How to deal with the fear of anxiety
photo by Rickydavid
In this week's podcast we answer a question from a listener on dealing with the fear of anxiety...
Q: "Any suggestions on how to cope with anxiety about having anxiety? I have suffered with anxiety for a few years now, but recently it has intensified - I'm finding that I'm getting constantly worried about the anxiety itself that it tends to manifest itself in more symptoms. It seems I cant escape the cycle... any ideas regarding how to combat this?"
A: We get sensitised to what makes us anxious, and we subconsciously try to avoid that experience again. The trouble with anxiety is that it's within us. So we fear it and we want to avoid it, but you're stuck with it. This is where things can spiral horribly out of control.
Here are four things that can help:
Challenge your thoughts: sometimes we have a physical symptom that can be a symptom of anxiety but it can also come from something else
A fast heart can come from exercise, but many anxiety sufferers will begin to feel anxious anytime the heart rate becomes fast or they feel anything close to palpitations even if it is because they've just been exercising.
If you feel a physical sensation that could be from anxiety, ask yourself if you've ever felt it at another time?
Stop and breath and question your thoughts and try to learn to stop your mind and nervous system from jumping to conclusions.
Practice watching the symptoms without responding make your outgoing breath long and smooth and let any symptoms wash over you and pass. It takes some practice, but it really helps.
EFT tapping: anytime you feel yourself fearing anxiety you can use EFT to begin dissolving that fear. It's the easiest and gentlest way to tackle any sensitised response like a phobia or sensitivity to anxiety. You can learn how to do it in about 20 minutes with our EFT for Anxiety Relief guide.
Positive affirmations: tell yourself "I am safe, all is well, this will pass."
This is just a brief overview, to hear our complete discussion on dealing with the fear of anxiety, please listen to the podcast here, or on iTunes