Understanding that Anxiety is a reaction to a thought and that each person will have a different thought is the beginning of change. I suffered and I say suffer because you really do suffer when you have Anxiety, so yes, I suffered from Anxiety for around 5 years. We are constantly talking to ourselves and having conversations with ourselves and all too often very negative conversations with ourselves, if we are being honest, we are our biggest critic. Imagine walking around 24/7 with someone constantly finding fault in everything you do, second guessing you at every turn, isn’t that what most of us are doing to ourselves? Why? Why are we constantly doing this? Why are we telling ourselves we aren’t good enough? Why do we care what we think other people are thinking? ( 9 times out of 10) they aren’t thinking that at all and even if they are, how is it actually going to affect you or your life? If someone has an opinion that’s fine, everyone is entitled to have an opinion, we can’t tell other people how to think (often people try) but to what avail? So, if we know this, why then are we still talking negatively to ourselves, why are we creating most of our own issues?  Are we even aware that we are doing this? It’s become so normal to automatically look for dooms day that most people are creating their own issues and they aren’t even aware of it.   

Let’s look at how we can change this… 

“Change your thoughts change your life” Dr Wayne Dyer, it’s actually that simple.  I was walking around unaware I was creating my own Anxiety, something as small as saying, if I don’t cycle by 3 o’clock these feeling will turn up and low and behold sure enough they turn up like clockwork, every time I didn’t manage to go for a cycle.  I was even creating panic attacks, I really was. I would have a Panic Attack when I was unable to cycle and I had no idea why this was happening, I was looking around at every area of my life, making changes and when I was making changes I was just cementing more negative thoughts, you’re experiencing these feelings because so try this, when something worked I thought I’d found a cure but the feelings would come back, I’d then try something else because although I was doing everything I thought was right, I was still telling myself that if I didn’t cycle the feelings would come back (other more catastrophic thoughts too).  Once I established how powerful my thoughts are, I quickly embarked on becoming aware of them and changing them, I can feel the dreaded feelings of Anxiety and I know what I am doing to myself and I change them. When Anxiety shows up mine tends to hover around and all too often results in Panic Attacks and yes it was all over something as small as telling myself I needed to cycle. I always thought Anxiety was a result of catastrophising thoughts (over thinking), but isn’t that was I was doing? For instance, a client comes to me with Social Anxiety, to someone else this is just walking into a room full of people, they walk in and don’t even give the others in the room a second thought. They can’t even begin to understand why walking into the same room could have such an adverse effect on someone.

The person with Social Anxiety, however, will overthink everything and imagine all kinds of things that could happen, and they tell themselves that the people in the room are looking at them and thinking all kinds of things. Teaching them to look at this in a different way (the way the person who can walk into the room with no reaction) will improve their Social Anxiety. This doesn’t happen overnight, however, it is a process, it requires work, the person has to want to make the changes for themselves. We should never embark on any kind of therapy to please someone else, only when we are ready to make changes should we start a therapeutic journey as this is when we will be fully committed to the process. Having someone else tell us we should seek help is not motivation for us to be fully committed. When each person/client reaches a point when they really do want to make changes, for instance, the person with Social Anxiety has reached a point where they reach out of help, we can’t just say ah change your thoughts, we have to work with the client, understand them, not judge them or make them feel their issues aren’t relevant or why can’t you just go into a room, everyone else in the room managed, that’s why its full. We have to understand that we are all individual and that is why they aren’t like the 100 other people already in the room but if they would like to be, it’s achievable and they can do it.  Acknowledgement for change. This is the start of the journey…

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