Signing off for Christmas

I wanted to just wish everyone a happy Christmas and sign off for this year. The site and blog has grown so much in the last year, which proves how popular anxiety can be. I had someone write to me last week who suffered, he said ‘Paul I am a very fit scaffolder and feel weak for having anxiety, I kept it to myself for fear of ridicule with the people I work with. Once I read your book I began to improve and thought, why should I feel ashamed to let people know how I feel’ I told a workmate in confidence and could not believe it when he said that he suffered to a certain degree to’. This just shows how widespread the problem and the reason so many people come to the internet for answers and help. Hopefully in time the size of the problem will hit the medical world and there will be more qualified people to help, this would save so much suffering.

Secondly I still see people who want to be better today and not tomorrow, understandable, but all this desperation to be better can be a hindrance. Recovery is better coming to you, than you going searching for it. Understanding why you have a symptom is fine, it takes so much fear and worry out of the mix. But asking ‘How do I get rid of this feeling’ turns into searching for it. There is not a feeling or symptom that you should try to banish, go towards it, work along side it yes, but not spend your time trying to rid yourself of it, a lot of anxiety is just a tired mind and body working together, the last thing it wants is for you to fight against it. Someone once said, ‘I get it now, I never for one minute allowed myself to have anxiety’.

Again live along side anxiety and all the tricks it plays and recovery will come to you, you cannot force feeling good. It is far better to say ‘I felt anxious today, but its fine’ Than to say ‘I have spent all day trying to rid myself of anxiety’ which is what a lot of people do. With patience comes a belief that you will recover, when the seeds of doubt come, that’s when the fighting and self pity starts again. I always seem to take one step back and two forward in my own suffering, but even in my deepest days of setback believed one day I would be fine. One way to explain it is, say you were at the bottom of a mountain and looked at the summit and thought ‘Its just too far, I will never get there, there must be a quicker way’, or ‘Its a long way, but that’s fine I will just take it in stages and reach the summit in my own time’ The second was my attitude to my own recovery, it felt far away at times, but I knew I would get there, however long it took was not an issue. The first attitude I have heard from so many, they don’t want it to take time, they want it now, they go for shortcuts that never work, they want someone to come with the magic sentance to make it all go away, thinking, if someone just answers this then I will be fine, only to find it is never as simple as that.

In all my posts and reply’s I try and keep the blog a very positive place to be and also an honest place to be, I never pretend recovery is a smooth road or will come to you overnight, I will leave that to all the scam sites on the internet. People who think they are different and recovery comes to others and not them, it is not the case, its when that persons attitude changes enough to be able to live along side anxiety and not treat it as a monster trying to engulf them that the real change begins.

A lot of anxiety is habit, avoidence was mine, I knew the only way to change this was to go towards the feelings and places I was avoiding. I knew I would feel odd or dreadful at first, but this was the only way and I was right, aviodence only narrowed my life furthur, sent me deeper into the condition and I refused to let that happen. In time the places and feelings that I avoided so much were my saviour, this is when I began to de-sensitise, in time the places and feelings that filled me with apprehension became so much easier. What this did for me more than anything was give me an inner confidence that I could do anything and to not be bluffed by anxiety, a strange feeling. As Scarlet said in a reply to someone ‘It is like retraining your brain’ and she is right, if you train it to avoid, then you train it to see places and feelings as something to avoid, hence your life may get narrower. If you feel the fear and do it anyway, in time you train it to see life and places as normal. This is why I discussed in the last post as living your life with anxiety there and not letting it rule what you do and don’t do, to just live your life and try to be more interested in what is happening around you than how you feel.

To finish Candie sent me a pic of her and her partner David and the scan of their child of just 13 weeks. She would also welcome some names in case its a boy, so any suggestions would be good below. To view the pic just click here

I hope there is something above that maybe helps or people can relate to.

‘Have a lovely Christmas and a happy new year’

Paul

362 Responses to “Signing off for Christmas”

  1. Scarlet Says:

    Guess I’ll be the first to comment…

    Wayhay Candie a bun in the oven. Mind you I can’t quite make out whether it’s a boy or girl LOL Although I’m thinking blue…. so what about Paul, now that’s a nice name 😉

    Here’s wishing everyone a merry Xmas and all the best for 2009. If you aren’t recovered by the end of this year, then go with the flow…get yourself out over Xmas and like Paul says, don’t rush recovery..it comes when you aren’t looking for it, like love and 2 buses at once 😉

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hZhoF9Isf0o

    Okay it’s a sad Xmas song, but don’t we all love it…. tra la la al la

  2. Paul David Says:

    Ha, Ha Scarlett, I told my mum off for calling me Paul. I told her it was way too boring. I did suggest the name ‘Karel’ to Candie, unusal but a nice ring to it. That song you put up, I actually bought the 12″ to that, I think I was about 15. Have to keep that quiet, my mates would never let me forget it, nice song though.

  3. Candie Says:

    Thanks for putting the pics up Paul- i shall show David the page later whiles laughing about my bighead joke! He reckons it gets its out of proportion head from me (cheeky git!) i did explain they all have big heads in the first trimester though lol. oh yes i do remember the karel suggestion Paul…. it sounds like Kalel from smallville!

    I am sooooooooooooooooooooo excited for xmas- seriously, my child will be an even bigger excuse to be like a big kid when its older… it will be me awake on xmas eve not able to sleep haha!

    i love the last christmas song! Paul you should dig the record out and get into the christmas spirit lol. Have a boogie round your living room :p

    I cant work out if its a boy or girl either scarlet.. either way il be happy. I am dreading the labour, i went googling and ended up watching a very graphic labour on you tube which has traumatised me for life!

    Have a lovely christmas everyone, im looking forward to all the food 😀

  4. Emily Says:

    Just want to say hello and thank you for this site and your book, Paul. I’m gleaning a lot of great help from it already. I’m extremely versed in the ways of anxiety as I have done my research from the minute it took over my life about 4.5 years ago, but I’ve also been fighting it for sometime. So, the fighting is lessening as I re-read your book. Man, is that hard to do; especially when we’re not supposed to “do” anything! I get extremely intimidated by my thoughts and uncomfortable emotions, rather than physical feelings or avoidance of places. It’s tough! But, I WILL make it to freedom! Thanks again.
    Merry Christmas to all!

    Warmly,
    Emily from Florida

  5. Paul David Says:

    Candie it will hurt lol, but you will look at think, yes it was all worth it. Don’t forget to put Karel on the picture page. Erm the 12″ inch was destroyed years ago, but got to give you credit for trying to convert me :)

    Emily welcome from across the pond. Stick around and we will try and make 2009 a year to remember for you, just from your post you seem to have the right attitude that will being you peace in the future.

  6. Ivy Says:

    Hi everyone

    Just wanna say thanks to Paul for this blog and his website and all those who have shared their experiences and advices. I am now accepting the way my anxiety is and will live everyday as it is.

    I recently read a book on meditation and to apply mindfulness and awareness of what is present now. The book says that fear and anxiety is NOT YOU but just an offshoot of anxiety at that moment. Most importantly just remain in present and cherish what we have now. Afterall be it anxiety, sadness, fear…etc, life still goes on and keeps changing. :)

    Merry Christmas and a happy new year to al! 😀

  7. Scarlet Says:

    Candie,

    You forget the pain after the birth hun…plus you can have epidural if you want. I had no pain relief for either of mine. My mother always said if men were to have the babies, there would be none…and she had 7. Did you see in the news of that woman who had 18 kids.. All their names beginning with ‘J’ or something.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/worldnews/article-1098292/Woman-gives-birth-18th-child–names-begin-letter-J.html

    Not for me mind, two is enough.

    Lovely weekend everyone

    x

  8. mike Says:

    hello everyone.
    not posted for a bit but thought i would just pop in and say hello. i still read the blog each week and the posts with people helping each other is brilliant. congratulatios on your news candie all the best with that.
    are you still training for the run paul over christmas or just re start jan (sounds best to me) all have a great christmas and lets raise a glass to a anxiety free 09.
    all the best
    mike x.

  9. Paul David Says:

    Mike I have just printed off the application form for the run. Here is the link, http://www.runningdiary.co.uk/go/view.cgi/2898 hope you are able to come. Just training twice a week and 5 a side football once a week, I will step it up when it is a little warmer.

  10. lisa Says:

    hi just wanted to wish paul and all of you on the blog a very merry christmas and a happy new year lisa xxxx

  11. colmc Says:

    hi guys, hope yous all have great xmass,normaly i only post when im feeling desparate so this is a first,I justed wanted to say thank you for your book and this website and all the great people who post on i

  12. samantha Says:

    hi all

    just to wish all of you a merry xmas and a happy new year

    well done everyone and lets have a positive 2009
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  13. Sam Says:

    Hey everybody,

    Just came back from christmas shopping…wow its full of people in the malls…Just wanna let scarlet kno that its 10 days with no pills and i fell better than i was on them…i eat more + wake up better….still get physical sympoms like when i get up i feel dizzy and sometimes there is this adrenilin that runs through my body, like a lost feeling but that will hopfully disappear..

    HAppy holidays to everyone!!!

    PS: john whats up brother??
    Sam

  14. Scarlet Says:

    Hey Sam,

    Great to hear this. When I came off mine I was very dizzy as well for a whille, so just let it be…it disappears eventually, as will the ‘lost’ feeling.

    Have you done all your Xmas shopping now? is it snowing where you are?

  15. Eva Says:

    A wee note for Candie

    Candie, congratulations on your exciting news, your picture is also lovely, you will have a gorgeous baby!! Some boys names that I love are: Aiden, Marc, Alex, Bruce and Callum…have you had many ideas yourself?

    Have a wonderful Christmas!

    Evax

  16. Nicole Says:

    Hi Scarlet,
    In a previous post you talked about how you conquered your fears by forcing yourself to face them. I have made progess this past year but need to face this fear I have of having a major depression or this never leaving me etc., In times when I am almost anxiety free this is not that distracting but when uver stress (like now!) and my symptoms get worse, I start worrying about it then eventually I start to feel down as a result. it is so frustrating as I know what I am doing and as I write this it seems almost foolish that I allow this to happen. You see, the disappointment in myself becomes another side to the return of symptoms as well. Do you have any suggestions as to how I can truly face these fears and deal with them once and for all? I feel that I would make some strides forward if I could get past it. Thanks! I find your posts so helpful. Nicole

  17. Eva Says:

    Hi Nicole

    I think I face a very similar fear to yours, infact for years I wondered if I had depression, however a wise man explained to me that i was just sensitive to things happening around me – that seemed to satisfy me regarding the past, but now I face a new slant on things. Every day I wake up and cant see the point in things – it’s very disturbing and in a way it’s as if I’m not human…e.g. putting up the christmas tree or making food, talking to friends or going to work – all things we just do as that’s what you do in life, but it’s started concerning me that i have severe depression because I’m thinking this way, but maybe this is just anxiety? When my anxiety started I had suicidal thoughts, they are still there but I try to pay them as little attention as possible, so I’m trying to do the same to this strange phase I’m going through in the hope that it will pass in time. Do you find you have similar thoughts?

    It sad to hear other people going through these things, because I know how much it scares me and disrupts sleeping, eating and life enjoyment.

    I hope you managed to face your fear, and let it drift on by. have a lovely Christmas.

    Evax

  18. Kashawn Says:

    Paul thank you for the nice post. I have finally learned that these anxiety feelings are occuring in our bodies to FIX our bodies!!! thats why we have to accept them. The pieces of the puzzle are coming together nicely, I understand…I also feel the layers of anxiety peeling away it truly is a process. Thank you!!!

    -Candie you have an awesome knowledge base on anxiety and give awesome advice that has helped me:) Congratulations on the baby on the way!!! I can imagine your excitement as I am a nursing student who worked on the maternity floor :)

    Happy Holidays to everyone:)
    Kashawn

  19. Sam Says:

    hey scarlet,

    well i finished my christmas shopping today, and yes it snowed 35 cm here in montreal, Canada. It starting to look alot like christmas…LOL. Well i am happy to hear that you got the dizzy feeling, when u stop taking the med’s. The lost feeling is weird its like i always check on myself if i will get back to being worse again which its been 11 days that i have been feeling good like 90%…. I guess i am worried for nothing…Well Dec. 30 i am going on vacation, that should help…Take care everybody

    Sam

  20. Dave M Says:

    Hi guys… I used to post here more…

    Just going through some tough times lately, I wonder if anyone has gone through this?

    Lately I have really been struggling with this fear of going schizophrenic… I have never had any schizo symptoms THANK GOD, but my uncle is schizophrenic and I am a 23 year old male, so i’m still in the age where it can develop.

    Guys this has been really really really tough for me to deal with. IT’s getting to the point where I am constantly monitoring my brain to see if I’m getting symptoms… like if I hear a sound like a phone ring, I try to hope that it’s really real and i’m not imagining it. like If I see a light or see something move like my roommate’s cat I get a little alarmed for a second wondering if I imagined it. This is really really tough for me right now… I know that I am not crazy right now, but I keep wondering if all this stress will cause me to go crazy and develop schizo…

    how do I deal with this :(

  21. Kamini Says:

    Hi Candie..

    Saw your pic and baby’s pic. Your are very cute and you and David make a nice couple. Baby also will be very cute. You know in my country we can’t have the picture of the baby. The doctor does not give it to us.
    Well all that i can tell you mine also is just the same like yours, because we are the same weeks pregnant. When i will deliver the baby i will sendthe pics to you.Ok take care.

    For Scarlet,

    Hi Scarlet… I want to let you know that I no longer suffer from the headaches. It’s been 3 weeks and no sign of headaches. I knew where i was getting stuck. I was still mentally searching for answers and tiring my nerves. This was what was causing the headache. Well I won’t fall in this trap again. Now i am doing nothing, just accepting. As far as the thoughts are concerned, I am inviting them now, no matter how tricky they are and how loud they shout.

    Well I am very happy. My anxiety is reducing day by day (with lots of ups and downs). I am taking away the power from it.

    Well, Wish you all a Meery X-Mas and A very Happy New Year 2009 to you and your family.

  22. Stephen Says:

    Hey Scarlet and everyone,

    Havent been on this site for a while now as i have been overseas on my trip and still on Hongkong atm. Half of my trip was pretty good with the odd bad thoughts and feelings but the second half has been good and bad. It was the thoughts that got me off track again and the feeling weird. Although when i forget about it i feel alot better only to remember it and for it to come as a blow. I havent however let it stop me doing anything on this holiday and dont think i could of had a better time without it!. so i think i’ve personally done really well. Scarlet i was watching tv the other night in the hotel room and this documentry was on about something and then they mentioned the guy in it has depression and aniety and it made me feel awful again after just hearing it. I have no idea why when the words are just said i react. hmmm i have also been very paranoid when walking around making sure i hold onto my belongings properly ect..but thats very normal to do in a country your not familliar with hey??

    The thoughts in this setback have been the worst symptom as i have been getting thoughts that i was never normal..like before my anxietyi had all these problems i didnt know about and there is no way to get rid of it ect. i know it must sound stange. have also worried alittle that i might go crazy and hurt some one even though i never would. Hope you can reasure me scarlet. But i truely have had an awesome holiday so far, i have been on planes with no issues like before my anxiety and just had a really good time. Wouldnt change any of it!

    Hope everyone is having a good week and merry Xmas!

  23. LORRYT Says:

    hi all

    having a crappy day, tired from working all last week, , got this damned virus flu type thing, and am attending the docs everyday to get all my post op dressings done. had a bit of a bad day saturday and never went out for my birthday meal. thanks to you guys who wished me a good birthday on facebook, havent been on there for ages!.
    I am not in the best of mind frames at the moment, but reassured myself by reading pauls book this morning, i havent read it for ages , havent felt the need. I was getting woken up by these horrid adrenelin rushes and i think i panicked a bit, onwards and upwards ehh!. trying not ot let it get to me and just get on with stuff, but xmas is always quite a stressy time .
    Candie , do you like the more traditional names, or open to something different??????.
    will try and maintain my positivity over xmas and give myself a break

    have a good one all and thansk again for all the suppoort, u truly are a lifeline!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    xxxxxxxxxxxx

  24. LORRYT Says:

    me again!
    i have come off my meds to !!, its been about a month or so, but am trying not to dwell on it as it doesnt matter anymore it is the whole attitude thing that really makes the difference, and boy what a difference.

    sorry am going on

    have a lovely xmas all and a peaceful and stressfree new yearx

  25. Scarlet Says:

    Nicole promise I’ll get back to you in the coming days hun.. I have hubbys family here over Xmas and just got back in from the shops
    x

    Just a quick hello to everyone, wishing you all well.

    x

  26. Helz Belz Says:

    Happy Christmas everyone! here’s a pic I painted a week or so back, hope you all like it. the anxiety was telling me not to paint it but i did anyway :)

    http://smilodon42.deviantart.com/art/Christmas-2008-107070078

    pink christmases for you all! -x-

  27. Paul David Says:

    Just got back from my Christmas shopping, total mayhem, but I did buy my partner a nice gold chain and perfume, hopefully she does not read this blog and spoil the surprise!

    Have a nice time with the family Scarlet, I know how nice it can be with children, so I am sure you will have a wonderful time.

    If anyone has some Christmas pics they would like me to post after Christmas it will be a pleasure.

    Paul

  28. Paul David Says:

    Thats a lovely pic Helz, you have a real talent there. Glad you floated past any negative suggestions and did it anyway, that’s the way forward.

  29. colmc Says:

    HI guys ,
    i seem to have a good week then bad ,it starts when i wake up early and eventuly start to vomit ,some days i can lie in bed and accept i feel anxious and these days are normaly good it all seems to hinge on whether i vomet or not ,do any of you have mixed weeks any idea how to stop slipping back in to being anxious because im anxious.

  30. Candie Says:

    Hey Helz Belz…. wow your artwork is amazing… where did you learn to draw like that!? Some of it reminds me of anime. Keep it up, if your anxiety makes you think whats the point- dont let it bluff you- i had to go through many things i loved feeling anxious thinking whats the point, but the more you do it the more normal feelings will return to that area of your life. If you dont feel like doing something because your anxious its just a negative thought due to your anxiety, go against it- do what you used to enjoy doing and eventually you will enjoy it again. The worst thing you can do is think to yourself that you will will make an effort to enjoy yourself once the anxiety has gone- as you have to go through the motions whiles feeling anxious to bring back the normal feelings of enjoyment again.

    Hope everyone is enjoying the run up to christmas, i have just been food shopping to asda! It was hectic, managed to find some really cute baby clothes though!

  31. Kamini Says:

    Hi Helz-Belz

    Your pic is very nice.

    X

  32. Kamini Says:

    You are really very talented and creative Helz-Belz. I also like drawing and painting a lot. But my favourite hobby is gardening and listening to music. I also like playing badminton, but actually i am pregnant so can’t do it.

    Anywayz dear, Wish you a merry xmas. Continue to go against anxiety, i am sure you are far powerful than it.

  33. Eva Says:

    Hi Helz Belz

    I’m really impressed with your pic!! Did you feel good after you’d told the anxiety to go away and did you get a buzz after for doing it!?

    Evax

  34. Helz Belz Says:

    I am glad my pic has given smiles to you all! :) makes it worthwhile. Eva, doing this one didnt give me quite the buzz it used to, but it was better than one i did about a month ago, i was so worried and anxious and empty during that one that i just cried for about an hour after thinking i would never get the buzz back. Candie, i am very inspired by anime, it was all i drew a few years back! didn’t really learn to draw anywhere, its just always been there, just getting better the more i do. Kamini, keep doing what you love to do (pregnancy permitting of course:) ) it is good therapy to be creative, the anxiety is even an inspiration sometimes. Paul, thank you for the kind words :) art can be fickle at the best of times, but with the anxiety and the empty feelings, any art-block days suddenly get blown out of all proportion and it feels like i will never be arty again, when before anxiety i would just leave it a day or so until the muse came back. but some days it is better than others and i can get along with it :)

    pink christmases for everyone :) -x-

  35. Eva Says:

    Hi everyone

    I have a quick question that I wondered if anyone could answer. My main problem at the moment is that i keep thinking what is the point in life…sounds awful and thats how its making me feel. I’ve not avoided anything (including works party) for months and I try not to listen to what my head is saying. It’s as if I’m not human, unable to feel the joy or emotion that goes with living life. I went to visit a friend today who has moved house, they were talking about planting a tree and walking their dog and just usual stuff. I just keep getting overwhelmed with feeling of being so distant from it all and it’s just sickening me and really making me feel that I dont want to be here. i wont do anything, but I just feel I’m so tired of it all. i know accepting and carrying on is the way to do things, but I’m struggling. If anyone has any advice I would greatly appreciate it.

