled with health and happiness.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on December 31, 2020:

Eric, You have been on my mind as I have not seen much of you her on HP. I hope you’ve been well and have had a good holiday season. Have a wonderful 2021.

Liza from USA on December 31, 2020:

I like a lot your song selection about anxiety, Flourish. Some are my favorites. Actually, I listen to some of these songs while I'm working out, so yeah it does helping me to overcome my anxiety. Thanks for sharing.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on December 31, 2020:

Ann - You’re lucky not to be a nervous type. Some people just aren’t. Both of my parents are not either. My mother remarked to me recently that she thought she felt anxious once and I thought she was kidding because I tend to be a nervous type but I can surely control it.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on December 31, 2020:

Pamela - I’m glad you found a few songs that were pleasing to you. Have a wonderful New Year!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on December 31, 2020:

Bill - Many of the songs are recent, an indication that the newer generation is more open about mental health. Have a Happy New Year!

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on December 31, 2020:

I like the fact that you include useful or educational information in your music articles as well as the music itself. Anxiety is an important topic.

I hope you have a good 2021, Flourish.

Nell Rose from England on December 31, 2020:

Great list Flourish, and yes I am a nervous Nellie! lol! I always listen to music to calm my nerves. Even better if I sing along.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on December 31, 2020:

Most of these songs were new to me. As to that long list of people who have suffered from anxiety, I am sure that more people than ever have some anxieties today over the many things this pandemic has caused. Let's pray for a better year ahead! Wishing you and everyone a happy and healthy new year.

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on December 31, 2020:

Happy New Year To you

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on December 31, 2020:

FlourishAnyway These songs are some of my best and so interesting to know of their titles.

VIDYA D SAGAR on December 31, 2020:

Awesome list of songs about anxiety Flourish and the stories about the singers make an interesting read. Music is my favorite go-to when I feel low and I have a playlist too, of songs that instantly uplift my spirits.

Ankita B on December 31, 2020:

Great list of songs on anxiety. So many famous artists have struggled with this mental illness, I was surprised by the list. I loved how you have described this problem in your introduction.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on December 31, 2020:

Wanted to comment so as not to lose my chance to give you appreciation. I used to say I have no anxiety. What a load that was.

I really like the first song. Never heard of her or it.

Thanks

Will read more regardless of the site.

Ann Carr from SW England on December 31, 2020:

I can actually say that I don't know any of these songs and only a few of the singers! That's unusual for me!

Good advice in your opening paragraph. It gets us all at some stage but some worse than others. Thankfully, I'm not a sufferer other than the occasional normal worries. You're right that the worst time for niggles creeping into the brain is the wee small hours!

Happy New Year to you and yours!

Ann

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on December 31, 2020:

I know anxiety is a big problem this year with good reasons. I has been a very difficult year. You have a huge list of songs! That is impressive, Flourish. I'm not familiar with many of those artists, but I did like the Zach Williams song and several others.

Have a Happy New Year!

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on December 31, 2020:

I drew a total blank. Not only that, but I didn't recognize most of the songs you listed. I wonder what that says about me? lol Happy New Year, my friend!

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