As we’ve read recently in relation to former One Direction band member Zayn Malik, Anxiety doesn’t discriminate. Even a young man with many years experience performing in front of millions of people can find himself blind sided by it.
Anxiety is a tricky thing. A lot of people don’t realise that the symptoms they are feeling are actually Anxiety related. It may be that they are highly strung, snappy, nervous, feeling flustered, suddenly perspiring, the face and neck flushes, the heart begins to race, the mouth becomes dry, there is tightness or a feeling of blockage in the throat, a sudden lurch in the chest or a feeling of confusion and lapse in memory. These are just some of the symptoms and of course it is always worth seeing your Doctor to ensure that there is no underlying medical condition; However any one or indeed all of these symptoms may occur as a result of Anxiety.
People who have grown up Anxious may just accept it as the way they are, and people that have developed the symptoms may worry that they are having a heart attack among other things! Don't despair though, It is possible to reduce the symptoms to a very manageable level.
Here are some simple techniques to help you manage Anxiety.
Accepting that you are feeling Anxious and that Anxiousness is just a feeling triggered by the Brain in response to a stimulus, can go a long way to putting it in a better perspective and therefore reducing it's impact.
2. Slow down
Breath slowly and as deeply as is comfortable for you (try inhaling for a count of 4 filling the tummy and then the lungs, hold for 4 then exhale for a count of 4), slow down your thinking and your speech.
3. Realise that your Brain has accidentally triggered a process
The Brain is being overprotective, so it’s playing tricks with you to try to get you away from anything that ‘might ‘ be a danger. It’s just the Brain running a process, so when it registers that you’re over- ruling the process e.g. with reassuring self-talk and slow breathing, it will switch the process off.
4. Question your thoughts.
When this process is triggered the imagination goes into overdrive to explain why you’re feeling this way. Recognising that this is likely to happen helps you to question the thoughts, look for evidence and dismiss the doomsday thinking. Examples of questions you can ask yourself are:
Imagine yourself in a calm place. If you’re by water imagine leaves floating on the water and imagine that you are placing your worrying thoughts and sensations on the leaves and watching them float away. If you’re at the beach you could imagine that your thoughts and worries are written in the sand and being washed away by the waves, or you could attach them to clouds in the sky and watch them float way.
6. Observe but don’t engage
Observe your thoughts without judgement. Get a card the size of a business card to keep in your wallet, or maybe put a post-it note on your bathroom mirror as a reminder and write on it “Practice observing (thoughts, feelings, emotions, sensations, judgement) with compassion and without judgement.
7. Talk to yourself in a positive way
Anxiety can produce a lot of negative self-talk which then increases the Anxiety creating a snow-balling loop. Reassure yourself with “positive coping statements,” e.g. “this anxiety feels bad, but I can some steps to reduce it and it will pass”
8. Focus on the here and now.
Often Anxiety keeps us stuck worrying about what’s going to happen. Instead of trying to fortune-tell the future, pause, breathe and notice what’s happening right now. Even if something serious is happening, focusing on the present moment will improve your ability to deal with the situation.
9. Focus on meaningful activities.
When you’re feeling anxious, it’s also helpful to focus your attention on a task that’s meaningful and goal orientated, even if it’s just folding the Laundry. This is far more beneficial than sitting around and becoming obsessed about how you feel. It teaches the brain that getting out of the process of Anxiety feels better than running with it. Get busy with getting on with your life, the Anxiety process will run out of steam much faster that way.
I regularly work with clients to help them significantly reduce the impact of Anxiety on their lives, it’s remarkable the steps forward that they can take within a few short sessions.
Hypnotherapy can provide a fast-track to experiencing Anxiety triggers differently, i.e. so that they don’t result in subsequent Anxiety Attacks. In my opinion Hypnotherapy for Anxiety or as some might describe it Hypnosis for Anxiety, is one of the most effective and fastest modes of treatment available.
If you’d like help in overcoming Anxiety please give me a call on 0435 923 817 or contact me using this link.
Melbourne Hypnotherapist Georgina Mitchell practices in South East Melbourne
Georgina Mitchell was born in Ireland, moving to Australia in 1989. Georgina spent many years working in senior management in the Corporate world, before leaving to pursue her passion to become a Therapist.
Please note as with all therapies, Results for Therapies delivered by Hypfocus may vary from person to person