Anxiety can seem like a tricky adversary and intervening in it can often seem impossible. It really isn’t though and if I can change mine 180 degrees as I have, you can do the same. It takes some perseverance, problem solving, great information and sometimes a willingness to try new things or look at life in a different way.
Anxiety has many causes. If we are a bit wobbly emotionally, then today’s modern lifestyle, stress about money and relationships, a hectic pace and our often toxic food consumption will set the scene for low grade anxiety. When you add our cultural disconnection from one another along with a frequent lack of love and support things are worse. For those who have suffered significant trauma and drama or who are dealing with addictions or being on the spectrum for example, anxiety can be significant and disabling.
Whatever the intensity level of your anxiety, it can seem overwhelming, when you’re in it and is therefore confusing. Any way you can gain more information about it, is going to be helpful. The purpose of this article, is to assist you to have the information you need to get sorted.
Then armed with this information you just need to find the right combination of solution(s) for you.
1.CONSIDER YOUR ANXIETY PATTERNS
Do you always get anxious around certain people or in certain environments?
It may be that your body is trying to let you know those scenarios, individuals or places just aren’t for you. Do you have certain ‘friends’ or acquaintances who trigger you? Do certain cafes or businesses always feel toxic or unwelcoming to you, but you don’t know why?
When I first heard this and looked at it, something landed for me and there was a little chink in anxiety’s armor for the first time. When I used to become anxious I’d be very upset about it and I’d waste emotion crying or being upset that I’d just had another attack around people I desperately wanted to impress, or my hands had just shaken badly paying for something in a cafe that my friends loved, but that had always felt nasty to me, (I just hadn’t ever thought of it that way).
I had always made the situation right and me wrong, but like me, you might not be as messed up as you think you are. You might just be highly aware and much more highly aware than some of the people around you.
In fact what you perceive is anxiety can be your body trying to move you to more agreeable situations that are more suited to your vibe and your level of kindness and caring.
Often people who have been through a lot are more highly connected to their own awareness than others, so it can be easy to fall into the trap of making yourself wrong, but what if you were right and your anxiety could be an asset?
That’s a vastly different point of view, I know…
Try it on for size and see how it feels.
At best you’ll start to see your own awesomeness (and have a different sense of how things really are).
At worst you’ll maybe cut some of those people/places out of your life – not as an avoidance, but as a choice because you are seeing things differently.
I am not advocating this as a way to dodge your anxiety, but if this tool lands for you, maybe your whole life will change as a result. Mine certainly did – along with help for my body to break the pattern it was in.
2. RECALL YOUR THOUGHTS JUST PRIOR TO SYMPTOM ONSET
Think about your most recent or most stand out experiences of anxiety
Do you get symptoms that lead to feelings and thoughts, or do you have thoughts that lead to feelings and symptoms?
This is good information to have.
We are wired to look for threats (it’s a cave man legacy). Now that there are no wild beasts roaming around, the new form of fear that takes our energy and attention is frequently what others think of us.
Is your trigger is thoughts, what are they? Is it what others are thinking of you? Is it that you’ll say the wrong thing, is it that you don’t feel physically attractive enough, is it you’re not cool enough, or is it just a sensation of panic around too many people? What is it for you?
If your trigger is your body creating symptoms, which is activating your feelings and then thoughts, you may require some body work to undo the physiology first, before you will have more of a sense of control over things.
Having a body process available that did this (the Access Bars) changed everything for me with regards to my anxiety along with number one on this list.
3. NEXT TIME YOU GO INTO ANXIETY STOP. THEN DO SOME ‘DATA MINING’
Be glad next time your symptoms arise, because if you can remember this article and what to do, you are about to go a long way to understanding and dismantling your anxiety.
I want you to be the observer in the situation.
Shift your focus from inside the symptoms and being at the effect of whatever is happening and go outside of yourself and observe instead. Notice the sensations, your own reactions to the environment you are in or to the people you are with, notice the conversations that are taking place, notice the sense of contraction you may be experiencing. Notice the specific feelings and thoughts taking place within your body and mind. Don’t react to them, just observe them as if you were an outsider.
What is it you haven’t been acknowledging that is blatently obvious? What do you push down, ignore and over ride every time this happens? Now there are several things you can do with this information.
You can work with an expert to re-frame this response using this information (so you feel differently in that particular circumstance in future).
Or you can use the information to become aware of your triggers and choose differently.
For me, because I’d tried all sorts of therapies and confronting my anxiety that didn’t work (they just made it a lot worse). I chose two primary strategies for dealing with my anxiety.
- Regarding it as a valuable source of information and treating it that way instead of making myself wrong. Getting curious about it..
- Having Access Bars to unlock the physiological aspects of what was happening. My anxiety was so well established. My symptoms would trigger and kick off feelings and thoughts and this was the ONLY tool I every found that could free my body and this is one aspect that popular psychological treatments miss. For people very connected to their own awareness and particularly for clients that fall in this category, I’ve found this a vital yet mis-understood aspect.
I also took a lot of steps to support my body in not being so easily triggerable in terms of cascades of chemicals by implementing better diet and sleep and becoming very fit, so as I’d also be more relaxed if and when I was erring towards anxiety.
There are many strategies and combinations of solutions that may help you, it’s often a matter of bravely persisting until you figure it out for yourself.
If you would like to speak to me about a program which can help you deal with your anxiety in a vastly different and empowering way, click to apply for a 30 Minute Complimentary Discovery Session.