    Many Thanks and hope you all have a lovely Christmas

    Evax

  36. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Nicole,

    “In a previous post you talked about how you conquered your fears by forcing yourself to face them. I have made progess this past year but need to face this fear I have of having a major depression or this never leaving me etc., In times when I am almost anxiety free this is not that distracting but when uver stress (like now!) and my symptoms get worse, I start worrying about it then eventually I start to feel down as a result. it is so frustrating as I know what I am doing and as I write this it seems almost foolish that I allow this to happen. You see, the disappointment in myself becomes another side to the return of symptoms as well. Do you have any suggestions as to how I can truly face these fears and deal with them once and for all? I feel that I would make some strides forward if I could get past it. “

    Your worry about having major depression and the anxiety never leaving you are ‘what if’ thoughts, and you need to treat them as you would any other irrational thought, ie…brush them off, and react without emotion, this is how you face them head on. So when you get these type of thoughts, say to yourself.. “so what if I do have depression forever, I’ll survive”. Try and do this without an anxious emotion, be blasé about it as you say it , and then distract yourself with something, repeat this as often as you need to…. and continue to live your life whilst you live alongside the thoughts and feelings. You need to learn not to react. Soon it will come naturally and you won’t have to force yourself to say it….

    Hope this helps, if you have any more questions let me know..

  37. Scarlet Says:

    Hey Sam,

    “well i finished my christmas shopping today, and yes it snowed 35 cm here in montreal, Canada. It starting to look alot like christmas…LOL. Well i am happy to hear that you got the dizzy feeling, when u stop taking the med’s. The lost feeling is weird its like i always check on myself if i will get back to being worse again which its been 11 days that i have been feeling good like 90%…. I guess i am worried for nothing…Well Dec. 30 i am going on vacation, that should help…Take care everybody”

    Glad to hear you finished your Xmas shopping, I have too…the shops weren’t too busy either, as Xmas is a normal day for folks over here. As for the dizziness, it’s normal…I lost my balance a lot as well, and fell a couple of times, it was almost like I was drunk. Of course these feelings won’t last forever. Great to hear it’s been 11 days and you are feeling around 90%…you are doing fantastic.

    Have a lovely holiday

  38. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Stephen,

    Oooooo Hong Kong how lovely.

    “Scarlet i was watching tv the other night in the hotel room and this documentry was on about something and then they mentioned the guy in it has depression and aniety and it made me feel awful again after just hearing it. I have no idea why when the words are just said i react.”

    It’s normal, even the words ‘depression/anxiety’ can make you jittery at times. You will feel like this for a while until it tapers off and I promise you there will come a time when you can watch absolutely anything without an inappropriate reaction.

    “hmmm i have also been very paranoid when walking around making sure i hold onto my belongings properly ect..but thats very normal to do in a country your not familliar with hey?? ”

    I think it is, especially if you are carrying loads of money 😉 I got my bag stolen once in my home town and it took me ages to organise new bank cards… so best be safe. Do you carry your money in a bum-bag type thing? These are the best I find.

    “The thoughts in this setback have been the worst symptom as i have been getting thoughts that i was never normal..like before my anxietyi had all these problems i didnt know about and there is no way to get rid of it ect. i know it must sound stange. have also worried alittle that i might go crazy and hurt some one even though i never would. ”

    Yes i thought I had never been normal as well, thought it was some ‘condition’ which had laid dormant and suddenly it had appeared never to leave me. These days mind you I think I’m perfectly ‘normal’ although my husband might disagree 😉 Promise you this feeling will go. As for worrying about hurting someone, this was one of my most common ‘intrusve’ thoughts, as I had a newborn baby, and generally they centered around him…took me ages to accept thoughts like this, but I have.. Like I said to Nicole above, you must react in an almost blase way to thoughts like this, brush them off as nonsense, becasue they are.

    Enjoy the rest of your holiday Stephen, speak to you soon

  39. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Dave,

    “Lately I have really been struggling with this fear of going schizophrenic… I have never had any schizo symptoms THANK GOD, but my uncle is schizophrenic and I am a 23 year old male, so i’m still in the age where it can develop.

    Guys this has been really really really tough for me to deal with. IT’s getting to the point where I am constantly monitoring my brain to see if I’m getting symptoms… like if I hear a sound like a phone ring, I try to hope that it’s really real and i’m not imagining it. like If I see a light or see something move like my roommate’s cat I get a little alarmed for a second wondering if I imagined it. This is really really tough for me right now… I know that I am not crazy right now, but I keep wondering if all this stress will cause me to go crazy and develop schizo…

    Dave, I had thought that I might be schizophrenic as well, in fact I was afraid of the word schizophrenic. Worrying about being schizophrenic, or being stressed out does NOT cause you to be schizophrenic. You have anxiety. When you get thoughts like this, brush them aside, say ‘yeh, whatever’ and continue with normal everyday things (do this with sounds/lights as well)…get used to saying ‘yeh whatever’ 1000 times a day if you have to, soon it will become second nature. Also get out with your mates…continue with your ‘normal’ living and let these thoguhts be in the background. You are having thoughts we ALL have had. Thinking you are schizophrenic/psychotic is one of the most common thoughts. Not one person who I have spoken to didn’t worry about being schizophrenic.

    Give thoughts like this no weight at all.

  40. Scarlet Says:

    Helz-Belz, what a great drawing, you did it hun, you went against the anxiet. Draw as much as you can if this is what your passion is. You must change your passion for A&D back into one for drawing.

    Pink Xmas

    Hugs

    x

  41. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Kamimi

    “Hi Scarlet… I want to let you know that I no longer suffer from the headaches. It’s been 3 weeks and no sign of headaches. I knew where i was getting stuck. I was still mentally searching for answers and tiring my nerves. This was what was causing the headache. Well I won’t fall in this trap again. Now i am doing nothing, just accepting. As far as the thoughts are concerned, I am inviting them now, no matter how tricky they are and how loud they shout.

    Well I am very happy. My anxiety is reducing day by day (with lots of ups and downs). I am taking away the power from it. ”

    Great to hear your headaches have subsided. I had them for a while as well. Sounds like you are doing so well. How you feeling generally? Has the nausea subsided? Bet you are having Xmas in the lovely sunshine as well.

    Here’s wishing you a great Xmas
    x

  42. Scarlet Says:

    Just want to wish everyone a lovely Xmas and all the best for 2009. Speak to you after Xmas, gotta go now and clean the house, bath the kids and wrap the pressies.

    xxxxxx

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9vPfOjAw5Z0

    I love this one, even though it’s old.. mind you I won’t be seeing one this year myself… Only Sam will probably.

  43. fiona Says:

    Hi folks, hope your all having a great start to the hols! I went christmas shopping on monday and the shops were ridicuolosly busy!!
    I’ve added a fave xmas song to the collection

    http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=Iq6atatcsCQ

    Thanks to Paul and of course Scarlet for the great advice.

    I had a bit of a setback yesterday after loads of good days but i realise that for me a setback builds slowly and becomes full blown when you start fearing and taking symptoms seriuosly again. It also takes a day or so after the peak of the set back for my body to settle again and my confidence to grow…. any opinions or experinces of this anyone?
    Anyhoo, i happily and patiently waiting for recovery, in fact alot of the time i think i am pretty much recovered and just waiting for the symptoms to fade… until a bad setback obviously!

    Enough about me!!
    Candie your baby is so cute and what a lovely pic of you and your boyf!!!
    What about Kier, Hayden, James or Zac?
    Aww i think i’m getting baby fever…. 2 of my friends have recently given birth.

    Have a great xmas and new year everyone!!!!

  44. Paul David Says:

    Fiona to sign off myself until the new year.

    Setbacks are fine, don’t fear or try to stop one coming, they are very much part of recovery. The more you go through them, the more your confidence builds that its just a setback, nothing else. I actually got to the point where I did not mind them, it was like a chance to prove to myself that I would not be bluffed into self pity, questioning and worrying again, a setback only has the power that you give it. I was like ‘O.k no problem, I feel rubbish today but its o.k, it will pass’ and it always did. It is the same with anyone who is recovering from depression, a recovering alcholic, they would have days where they felt depressed again or they would have the cravings for a drink more on certain days than others, its all part of the recovery process, we have been through so much, it is only natural that recovery does not come in a straight line.

    Remember enjoy the good days and don’t get down about the bad, I went from no good days to many, that showed that I was heading in the right direction.

    Also there is no need to wait for symtoms to fade, this could turn into impatience or watching your progress. If you feel good or bad on any given day its fine, its never about how you feel, its about your attitude to how you feel that is important. I never demanded progress or put pressure on myself to feel better, it just sort of crept up on me, this is the way.

    Have a great Christmas

    Paul

  45. Paul David Says:

    Fiona, just spotted the boys names, love them all, Candie have you seen any you like so far?

  46. Sam Says:

    Hey everybody,

    \Well as u know its been 12 days no meds and all is good till today a bit of stomach pains but not as bad as when i was on meds…Inviting my little setback to spend christmas with me instead of fighting it, like Scarlet and paul thought us…Want to thank everybody this year who gave me there support while dealing with anxiety, it made it easier to understand and run with it…

    Merry Christmas and filled with health because thats all we really need…

    Ciao
    Sam

  47. Dave M Says:

    Thanks scarlett…

    that makes me feel better to know that a lot of people have had this fear as well… I do notice that it bothers me more when I’m in the house with nothing to do.

  48. Candie Says:

    Merry Christmas everyone, thanks for the wellwishes and baby name suggestions- all have been noted 😀

    Would just like to say to Dean that i had a major fear of schitsophrenia- your anxiety is tricking you into thinking the worst, the fears will eventually subside as the anxiety does. My mind used to scan and check i wasnt hallucinating too- but the fact of the matter is everyone hallucinates sometimes its 100% normal. Paul said he felt asif he was floating up from his bed(that is a sensory hallucinations)… i have had tinitus which is an auditory hallucination and i actually know a lady who hears songs and talking which is a hallucination called musical ear syndrome. Not one of these are psychosis at all, they are related to stress and past memories. So dont threat about been schitsophrenic- as that is a split personality disorder not based on hallucinations… sure they are part of it but a different type. Your anxiety will try trick you into not beleiving what i have said and you may still threat for a while- which is fine, but go against it and if you find yourself mullin it over in your mind think to yourself no this is not true and i wont be tricked into investigating it- create new habits.

    Ok bed time for me, the excitement of xmas has tired me out! x

  49. Scarlet Says:

    Candie, I have experienced all what you mentioned as well.

    Oooo and Dave, no more googling schizophrenia. 😉

    Lovely Xmas all, am just cooking Xmas dinner and watching Scrooged on the telly.

    xx

  50. Candie Says:

    Hi Scarlet- i watched scrooged yesterday, i have it on dvd- its a great film isnt it……. sooooooo funny!

    Well i hope everyone is enjoying christmas, mine has been lovely so far… nice and relaxing as for once im not cooking! 😀

  51. Ivy Says:

    Hi Scarlet and all,

    I’ve been doing fine except for a bit anxious moments here and there. But I have this disturbing thought which I’m wondering if anyone of you has it before or is it consider one of derealisation.

    Even though I know I’m in reality and not even panicky, I think I have obsessed over my condition too much up to the point that every little things that I do, such as eating, talking, laughing or even at my own thoughts, I would be asking why and what leads to what I do at the moment and whether would I be able to accept reality and accept everything that appears before me. It’s disturbing cos I’m afraid I would not be able to accept reality and life as it is and I just felt so tired at times that I just wish to run away or sleep to forget everything. I think I have become fearful of living? because of all my thoughts and feelings.

  52. Dave M Says:

    LOL @ Scarlett :)…

    How’d you know i’ve been sitting here googling schizophrenia… well I was… I’m trying to stop.

    It still really scares me though. Today I just started a new job as a waiter down here in Miami. I just moved here 3 months ago or so… I just left my job in New York, and my parents house and drove down here. I always hates the weather and I was sick of my job, I had been at for 2 years. So I came down here to start a new chapter. Anyway I have made some friends, and been looking for jobs as a bartender or waiter because I feel that being more social will help me to be happier.

    Anyway the thoughts still come… Like I read (while googling schizophrenia), that it’s hard for schizophrenics to be with people because of all the craziness that goes on in their head, and they end up isolated. This has happened to my uncle. Today I was talking to someone and the thought started crossing my mind and I started feeling really anxious as I was talking to him. The worst feeling is monitoring your inner monologue to see if you are going crazy. Like I know we all have that inner monologue, that’s like your voice, that talks as you think. But sometimes It’s like I keep checking to see if i’m gonna start hearing voices or something and it’s REALLY SCARY. I fear that because I keep worrying about it so much, it’s going to happen to me. Like if I keep checking eventually it will start. Sometimes I feel like I should get on anti-depressants or anti-anxiety just to make sure I DONT get schizophrenic. If someone could promise me that I have no chance of going crazy, then I could deal with the anxiety. But the fear of going crazy is so scary that It’s hard for me to just “accept”. you know? Like I had a fear of being gay for a little while and to me that’s like a walk in the park compared to being schizophrenic. I would much rather be gay than crazy any day… if that makes sense lol. On top of that, all this worrying makes me feel a little depersonalized sometimes and it really scares me when it happens. .

    ARGH, this is really hard to deal with. I’m also sorry for posting this in this topic, because I know this was supposed to be like a “happy” blog, but I just needed ppl to talk to.

  53. Stephen Says:

    Hi everyone,

    Just to add firstly, i also had and still sometimes do fear going scchizo as it had been one of my main fears alongside with Bipolar and depression. I can fully relate to hearing something like a sound on the telly or a noise something might make and start questioning if i really did hear it or im hearing things. But when i ask someone around me they say yer..i herd that too and i feel greatly relieved. But i shouldnt have to keep getting that clarification all the time. I got a little anxious last night as i was drifting off to sleep and i think everyones minds go really funny in that period and you can think of some pretty strange stuff and i was thinking about someone who was talking and i fully woke up really anxious thinking did i hear that? But i know i was just “thinking” about someone who was talking about something but i still freaked. Ohh i read above someone said that they read stress causes schizo, i seriously think that could not be further from the truth, if it was ture wouldnt everyone be Schizo with rapidly rising stress levels in todays society? Just a thought.

    Thanks for the reply scarlet, i am now back home and had a really good christmas day yesterday actually, with little to know anxiety and had large periods of feeling normal and not thinking about it until i was having christmas night drinks with some of my friends who one mentioned the word Bipolar which made me feel a little down and jittery for a while. but i carried on drinking and having fun anyway. I have had a few schizo fears laterly too as i mentioned above. i know i am improving slowly and dont really feel the need to post quite as much. Now my holiday is over my view on recovery has taken a complete 180 change as im prepared to give it all the time in the world now as i dont ‘have’ to quickly get better for something. At your worst scarlet did you feel like your life was over and you’d be locked up forever? like you would never be normal again and sink into the pits of despair? not that i feel this way at the moment but some of th fears can really push you around.

    Hongkong was really good, did so much shopping, we also did a cruise before it through asia which was just so relaxing, i just ate and lay in the sun by the pool and for alot of that trip i was at peace with myself…water has a very strange calming effect on me haha. I’ll send you some photos if u like/or post them. But i think no one should avoid planning a holiday until they “get better” because then you are waiting to ‘get better’ which doesnt really get you better. I went on my holiday in bad anxiety and thinking this was a huge waste of money because i feel like this HOWEVER you just go on and have a good time anyway. sure there were times i didnt feel quite right but i did it and had just as much of a good time then i would of with out anxiety. Sorry about the huge post, Hope everyone had a very good christmas! Just nibbling at the left overs today and eating way to much chocolate!!

    Stephen

  54. Dave M Says:

    Nice post Steven… Hong Kong is one of the places I would like to visit most…

    As far as the falling asleep thing, I TOTALLY understand what you mean! I am greatly relieved to see someone else has had this experience. Occasionally lately, falling asleep has been scary for me too because you start to drift off, when your mind begins to kind of dream but you are not fully asleep, and at least for me, I will hear like random little things like voices or noises. They are never like voices telling me to do anything or something like that, but like if I have been watching football all day, it will sound like the voice of an announcer for a second, or maybe some music from the broadcast… But it has been scaring me, and I jolt awake, thinking “what if I start to hear these things while I am awake”….. It’s disturbing.

  55. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Ivy,

    “Even though I know I’m in reality and not even panicky, I think I have obsessed over my condition too much up to the point that every little things that I do, such as eating, talking, laughing or even at my own thoughts, I would be asking why and what leads to what I do at the moment and whether would I be able to accept reality and accept everything that appears before me. It’s disturbing cos I’m afraid I would not be able to accept reality and life as it is and I just felt so tired at times that I just wish to run away or sleep to forget everything. I think I have become fearful of living? ”

    Ivy I was the same as you hun, monitored ‘obesessed over’ my every waking breath, it’s blooming exhausting. You are in reality, just analysing way too much. As time goes on you will do this less and less, and you do this by living in the moment, getting out and about with friends, working, keeping your mind occupied with other things, reading, watching telly (all brain re-training)…. and when thoughts pop into your head that you know will make you anxious if you analyse them, just say ‘yeh whatever’ and carry on with what you are doing (do this 1000 times per day if you have to). Don’t feel the need to analyse what leads to what like you have been doing, it’s futile… just let it be, this is what acceptance is all about, getting on with your ‘normal’ daily living and accepting the thoughts without analysing them. It takes practice, but it’s what gets you to full recovery…

    x

  56. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Dave,

    “LOL @ Scarlett :)…

    How’d you know i’ve been sitting here googling schizophrenia… well I was… I’m trying to stop.”

    I have a crystal ball ha ha !!!!!!!

    I have never heard of stress causing schizophrenia either… neither does anxiety. Folks suffering anxiety generally think they are going crazy due to the endless ‘mind chatter’. I myself worried that I might starting hearing and seeing things as well, but again this is anxiety playing tricks on you. You can deal with the anxiety Dave, YOU ARE NOT GOING CRAZY. Get yourself out and about, chatting to other people, doing normal everyday stuff. And no googling symptoms anymore 😉

    Great that you have a job. Being a waiter is an excellent way of mixing with other people and taking your mind off the irrational thoughts. Let the thoughts of being schizophrenic be in the background as you work, don’t give them any weight, don’t analyse them, say ‘to yourself ‘as if’ and get on with other things, do this each time a thoguht of this nature comes into your head. It takes time, but gradually when you are able to stop analysing your thoughts.. and remain in the present moment, you will gain loads of confidence , and they will diminish.

  57. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Stephen,

    “i think no one should avoid planning a holiday until they “get better” because then you are waiting to ‘get better’ which doesnt really get you better. I went on my holiday in bad anxiety and thinking this was a huge waste of money because i feel like this HOWEVER you just go on and have a good time anyway. sure there were times i didnt feel quite right but i did it and had just as much of a good time then i would of with out anxiety”

    Glad to hear you had a good time on your hols. You are right dont’ wait until you are better to start ‘living’. ‘Living’ your life is what gets rid of the anxiety.

    “At your worst scarlet did you feel like your life was over and you’d be locked up forever? like you would never be normal again and sink into the pits of despair? not that i feel this way at the moment but some of th fears can really push you around.”

    Yes most definitely, thought I would be locked in my own mind with myirrational thoughts, existing alongside others but not actually living. It was terrifying at the time, as I couldn’t see a way out. I felt that I would fall into a pit of despair, and I did for a while becasue I had major depression… but of course I recovered from it and am here to tell the tale. Please don’t be worried about major depression Stephen. Living your life… getting on with everyday things is a sure way to stop it in it’s tracks…and also, it’s fully recoverable from as well.

  58. Eva Says:

    Hi Scarlet

    I find your replies to everyone really helpful and are obviously providing so much help and hope for so many people. The last few days for me have been pretty awful, I suffer from IBS which I seem to get really badly at Christmas time. It usually wakes me up in the middle of the night with extreme abdominal pain which causes me to faint. I didnt faint yesterday thank goodness, but the pain all day was rotten. However, it’s my thoughts that drive me crazy. So many points throughout the day I had to sneak upstiars and ‘collect’ myself because it upsets me so much. Did you ever have thoughts about the meaning of life? I keep wondering what drove me for all these years and what made me wanting to keep on living. It’s really quite weird and quite ‘unhuman’. Things seem to have lost their meaning, joy or purpose, even simple things like eating. I dont listen to the thoughts and almost do the opposite of what they are telling me. Will this pass if I keep doing this? I’ve done this for just over a month and am willing to keep on doing this in the hope that it will go away. It’s a real struggle every day to deal with this and this blog really helps me know I’m not alone.

    Hope everyone had a lovely Christmas!xx

  59. Candie Says:

    Hi Dave and Stephen… i can deffo say if stress caused schitzophrenia then i would deffinately be schitzophrenic by now! Its not true, and if you was going to go mad worrying about going mad wouldnt make it happen- it would happen regardless of stress levels etc. I too hear random things as im half asleep… these are just memories in the subcontious mind replaying as your in a half dream state… it happens to everyone, an anxious mind just tunes in and thinks the worst! As i previously said a hallucination has nothing to do with schitzophrenia unless it involves a split personality. Sure you could ponder over it, but no ammount of googling or reassurance will make the fear disapear- it will go when you start reasuring yourself which can be acheived through cutting of from thoughts and positive thinking.

