Anxiety is a natural and at times a life saving emotion. Its an emotion with measurable physical effects on the body and prepares us for a perceived danger. It can be treated from a number of approaches; learning relaxation techniques helping to contain symptoms as they arise, prescription drugs can also be used as a short term measure, cognitive behavioural therapy, and gradual exposure has also proved successful especially in cases of irrational phobias.
Person centred therapy would approach anxiety by addressing an underlying misalignment between a persons experience and their perception of themselves. If ones self perception is built on conditions of worth and not their internal locus of evaluation then life experiences can be very distressing.
An example of this would be if a boy grows up being praised and loved when he performs well in class, part of his self perception is that he does very well at school and it is an important part of him. However if he changes schools and is surrounded by more able students, overnight his self perception is challenged and school becomes a very anxious place. A person centred therapist would provide necessary conditions for the boy to explore the real value to himself of being at the top of the class, and using his internal locus of evaluation come to terms with his position in the school without any risk (perceived or real)of being judged or considered less of my significant others in his life.