Don’t see anxiety as the enemy

A similar post to this was on the earlier blog that was lost. A member here asked if I could post it again as he found a lot of comfort in it. So here it is.

People often ask me how I suffered for 10 years and then found my way out of anxiety. Well the main reason is because I now know I did everything wrong. I spent years basically trying to fight and think my way better. Not one day went by without me trying to rid myself of how I felt. And that was the problem, I was trying to rid myself of something that was normal in the circumstances. I suffered anxiety firstly because I had panic episodes through drug withdrawal. I had no idea what was wrong with me and worried daily about these feelings, this added anxiety to the episodes of panic, Wow, now I really had something to worry about. What were these new feelings? The shaking hands, the lack of emotion, the irratibitly, the blurred vision, the racing thoughts. After no answers were given to me by the medical world I worried I was going crazy, I searched my mind daily for answers, I got angry, filled my day with self pity. I worried daily as to what was wrong with me. All this worry led to depersonalisation, my mind protected me from all this worry and shut my emotions down, I felt like a walking shell. I forgot how to smile, to feel emotions, struggled to hold a conversation. So I worried and fought even more. Can you see why we get worse and not better without the right help and advice?

All my body and mind wanted was a break to regain its balance. But I worried daily and added loads more stress to the mix. I thought deeply each day and this tired my mind even furthur and made me feel even more detached from my surroundings. This was something I had to change and I did. As soon as I realised what was wrong with me and why, I lost a lot of fear and bewilderment.

The mistake people make is they are always trying to rid themselves of how they feel, instead of just getting on with their day no matter how they feel. I always say don’t put yourself under any pressure to feel a certain way, If your having a good day then fine, if your having a bad day then fine, just go with it, don’t fall into the trap of trying to constantly do something about it. It is NEVER a case of ridding yourself of how you feel. It is all about changing your attitude towards it and knowledge and understand does change your attitude, it is a lot easier not to worry or be bewildered over something you understand. As one person once said to me ‘ I understand now if you treat anxiety like a monstor and it will treat you like a victim!’ That is a very good way of putting it.

Some people email me asking about medication or if hypnotherpy is good, what do I think about this method or that method. What they are really saying is I want this to go away today, again they want the impossible overnight fix. My own recovery took time, it was like defrosting, normal feelings and emotions came back bit by bit, there was no overnight success. I receive emails from people who are doing so much better, many fully recovered, and in all cases they get in touch a while after first buying the book or landing on the site. This is because they have trusted in what I have said, not rushed things and given their body as much time and space as it needed.

So don’t fall into the trap of seeing anxiety as a big monstor, something you must rid yourself at all costs, this turns into fighting, worrying, self-pity, it gives it all the fuel it needs to continue. You don’t have to go around saying ‘This is just anxiety’, ‘I must accept this’ etc.. Just have a ‘whatever’ attitude’ towards how you feel and move on with your day.

Hope that helps

For more information and help visit my main site www.anxietynomore.co.uk

10 Responses to “Don’t see anxiety as the enemy”

  1. Anthony Says:

    Paul,

    your words are very comforting, and I’m glad that someone understands exactly what I’m going through.

    I have not read your book yet, but I plan to. That, along with medication (I know you are not big on it, but it’s worked for me in the past), exercise, and time will help me get through this.

    Right now I’m back to work, I sleep well, but like I said in a previous blog, my mind wants to analyze and worry. A few times that I’ve tried to explain how I feel to my family, I just break down and cry. I guess my frustration comes from my medication not working anymore after 4 years. This is exactly how I felt back then.

  2. No More Anxiety Says:

    Anthony people keep saying I am anti medication. The truth is I go on what it did for me and the sad stories on forums I see all too often of people swapping and changing them like sweets over many years. If you find some comfort in medication then that’s fine, as long as people don’t see it as the only answer, swapping and changing, trying to find that miracle tablet that will make it all go away. In my opinion you need to understand this condition to make strides, knowledge put me on the road to revcovery. As you say your mind wants to constnatly analyze and worry, that is exactly what I did for many years as I just did not understand what was wrong with me, this is why I say understanding is so important, it takes so much worry and fear out of the equation.

  3. Anthony Says:

    I see what you are saying. I consider my anxiety to be very mild compared to some people, so I simply see meds as being a solution to my anxiety, as it worked for me for so long.

  4. Frederic Floyd Says:

    Just another idea for a post:

    some symptoms of anxiety mimic non anxiety symptoms. Eg: tinitus, eye floaters, blurred vision, migraines…

    It is difficult to sift through your mind the idea that something is purely driven by tight nerves and adrenalin, when you hear of people complaining of the same symptom with no anxiety to drive it.

    Hearing about these people brings a lot of doubt, and fear that I will recover from these symptoms. I do trust most of what you say, but doubts still linger (maybe because I havent talked to anyone who has recovered from floater, tinitus, eye strains and such…)

  5. Anthony Says:

    Well, Paul, I finally ordered your book. Can’t wait for it to come in the mail. I don’t expect a miracle after reading it, but I’m sure it will help.

    Are there a lot of things in the book that aren’t mentioned in the site?

  6. No More Anxiety Says:

    I am sure it will help you Anthony, the book goes into far more detail than the site and includes a lot more subjects, that’s why it is over 100 pages long. Although there is far more information, I still try to keep it easy to read and understand. Do feel free to pass on feedback.

    Paul

  7. Tarmo Says:

    A question to Paul:
    Often with anxiety comes depression of some sort, but do you think depression is a sickness of it’s own as well? I mean, do you think that the advice you provide for treating anxiety can be used for depression of different sorts?

  8. No More Anxiety Says:

    Hi Tarmo, I think anxiety and its symptoms can bring on depression. I never suffered with depression before my own anxiety, so I kind of knew that if I could come through anxiety I would also lose the depression. Anxiety robs us of so much, our personality, our whole outlook on life, it depletes us mentally and physically and this is a big factor when depression comes into the mix. My advice is don’t be depressed because you are depressed, this is the same advice as don’t be anxious because your anxious. I hope that makes sense, it means don’t add loads of self-pity. Many people once they understand why they feel like they do can have a different outlook on how they feel, a new belief and this can lift their spirit. When I understood nothing and thought this was me forever, of course I felt sorry for myself and the depression deepend. I can’t comment on each indivdual case, but that’s how it worked for me, the depression lifted once I started to improve, in fact now I can’t remember the last time I got down. After what I went through everyday seems like a gift to me.

    Paul

  9. Tarmo Says:

    What a nice answer, thanks Paul.

  10. Saj Says:

    Paul:
    Thank you for your wonderful and refreshing thoughts that are of great help to me.

    I have had some experience on Buddhism in which it is believed that ‘grief’ is a part of life, we must not shy away from it. Instead accept it as a reality and live with it. I think the toughest part is training your mind to accept realities and events (sometimes harsh) of everyday life and soaking them silently without any side effects or negative reverberation.

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