  60. Nicole Says:

    Hi Scarlet,
    Thanks for the advice. It’s funny, shortly after I wrote that post, I felt soo much better. This could also be because we have been really busy celebrating with family and friends, but I have had very little anxiety since I got those thoughts out. That is often the way for me. Just posting a concern seems to de-mystify it. Seeing it in writing makes things clearer and I am able to see it as just a thought.
    I will follow through on your advice and not pay those thoughts any respect. Lately I have put alot more of Paul’s advice into action and have felt completely normal for long periods of time. I read and read his book along with Claire Weekes’s books for the past year and it seems to have taken that long for me to actually practice what I am reading. I realize now that I was expecting recovery to come along only because I was reading the right material and then I was getting extremely frustrated & anxious when I was not getting better.
    It is great to finally ‘get it’! Thank-you to everyone here who has helped me sort through this fog. Merry Christmas and a very happy and healthy New Year! Nicole (in Ottawa)
    P.S. Hosting a hockey party for 30 today, a wee bit stressed but this little break has helped immensely! Party on…..again!

  61. Emily Says:

    Hi!Here’s my first question to post…hoping someone has had experience with it, too: We’re so sensitized and get hung up on certain things that frighten us and then of course, anything and everything that reminds us of those things, we get all frazzled and obsessive with the “whys and what-ifs” and I totally understand that this keeps it in focus. One of mine lately is guilt/shame from things in my past. Is this exactly like any other thought that I have to just let be there and not try and work out? Do these fall under that anxiety umbrella, too? Whatever thoughts make us uncomfortable get too much attention and that’s the problem, not the actual thought itself, right?
    If so, then I sure know my stuff, but living it is seeming to be WAY harder than it sounds…but, some of you on here have gotten through it and become victorious so I know I can, too.

    Thanks,
    Emily

  62. Michelle Says:

    Hi, I am new to posting, but I have been reading as much as I can here. I don’t know if this is the proper place for an intro, so please correct me if I’m wrong.

    Last January 4th I had what I call a “breakdown.” I found out I was pregnant (with my 4th). I had wanted the baby before I knew I was pregnant, but once I found out, my world ended as I knew it. I had anxiety to the extreme. I didn’t sleep for literally 2 months for more than an hour or 2 a night, and that was with the help of sleeping pills and melatonin. I lost 40lbs in those 2 months because I could not eat. I felt like the world opened up and I fell straight to hell, because there was no relief at all. I had every single symptom, but exaggerated. I paced all night and day, had to go to the bathroom all day.. it was horrific.
    I ended up losing the baby the first of February, and as sad as it sounds, I was grateful, because I wanted relief (thinking it was the pregnancy causing it). No relief. The doc prescribed me Zoloft an that intensified the anxiety, I had akathisia. Flushed them, then tried Lexapro, made me insanely depressed on top of it, and sick to my stomach. Stopped that too.
    The doc prescribed me Klonopin which I took, and finally, relief (I don’t recommend it though, because coming off can be hard). I took .5 at night for sleep along with another anti-depressan called Remeron. I started to pull through. I came off the Klonopin in August. I never quite made it to 100%, but had days that were a close 95%. The weeks preceding Christmas were some of the best ones I had had. I was looking forward to coming off the antidepressant this coming February.
    Then, just 5 days ago, I felt the panic welling up in me as I was putting together a puzzle. It completely came out of the blue, and my immediate reaction was, “Oh no– Not again!” I tried to brush it off and distract myself. It sort of worked, I was able to go to sleep fine that night, but woke up slightly anxious. Later that next evening I had another few flushings of panic. Same thing.. tried to play it off. Got to sleep, but woke up early 4ish (I can usually sleep till at least 9am!), and had the anxiety. Every day has gotten progressively worse, and I’m scared to death I’m going to go off the deep end again.
    I am so grateful I stumbled across this site. My last bout, I read all kinds of horror stories on the internet which terrified me. But I couldn’t stop myself from scouring it anyway. I can’t believe there are other people who have felt the same way! But what scares me is, with the exception of Paul, none that I have read have ever been completely cured. Back to 100% and actually stayed that way. Seems many of you get close to normal, and more frequently regress several times over a period of years. That is so discouraging to me. I feel like I’ll never ever be completely “normal” again.
    It’s jsut so hard to go through my normal activities when I physically feel so horrible. Right now I’m more concerned with the physical symptoms than the mental ones, because if I didn’t feel so horrible, I wouldn’t think so horrible.. you know what I mean?
    I hope I didn’t intrude on your little corner of the internet, I am just hoping to find some comraderie, and hopefully find help. I did order Paul’s book, and am waiting for it to come (I’m in the U.S. — Texas).

  63. Dave M Says:

    Thanks for your reply Scarlett..

    What you are saying forms the basis of everything I am trying to learn in ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy). Basically the idea is to stay more present and learn how to kind of ignore your thoughts, which is also of course what paul preaches…

    Today was much better…As I was waiting tables sometimes the thoughts would pop up, but I was able to say “who cares?” but more than that… it was more a thought that “I dont feel like thinking about this right now. I have something to do”.

    It helps to have a job where you are constantly busy and on your feet for 10 hours straight!!!!!!! The only time I really have time to think is when I’m in the backroom polishing silver or alone making coffee or something. But one of the scariest feelings is kind of like a Depersonalization feeling or more of a questioning of how “in contact” I am with reality around me. But that all ties to the fear of going crazy. Anyway, sorry for the rambling, but thanks for the reply. It helps to know someone has dealt with this before and persevered

  64. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Dave,

    “But one of the scariest feelings is kind of like a Depersonalization feeling or more of a questioning of how “in contact” I am with reality around me. But that all ties to the fear of going crazy.”

    Dave please try not to worry about the depersonalisation, it is the result of a tired mind with all the analysing, nothing more…it will go when your mind rests. I had it for ages, thought I was going crazy, but when I understood it fully… the hold it had on me disappeared, as I feared it no more. On Xmas day I was so tired after having little sleep the night before (we have visitors) and I walked around very similar to those days when I had depersonalisation, very strange…but of course I didn’t worry about it…

    Nicole, Emily, Eva, back to reply to you later..

    x

  65. Eva Says:

    Hi Scarlet,

    Me again, I’m really sorry to appear so desperate, I@m just really struggling. During the night I had one of my scariest thoughts in my dreams, it’s exactly as I feel during the day and it’s that I cant cope with life anymore. It set me off feeling like I was going to faint in my bed and I couldnt get back to sleep for ages. Now that I chose to get out of bed I’m in floods of tears because I know that I can do nothing to help myself and that I’m doing things that are adised on this webpage – accepting the thoughts, saying to myself ‘no i dont want to think that thought, I want to go to sleep’, but it’s really crippling me. Is it normal for people to be woken up by thoughts like these? It all just makes me want to be sick. I know this will come to an end one day, but I do wonder if there is something else wrong with me that it’s not shifted quicker, it’s been 3-4months now…

    Again, sorry to waffle on so much, this is the only place I feel I can write down how I’m feeling. If you cant reply dont worry, I can always have some relief from reading others posts.

    xxx

  66. Candie Says:

    Hi Eva… i had full blown anxiety for about a year and a half before i was finally able to start recovery. 3-4 months isnt that long, i understand your tourment but the good news is as you havn’t suffered for a long period of time your habits will be easier to undo. This hasnt shifted for you yet as you havn’t quite accepted how you feel, which is fine as its a slow transition and took the majority of us a long time to grasp! When you are accepting a thought and replacing it with a new positive habit you have to have full beleif in yourself….. you cant just think these new thoughts in hope it will all go away- you have to acknowledge how you think and feel, give yourself permission to be this way whiles adding the new positive habits.

    I floated around on this website for five months without seeing many results- then wham… things got better really fast because i finally understood and was able to impliment what im told. I can now stop myself thinking and have full control. This comes in bits and pieces, it came for me when i stopped thinking ‘oh why isnt this working, im sick of this, it should of gone away by now’. As you can see i really did not listen for a while, sure i new what i was supposed to do but i went about it all wrong- yet now i have come through. So for those who havnt quite got there yet, dont be disheartened- you will eventually.

    Its all in your attitude, i was watching tv yesterday about electric shock therapy, its supposed to erase memories so you have a clean slate with habits etc- i remember thinking ‘i wouldnt want that doing, i’m glad i learnt the hard way as i know my new habits will never allow me to go back again… if i had the therapy id lose the new tools i have learnt and would probably end up at rock bottom again!’ Now my attitude has so changed, six months ago id of googled it and seriously considered it- anything to make how i felt go away really.

    Have a great new year everyone x

  67. Paul David Says:

    Just one point after reading throug a few posts above. We must remind ourselves that anxiety and the symptoms it brings are not reality, it is irrational. This was always my thinking and helped me not go down the road of thinking it was anything else, it helped me just smile at the silly tricks it played. Any symptom needs to just be smiled at and not seen as reality and not that you are going crazy or anything else, this is the attitude that got me through and now I am fully recovered I am so glad I did not take my symptoms to serious, they were not reality, just the subject of my tired mind and body working together and the only way to give my mind and body the rest it needed to recover was to take it all with a pinch of salt and not spend my days worrying about how I was feeling or trying to figure each and every symptom out. This is what I did for many years and it just sent me deeper into the condition, which makes so much sense to me now. Don’t be put off by the fact I had anxiety for 10 years, I did but for 9 of them I did everything I now preach against, as I knew no better. So many people on here say ‘I get it now’ I eventually want everyone to have this change in attitude and then have the patience and belief that they will come through. I want people to get it and this is the reason I don’t bombard the blog with information and let people talk and ask questions, I again am repeating myself, but its like driving a car, it takes time to learn, but in time it comes automatic, this is how it was for me, I could suffer tomorrow and know instantly how to come through, its a set attitude in me, I am sure Scarlet who suffered and recovered could say the same and anyone else who has come through in the past.

    Paul

  68. Paul David Says:

    Hi Michelle, Sorry I just got round to moderating your post so it got kind off stuck above. Firstly its great to have anyone new say hello and you are definately not intruding on anyone or anything, its great to have anyone new come along, there are no cliques here, so please post and ask what you wish. On your book, it should be with you soon, but I did have a mess up at the printers where they sent me the wrong books and it put me back a couple of weeks, but it will now have gone, any problems with delivery then just let me know.

    On to your post……..

    I will just start with this

    Then, just 5 days ago, I felt the panic welling up in me as I was putting together a puzzle. It completely came out of the blue, and my immediate reaction was, “Oh no– Not again!” I tried to brush it off and distract myself. It sort of worked, I was able to go to sleep fine that night, but woke up slightly anxious. Later that next evening I had another few flushings of panic. Same thing.. tried to play it off. Got to sleep, but woke up early 4ish (I can usually sleep till at least 9am!), and had the anxiety. Every day has gotten progressively worse, and I’m scared to death I’m going to go off the deep end again.

    Michelle please let anything come your way, give a free reign to any feelings, don’t fight or push them away don’t spend your days worrying that you will be back in a hole, let your body know its fine to feel anxious or slightly panicky and it is. As you say you are scared to death of going off the deep end, DON’T be, just allow to come what may. Don’t waste your time worrying each day about ‘What if’ you will build up so many fears and put yourself under so much unwarrented stress. The day I turned it all around was ‘O.k do your worst I no longer care’ and this was the attitude that got me home, I just did not care anymore, I was fed up with fighting and worrying about how I was feeling daily, I just wanted to live again and how could I when all I cared about was how I felt each day, watching and worrying about each symptom. So just have that attitude for me for one week and see how much better you feel, don’t fight or worry about how you are feeling. I used to write on my hand ‘Whatever’ I would just be about to ‘go over’ how I was feeling and try and do something about it and then I would look at those words and just stop and say ‘Oh just go where you want I don’t care’ Have you ever had a feeling and its not where you are at, its where you think ‘it will take you’ that you fear, this is the crucial point at where I would say ‘whatever’ just let it take you wherever it wants and don’t fear it, but there is no place, it always sorts itself out and you feel you again, these are just ‘moments’ as I used to call them. Once you go through these moments a few times they lose there edge, but a lot of people don’t let these moments come and go, they start with the ‘what ifs’ and the ‘oh no its coming again’ , ‘why me’ etc…etc…So just try for me to change that attitude and you may see a big change.

    Secondly on your point about people not recovering, Michelle so many have come and gone in the last year who have recovered, I get emails every week about people who are now back at work, enjoying a normal life again from a place they thought they could never recover. A lot of people on here, in fact I would say most, have come so far, some like yourself are new here and looking for the information that will help them, very few recover and feel the need to stick around, they just want to go out and live again. But just come here with an open mind and hopefully you will learn so much, I understand that the internet is full of horror stories, but these seem to come from people on forums where there is no one to actually give information out, it is in some cases a free for all and people who need help and guidence tend to be the ones trying to give advice and it never really works, its the reason that I am not a fan of forums in the first place, they are full of conflicting advice, one post can have 12 different reply’s all offering different pieces of advice, it just confuses the person even more, I am not saying they are all like this, but many are.

    Lastly you say…

    It’s just so hard to go through my normal activities when I physically feel so horrible. Right now I’m more concerned with the physical symptoms than the mental ones, because if I didn’t feel so horrible, I wouldn’t think so horrible.. you know what I mean?
    I hope I didn’t intrude on your little corner of the internet, I am just hoping to find some comraderie, and hopefully find help. I did order Paul’s book, and am waiting for it to come (I’m in the U.S. — Texas).

    Michelle it is hard to go through your normal activites when you feel so run down. But what you find hard today you may find easy in time, but we have to go through it, nothing I can say can make the physical feelings dissapear. To me I have to look back and think ‘Was I really that bad’ I was and I could never see a way out, now I cannot believe I suffered as bad as I did. When we feel at our worst we tend to never see a way out, we think we will feel like this forever. Again just try and live your life with your symptoms in the backjground, don’t spend your days ‘worrying’ about how you feel, say ‘o.k I accept that I feel horrible at times, its o.k I wont let it stop me living my life and I will try not to let it bother me as much as I have, I wont always feel like this’ Its the change in attitude that we need to address. I used to have a card stuck near my t.v when I woke that said ‘Today is going to be a great day’ it was just to set me up in the right frame of mind for the day instead of how I used to wake up, full of dread for the day ahead, feeling sorry for myself, get down and frustrated about the way I was feeling, I had to have a shift in attitude to move forward.

    Michelle I hope there is something there for you and do stick around, its great to have anyone new on board, the posts and replys are there for that reason, to help as many people as possible.

    Paul

  69. Sam Says:

    Hi Michelle,

    Listen to Paul, 5 months ago i couldn’t leave my house bcause of the physical symptoms…stomach pains + feeling lost and dizzy. Now after Paul and Scarlet’s help i learn to accept them the physical symptoms…dont get m wrong i still get them but i try hard to pay no attention to them and live my life…yes its hard but whats easy in life almost nothing…i got off my anti dep about 2 weeks go and i feel really better just coming here and asking questions and reading all the great info.

    You will find out in time that Scalet will make u feel hope and r-assurance…

    Hang in there

    Ciao
    Sam

  70. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Eva,

    Like Candie says it takes a while to be able to implement all the things Paul has said.. I myself suffered like Candie for well over a year before I even found out the information I needed for recovery. Took me almost 2 years in total to reach full recovery. 3-4 months is not long hun.

    Getting rid of anxiety and depression is a learning process, and once you have been through it and come through the other end (the long hard way with many ups and downs) it is a real achievement, and you have the tools for recovery embedded in your mind so that you will never ever suffer again. Like Pauls says

    “I could suffer tomorrow and know instantly how to come through, its a set attitude in me, I am sure Scarlet who suffered and recovered could say the same and anyone else who has come through in the past.”

    This is 100% true for me as well.

    “During the night I had one of my scariest thoughts in my dreams, it’s exactly as I feel during the day and it’s that I cant cope with life anymore”

    Regarding the scary thoughts, you must try and learn to not give them any weight, thoughts CANNOT harm you..so treat them as an annoyance, brush them off with the contempt they deserve.. you can learn to do this, it took me a while to master it, but you need to practice every day as much as you can..and it really does become automatic, even though you will doubt it for ages. Tell the thoughts to leave you alone, or shrug and say ‘yeh whatever’, “I’m too tired to be bothered with you now, come back tomorrow when I have more time” something like this.

    ” Now that I chose to get out of bed I’m in floods of tears because I know that I can do nothing to help myself and that I’m doing things that are adised on this webpage – accepting the thoughts, saying to myself ‘no i dont want to think that thought, I want to go to sleep’, but it’s really crippling me. Is it normal for people to be woken up by thoughts like these? ”

    It’s very normal to be woken up by thoughts whilst suffering (I myself didn’t sleep for months), and it may seem like there is nothing you can do… but there is, get yourself up and make a cup of tea, put on the telly or radio, have a warm bath, read a book (all with racing thoughts perhaps, but do them anyway…don’t lay in bed ruminating). Then after half hour try sleeping again… perhaps you will be tired. I myself tried meditating for a while and I downloaded a couple of self-hypnosis tapes, which helped me sleep/relax some evenings. You could try these, but please know Eva that what you are suffering is temporary and as time passes, you will be able to implement what we are saying and see a difference.

  71. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Eva again,

    “The last few days for me have been pretty awful, I suffer from IBS which I seem to get really badly at Christmas time. It usually wakes me up in the middle of the night with extreme abdominal pain which causes me to faint. I didnt faint yesterday thank goodness, but the pain all day was rotten.”

    I had terrible IBS for months, drove me nuts…but it disappeared when my anxiety subsided.

    ” Did you ever have thoughts about the meaning of life? I keep wondering what drove me for all these years and what made me wanting to keep on living. It’s really quite weird and quite ‘unhuman’. Things seem to have lost their meaning, joy or purpose, even simple things like eating.”

    Yes I felt like this all the time, thought I had actually lived a lie for most of my life and the true me was the one who was anxious and depressed, but of course this was the result of irrational thoughts and over-analysing…and my reality was distorted, nowadays I don’t think like this at all, and am very content with my ‘lot’.

    “I dont listen to the thoughts and almost do the opposite of what they are telling me. Will this pass if I keep doing this? I’ve done this for just over a month and am willing to keep on doing this in the hope that it will go away. ”

    Yes they will go away hun, but it can take longer than a month to implement all what we are saying, and recovery comes in pieces with lots of down periods and self-doubts. All the down periods are necessary for recovery, as are the glimmers of hope..at first the glimmers of hope might only be a second, but they will build up. I haven’s spoken to anyone yet who didn’t go through this same process of recovery.

    “It’s a real struggle every day to deal with this and this blog really helps me know I’m not alone.”

    I know it’s a real struggle, I can still remember all the feelings I had like it was yesterday, so I can empathise with you and what you are going through.. you are not alone.

    x

  72. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Michelle,

    “But what scares me is, with the exception of Paul, none that I have read have ever been completely cured. Back to 100% and actually stayed that way. Seems many of you get close to normal, and more frequently regress several times over a period of years. That is so discouraging to me. I feel like I’ll never ever be completely “normal” again.

    I read stories like this as well when I was suffering, but it’s not true, in fact many do make a 100% recovery (me included) and I have spoken to many people who recovered fully as well. Like Paul says those who have recovered normally don’t hang around but go on to live their lifes.

    I think the ones who regress haven’t learned all the rules for full recovery and been able to implement them, or perhaps they relied too heavily on medication to cure them. Pauls method is based on education and acceptance and I believe that once you have been able to implement what Paul says in his book (it takes time mind and is not an overnight thing) then you will never fear anxiety and depression any more…and you will never have a relapse.

    Please stick around and read everything on Pauls blog, it may take time to sink in and for a while you will have doubts that what he is saying works, but it really does.

  73. Candie Says:

    Hi Michelle- welcome to the blog, stick around and post whenever you need too, we are a friendly bunch and this is a great place to help you acheive recovery. On the subject of not seeing many posts about recovering- i have been on this blog for nine months and i know of loads of people that have recovered…. the thing is you really need to let how you feel run its course- as Paul says with anxiety its always a perception of future what ifs- none of my fears have ever come true and i have yet to meet anyone whos anxious fears are true. Go against whatever your anxiety is tricking you to fear- if you fear something re-inforce a new habit that will change your reaction. If i have a symptom, i often find myself about to ruminate and lately i have refused to go there! I think to myself, whatever- i am not going to take this further as i refuse to be bluffed anymore. Can you see if what you fear was going to happen then it would happen, no amount of worryin can stop it- this is why we need to let the feelings come and see for ourself that we are fighting a false fear due to our anxious state. Eventually you become more confident.

