How do I know I am anxious?
If you spend time with your mind focused on these issues then you are likely to be anxious. It is really worth recognizing the fact of being anxious instead of ignoring it. Because whilst ignoring it feels like you are doing something, in reality you are only perpetuating the problem.
Seven varieties of anxiety
Anxiety can be never ending. It can constantly find ways to capture your attention and take you to terrible places. For many people anxiety is focused on a few specific worries. I will list the most common ones and then offer some tools you can use to take back control from anxiety.
1. What if I get trapped?
No one wants to experience being trapped. It seems the most horrible of things to happen. How often do you actually get trapped? You may imagine that you are trapped on a plane or a train. But the truth is you wouldn’t want to be outside of the plane would you? Trapped is usually a fear of not being able to control yourself, in particular your body. The mind focuses on the idea of being trapped because that is usually the most frightening thing we can imagine. We are never trapped unless we believe we are and in most of those cases it is for our own safety; planes trains and automobiles.
2. What if I worry and get anxious?
I understand that my problem is that I am anxious about being anxious. So even before something happens I am worrying that I will get anxious. So I do!
3. What if something goes wrong?
I don’t know what will go wrong and that’s the problem. When will it happen? The feeling is so strong it feels inevitable that something will get out of my control and go horribly wrong.
4. What if I can’t control things?
The world feels uncontrollable and incredibly complex and my ability to control things seems so small by comparison. I expect terrible things to happen and I won’t be able to control them enough to keep everyone safe.
5. What if I offended someone?
No one wants to deliberately offend and that is why it rarely happens but if you worry about being offensive then you are taking steps that go above and beyond the call of duty to avoid this happening. This turns a normal desire to be friendly into a worry about being offensive. And paradoxically the concern you have feeds to worry.
6. What if people can see inside me?
People will see I am not comfortable and they will know I don’t belong or I don’t know what I am talking about. They can see I look stupid.
7. What if I upset them?
Why didn’t they text back straight away? Was it something I said or did?
I can’t bear the thought of being judged
I would cringe and want the world to swallow me if I made a mistake and I thought someone was judging me for it.
How to make anxiety history
Don’t simply tolerate anxiety. It is not inevitable it is simply a trick of the mind. A dead end of thought that you don’t know how to get out of. But you can get out of it and it’s not that hard with the right guidance and a little bit of effort on your part. I know anxiety feels terrible and because it feels so terrible it seems impossible to defeat. In my clinical practice I have treated many hundreds of people with anxiety and through using my online tools many thousands of people have been successfully been treated for anxiety.
I want to start you off on the journey away from anxiety by having you watch A few selected films I have made and these will both inform you and deliver tools you can use in your everyday life.
Choose the link that seems most relevant to you.