    An anxious mind can be corrected by going against the grain and refusing to beleive your irrational thoughts and feelings- eventually things balance out again.

  74. Paul David Says:

    Great advice above and the point is with Sam she still feels certain symptoms, but she has changed her attitude towards them and in doing so does not let anxiety rule her life as she did before, she had opened the door for other things to come into her day, when we start living again we are over riding past feelings and fears and this is where the change begins to happen, it just takes a belief it will and a little time. But the day you say ‘O.k its not nice but I wont worry or try to work it all out anymore’ is the day you give yourself a break. The word breakdown comes in because we have over worked our body, the last thing it wants is for you to over work it even more and this is where the cycle of anxiety starts, we feel anxious and our body needs time to recover, but we work it harder by worrying and fighting how we feel, our bodies tire furthur and so we worry and fight more, this is the cycle we need to change.

    Again sorry for anyone who read my above posts, a few grammer mistakes that made it harder to read, I need a 100 lines. ‘I must read through before posting’ :-) I have now fixed it.

  75. lorryt Says:

    hi all

  76. lorryt Says:

    hi all

    good to see you all, and still hanging around over christmas. i am gonna let off some steam here so please ignore me of you wish !!!!. my hubby is being a silly sod at the mo and this virus ios getting him down and he has convinced himself he is seriously ill as he has found a lump. probably just swollen glands treatable with antibiotics, but hes like a bear with a sore head and hes getting me all upset, kids wish he was at work and i am worried about my oldest as she doesnt like him at the mo!. i am gettign stressed over nothing , i havent been out of hospital long, have been back to work and resumed all my usual household duties. i am on painkillers as i have a large mass of abcesses removed from my breast ! ( not that yu really wanted to know ) . y everytime do i think i am superhuman and try to carrry on as normal, . i am getting down and all these silly thoughts come in , and yet again i am taking notice, and its getting to me, i seem to have lost the knack of saying sod off to the thoughts. i re read pauls book and am trying to carry on and not dwell on it but the accepting bit is easier, but carrying on bit is hard. i know i worry too much and i though i had conquered that but boy its hitting me hard today. lost count of the times i have cried, i sat and watched a film about some huskies and cried then started talking to my daughter and cried. i feel so silly, is it because i have come off the meds or just the circumstances at the mo. i know its two forward one back but i think today its two and a half back !!!! any advice x

  77. Eva Says:

    Thank you very much Candie and Scarlet,

    I will keep re-reading your posts throughout the evening, I always find I take a new slant on things when i read them more than once. Sometimes I think things need to get worse before they get better. I had thought things were a bit better for a wee while – never great, but small improvements…

    Again, many many thanks for taking the time to help me so much. xx

  78. Scarlet Says:

    Lol @ Paul,

    “Great advice above and the point is with Sam she still feels certain symptoms, but she has changed her attitude towards them and in doing so does not let anxiety rule her life as she did before”

    Sam is a butch hockey player methinks… 😉

  79. Scarlet Says:

    Paul, Candie hows Christmas going?. Do you celebrate New Year, partying etc…or do you generally stay in and watch the telly?. Over here no doubt there will be huge fireworks, and it’s warm enough to be out and about. Depends on whether my 2 year old can stay up or not, but we have more guests coming day after tomorrow so most probably we will go out, half of hubbys family (brothers/uncles) are here and I’m the only female. Got a bit of (much needed) time to myself tonight.
    x

  80. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Eva,

    “Thank you very much Candie and Scarlet,

    I will keep re-reading your posts throughout the evening, I always find I take a new slant on things when i read them more than once. Sometimes I think things need to get worse before they get better. I had thought things were a bit better for a wee while – never great, but small improvements…”

    It does take time, sometimes whilst suffering you can read things 10 times and can’t digest the info, and sometimes you are more receptive… depends how you are feeling at the time. It sounds to me like you are having a setback Eva. Setbacks are necessary for recovery and recovery has many of them, ride it out, act blase with the thoughts, it takes practice but know that you can and will master it as well, and the doubting will disappear in time. The doubting occurs becasue you don’t see immediate rewards for your efforts, but they are adding up in the background I promise you…

    Hope you sleep better tonight. Do you go to the gym hun, or do any yoga…anything like that?

    x

  81. Emily Says:

    Scarlet, Paul and Candie,
    This must be tough at times to keep up with everyone’s postings and dishing out the encouragement. Thank you that you do this to help those of us that feel stuck and scared!
    I’ve been checking back to see if anyone had any thoughts on my post, but there are so many that it probably gets lost in the shuffle so easily.
    Uncomfortable memories from the past give me a REALLY uncomfortable feeling that I want to run from and I’m what-ifing that I’ll continue to be so affected by this feeling (which of course, makes it more intense and intimidating). My earlier post was asking if this is just like any other obsessive thought or feeling that we don’t like and I try to let it be there just the same as that and it will lose it’s power??

    :) Emily

  82. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Lorry,

    I think you are bound to feel stressed what with your hubby being ill and by the sounds of it anxious himself. Sounds like you have taken too much on in a short time.

    I know it’s hard sometimes to accept the thoughts and not analyse them, try saying that you just don’t have the time to analyse the thought today, as you are too tired, and repeat it when an irrational thought enters your head (or a thought that you know will make you anxious).

    “is it because i have come off the meds or just the circumstances at the mo. i know its two forward one back but i think today its two and a half back ”

    Sounds like it could be a bit of both Lorry, definitely circumstances can alter your mood. I had a good cry myself the other day after a huge row with my husband…almost had my bags packed. Today I’m in a better mood I have to say and accept it as the trials and tribulations of married life 😉 It’s ‘normal’ to feel down at times, let yourself have permission to feel this way…even those without A&D can feel like you have. Think of tomorrow as a new day hun.

    Can you go visiting tomorrow, get out and about with friends/family…do some retail therapy in the sales?

    x

  83. Scarlet Says:

    Hi emily,

    Oops sorry I missed replying, I meant to, but age is creeping up with me
    😉 Likewise if I missed replying to anyone else…….

    “One of mine lately is guilt/shame from things in my past. Is this exactly like any other thought that I have to just let be there and not try and work out? Do these fall under that anxiety umbrella, too? Whatever thoughts make us uncomfortable get too much attention and that’s the problem, not the actual thought itself, right?”

    Misplaced guilt thoughts like any thought that you analyse too deply fall under this umbrella Emily…

    “Uncomfortable memories from the past give me a REALLY uncomfortable feeling that I want to run from and I’m what-ifing that I’ll continue to be so affected by this feeling (which of course, makes it more intense and intimidating). My earlier post was asking if this is just like any other obsessive thought or feeling that we don’t like and I try to let it be there just the same as that and it will lose it’s power??”

    Yes they are like any other obsessive thought, they are generally distorted memories with an innapropriate feeling attached, ie guilt in your case. As you recover you will no longer view such memories with this guilt and yes they will lose their hold over you.

    x

  84. Paul David Says:

    Lol @ Paul,

    “Great advice above and the point is with Sam she still feels certain symptoms, but she has changed her attitude towards them and in doing so does not let anxiety rule her life as she did before”

    Sam is a butch hockey player methinks…

    Oops, sorry Sam, ahem, I must spend more time getting to know people lol.

    Not really done too much Scartlet, I play a lot of sports and love my weekly quiz and indoor bowling and it all gets cancelled, I just want normality back. I did go out xmas eve as I had the sore head to prove it and then a quiet xmas day with just me and my partner. Meeting up with friends tomorrow for a few drinks and then a comedy club on new years eve. I just want my normal routine back, I am a bit of a bah humbug as Candie will tell you, but I am trying. New years day has been set for family and a buffet, so I need to run it all off, in fact I am waiting for a pizza to be delivered now lol

    Emily its a pleasure to help out, the blog does get very busy and posts do get buried at times. I don’t have as much time to reply as I would like and sometimes only have time to skim through, but I do set time aside to reply and post here. I never want to be a faceless person behind a site, it means as much to me as it does to you that this site helps. I really try and set it apart from other sites I came across on the net, I just felt there was little help out there, hopefully the fact it does get so busy tells me that it is helping a lot of people and that makes it all worthwhile.

    Lorry as Scarlet says its o.k to be down, allow yourself to be. I never had a total ‘You wont stop me being happy, attitude’ sometimes I would just allow myself to cry and get down, but I always brushed myself down and got back up. Everyday life is testing sometimes, don’t always blame it on the way you are feeling, its just feelings and emotions get exagaratted when we are run down, things feel worse than they really are. It sounds to me like you are just having one of those days, I had these at times and I just got my coat and went for a long walk, it used to do the trick. Tomorrow is always another day and you will soon be back on track.

  85. Eva Says:

    Hi Scarlet

    Think you hit the nail on the head when you said that:

    ‘The doubting occurs because you don’t see immediate rewards for your efforts, but they are adding up in the background I promise you…’

    By nature I am a very proactive person and like to ‘fix’ things. If i’ve had an argument or even if I think someone maybe doesnt like me, I can never usually sleep unless I sort it out!! It’s no wonder that the worst thing that’s ever happened to me (the anxiety) taunts me whilst I sleep. I trust in you that I am making progress in the background. I guess the fact that I went back to work before Christmas is a huge positive and althugh I’m not very productive, to even get ready and go to the office is a huge step forward.

    This morning I tried to see my dreams/thoughts for what it was, a bad night of anxious sleeping…OK alot worst than a standard nightmare, but if I’m sensitised just now then the emotion attached to them is obviously going to be higher. However as you say, I need to practice releasing the emotion from the thoughts and I guess pretend that they are not my own thoughts.

    Trying to keep focused on ‘normal’ tasks during the days are also pretty impossible, especially as I have this uneasy feeling in my body all the time. But I keep doing them anyway, even although their meaning has vanished. My doctor told me alot of my ‘unhuman’ feelings (my nickname for them) is down to depersonalisation. Thank goodness for their actually being a descriptive term for this symptom as I totally think this is the one that makes everyone feel like they are going crazy…

    As for the exercise thing…I do go horse riding (once a week)…I do keep going to it, but my mind and body feel so sick with my thoughts that my concentration it totally crap! However I still go. I tried yoga and relaxation cds, but I’m really fidgety around it all. I’m quite strange that way, relaxing pan pipe music and things like tht actually make me more tense. The one thing I do love is a neck and head massage, so think I’m going to fork out and go for one of them…although even going somewhere to get this done makes me panic…go anyway I say. Worst that happens is that I’m sick or I faint…’so what though’ is what I tell myself. The other activity that I’ve been doing this Christmas is playing ont he Nintendo Wii with my family. That has got us sweating buckets. Ok I’m not full of energy and half the time I look like a zombie not wanting to play with a sore IBS tummy, but the fact the games are short means I can rest in between. It actually made me laugh a few times and that was great…I’ve also been doing a bit of online shopping and really need a visit to the hairdressers so going to try and keep doing stuff like that – which was the old eva 100%. Not sure if i mentioned, but I’m also doing cbt with a psyciatrist. He is trying to reinforce that just because you have a thought, it doesnt need anymore attention than that. he also suggested making a list of things that I would normally like to do and doing them regardless of how I’m feeling…very similar to the advice paul and all of posts on here suggest.

    Anyway i could talk for Scotland so I’m gonna go now and not clutter up this page anymore. Feeling a bit more positive now…all thanks to you (and a bit of realisation from me!) xxx

  86. lisa Says:

    haha paul your getting like i used to be with my grammer..lol.would like to say paul i remember a post about you replying to someone who couldnt stop thinking about the anxiety,the feeling, and you replied dont try not to.that is what i find really difficult.i feel its like toothache its always here:-(i know its a change in attitude but this is the last hurdle for me now any advice? went to a christmas party last weekend and threw up all night ,im not used to alcohol anymore so that was my blow out til next christmas. roll on 2nd january big brother is back on but no cookiessssssssssss..lol

  87. Michelle Says:

    Thanks so much for your replies. And I am completely grateful for them.. that you would take time out of your own lives to help someone whom you’ve never met. I’m also in awe that reading about other people’s anxiety doesn’t bring yours back on. I can’t wait for the day that is true for me.
    I do have a question.. I don’t think I have some weird, incurable disease, but where does the andrenaline come from in the first place? Might something be wrong with my hormones/organs that would have flooded me with it in the first place? It just came on completely out of the blue. I have never been a worrier in my life. I used to hold the feelings that worrying doesn’t change anything. So why did I get hit out of the blue with anxiety? I was really the happiest, most content, relaxed person I knew until this happened to me a year ago. Thought I was recovering, then it hits me again almost a year to the day it did the last time.
    I’m wondering if this second bout didn’t come from some subconscious memory of last year at the same time. The same smells, the same sights and sounds.. the same time of year. I’d like to say a year later.. wow, I have come a long way, and thumb my nose at the anxiety saying, Ha Ha, I’m better now. That was my plan anyway– guess the anxiety had other plans.

    I am thankful that I ran across this site as soon as I did this time around, and only wish I had stumbled across it last year. If so, I might have avoided a lot of suffering.
    I thank God for it, because I am nowhere near as bad as I was last time. This site has helped me to try to ingnore the “what-ifs” that make the anxiety spiral out of control. At least I try to. I am happy to say that I fell asleep pretty well last night, and that even though I did wake up a bit early, I was able to calm myself down (without medication) and catch an extra couple of hours.

    Have any of you ever had the feelings that life is really, really, really long? I turned 40 last January, and used to pray every night that I would live to 100.. I loved life SO MUCH. But since the anxiety I think life is dreadfully long. I look at my kids that I used to think were growing up way too fast, and think wow.. it was sure a long long time ago that I was their age, I wish life would just hurry up so I can be old and die.

    I also get more and more periods of deja vu which I think are disturbing. It just makes me tired.. like I have lived forever and have had no rest. Part of me hopes there is no afterlife (I’m Christian, so that is a hard one for me), so that when life ends, it just ends. When I think of eternity, it just makes me feel so tired. What is this all called? It doesn’t seem to fall under depersonalization or derealization.. I just can’t wait till I am happy to be alive and want to live to a rip old age again.

  88. Candie Says:

    The posts are flooding in tonight!

    Michelle- this sounds deffinately like depersonalisation, iv had it on and of- where you can feel happy about nothing and thinking of the future seems too much of an effort. This all goes away once your anxiety does- even though you say you where such a happy person who didn’t worry, stress has crept up on you somehow and sensitised you. You can get better though, it takes time but we can all acheive it.

    Lol thank god for big brother coming back… that should give me something to watch on tv for a bit- wonder what nutty celebs we will have in the house this year Lisa?!

    Hi Scarlet- I havn’t got plans as yet for this new year, i wont be drinking as im pregnant so if i go to a party i may be the big fat pregnant walrus sipping lemonade feeling sorry for myself in the corner haha. I did hit the shops today to check out the sales, i got some nice baby clothes which where a bargain- theres just so many cute outfits to choose from! I cant beleive its lovely and warm where you are at this time of a year, id love to go lay in the sun in the garden right now! Pregnancy has made me soooooooooooooooooooooooooo tired, alls i wanna do is sleep… think i may start napping during the day. Hope you have a fun new year.

    Emily, i am glad you found some comfort and encourangements in my advice- eventually you will feel much better and be able to help other people if you would like to :)

    Lorry- anyone would feel under a lot of pressure under all that stress, allow yourself to go through the motions and dont expect you should be feeling not anxious under all the stress… its natural to have periods of our life where we experience natural episodes of anxiety.

    Have a good weekend everyone x

  89. Paul David Says:

    Lisa: haha paul your getting like i used to be with my grammer..lol.would like to say paul i remember a post about you replying to someone who couldnt stop thinking about the anxiety,the feeling, and you replied dont try not to.that is what i find really difficult.i feel its like toothache its always here:-(

    Lisa I think I remember the post. It was more that the person was trying not to think of anxiety, the habit of thinking about it and the attention being on themselves had formed so don’t fight it, don’t try not to think a certain way, go with the flow. Its like someone being in prison for 10 years, they would come out and it would still be a big part of their life and be on their mind for a while, but in time the outside world would become their life and they would think of their time inside less and less, this is how it works with anxiety. I hardly give it a thought these days, even though I work within the subject everyday as it stopped being the focus of my day a long time ago and this in time comes. The day for me came, when I no longer perceived how I felt as a problem, I did not like how I felt half the time, but I had taught myself to no longer care, it became second nature to me. While we still complain about anxiety, we have not accepted it as part of our lives and this is where we need to get to. I am not saying like it, but train yourself to not see it as a problem anymore, this includes all symptoms, as I have said many times if your body could speak it would say ‘Please you have over worked me, I just want you to step out of the way, give me some space and I will repair myself, please stop with all the worry and questioning, I will come through, I just need a break’ it does come trust me.

    O.k pizza is here, I have to go, hope everyone has a happy new year. I will try and get back and reply some more later as I do have more time at this time of year.

  90. Paul David Says:

    Candie call me a dopey man, but can you buy baby clothes before you know the sex of it? I don’t know I am a man after all. The posts do seem to be flowing tonight, must be all christmas’d out, that or a few mother in laws are around and people are escaping to their computers.

    Any mother in laws out there I am joking 😉

    Lisa I just got the grammer quip, cheeky. I know you will have to keep an eye on me, I think I type too fast, all seems well until I read it back.

  91. lisa Says:

    iv not heard whos going in the house candie but hope its funny.could do with some hunks ..lol. it would be great if peter kay went in i think hes ace :-)

  92. lisa Says:

    im like big brother paul..lol becareful or youl be evicted haha :-)

  93. lisa Says:

    just noticed your post,thanks paul.enjoy your pizza iv just had chinese. happy new year to you and to everyone on the blog x :-)

  94. Candie Says:

    Hahaha oh Paul- you daft bugger! Yes you can by unisex clothes… although they have to be neutral colours or multicolour… i have loadssssssssssssssssssssssssss. Its really addictive, worse then shopping for yourself as you pick everything up and ‘melt’ and go awwww and just have to have it. Iv even got some little reindeer and santa outfits out my catlogue in the sales in advance for next xmas for the baby- got them at 75% of, god i do love a bargain!

    Lisa i think Peter Kay should go in as Geraldine… how bizzare lol.

    Eva- you mensioned on another blog post that you get a strange sensation in your jaw, you name it iv had it when it comes to my mouth and jaw! Tension, lump in throat… weak gag reflex, jaw ache to the point i need to open my mouth! Ofcourse we always think the worst but its never the case. It goes away when you no longer care about it been there, when you refuse to be bluffed by the irrational fears the symptoms hold- or when your distracted.

    Ok bed time for me, going to watch some ‘House’ i love anything with suspense!

  95. Sam Says:

    Lol @ Paul,

    “Great advice above and the point is with Sam she still feels certain symptoms, but she has changed her attitude towards them and in doing so does not let anxiety rule her life as she did before”

    Sam is a butch hockey player methinks…

    Oops, sorry Sam, ahem, I must spend more time getting to know people lol.

    Its ok paul…

    Scarlet a butch hockey player no but a big big hockey fan, actually watching montreal vs pittsburgh and reading all the amazing posts. here in montreal we have an ice storm so i decided to stay home and read + watch hockey..

    I hear all kinds of people tonight saying how great this blog and the people in are amazing….i will drink to that, Paul’s posts and articles are great..+ Scarlet and candies advice well priceless..

    I came on this blog on july 2008 and couldnt even type a note as i felt like crap..stomach pains, naseau, week, no appitiate you name it..

    Well i got off the meds and started to take Paul and Scarlet’s advice and run with it.

    Dont get me wrong there is some days i feel down, but giving it no respect is the key…inform ourself and ask questions on this blog the answersyou will get are great..

    New years going to Jamaica with the wife dec.30.2008….just a hard year we both need to relax…

    Paul here is a new title for your next article: Signing anxiety off for the new year..

    Thanks to all

    Sam

  96. Michelle Says:

    Do you think it’s possible for some people who follow the advice to a T to still never fully recover? Do you think it could truely be a medical/hormonal/organ malfunction and some people will just have it forever to varying degrees?

  97. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Eva,

    “By nature I am a very proactive person and like to ‘fix’ things. If i’ve had an argument or even if I think someone maybe doesnt like me, I can never usually sleep unless I sort it out!! It’s no wonder that the worst thing that’s ever happened to me (the anxiety) taunts me whilst I sleep. I trust in you that I am making progress in the background. I guess the fact that I went back to work before Christmas is a huge positive and althugh I’m not very productive, to even get ready and go to the office is a huge step forward”

    You sound very much like I used to be, chewing things over until they are resolved. Nowadays I resist sorting things out and I am a more laid back person for it. I set myself little challenges, like for eg. the other day I had an argument with my husband, now in the past it would have haunted me if I didn’t go back and give my two cents worth (and not have the upper hand), but these days I am able to accept that there may be unfinished business and let it be.

    Same with tidyness, it would annoy me if I spent a long time tidying up and one of my kids or hubby came along and messed it up. I used to immediately clean up the mess…now I leave toys all over the floor, and clean up later.. Honestly mess is good for you sometimes 😉 . This is how I live my life now, and if I find myself obsessing over something daft, I gather my thoughts together and say to myself that it’s small stuff and I’m not going to stress over it…and I don’t. I never lose sleep over it either, everything can wait. You can adopt this philosophy as well…set yourself little challenges throughout the day, and let there be loose ends. Life if full of them and it’s all part of acceptance that we are not perfect.

  98. Stephen Says:

    Hey scarlet, Paul and Candie

    Can’t believe christmas is done and dusted for another year, goes so quickly! I havent been doing too badly laterly just doing what i want to do ect which is good. Still having many grey days like today where im not quiet sure how i feel but definately have this overwhelming almost kinda burning feeling in my chest/pit of the stomach which makes me feel anxious and mabye a tad down. Its weird though because i seem to be reacting to dissapointment more these days, like if i go out with my friends and they all want an early night and i wanted to still have fun, or simply the night just ends i get sorta dissapointed like its all over now and then question why im reacting to such trivial stuff. Spose i just always want to always be having fun 😛 but then i do question why i feel/react that way and run off with my thoughts. I think ive been suffering this for about 7-8 months now but slowly getting there. I just hate my memory because i think back to my worst and how i felt and get really anxious and kinda sad. but i am definately moving forward thats a given but still have a far way to go yet. Scarlet i should expect to have loads of grey days where i just dont feel right/overwhelmed and unsure? is that correct because these are the majority of my days. I havent had a full black day for a while, maybe moments of black but i am happy to say “pink” is poping in more and more haha. Hope everyone has a good new years eve, im looking forward to cracking open my bottle of duty free absolute vodka! lol

    To michelles question i know i am still very much suffering but i think everyone can completely recover, atleast to the ‘content’ stange before their anxiety where they thought the words ‘stress’ and ‘anxiety’ were simply resolved by having a weekend away and were nothing like what we all experience. Plus i’ve read everywhere its a learnt behaviour, but i’ll leave it to thoes who have fully recovered to answer it lol

    Stephen

  99. Scarlet Says:

    hi Michelle,

    “I have never been a worrier in my life. I used to hold the feelings that worrying doesn’t change anything. So why did I get hit out of the blue with anxiety? I was really the happiest, most content, relaxed person I knew until this happened to me a year ago. Thought I was recovering, then it hits me again almost a year to the day it did the last time.”

    I was a happy person as well, but had complications with my last pregancy which led to too much worrying/obsessing. Will Beswick, whose book was mentioned on another blog posting states that anxiety can start off with one adverse reaction to a ‘negative’ thought, and this in turn can lead to the future ‘inability’ to do anything. I am a firm believer in this statement as this is what happened to me. What you are suffering can happen to anyone hun, even the happiest of folks…

    You mention that you have had a replase after one year, and some months of feeling well. I think you weren’t fully well to be honest and hadn’t learned not to fear anxiety and depression and have faith in your own body and mind for recovery, (perhaps you relied too much on the medication hun). When there is no fear of anxiety and depression, it will never return, and you can cope with anything. Took me around 20 months to be fully recovered myself. After one year I was still suffering bouts of depersonalisation and still hadn’t accepted that it wasn’t something much worse, it also took me a long time to grasp the concepts and put them into place. I hadn’t found Pauls blog back then, I think I was around 90% recovered when I read Pauls book.

    “Do you think it’s possible for some people who follow the advice to a T to still never fully recover? Do you think it could truely be a medical/hormonal/organ malfunction and some people will just have it forever to varying degrees?”

    Everyone thinks that they may be the only one who doesn’t recover, it’s part of the self-doubt that we all have when suffering… but keep following Pauls advice, live your normal life alongside anxiety, accept the thoughts let them be in the background and try and not analyse them (takes practice I know – but small steps at first), and face any fears that you may have head on, ie. do not avoid doing things, going places that you would have done before the anxiety, even if you feel strange. You are changing a behaviour and to do this you need to live alongside the old behaviour for a while until the new behaviour overtakes the old one. I promise you this method works, and no I don’t think it’s caused by a malfunction of some sort and cannot be reversed.

  100. Scarlet Says:

    Hey Paul

    “Not really done too much Scartlet, I play a lot of sports and love my weekly quiz and indoor bowling and it all gets cancelled, I just want normality back. I did go out xmas eve as I had the sore head to prove it and then a quiet xmas day with just me and my partner. Meeting up with friends tomorrow for a few drinks and then a comedy club on new years eve. I just want my normal routine back, I am a bit of a bah humbug as Candie will tell you, but I am trying. New years day has been set for family and a buffet, so I need to run it all off, in fact I am waiting for a pizza to be delivered now lol

    Sounds like you have done loads. I don’t much like the period in between Xmas and new year, it’s a strange time of the year to be honest. Mind you Xmas is different over here and everything is open and busy… and there’s no lull like in the UK. Comedy club sounds great. I think I am in need of a bit of excercise myself in the New year as I’ve eaten way too many chocolates.

    Candie, with my first I shopped loads, bought far too much stuff I didn’t use.. so know what you mean. Baby clothes are sooo cute, and give you that warm fuzzy feeling. With my second I didn’t buy much until he was born, as I had A&D.. but I made up for it afterwards (in triplicate LOL) xx

  101. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Stephen,

    “Scarlet i should expect to have loads of grey days where i just dont feel right/overwhelmed and unsure? is that correct because these are the majority of my days. I havent had a full black day for a while, maybe moments of black but i am happy to say “pink” is poping in more and more haha. Hope everyone has a good new years eve, im looking forward to cracking open my bottle of duty free absolute vodka! lol”

    Yes it can seem like an eternity of these grey days, but they do pass, and are replaced gradually by pink ones (a bit haphazard it may seem). You have to live alongsdie the grey ones for a while and get on with ‘normal’ life like you have been doing, slowly but surely the analysing of every little thing does disappear, and the grey lifts…

    I know that feeling of disappointment when folks want to go home and you want to continue partying, it can happen to those without A&D as well, but we tend to over-analyse it too much.

    I think you may be having a bit of a lull since you have come back from your hols. It will pass soon Stephen

    Ooooo duty free vodka, have a great time supping it all. 😉

  102. Paul David Says:

    Scarlet makes a good point, you do have to live alongside the old you for a while before normal feelings return. I think this is where doubts set in as people say ‘Well I have took the advice on the blog and I still feel awful at times’, you may feel better, but any symptoms you feel must be eliminated, that’s not the case, you have to live along side these crappy feelings for a while, until normal feelings over ride them. Take it from someone who fought them for many years until I realised it was a battle I could never win, I had to just let them be part of me for a while.

    Michelle as I said yesterday please come here with an open mind and don’t start questioning or do the old what if. ‘What if’ everyone recovers and not me, then start worrying about this. Can you see the habit we need to change, we need to get you thinking ‘Paul and many others have come through and so will I’ Again though just go for progress and forget recovery for now, that will just come to you, don’t run before you can walk, but please try and stop the ‘what ifs’ its the anxiety that has put you in negative thinking mode, don’t listen to that voice. Have your own voice, a positive one that believes that you will come through, even if you will have some dark days along the way. Many people first come here with a ‘Can I really recover’ , ‘Maybe I am the one that wont find a way’ Trust me I never believed I would ever be the person I am now, I always hoped and it was that small piece of hope that I hung on to. But knowledge got me home and that knowledge you will have to, its just at the moment you feel in such a pit you don’t believe you will, we always react to how we are feeling at anyone given time. When I was healthy I never believed I could suffer anxiety and when I did I never believed I would come through, I was wrong on both occasions.

  103. Paul David Says:

    Paul here is a new title for your next article: Signing anxiety off for the new year..

    Good idea Sam, great to see you improving and again I see a shift in attitude to how you view your anxiety, that’s always the first step and when I think ‘Yes that’s the way’. I would also like to add that this shift comes in time when we keep going against our instincts, a thought may still hold a bit of fear but if we keep taking no notice of them they begin to hold less power, we may feel jittery and panicky when we go towards something we have been avoiding in the past, but in time it weakens and becomes so much easier, we may feel anxious and still battle or worry about our symptoms, we have done it for so long habit drags us back from time to time, but if we keep thinking ‘No I am not going there’ , ‘Worrying about it never helps, I will just get on with my day’ a small shift in attitude begins. Every sport, every new skill we learn takes practice before it becomes second nature, it just become a new learnt behaviour and this is exactly how it goes with recovery, we learn new behaviours, we build a new understanding. Its just we have to go through it to reach this new learnt behaviour, but it will come and again so many have come so far or recovered that first came here, because they stuck with the advice and did not lose heart or go for a quick option to make ‘it’ all go away, a new attitude and behaviour was born.

    Just remember everyone, a good day should be enjoyed and a bad day is not a problem, it passes, it always does, just a silly old setback. I preach not watching yourself each day, checking your progress, as I would rather you just get on with living and not make anxiety the focus of your day, putting pressure on yourself to feel good and getting down when you don’t, but for all those who do feel better, this is all the proof you need that you are back on the right track, so keep reading and lets hope 2009 will be the best year yet.

    Paul

  104. Candie Says:

    Hey Emily- i thought so too! If you shop on littlewoods catalogue there are some lovely santa, reindeer and snowman outfits in the sales :)

    Michelle, you are at the begining of a new journey now, although i think you helped yourself a lot previously- you never quite grasped the attitude to fully recover. Trust me there is no such thing that makes anxiety a medical, chemical hormonal imbalance thing! Doctors do note that some patients have these qaulities and jump onto the band wagon as the cause(when they are symptoms), but our attitude and how we think has been proven to have the biggest impact on our brain and body- thats why acceptance works. The cards really are in your hands, you have all the control and this doesnt have to be you forever. This question is simply a negative thought, one i think we have all had! However you get to the stage where eventually you drum it into yourself that its not true and refuse to beleive it. As mensioned previously Scarlets mum too suffered anxiety, yet that hasnt stopped scarlet recovering… so did my mum and it hasnt stopped me coming on in leaps and bounds- your attitude and habits determine how you feel- not some medical imbalance or ‘the genes’. Anxiety really is just a learnt habit.

  105. Paul David Says:

    Hey Emily- i thought so too! If you shop on littlewoods catalogue there are some lovely santa, reindeer and snowman outfits in the sales

    Candie calm down xmas is over now :-)

  106. Candie Says:

    Dont we know it Paul- its devistating! Got the sales to look forward to now though :)

  107. John Says:

    Hi everyone,
    I been so busy these past few weeks been taking an online class. i finally cleaned out my whole apartment. It was my plan in the summer to fix up the place but then my anxiety hit. I also fell off an atv twice just recently but Im okay but very sore. I am babysitting my neice now and she is such a sweetheart. I had great few days and some that are so so. I still have my thinking but less and less. My thoughts are repetitive everyonce and a while but let them go and then I forgot what i was thinking about before. It so right about the repition of the thinking. I wanted to wish you all a extremly Happy and Healthy New Year! and a belated Christmas or Hannukah. Thank You all. Everyone just listen to Paul and Scarlet and Candie. They truly have helped me just follow there advice. It is the truest piece of advice I have ever come across. I finally learned for this moment in time to accept advice from someone else.

  108. lorryt Says:

    hi all

    Thanks for the support, its hard at the mo, but im keeping myself going, i have a cry occasionally and just get back on with things. when i do feel the anxiety kicking in i just say go away to it mentally. i can see its going to be a tough week or so, but im not going to allow myself to go backwards, i have come too far to let my mind go that way.
    must go now chldren calling, hubby in bed feeling low so im in charge !! wey hey

    have a good new year all xxxxxx

  109. Michelle Says:

    Thank you all for your encouragement. I know the what if’s are crazy. I know it’s not me that’s thinking them.. it’s the anxiety. Because when the anxiety lets go of its hold for a moment, I don’t think them anymore. In fact, in those few moments I can almost feel like I’ve never had anxiety. It’s weird how when it hits me, I feel like I’ve always been miserable all my life, and always will be. And when it lifts, it’s almost hard to imagine what it’s like. I wish I didn’t go back in my memory when I’m feeling well to try to remember though. How sick is that?

    During recovery, and you’re doing so well getting better and getting on with your life, do any of you ever slip up and start the negative thinking again? If so, does that wreck all progress you have made? Is it possible to truely live alongside it 100% of the time? Paul, Candie, Scarlet… did you make any backwards steps in your thinking during recovery? It’s just that the anxiety seems to be stronger than my will at times. As much as I’d like to ignore it, I can’t sometimes.

    I hope you’re all having a fantastic day. I promise I won’t be all full of gloom with every post.

  110. Candie Says:

    Michelle- when you say that you cant imagine how it feels to be anxious when your not, that moment of normality shows it can be acheived as a permanant state of mind and is not forever. Your anxiety will do everything to make you think the worst, but beleive me if you choose not to beleive it eventually you actually beleive your going to get better and things come on in leaps and bounds.

    As for recovery, some days i would get acceptance 100% and others i just couldnt grasp it. This is how it goes for a while, up and down! You wont wreck your progress in a setback, they will make you stronger. Anxiety will seem more stronger at times, thats what it does- tricks you. But you have to go against this, disbeleive anything negative anxiety tells you and live beside it. If some days you feel negative and think you wont recover, dont argue with yourself and ruminate- just firmly think ‘ya know what, whatever.. i arnt going to fight my anxious state anymore- im going to embrace it’. I made loads and loads of backward steps, then during them i learnt lots too- sometimes we have to experience the bad to re-inforce the good habits.

    When you have moments of no anxiety you can think clearly and see there was never any threat, thats enough to show you really how much anxiety can try and bluff you into thinking the worst isnt it. Remember your aim is to lesson the time worrying about how you feel, not control how you feel and rid yourself of how you feel. Trust me you wouldn’t feel half as bad as you do if you allowed yourself to feel how you do. Anxiety is as big of a problem as you make it. Your going to be just fine, sure if your feeling anxious right now you wont beleive me- but i can bet you if you re-read this post when your having an ok moment that you will have a differant take on what im saying and beleive you are going to be fine. Try it! Remember, dont be bluffed!

  111. Ben Says:

    Hi Everyone,

    I’m just starting off on this journey and was wondering what advice any of you could give me in order to start this process. Everything I read seems to make perfect sense but I can’t seem to switch off and accept the way I feel. The more I think about it I have spent the last 8 years analyzing the way I feel, searching for new medication, remedies, forums etc (as Paul describes in his book) and it seems very hard to stop doing it – almost as if I’m worried about not having something to worry about no more ?!? The whole anxiety thing seems to have just consumed me over the past few weeks and I’m convinced its because I have had time off work to think about it more. I know what I am doing wrong, I just can’t bring myself to do it… anyone else been here ???

    Thanks

    Ben

  112. brian Says:

    Hey guys,

    I’m still having a really tough time. I just don’t understand what is going on because for 5 months after discovering this website, everything seemed like it was going just like this website said. I started feeling much better, with ups and downs, but could feel my body healing and noticed how much better my attitude was getting. Then all of a sudden I started feeling bad but unlike a setback, it didn’t get better. For the past 4 months I have been getting worse, not better.
    Now I feel exactly like I did before I found this website, which is the scariest part because I know I have the answer in front of me but its not working. I understand what’s wrong with me, yet I don’t know what to do because no matter what I try or what I read on this website I always end up at the same place. I have no idea what the problem is or what I am doing wrong, but I know something is wrong. Has anyone ever made a lot of progress over a span of months and then suddenly lost it all? The scariest thing is that I feel like I lost it all right when I felt the strongest and had the most confidence in myself and in this website.
    Paul you responded to one of my posts awhile ago and I really appreciated it. I didn’t respond back because at the time I thought I would try to take a break from it all, but nonetheless I am back at the same place feeling bad. Thank you for responding though, it means a lot.

  113. Emily Says:

    Brian,
    From my perspective, it sounds just like a setback. It always seems like you’re back at square one after you have good days or weeks. It SEEMS way worse than ever before because it’s scary and you get all flustered that it came back so strong, etc. From my experience, I’ll find myself all in a tizzy and worked up because it feels so awful, but after a while of being gentle with myself then things start to settle and I feel a bit more confident again and can think clearer. It doesn’t all go away, but I can at least get some focus about what we should do with it. Candie wrote something just 2 posts up that reminded me of that. It can be scary when you’re all worked up, but it will calm back down and you’ll be able to get back on the horse and use the skills you know from this site, etc. I’d also like to encourage you to remember that it’s Ok to feel all the crap that’s going along with this. Besides the fear, there’s also the big disappointment and discourgement, too. You do not have to like it, but know it’s alright to feel it all.
    I’ve not mastered this by any means, but I’ve had enough setbacks to learn a few things as I have them.

  114. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Ben,

    It can take a while to master acceptance of thoughts, but you do it by living alongside them whilst you continue with your ‘normal’ life. It is hard to change a habit, but it can be done Ben, even after 8 years. Paul suffered 10 long years and he says above that he spent 9 of those years NOT doing what he preaches on here. I didn’t suffer as long (20 months), but I’d say it took me around about a year to be able to stop analysing my thoughts, and accept fully that my own A&D was fully in my control.

    “The whole anxiety thing seems to have just consumed me over the past few weeks and I’m convinced its because I have had time off work to think about it more. I know what I am doing wrong, I just can’t bring myself to do it… anyone else been here ???”

    Yes I’ve been where you are and it is most probably due to the fact you’ve had time on your hands to ruminate, ponder over your thoughts/meaning of life etc. Like Candie says in a post above, you haven’t quite grasped the ‘attitude’ for full recovery…to do this you must learn to fear your thoughts no more… as they harmless. Try to cut off your thoughts after they enter your head and do this with ALL thoughts for a while… ie. let the thought float in and say ‘I’m not analysing this thought now’ and distract yourself with something, TV, getting out and about with your mates, reading a book, working… basically living in the moment, and not thinking of the future of past. This was one of the (many) techniques I tried during recovery and after much practice it eventually worked and my mind became more peaceful, and I started to gain confidence that I was able to control my own thoughts. The fear disappeared shortly afterwards and full recovery came soon after.

  115. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Brian,

    “Has anyone ever made a lot of progress over a span of months and then suddenly lost it all? The scariest thing is that I feel like I lost it all right when I felt the strongest and had the most confidence in myself and in this website.”

    Yes, I had many setbacks and a few of them lasted months as well… thought I was back at step one again, but this is not the case, you have learned a lot so far, and when the setback goes (and it will), you will be much stronger for it… you are not going backwards, even though you think you are. During a setback our thinking is distorted, so even during those 4 months that you mention the setback has continued, you probably have had periods of respite.

    A nurse once told me that A&D is like drowning, and it doesn’t matter if it’s in 60 feet of water or a foot of water, you are still drowning. Each day you are getting closer to the surface but often you don’t see recovery until your head peaks above the water. I remember feeling like you that I had made no recovery at all, but I had… in fact I was closer to the surface but did not realise it.

    This setback will go Brian, so live your ‘normal’ life with the thoughts in the background, and attach no importance to them.

  116. Scarlet Says:

    Sam,

    Just wanted to say, have a great holiday in Jamaica.

    Enjoy yourself and here’s wishing you all the best for 2009. Here’s to signing off anxiety for the New Year 😉

  117. Ben Says:

    Thanks for the reply Scarlet, makes a lot of sense – I have probably spent the past week feeling that I can’t get on with my life because I need to spend time analysing why I feel so bad. I guess this is the completely wrong way to do it and maybe if I had have got on with my life I wouldn’t feel so bad…

    As one of the previous posters said I think it is the physical symptoms that are holding me back more than the mental at the moment. I seem to have developed a shortness of breath and a bit of a tremor in my bottom lip and I’m terrified that this might lead to “something else” some one might notice etc etc. I know its wrong to think this way, and the more I think about it the more I worry about talking to people etc etc. I really can see how this thing can rob you of your personality as Paul describes…

    I think this is a brilliant blog by the way Paul – you are so right about the forums, I am really starting to think they are actually quite a negative place to be in terms of recovery. You can spend hours searching keywords and finding conflicting advice etc whilst just giving yourself more “what if” questions….

    Ben

  118. Nicole Says:

    Hi Scarlet, Paul or Candie,

    Just a question about the cutting off of thoughts-

    “Try to cut off your thoughts after they enter your head and do this with ALL thoughts for a while… ie. let the thought float in and say ‘I’m not analysing this thought now’ and distract yourself with something, TV, getting out and about with your mates, reading a book, working… basically living in the moment, and not thinking of the future of past. This was one of the (many) techniques I tried during recovery and after much practice it eventually worked and my mind became more peaceful, and I started to gain confidence that I was able to control my own thoughts.”

    I am able to notice when I am latching onto a scary thought now and I am able to more or less dismiss them but there is often a feeling like I am running away from the thought when I do this and I know that part of the accceptance attitude involves letting your thoughts be there as they are of no consequence. So there is a small grey area here for me. I guess the idea is being able to witness what your mind is doing when it latches onto a scary thought and realize that if I want to jump in and create a scary scenario then I can, but it would just be creative thinking and not reality. When I choose to not involve myself in the scary thoughts, I am re-training my brain to stay in the moment. Would you say that this is the right idea?
    Thanks again,
    Nicole

  119. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Ben,

    Sorry this is quick, I don’t have much time now…but wanted to say:

    Regarding the tremor on your lip, this is anxiety Ben…nothing to worry about, I had lots of twitches as well as tonnes of other physical symptoms including shortness of breath/palpitations when I was at my worst.. It WILL NOT lead to anything else, and will go when you recover.

    “I think this is a brilliant blog by the way Paul – you are so right about the forums, I am really starting to think they are actually quite a negative place to be in terms of recovery. You can spend hours searching keywords and finding conflicting advice etc whilst just giving yourself more “what if” questions….”

    My advice would be don’t check out any forums if you are feeling vulnerable, they only make you feel a lot worse, and all the answers for full recovery are here on Pauls blog, but I understand how difficult that can be.

  120. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Nicole,

    “I am able to notice when I am latching onto a scary thought now and I am able to more or less dismiss them but there is often a feeling like I am running away from the thought when I do this and I know that part of the accceptance attitude involves letting your thoughts be there as they are of no consequence. So there is a small grey area here for me. I guess the idea is being able to witness what your mind is doing when it latches onto a scary thought and realize that if I want to jump in and create a scary scenario then I can, but it would just be creative thinking and not reality. When I choose to not involve myself in the scary thoughts, I am re-training my brain to stay in the moment. Would you say that this is the right idea?”

    I understand what you mean here, as I felt the same as you for a while, that I was forcing something that I should just accept. But by forcing I mean not taking the scary thought any further than the initial thought itself – ie ‘not analysing it’ (which folks without anxiety generally do) then it will become become second nature. So do accept the thought, let it be in the background but force yourself NOT to take it any further by saying ‘whatever’ or something that works for you. This is a technique that worked very well for me (after a while) and I do it even now with thoughts I can’t be bothered to analyse.

    Believe me you are not running away from anything as it is futile to analyse an irrational thought anyway.

    Oooo I hope I made sense here, as this was very brief as I’m just cooking dinner and have guests coming any minute. If it didn’t make sense tell me.

    Hugs

  121. Paul David Says:

    O.k as I will be busy with things after xmas (mainly updating the book) so I am going to try and answer as many people as possible while I have the time. A lot of the time I don’t know how far people have come or how they go about there day, there attitude to how they feel until they post something and then you think, that’s the problem.

    Firstly Lorry

    hi all

    Thanks for the support, its hard at the mo, but im keeping myself going, i have a cry occasionally and just get back on with things. when i do feel the anxiety kicking in i just say go away to it mentally.

    Firstly Lorry you don’t have to say ‘go away’ to anxiety. Anxiety is a run down body, you cannot banish what is normal in the circumstances, its like your arm being broken, but telling the pain to go away, having flu but not allowing yourself to feel bad. We allow ourselves to have flu, we know we will feel bad for a while, just think of the stress we would put on ourselves if we spent all day worrying about our sneezing, telling our headache to go away, coming on a flu forum to ask how to get rid of it. People would say ‘you can’t’ you just have to let it go of its own accord. So welcome your anxiety, don’t see it as a problem, if you tell it to go away, it will always be that dreaded feeling, the one you must banish, the one you will worry about, let it get you down, try and rid yourself off. It will take up your day. And this is not what I want you to do, although you feel dreadful I want you to allow yourself to feel dreadful, this is where you change a habit of behaviour and where the changes begin. But it takes time and time is something we have plenty of. I never really got better until I stopped trying to be better, I just gave up the daily battle with myself.

    One thing for everyone is that I felt awful like Scarlet for many months, a long time, I progressed slowly, but I did it the right way. I just kept getting back on the horse and it was the only way. I did not wake up one morning and think ‘I have got this’ and the next day everything was fine, it was not, I had many months of ups and downs, but slowly but surely the old me was returning. Some months I would feel I had gone backwards only for me to come through stronger than ever. I see a lot of, ‘Well I am doing what you say but I still feel awful at times’ Imapatience is what will hold you back. Don’t wake up and plan your day around anxiety, don’t say to yourself ‘O.k what should I do now’ , ‘How am I feeling’ , ‘If I do this I may feel better’ Just get up HOWEVER you feel and get on with your day, horrible or not, don’t anaylse how you are feeling, but don’t shrink from it either.

    Ben you say

    I spent the past week feeling that I can’t get on with my life because I need to spend time analysing why I feel so bad. I guess this is the completely wrong way to do it and maybe if I had have got on with my life I wouldn’t feel so bad…

    There is no probably about it, you are doing the wrong thing here. I repeat and repeat ‘don’t spend everyday anaylsing how you feel, stop trying to figure it all out. As I found out it is a maze you can never get out of ‘ You have anxiety, your mind and bidy is tired, run down, there is nothing to figure out. All this needless pondering will tire your mind even furthur, put more stress on your tired body making you feel worse, so you will try and figure it out even more, fell worse, well you get the cycle.

    I seem to have developed a shortness of breath and a bit of a tremor in my bottom lip and I’m terrified that this might lead to “something else” some one might notice etc etc. I know its wrong to think this way, and the more I think about it the more I worry about talking to people etc etc. I really can see how this thing can rob you of your personality as Paul describes

    The shortness of breath and tremor on your lip. You have become so used to watching yourself that you are noticing everything your body does, you are getting anxious over the twitch, the shortness of breath is just another symptom as you are now in a constant state of worry as you say. Let your bottom lip twitch, don’t watch or analyse your breathing, don’t worry what people will think, can you see how much extra worry you are putting yourself under, if you go around all day with this worry and watching everything your body does, worrying if people will notice, you will, like I did feel more and more detached from the world around you, build new fears up, trust me it gets you nowhere. As you are new here I would suggest reading through some old posts, they could really help you understand furthur. And if I pass on advice you can be sure that I know from experience that it will help you, I went through just about what everyone posts on here. I did all the worry, I did all the anaylsing, I did all the fighting, the self pity, there is nothing anyone posts here that I have not come across before or been through myself. As for the forum thing, you are doing the classic ‘Whats this feeling’ , ‘What if I have that’ , ‘I need to sort this out now’ ‘I need to figure every symptom out’ , ‘What if I develop this’ , ‘I must constantly put my mind at rest’ Ben it never ends and a cycle I really want you do get over. Just stick to this blog for a while and as always try and stop the endless googling.

    Michelle you say:

    Thank you all for your encouragement. I know the what if’s are crazy. I know it’s not me that’s thinking them.. it’s the anxiety. Because when the anxiety lets go of its hold for a moment, I don’t think them anymore. In fact, in those few moments I can almost feel like I’ve never had anxiety. It’s weird how when it hits me, I feel like I’ve always been miserable all my life, and always will be. And when it lifts, it’s almost hard to imagine what it’s like. I wish I didn’t go back in my memory when I’m feeling well to try to remember though. How sick is that?

    Now this is the key because if you can dismiss the ‘what ifs’ when you feel good, why can you not when you feel bad, you are the same person. This will take practice, but just ‘don’t listen to the what ifs, don’t go down that road, your instincts say do, but you have a stronger power and thats your rational thinking, it is a weak voice at first, but it gets stronger. My old bad habits kept trying to drag me back, but I had a small weak voice that I listened to in time, the one that said ‘You will come through this and be a better person for it’.

    But I do remeber a eureka moment when I started running, I was full of negativity, full of worry, full of self pity and I went for a run and came back and felt no anxiety, I could think really clearly, I felt positive and I could see then that underneath all this I was still there, once the anxiety passed I would feel like this all the time. I could see anxiety as just a blanket over me, but it was not real, the real me was underneath it waiting to come out. If I thought strange thoughts or felt negative it was not real, it was the anxiety, I had got it, I did exist away from anxiety and the real me was just waiting to resurface. Everytime I felt awful after that I could dismiss it all as anxiety, I could deal with it far better, play your tricks I no longer care, the real me is underneath.

    I hope that makes sense.

    O.k have to dash, I will try and come back later, Brian I will try and say a few words later.

  122. Stephen Says:

    Hey scarlet, i just have a quick question if you have time to answer. The grey days which im having alot of just give me a mixture of an under lying anxious/down feeling which lingers and comes more when i think about it, but dies down alot if im thinking about other things. Now i get through these days like i am definately not happy but i “manage” so to speak and just keep on doing my normal everyday things. But i dont really feel like im recovering as such but more just managing it. Is this just a typical ‘grey’ day and should it feel like this??? i cant help thinking i should be doing more as all i am doing is “not doing’ and letting it just be there without giving it much notice.

    Hope everyone has a good new years eve and i know 09 will be an awesome year!

    Stephen

  123. Nigel Says:

    Hi Everyone

    My first post to introduce myself. I’ve been anxious/panicky for a few months now. It seems worst in the morning – I sleep OK and the bad feelings seem to go by late afternoon/evening and then I feel fine! I’ve been on fluoxetine for two weeks now, but they don’t seem to be having much effect yet, although I am probably being to impatient. I find it difficult to identify particluar thoughts – it seems like some vague uneasy feeling hanging around all the time. I am trying to distract myself as much as possible by getting on with things but I have to admit I really want this to go! My father died four weeks ago which sent my stress and anxiety way up so I know that’s not helping.
    When I feel OK it’s hard to imagine how it feels at bad times, and vice versa, but I suppose having some good times shows the good times are there, they just can’t get through and stay.
    I’ve been off work since dad died but am planning to go back next week. I’m a bit concerned about how I will cope which is playing n mind at the moment, bt that’s another week away so maybe things will be a bit better by then (I am and optimist LOL!). It;’s nice to see everyone’s comments and stories as I feel I’m the only one feeling like this and everyone else around me seems so happy and content.

    Thanks eveyone

    Nigel

  124. LORRYT Says:

    hI

    Thanks Paul, i know up until now i was going about it the right way, and things were improving. it seems i have all the stress to cope with and it all comes crashing down again. i have been re readinf parts of the book again and trying to apply it again, its like i thought i knew where i was with it all then i lost it again ???, if that makes sense, the stress of the circumstances has overtaken everything, and i feel low.. I am one of those people who reads too much into things. My daughter made a hurtful comment about her dad the other day and i read it that she didnt want him there and she hated him, i got so upset. i was then reminded that she was at that age (9) whereby hormones kick in and they are growing up and tempers start to flare and words get said etccc. i just need to take a sttep back and not be so intense. but at the moment everything feels so intense. My emotional rollercoaster has arrived back at the strat of teh ride , but this time i know what to expect i guess and not to pay it that much attention. i find it hard to believe that after making so much progress after such a long time of being anxious a lot, that i am experiencing it again, but i guess as i said i know what it is now and not to pay it too much time.
    i know thsi route makes sense, and i am sticking with it, i am not tempted to go back on my meds and not looking for other answers, just so suprised that the body does take soooooo much time to heal !!

    thanks paul, candie scarlett ………

  125. Candie Says:

    Hey Nicole- i have felt this feeling when cutting of from thoughts, i still do occasionally as we cant be 100% perfect with anxiety straight away. What you are experiencing is a feeling like you have not quite got something right, like you should be doing more? This is how it feels to cut of from your thoughts for a while, because habit is telling you that you should analyse- trust me though it gets a lot easier and eventually this feeling of wanting to still take a second look goes away. You are learning a new habit and doing brilliantly, eventually you will realise exactly how much control your mind has if you dont intervene for clarity! There are three stages to accepting a thought(well this is how it went for me). Firstly you have to acknowledge that although you might not be comfortable with your anxious thoughts, they are a product of your anxious mind and hold no meaning or weight. Secondly, you have to practice cutting of from your thoughts (as you are doing now), thirdly- your new habits become ingrained and confidence builds. Its a gradual process so don’t feel like you have to rush recovering as it needs to happen at a slow pace for your new habits to become ingrained. You are in a really good place in recovery, it took me about 18 months to realise i could actually cut of from my own thoughts!

  126. Paul David Says:

    Lorry I KNOW from my own experience that when we have a bad week it seems like we are back at square one, that we are the chosen one never to get better, we are always impressed by how we feel at any given time. But you have moved forward, you have learnt a new approach to anxiety, you may not feel like you have on a bad day, but remember you can distinquish a bad day now, at one time you probably felt bad all the time, that shows how far you have come, even if progress is small, you are moving in the right direction and you will never lose that progress, remember we said you will have some bad days, the stress of christmas and other things can make is peak at times, its temporary though, just see it as one of those weeks, take a walk and just have some you time, I used to do this when I felt things were getting on top of me, I just left it all behind for a few hours.

    And allow your ody the time it needs to heal, this is so crucial but it will heal better when we take a step back and that’s why it is important not to go down the self pity/worry/anaylsing route, it wants a break just like you do. And I know what you mean about taking thinks personally, but we have to become selfish at times and not take other peoples comments or problems on board, all that can wait until Lorry is Lorry again. I got very used to letting everything pass over me. I once worried what people thought, I was at a very sensitive state, I would go over a critical comment, I would take things to heart, but I stopped doing it, I no longer had the energy and I now know I was sensitised and while you are sensitised, problems seem much bigger, a comment you could dismiss seems to be important, you need people’s acceptance, but try not to let things bother you, its not worth it, you can’t live your life through other people. The only thing that matters right now is your health and being you again, so try not to allow things to get you down, don’t take what people say to heart, don’t take other peoples problems on board, let it all go, just put yourself first for the time being and anything else can wait.

  127. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Nicole,

    Got a min to myself now…phew!!!!!

    “When I choose to not involve myself in the scary thoughts, I am re-training my brain to stay in the moment. Would you say that this is the right idea?”

    I would say 100% yes to this.

  128. Sam Says:

    Hey everybody,

    Leaving tonight on vacation, woke up this morning gagging and really anxious and nerves all over m body…is this normal??? well i love planes, i think its me telling myself always will i feel good for one week in jamacia…

    Sam

  129. brian Says:

    Guys, yall are awesome. Scarlet and Emily thanks for replying. I’m gonna go do what yall say and just go about my day. It’s good to be reminded how no matter what I’ve been through or how I feel the strategy is always the same and is always simple.

  130. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Stephen,

    ” i just have a quick question if you have time to answer. The grey days which im having alot of just give me a mixture of an under lying anxious/down feeling which lingers and comes more when i think about it, but dies down alot if im thinking about other things. Now i get through these days like i am definately not happy but i “manage” so to speak and just keep on doing my normal everyday things. But i dont really feel like im recovering as such but more just managing it. Is this just a typical ‘grey’ day and should it feel like this??? i cant help thinking i should be doing more as all i am doing is “not doing’ and letting it just be there without giving it much notice. ”

    The grey days seem to linger for a while, I remember them well. You should not be doing any more Stephen, accept that you are having a grey day and don’t try and analyse it anymore than that… I seemed to get ‘stuck’ for a while with the grey days, but when I learned not to even think about them at all and get on with ‘normal’ living, they disappeared. You are recovering very well, and soon you will notice lots more ‘pink’ days appear, you’ll see.

    Are you doing anything for New Years Eve? getting out with your mates, partying?

    ——————–

    Hi Sam,

    Holiday jitters no doubt, fear of the unknown….. yes it’s normal. I even feel a bit like that before I fly, but you are gonna be fine and coming back soon to tell us all about it. Have a lovely time in Jamaica.

  131. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Nigel,

    Welcome to Pauls blog, I am sure you will find a lot of info to help you here.

    I am sorry to hear about your Dad, you must give yourself permission to feel anxious and grieve, losing a parent is difficult, I lost my Dad when I was at my worst…

    “When I feel OK it’s hard to imagine how it feels at bad times, and vice versa, but I suppose having some good times shows the good times are there, they just can’t get through and stay.”

    You are doing very well by the sounds of it Nigel, having good times peeking through means you are well on the way to recovery.. Soon you will be having more good moments until they overtake the bad days.

    “I’ve been off work since dad died but am planning to go back next week. I’m a bit concerned about how I will cope which is playing n mind at the moment, bt that’s another week away so maybe things will be a bit better by then (I am and optimist LOL!). ”

    Getting back to work will do you good, help take your mind off your anxiety, so try not to think about it now as you have another weeks holiday. You don’t need to be well before you get back to work, getting back will help with your recovery.

    “I feel I’m the only one feeling like this and everyone else around me seems so happy and content.”

    You are certainly not the only one suffering, when I started talking about my own anxiety so many people told me of their suffering/past suffering as well, it’s very common. I am glad you have found us.

  132. Candie Says:

    Hey Sam- Have a lovely Holiday.. what i would give to get away and relax for a few days in the sun! The gagging sensation you feel in your throat is completely normal when anxious… anxiety plays havoc with the muscles in your throat. Iv experienced it before. I new i didnt want to be sick, yet i felt the need to ‘gag’. Your holiday will be just fine, the change of scenery will refresh your mind and im sure you will enjoy the holiday a lot more then you think!

    Lorry- dont worry about where things took a bad turn, the truth is you did nothing wrong… a lot of stress caught you of gaurd and you became a bit overwhelmed. Happens to us all, your just more sensitive to it atm. It will pass and you will be back on track with your recovery again- dont threat about all of this, just let it wash over you. Iv had a stressful few days, family problems which led to me getting really wound up with myself and feeling a bit worse for wear- but i am refusing to try think myself better, im going to step out the way and let things go where they want to.

    Take care everyone, this time of the year is stressful for everyone- we are just more sensitive to it all so tend to get ourselfs wound up! x

  133. Nicole Says:

    Hi again,
    Thanks for the feed-back Scarlet. The pieces of the puzzle are starting to come together.
    I just had a brief visit with my MD and came away feeling a little disheartened as usual. I am taking a very small dose of medication and I plan on stopping all together over time. I was telling her how much progress I have been making and she was nodding politely then said “let’s talk about what to do if your symptoms come back worse than before”. My response was I don’t care if they come back, I will be fine.
    If she knew anything at all about this condition she would know that to say that to someone who is close to recovery is sooo incredibly negative and can chip away at the self confidence. Not a word of encouragement or hope.
    I know that she thinks that she is being a good practitioner but it frustrates me having to sit and discuss this with someone who has no clue what it is like. In the end it was probably a good thing to have to look her in the eye and tell her that I would be fine regardless of what happens.
    That is all I will say and I don’t want to start a stream of anti-doctor discussion, but I will do my best to not let this bother me and stay on course and stay positive.
    I will be much more jolly on my next post! Nicole

  134. Michelle Says:

    A quick question about medication. I was due to come off my AD in Feb. I even felt like I wanted to up till a week ago. Should I keep my appt. with my psychiatrist and not tell her about this anxiety that has popped up? (She loves to push pills.. told me I had everything from BiPolar to OCD to clinical depression.. wanted to give me Lithium, Depakote.. you name it). She’s under the impression anxiety is uncurable. I am afraid she’ll want to throw more pills at me, or keep me on my AD.

    Will coming off my AD make me worse? Is my brain used to the extra seratonin right now, and coming off could send me into a tailspin? I just want to do what is best for my mind and body right now. I don’t want to assault it anymore.

  135. Scarlet Says:

    Hey Candie,
    “Iv had a stressful few days, family problems which led to me getting really wound up with myself and feeling a bit worse for wear- but i am refusing to try think myself better, im going to step out the way and let things go where they want to.”

    How you feeling hun, try and relax as much as you can, this stressful period will pass, and being pregnant makes you extra sensitive. Only a couple more days til 2009.

    Hi Nicole,

    Don’t worry about what your doc said, those in the medical profession should know better, but most of them only have an understanding of anxiety and depression from text-books… they have never suffered themselves. You will be fine, most definitely 😉

  136. Nigel Says:

    Hi Scarlet

    Thanks for your comments – it’s so nice to be able to share thoughts and worries! This blog is great – much better than a lot of the discussion sites which just seem to depress me even more. This is so much more positive. I’ve read Paul’s book (excellent) and am trying to put some of the ideas into practice. The hardest part I find is to just let the feelings be there and at the same time get on with everyday things. I seem to have lost my enthusiasm for so many of my interests which doesn’t help but I will keep at it.
    It’s now evening here (UK) so I am in my better phase, when the anxiety and stress seems to fade away, which is so nice – I just wish it would last!
    I seem to follow a fairly regular pattern – I sleep OK but even if I wake during the night I feel fine. The anxiety seems to kick in about 7.00am and drags on through the day, but usually lifts around late afternoon/early evening, so I realise there are a lot of you out there who are far worse.

  137. Candie Says:

    Hi Scarlet… i’m ok thanks :) i have had better days but i understand i am pregnant, coming of the last bit of my meds and a lil bit stressed out due to family- so for now i have give myself permission to feel a bit under the weather. Anxiety or no anxiety everyone struggles with certain aspects of life from time to time. I ended up with anxiety by trying to control every problem and correct it- so i have decided you cant reason with unreasonable people. Its ok to feel down or stressed- its when you battle with these feelings internally the real problems start. This will pass before i know it, so i am not going to let it drag me down. I wouldnt say i even feel that bad to be honest, not overwhelmed- just stressed! How are you Scarlet? you still got family staying with you?

    Hi Michelle- if you come of your tablets at a really slow pace, you are unlikely to notice the differance- eveyone i know that has done it slowly has felt great after it. You question if you should still be on the meds, when by the sounds of it its your psychiatrist you could do without! I’m not saying dont speak to anyone, but speak to someone who supports you and knows there stuff. Paul spent years speaking to Doctors and specialists who didnt have a clue and got no where, then he was reffered to a specialist who had suffered himself and new a lot about anxiety and how to recover.. was given some good advice and able to help himself recover. Some docs just dont know there stuff, FACT! I refused to see a psychiatrist as i just new they wouldn’t be able to help me. Find someone who is right for you, dont settle for any less.

  138. Michelle Says:

    Thanks Candie. I hope tomorrow is a brighter day for you. Those hormones can sure have you all over the place!

    I wish there was someone here locally that was an expert in anxiety. The gal I am going to claims to be, but in my gut I know better. I am seeing a therapist too. It helps having her to talk to, but it does get frustrating when you know they have never suffered from it. All year she kept telling me to “act as if you don’t have anxiety.” I would get SO frustrated.. thinking HOW?? But now that I have read much of Paul’s blog, it makes a lot of sense. I know she is just quoting what she learned in her anxiety books, but she could never explain how you live as if you don’t have it. I kept telling her… If I took out a butter knife and started sawing off her arm near the shoulder and told her to go on about her business as if I wasn’t doing that to her, could she? I think she’d get just as frustrated with me as I was with her. She wants to help so bad. Maybe I’ll have her check here on Paul’s blog and have her order herself a book so she’ll be able to help others more efficiently.

    You guys are all truly awesome. Whenever I find myself getting in a funk about how I’m feeling, I come here, and I do feel a bit better. I think the lightbulb is starting to go on, and I know what I need to do. I think applying it is going to be hard at times though.

  139. Nicole Says:

    Hey Scarlet,
    No worries, you always make sense! Thanks, I understand what you were saying about acknowledging the thought but making the choice to not investigate it. This clarifies that grey area for me.
    Many, many thanks as usual,
    Nicole

  140. Michelle Says:

    Nicole, I’m so glad you asked that question. I feel like I do a lot of that too, not knowing if I was right or wrong. Was I not inviting the thoughts in by trying to think of something else instead? I also feel like I’m running away from the thought.. like it’s still there in the background just waiting for a quiet moment, wondering if I should investigate it or not.

    It’s amazing to me how many, if not all, of the same things I think or feel have been thought or felt by you all. Knowing I’m not alone in this helps so so much.

  141. Andrew Says:

    Hi everyone,

    Basically what I’m going through now is dealing with tension headaches. It’s frustrating because the anxiety causes the headaches, but then when I’m in the cycle the headache triggers the anxiety also and vice versa…

    I am definitely in a much better place now than a month ago. But the physical symptoms sometimes get me – like palpitations and headaches. It’s like they feed off each other.

    Do the thoughts every go away? It seems like now that I know it’s anxiety, the thought of that is always in the back of my mind – and sometimes I find myself associating everything that I feel with anxiety. It’s just annoying. =p

  142. Michelle Says:

    I think once the anxiety is gone.. really gone for awhile, you will forget about thinking about it just like any bad memory.

    I can’t wait for that day. I hate when I’m getting on with my life having fun, then out of the blue my mind goes to the anxiety and says, “oh yeah, you’re not totally having fun, you still have anxiety.” I can’t wait for that to go away. I can’t wait for the day that I make it through.. even just one day without ever once thinking about it.

    My nagging symptom that even remains when I don’t have the anxiety is a tingling in my right forehead and down the right side of my nose. It’s SO annoying (but thankfully not painful). It’s always there no matter how I’m feeling. Even when I’m not feeling the anxiety, that is a constant reminder of it.

  143. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Nigel,

    “I seem to follow a fairly regular pattern – I sleep OK but even if I wake during the night I feel fine. The anxiety seems to kick in about 7.00am and drags on through the day, but usually lifts around late afternoon/early evening, so I realise there are a lot of you out there who are far worse.”

    It’s all to do with state of mind Nigel…can you see a pattern. In a morning anxiety is on your mind and throughout the day, whereas in an afternoon/evening you are much more relaxed and able to think clearly and sleep through the night. Waking up and having anxiety in a morning is just a habit that needs to be broken and it will be in time… probably you will notice a difference when you have to get up in a morning for work…. your thinking pattern will change. What are you doing at the moment to occupy yourself during the day, do you go to the gym?.. I remember Paul saying that his attitude changed when he started running. Could you incorporate a morning jog into your lifestyle through the holidays, or can’t you be bothered?. I know the weather is crappy in England at the moment, I heard -13 is on the cards. Small lifestyle changes do reap big rewards though Nigel, I read somewhere that in Russia, they can’t afford to dish out ADs to everyone, so they give them a subsidised gym membership instead. I am all for this… as it builds up self esteem enormously…

  144. Nigel Says:

    Hi Scarlet

    You are right about it being a habit which I need to break – it’s just finding the way to do it. I don’t go to the gym but I try and go for a good walk each day which helps a bit. I will admit the though of going back to work is making me anxious so next Monday is going to be hard. I’m my dad’s executor so there is paperwork to deal with most days which although it occupies me it is difficult to deal with without emotion.
    I’m not anxious when I first wake up – I suppose it is the thought of getting through another day which starts it off. The weather is dull and cold which doesn’t help – perhaps I have a bit of seasonal affective disorder as well as I do fell better when it’s brighter.

  145. Kamini Says:

    Hi Scarlet… I Was doing so well these days and out of the blue i got this setback. When i do brain retraining, i feel the term i use to accept don’t have any weight, they feel meaningless when i say them to myself.

    Deep down i know its only anxiety trying to fool me again. But sometimes it seems so real, as if they are really meaningless and useless. in fact, it was these term that made me recover in the past. but why they seem like this now. I am still using them, i know the feelings i have about them will pass. Memory and habit is holding me back. But i just want you to clarify it to me?Please dear.

    Thanks again for your usual help.

  146. Shirley D Says:

    Well hello gang,
    I hope there’s room at the bottom for me, what a lot of posts, as i went down i was nodding in agreement, sighing in sympathy and tried to remember who i wanted to reply to, but there were so many, i’ve forgotten.
    Some new names on here, welcome to the newer members. Whilst i have come on in leaps and bounds, sadly i have to report that i had a relapse over Christmas – certainly not to the extent of last year but i woke at 4am this morning and all sleep from then on was troubled. I see LorryT describes it as an adrenelin rush, mine is like being pulled backwards through a tunnel, i told myself this morning that I had had sufficient sleep from 10.30 till 4 am and that tonight was another night. I know that this New Year will bring me more news of my impending divorce and a rather greedy ex husband. Starting back to work after having had a nice time off – i know we all feel the same but when you are in it you feel like you are alone, also Julian my partner has the dreaded lurgy and whilst coping with it very well it has made me feel very vulnerable because he’s not my strong one anymore – i know it’s short term.
    Everything becomes so accentuated and magnified. I went off lovely last night and like someone else i’ve just read about woke at 4 and that was it, just thinking about walking along the road was scaring me, now day has dawned i feel better again, hopefully getting back into the routine of before Christmas will return me to normal, but once the sleep pattern has been messed up it messes with my mind.
    I have done the classic, asked myself why it has returned, why it’s suddenly appeared again, but when i look back over many Christmas’s I seem to remember being in floods of tears over silly, silly things.
    The news on peoples jobs seem so bleak, all those who have been lost through various accidents, deaths over the Christmas time which is supposed to bring us great joy. But hey, ho, lets not be negative, come February (only four weeks away) it will be the return to the Spring months and then onto Summer and we all know how fast the year goes. Soon the sun will be waking us all up.
    No Nigel, i think we all have the same thoughts when the weather is dull.
    No Nigel, you are certainly not the only one suffering – the above gang is testament to that!!! but you feel like you are on your own. I couldn’t stand having the radio on or TV because it seemed to grate on me. Now i like to go to bed at night with the radio on as a background noise, sometimes i don’t bother but this morning i eventually switched it on and we have found a local radio station that just play songs until about 7am so there’s no intteruption with silly adverts just plain music.
    Happy New Year to everyone.
    Shirley

  147. LORRYT Says:

    HI GUYS

    I know you are all right, christmas is stressful for everyone, and i realise now that it gets to us all.
    i have to let things pass and no go down the analyzing route, never didi me any good before!. i can see how anxiety tricks people into thinking completely irrational stuff now. i will take step back and let my head fix itself .
    Candie , when i was pregnant, my emotions were up and down like a yo yo, it will pass, and you will reach a point where it wont happen!, just about the time baby decides he wants to make an appearance!, only joking !!!, it is such a great time in your life and sounds like you have a good bloke ot support you so enjoy it.

    thanks again.xxxx

  148. Mazza Says:

    Hi everyone, this is my first post here, but I’ve been using this website for quite some time. Just to introduce myself, I have had anxiety on and off for 13 years(a very long time). It started after a chest infection, I went to the drs and she said it was because I smoked and started to tell me what would happen to me if I continued. I had my first panic attack the following week and called the emergency doctor as I didn’t know what was happening to me. He explained and said next time inhale into a paper bag, great advice lol, then he left. Well since then I’ve had anxiety. I’ve been on AD during that time, but came off them cos I didn’t think they helped. The side effects coming off them were awful. My main problem is I can’t stand the physical feelings, heavy head, dizziness, stomach aches, shortness of breath etc. I worry constantly that something must be wrong with me and I’ll always be like this, and I still smoke, which I know probably doesn’t help, cos then I worry about what it’s doing to me. How stupid is that. I’ve probably read every book on this subject, checked every website, although this is far the best in my opinion, and I still can’t get rid of it. I’m so fed up with it, I just wish I could feel normal, like before it started. Sometimes I just want to cry and sleep forever, and for the last few weeks I can’t even sleep the night through (lol, can’t even get peace that way. The only time I feel what I call normal is if I have a few drinks, but then the next day I feel tons worse. I’m thinking of trying St John’s Wort, has anybody tried it, and was it any good.
    Sorry to ramble on, but I’m getting to breaking point and just want it all to go away. Thanks for listening and thanks for all your good advice
    Mazza

  149. Mazza Says:

    Sorry, me again, wishing you all a happy and healthy New Year
    Mazza

  150. Candie Says:

    Hey Kamini- Paul mensioned before that we can use phrases that help us to accept and after a while they lose there meaning and dont help. Dont threat, iv had plenty of little saying that change over time which i say to myself if i catch myself fighting how i feel occasionally. Dont try to force those saying to work again, find something new which will keep you on track. The key is not to use phrases in hope of how you feel will go away, but have little sayings or words that help you not obsess and fight how you feel.

    Lorry thats the right attitude, remember its not so much what you do on a good day, but what you do on a bad day that brings victories. I read that somewhere and it makes a lot of sense. Yea my emotions are up and down a lot lately, but im taking it all with a pinch of salt- lots of people have said that things do calm down, so i havnt let myself go down the route of worrying over it!

    What is everyone doing for the new year? Lots of alcohol and hangovers i expect!

  151. Nicole Says:

    Hi Candie,
    Thanks for clarifying things and the words of encouragement. It does feel a little wierd not to start worrying over a scary thought, but I understand that this is just a habit and one that I can get rid of. It is tough at times but I will keep moving forward.
    Freezing here today – 20 something with the windchill but at least the sun is shining. Gotta go and get on with the day!
    Nicole

  152. Eva Says:

    Hi Candie

    I was wondering how do I know if I’m fighting the thoughts and how i feel? Today has been terrible again, I’m so tired lately, sleeping 11hours and still being tired…is that normal? I find I can barely speak to people because of how low I’m feeling. I get such a sore stomach it actually makes me feel sick and as much as I try and say it’s ok to feel like this, I usually end up crying about it. My thought pattern scares me as I feel like I am in really hot water. I cannot connect with people and I feel like I just dont want to be here…nothing to look forward to and i start questioning whether I’ve always felt like this. When I try to convince myself that it’s rubbish I end up feeling really uneasy about normal things like eating or the thought of going on holiday or even talking to people. I keep hoping that one day this will be all over. I feel helpless.

    Evax

  153. Candie Says:

    Hi Eva… if you are rethinking (ruminating) about thoughts over and over in your mind, trying to get them right or make sense of them all then you are fighting them. We often make the mistake of thinking because we feel bad where doing something wrong, when thats not always the case. Sometimes our mind and body has to go through the motions and catch up with your new attitude and way of thinking.

    So for today, dont be bothered about not been able to be happy about holiday etc, honestly we all feel like that when we are suffering with anxiety. Its not that you have to put things right and make it so you can enjoy those things, its that you have to let your mind and body go through all these emotions, thoughts and feelings whiles stepping aside and not trying to intervene. When you trually accept you learn to live in the moment and take each moment as it comes, stop trying not to feel bad and worrying over it. Its ok to feel like this, and when you see that its ok to feel this way and give yourself permision to feel this way a weight will lift and a lot of worry will banish. Its not your symptoms that are keeping you anxious, they came because of some form of stress- but your reaction to them is what is keeping you in the anxious loop… if you only allowed yourself to feel like you do, understand that its natural under the circumstances- then your body would eventually correct itself.

    Dont wait to get better, it never helped anyone- dont wait till you can look forward to something book that holiday anyway. Honestly Eva i have been there, the more you avoid things due to feeling crap the more you lose your will to actually ‘live’- you need to do these things, over and over- feel crap, good, average…. go through everything and eventually normal feelings come back.

    Now you can sit and think yes but this all seems so out of reach right now, i feel so deeply depressed and anxious i cant see a way out- but honestly recovery is about not striving to see the way out and getting on with life anyway. This is the only way to get past this. Heres an example- at the begining of my recovery, i went to bingo. Did i feel excited to go? Nope! Did i see the point in going.. nope! But i went, and gradually i had moments there when i went that i could feel excited etc. Now today for the first time in ages i am going again, yes i have a little bit of background anxiety(not because of bingo!) but i can now look forward to going and know i will enjoy myself. This will be you eventually, at first it will all seem exhausting and pointless- thats what anxiety does. But as someone said on the blog previously its like nocking a wall down… to begin with your chipping away at it, and eventually i starts to fall down on its own in big pieces! That saying is so true. Eva i promise you that you can do this, my mind tried telling me otherwise for so long- thats what anxiety does to you… but i went against all my instincts and now im comin out the otherside. x

  154. Eva Says:

    Thanku Candie

    I cant believe what I write sometimes, I guess we all thought we’d never be like this. I think I am going over and over things in my head, trying to work out what changed to make me feel like I cant cope with things and that i dont have a happy future – perhaps i have been fighting the feelings, there must be a subconcious part of me that cant help it! So for today I’m going to try what yousay, accept that it’s ok to feel like this and try to keep occupied at the same time.

    I noticed the feelings of not wanting to do anything…then what’s the point in them…etc about 3months ago as soon as I split up from my boyfriend. I’d debated about splitting up with him for months and although I didnt wnt to I felt i had to as it as in my head all the time and was so irritable around him. However you say that doing things anyway will bring back some joy, so in a way I am already on that road, seeing small things I like at the shops or looking forward to eating a donut at the restaurant! It’s the time factor I hate, I know this does all take time and it drives me crazy to the point that I cant cope with everyday being like this!!! AGH!!!!

    A good friend of mine said that all the weird feelings about not being able to see my future and everything seeming strange will stop when I recover and everything will fit into place. I really hope so…otherwise Andrex are going to run out of handkies!! Cant wait for the day I’m happy again, seems miles in the distance if at all.

    It was really comforting to know that your Bingo experience is how I’m feeling. I bet when you got there you wnted to go home, but then you get no relief from it all there either, right? Also, did you feel like you were so much worse than anyone else could possibly be? I keep thinking that I cant appreciate what others are going through, but the self obsessed thinking part of me convinces me that mine is so much worse and that I cant get through it – anxiety talk i hope.

    Many Thanks and goodluck at the bingo, enjoy the high moments!xx

  155. Candie Says:

    Eva- trust me, to begin with we all think we are the worst case ever, that there is no hope and can feel no happiness about anything. Perhaps i should tell you how bad i was then you can see there really is no point of no return. I didnt eat, sleep, cried continuously… begged my doctor to section me as i was scared of everything, i couldnt rest was constantly walking about in a daze- watching people doing everyday normal things wondering why i couldnt be like them. When i woke up in the morning i was so depressed to be alive, then one morning id have enough and went to see my doctor- although i dont think he helped me i realised that to go there i did actually want to help myself. It would be very hard to explain the transition from that level of depression, dispair and anxiety to the happy qaulity of life i live now. I am not 100% recovered, but id say at least 95%, but i am so god damn close i just know im going to be better! Please dont be bluffed by how you feel, your negative thought pattern is a symptom of your fighting and resistance to your anxiety mostly- thats why giving in brings so much relief! Give in now to how you feel Eva, i promise you it will be ther best thing you ever did and in time you wont look back!

    The good thing about recovery is it becomes easier to accept as you progress, so dont think you are stuck in this awful phase of life forever- as symptoms and how you feel get easier to accept all the time. Dont try to figure out why you think how you think and feel how you feel, its a complete waste of time- just go with how you feel and if you find yourself complaining just think to yourself its ok to feel like this, its tempory and i am going to go with the flow. Honestly, after a short while you will feel a lot better then you do now.

    I didn’t just feel like that about bingo Eva, i felt i couldnt enjoy anything… shopping,nights out, life in general… anything and EVERYTHING! But i started to do all them things anyway, doing them tells your mind that you are not going to hide away- if you feel crap so be it… but your going to live anyway. This builds positive thought patterns eventually that help you recover. For a while your attention will be on you and your anxiety, but eventually you lose yourself in the moment and begin to ‘live’ again. Now your anxious state will do everything to try and bluff you… it bluffed me for a long time and Paul for a decade! But go against it, do everything you would of done before anxiety. You need to do this Eva, it is going to be what makes you better again- you wont see it now, but in a few months your attitude will of shifted and you will have a whole new outlook and perspective. I look back at some of my first posts when i came here, i was just as lost and desperate as everyone else- thought i was doomed forever. This isnt true though, not one of us are doomed- you are only what you let your anxiety trick you into beleiving. So if i have a thought that oh i feel crap today i dont want to go shopping as i wont enjoy it, i then think to myself ‘ya know what, im going- i am not going to be bluffed by how i feel’. Within a few days from that i feel a lot better and wonder what all the fuss was ever about!

  156. samantha Says:

    hi all

    in response to eva’s post about never feeling they would be well again i just want to share my experience with everyone the reason for this is even at the worst point in my life and to where i am now just proves you can recover so here goes

    sept 07 i suffered acute anxiety and intrusive thoughts i could not eat, sleep or function on a normal level i had the local crisis team involved ( they were rubbish i might add) i had severe dp my mind was constanly racing my body constanly shaking i feared i was on the edge of psychosis it was that bad all these things were with me 24/7 the agitation was the worst i could not sit still.

    now today in 2008 i am back at uni finishing my degree i work part time i can do all the things i need to be doing dont get me wrong it has been a long hard slog to get to where i am today but it can be done yes i have off days when the thoughts return or i may feel anxious but i let them pass the help and info from this blog helped enormously

    i really think that what u have been through has changed me for the better in alot of ways i wish it hadnt happened but in some ways i am glad it did

    so please always have the faith that things will get better as i am today i can stand here and say it does and this is from someone who really thought they were going mad / psychotic

    anxiety can be horrible when severe but it can be overcome

    good luck everyone you will recover from this

    samantha

  157. Helz Belz Says:

    Candie, just had to say that what you wrote there was amazing. the feelings are so true, and so scarey to think that no-body else feels like that. it is a relief to know that so many other people feel that way too. it actually answred some of the questions i came on to ask before i asked them!
    i was just coming on to ask about irritablilty and low self esteem, i am sure they are linked to anxiety too, but just need confirmation. i had a few blue/pink days over the last week, but having a bad setback now, but have come to expect them, even though they come for no apparent reason. it just i get irritable more than i ever used to. i also noticed comments that other people make that i would maybe used to have taken well or brushed off (and not all bad things, also things like suggestions) and getting so irritated by them and getting all defensive. i feel like lots of things are a personal attack on me, even if thats not how its meant to be. am hoping that its just the anxiety making these things seem more important than usual. have been letting the thoughts be there but it seems like a big deal at the mo. like i feel bad for being irritable/snappy/indecisive. this prob all sounds silly compared to lots of ofther symptoms, but this is a relatively new one to me, and it seems just as scarey as the others as this is not like me at all. :(

    i hope everyone had pink christmases, now on to pink new years! -x-

  158. Eva Says:

    Thanks Candie, what an amazing story. When I look at your picture that Paul posted, you lok so happy and pretty and content, it’s hard to imagine you going through what you describe. Can i be nosy and ask if you took any medication? My doctor has tried me on a few AD’s and anti-anxiety medications, all of which didnt agree with me. I’m someone who usually puts up with any pain and doesnt take any medication, but I knew I had to try something. Now I’m trying St Johns Wort, herbal stuff hasnt had a bad reaction to me yet, I just hope it maybe regulates my mood or relaxes me enough to help me even 5%.

    Your advice has helped me this afternoon, I accepted that however I felt, depressed worried etc and that did come with some relief – I had been fighting. I could understand the flight concept but not the fight…obviously I’m a fighter. Comes from the Girl Power thing haha! I think that’s where i was maybe going wrong, fighting the feelings and yet making myself do things. Where I now know I need to do things whilst accepting that I feel crap – and yes I do say to myself oh go away blasted thing, but maybe I wont feel quite as bad for feeling crap…if that makes sense.

    One other thing that really concerns me and I’m sure if an offshoot of anxiety and worrying, is that I have really weird thoughts/sensations about people. Not that i want to harm them, just that being human is so weird…infact I almost feel unhuman and unable to connect with them. I re-read some old emails I sent to friend 2-3years ago and when i read them I feel like a completely different person. Could this be depersonalisation? Pretty horrible and I get it ALOT! as in every day for most of the day…it also contributes to the feelings of not wanting to be here…

    Sorry to ask so many questions…

    Many many thanks

    evax

  159. Candie Says:

    Helz Belz- irritability… the reason you feel symptoms that are new is that old symptoms are fading and these underlying ones are unmasked- like as my fears are unravelled i may experience other minor symptoms and start to read into them- now i say no i arnt going there, do ya thing and il get on doing mine. Low self esteem comes hand in hand with anxiety, its something that will life when the anxiety does so pay neither symptoms any attention or concern as they will correct themself. I’m glad you liked what i wrote :)

    Eva- thats it, keep at it… it will get easier as time passes and eventually take no effort at all. As sufferers we often make the mistake of trying to banish how we feel to get better, when we should be doing the oposite and allowing ourselfs to feel this way…. if you allow yourself to feel this way, you remove a lot of tension and worry which then leads to your mind and body correcting itself. Take any negative/intrusive/anxious thoughts with a pinch of salt- let your mind go where it wants to naturally go, and if you are uncomfortable with a thought that is ok too- just dont dig deeper as i can assure you ruminating brings no clarity! Yes i was put on anti-depresents… nasty old school ones which i am near enough of now. If your not on them then have a good think about staying away from them, its much easier to do without and mine gave me extreme derealisation! What you describe is depersonalisation- braught on by a tired mind. Again, let it be there as its not something you need to do something about- it will go when your anxiety subsides. I am glad my story inspired you Eva, as at the heart of all my suffering i was a mess- looked like a zombie and didnt care about my appearance at all…. must of give my doctor nighmares haha.

  160. Emily Says:

    Candie, you said, “irritability… the reason you feel symptoms that are new is that old symptoms are fading and these underlying ones are unmasked- like as my fears are unravelled i may experience other minor symptoms and start to read into them- now i say no i arnt going there, do ya thing and il get on doing mine.”
    This must then also apply to the guilt phase I’m going through, where I feel guilty about anything and everything sometimes…I never really had this before, but it must be exactly like what you said about Helz Belz’s irritability, right?
    That makes sense…I’ll keep on trying to let it flow, too, just like the other symptoms and thoughts.

  161. Candie Says:

    Hi Emily- its probably the case. I used to think i had new symptoms… but then i realised its because my usual symtoms where becoming less important so the ‘newer’ ones where no longer masked. Honestly though it doesnt matter if the symptoms are new or underlying they all should be treat the same way. Guilt is very common with anxiety- other then stress it was my first symptom. I would be sat pondering with a feeling of uneasyness that i couldnt quite put my finger on…. then my mind would look for reasons to pin the feeling on- extreme guilt! I remember once feeling so guilty i started reeling of loads of things to my partner that id done wrong in my past etc… trying to releive myself! It does pass though and has gone now. I have noticed lately my anxiety is disapearing in the oposite order of how it came! I started with stess, then uneasyness and guilt, then low mood, then obsessive thoughts and anxiety, then extreme anxiety and what i know now as depersonalisation! It really doesnt matter what order is what though, dont concern yourself with it and try to work it out if your in the middle of it all :) I guess it was something i realised lol.

    Well it looks like i will be staying in for the new year, going late night shopping in a min to Asda for a DVD boxset for me and David to pass the time tomorrow night! Well i didnt win at bingo!! Was one number of a few times though, saying that though i did get a welcome back gift- a box of energy efficient light bulbs…. Wahey! *says that without the slightest hint of sarcasm 😛

  162. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Everyone,

    Just a quickie as got loads to do today, yet more guests coming tomorrow. I’ll be glad when things are back to normal in my household. I’ve never had so many guests come and go in my life, guess it’s becasue we live somewhere warm and sunny now….

    Candie, was it Mecca Bingo?, I used to go there many moons ago, won once as well?

    New Years celebrations have been cancelled over here, so our plan to go on the beach at midnight to see fireworks might not happen, but we may go to the beach anyway… What’s everyone else doing? Candie guess it’s a DVD for you then hun. Most years I stop in as well and watch the telly.

    Here’s to wishing everyone a happy and prosperous New Year and peaceful thinking in 2009.

    Back next year 😉

  163. Stephen Says:

    Candie thanks so much for sharing your experience, you have come so far and it shows you do get better and eventually recover.

    Scarlet & Candie i keep getting this thought that what if i got so bad or went made and took my own life? like i know i never would but when im feeling crappy this thought freaks me out and i kinda panic thinking would i ever do it even though i know i wont. it just comes with such a force…i think everyone has had this fear/thought before? i hope…. I also hate the “whats the point” thing when ur going out to have a good time and ur looking forward to it only to get that “whats the point’ thought or whats the point about life? ect ect well im going to go an enjoy myself tonight and am so glad to see the end of 08!

    Happy new year guys! all the best for 2009

  164. Scarlet Says:

    Stephen,

    I had thoughts like this as well…in fact I was heping out on a forum where the ladies self-harmed and I got intense feelings to do it as well when I was suffering A&D…but I never did, and these days I can read anything on self-harm and not get any urges at all… same with suicidal thoguhts. Like you at one time I felt stongly that I might commit suicide in an irrational moment, but after attaching no weight to these type of thoughts they disappeared..

    It’s becasue you are attaching an innapropriate emotion to the thought Stephen, and this invites more of the same thoughts in, so next time a thought like this comes into your head, act blase and say ‘as if’ and don’t take the thought any further, it is an intrusive thought like any other thought and should be treated the same… with absoultely no respect at all.

    Have a great evening tonight, bet there’s some vodka flowing down in Oz. 😉

    Speak to you in 2009.

    x

  165. Candie Says:

    Hey Scarlet- yes it was Mecca bingo i went to, i go now and again but this was the first time i had been in agesssssss! Fireworks on the beach sound lovely, have fun celebrating either way!

    Hey Stephen- yes i have had all these thoughts and all the innapropriate feelings to go with them. There is a simple answer to this though; Psycho-semantics. I will give you an example, when you next feel physical pain like cramp, or have a cold…. you will know what it is so wont feel the need to worry yourself into panic. But try this if you are not in any form of intense pain, sit and concentrate on that pain- think about how bad it hurts and how irritating it is… all of a sudden your pain will seem to be a lot worse then what it was! Never under estimate your mind, when you panic it reaches a peak called the fight or flight- so what you feel is no urge to act on your thought, but and urge to rid yourself of how you feel- the panic urge- so in theory what your feel is your mind working super hard preparing you to fight something thats never going to happen anyway. Trust me suicidal people dont worry about harming themself, they are way past caring and have trually dont want to live anymore…. as Scarlet said what you are experiencing is simply another obsessive thoughts, couped with irrational feelings- iv had many, and from Scarets advice i get the impression she had many too. I hope i havnt confused anyone, i used to read a lot into the science side of anxiety and there is no need to- however sometimes with obsessive thoughts we need that little bit more understanding to be able to dismiss them.

    There came a point for me where i wasn’t so much scared of my thoughts anymore, but i was still thinking some of them obsessively- then i realised, if something is going to happen it will happen… what i feared had never happened- so i decided i was going to call my anxietys bluff and give it chance to happen by not fighting my thoughts or feelings. Ofcourse nothing happened, and the thoughts and panic urges slowly subside as confidence builds.

    Wishing everyone a brilliant 2009, i must admit as its going to be the year my first baby is born i am more excited about the new year then usual! Have fun wishing the new year in everyone, Stephen i will be thinking in envy of you with your vodka as i sup my lemonade haha!

  166. LORRYT Says:

    Hi all

    Candie after reading your post you now have such a positive attitude, and i want to reach the point where i can live in the moment and lose myself without thinking and worrying about the day. thats all i ever wanted from the start. i know i can get thereas you guys are all showing me, .
    New year , new positive habits. I can be happy !, it will come to me when the anxiety goes away.

    have a good one all and look forward to what the new year bringsxxxxxxx

  167. lisa Says:

    wishing a happy new year to everyone x:-)

  168. Candie Says:

    Happy New Year Lisa, have a drink for me 😀 I have looked out on msn for you the past few days but didnt see you on. Txt me and let me know when ya next on so we can have a catch up and play minesweepers :)

    Lorry- trust me i started of with all the negative thoughts, feelings,low mood,bouts of depression etc…. you are right on track with recovery- i found this blog about 5 months before you did so i had a head start, i started of like you first did…. then you slowly started to accept how you felt(i could see the change in attitude in your posts), in time you will see how you feel in a differant light as i do too. Its not something you have to make happen, it will just happen! I really was just as overwhelmed by it all as everyone here at one point, i didnt see a way out and felt like i didnt know how to find my way out or ever be able to learn how to accept. I supose the best way i can describe it is i started to allow myself to feel bad, by no means was i happy to be this way but i didnt add any extra tension. I dont need to explain anymore as if you can just do that one thing then the rest will fall into place itself, dont be overwhelmed thinking there is so much to get right to be able to accept- as that itself can create pressure and tension again. As Paul says just go with how you feel, if you feel bad- feel it… the rest takes care of itself!

    Well these pregnancy hormones are driving me mad haha! Im either slightly irritated and emotional or happy and calm yet exhausted! Oh the joys of having kids, god knows how my nana managed ten of them!

  169. Eva Says:

    Candie

    What you said yesterday really helped me, but when i read your post to Stephen about his similar thought to mine, you said ‘Trust me suicidal people dont worry about harming themself, they are way past caring and have trually dont want to live anymore…’ it made me feel liek that is me!! I dont want to harm myself, i want to be normal – whatever that it! but I do feel like i dont want to be here anymore, i cant see the point…is this honestly just the anxiety or is it depression. I read that depressed people get a real feeling in the pit of their stomach and i’ve got that too. I went out today and got a throw for my bed in the sales as thats something I would normally have loved doing. I did get some joy out of it which was good and i kept saying that its ok to feel how Im feeling – millions of people must have.

    My cbt psyciatrist touched upon that I’m so scread that I have depression because I link it to suicide. I told him if it was anxiety I would be so much more relieved because I know it would go away, does tht sound daft?

    Hope you enjoy this evenings festivities and have a lovely 2009 everyone.

    xx

  170. Lorraine Says:

    Hi:
    I have been lurking in the shadows, this is the first time I have posted. I have had anxiety since about March but didn’t believe it until about the end of July, when I bought Paul’s book and went to my doctor for a full physical. He promptly sent me away with some Trazadone (which I never took – thankfully).

    The first few months of my recovery were extremely difficult, I tried to carry on as normal but went about things the wrong way. Timing my symptoms, fighting them by saying I was not scared of them why are they coming back. Anyway at the end of October I had a change of attitude and truly accepted everything. I still have symptoms and some really bad days but I know things are getting better. I no longer fight but as Candie, Scarlet and Paul say just carry on with everything and let them come and don’t give them any attention. I do still get mad some days but know that its for the good of me to not to keep up with the mad mood as it only makes things worse. True acceptance has given me the ability to change. I hope I continue on this road. I have a lot of DP now but find its not as bad as it used to be even though I feel as though I am on a different planet I can communicate. I Keep telling myself its nature’s tranquilizer!

    Anyway I want to thank everyone – reading other peoples posts has been therapeutic and helpful!

    I hope everyone has a wonderful 2009.

    Thank you Paul for starting this site.

  171. Candie Says:

    Hi Everyone

    Eva, and everyone else who i may of confused with that post.. sorry, i will try to explain what i meant. Eva, i can reassure you that alls you have is a bit of depression as an off-shoot of your anxiety not a seperate depressive illness- the majority of us have had it and it always lifts during recovery. Heres a great way of explaining what i meant… when i was at my worst, i went to my doctor and asked him to section me as i’d had enough of my anxiety and felt so low i was convinced i was suicidal and it scared me. Guess what he said? Go home and rest, you are not suicidal and he was right… desperate i was, but far from suicidal- a suicidal person would of not gone to there doctor and asked them to put them in a safe place from themself! They would just go and do it. Just like a suicidal person wouldnt come on this blog and ask people to clarify they arnt suicidal- they wouldnt be interested in getting better etc or fear thinking they feel that way inclined. This really is another one of them pesky intrustive thoughts braught on my low mood due to how you feel, you dont have to threat how to get past it because the low mood passes during recovery. This blog is a positive place Eva, you came here as you wanted to help yourself get better- a suicidal person is way beyond caring. You may not see it for a while, but this isn’t you forever. :) Also, you do have anxiety, i can tell from what you write that you fear how you feel- anxiety. But dont worry yourself about depression etc as i know loads of people who cured there depression with acceptance too!

  172. Eva Says:

    Thanks Candie, dont be sorry, my mine will twist anything into thinking it’s depression that I have. Thanks so much for the help you’ve given me, even the wee bursts of light relief you’ve given me today and yesterday has given my body such a rest from it all and hopefully that’s me finally grasping the fact that i’ve been fighting all this time.

    Hope you+1 and you’re family have a lovely hogmanay/new year (i’m designated driver for a family get together).

    With much appreciation

    Evax

  173. Helz Belz Says:

    I think i’m getting the hang of this. these set backs help to get practice in acceptance but they also give a chance to learn a little bit more about ourselves and how we react. this set back has shown me that i am still fighting, but in such a low-level way ive not noticed it. ive been ignoring the symptoms and saying ‘whatever, its only anxiety’ to all the symptoms both physical, emotional and mental. but have still been getting annoyed with myself about how i feel/think sometimes, which is still fighting and trying to make myself think/feel a certain way, which isn’t complete acceptance, because i’m not allowing myself to just be and feel, am still watching myself. i think i’ve been here before and got 80% better without realising about a year ago, but have been focussing on it and forcing it this time instead of working with it and letting it be there, which is why ive been getting more upset and distressed by it.

    am sorry for waffling there, but when a revelation somes to me i have to write it down. maybe it will help someone else…

    pink new years everyone! -x-

  174. Shirley D Says:

    Glad to report that my setback was certainly short lived and the old ‘Gal’ has returned to smiley and anxiety free me.
    Happy New Year to old and newer members and once again i want to mirror the message – Thankyou Paul for sharing your very simple method of recovery – the amount of bloggers on here is testament to the fact that you have winning ways and without stumbling on this site – i certainly wouldn’t be as far ahead as what i am. Plus Candie – what a wise owl she is! Plus my newly discovered facebook friends from the ‘A’ world. Cheers to you all.
    Regards

  175. Michelle Says:

    I had the same revelation last night, Helz. I was lying in bed thinking what a relief it is that all the sensations (physical and mental) are just symptoms of the adrenalin, and I could just let myself feel like crap. It felt like a weight had been lifted. I didn’t have to worry about getting better any longer, because when I stop worrying about it, the anxiety will go away! I can really feel a difference today. Yes, I still have naggy thoughts and my irritating forehead tingling, but like a sore throat, they will go when the germs (anxiety) dies. I just wish anxiety went away as quick as a cold!!!
    I pray for recovery for all of us this new year.

  176. Scarlet Says:

    Eva,

    Anxiety and depression go hand in hand, they are bedfellows. I had terrible depression, thought what is the point in life and even went through suicide scenarios in my mind, but I guess I knew I wouldn’t so anything becasue deep down that there was a spark of hope in me that I would one day get well…. but of course I was still afraid and even told the psychiatrist that I was going to jump under a bus. Of course he had faith in me and didn’t believe me, and really it was a cry for help. I wanted to live so badly but not ‘exist’ the way I had been doing. Like Candie says, those who are suicidal don’t come to others for reassurance, they just carry it out on their own. You have come for help becasue you want to live.

    Depression like anxiety is fully recoverable from and the low mood lifts gradually as your anxiety goes. You are anxious hun, and depression is another symprom of anxiety… so please try and not worry that you have something seperate… or different from us.. We can tell from what you write that it’s the same 😉

    HAPPY NEW YEAR ALL

    ADIOS to anxiety and depression in 2009

    xxxxxx

    For Everyone

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mObouU6xacs

  177. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Mazza,

    Wanted to welcome you to the blog (just noticed your post), I am sure you will find it very useful … Will get back to you soon. I am just waiting for guests to arrive.

    Hope everyone else is well.

    xx

  178. mike Says:

    hello everyone.
    just wanted to wish you all a very happy new year one of peace positive and happyness. all the best.
    mike x.

  179. Ben Says:

    Paul/Scarlet,

    Thanks for your posts, I think this blog is really starting to help me see a new way to dealing with all of this and I have made a new years resolution to stay away from the forums etc. You’re totally right, nothing positive has ever come out of the endless googling!

    One of the problems I have is that a lot of my anxiety is related to the job I do. I have lots of meetings presentations etc that I always spend weeks worrying about doing the old “what ifs” etc before hand and making myself a nervous wreck basically. As the christmas break is coming to an end I can feel myself starting to get uptight about work again. I know I need to just accept this, but whereas I am learning to do this in social situations work seems a lot harder as I am so worried about messing up. How does everyone else deal with this – is it just having the same attitude to the other stuff ???

    Also, I know paul did all of this without medication but what if you are on it – should you stop, or will it help alongside it. My doctor has put me on some ssri tablets and I am wondering if they are a waste of time now I have found this site.

    Anyway, better get myself off to the gym. Paul’s tip on the exercise is fantastic, everytime I go for a run etc it really helps. The next thing I am going to try is a nice massage – I just need to find one as when I looked in the back of our local paper they didn’t seem to be the type paul was referring to if you get what I mean!

    Thanks in advance and happy new year to everyone!

    Ben.

  180. Paul David Says:

    Welcome Lorraine, Don’t worry my stats show there are way more lurkers than posters, so its really good to see you posting and I am glad the blog has helped you so far.

    In answer to your post, you say…..

    The first few months of my recovery were extremely difficult, I tried to carry on as normal but went about things the wrong way. Timing my symptoms, fighting them by saying I was not scared of them why are they coming back.

    I am glad you changed your attitude and stopped the timing of your symptoms as you say. Anxiety will always hold its power if we watch our progress, we are seeing it as the enemy. All the questioning will start again with this attitude ‘How do I feel today’ , ‘Has it gone yet’ , ‘I felt good yesterday, why not today’ , ‘Maybe I am doing things wrong’. Its not about ignoring your symptoms, trying to rush around keeping busy. It is finally deciding to ‘allow’ yourself to feel how you do, but also not recoiling from it.

    Your attitude to D.P as natures tranquilser is a perfect way to look at it, just see how much that attitude has taken so much fear out of it and stopped all the questioning I said above. With this attitude there would not be the endless fear and questioning ‘Whats wrong with me’ , ‘I hate this feeling, why wont it go’ , ‘I am going crazy I know it’. I had to understand D.P to recover from it, as when I took the fear out of the equation then I stopped all the questioing, stopped fearing it and stopped it dominating my life, I stopped spending my days trying to figure it all out, opening the door to recovery.

    Ben, The googling does tire us even more, the endless searching of symptoms and cures just confuses us and makes anxiety become our whole day, we allow nothing else in, anxiety and the subject just becomes us.

    On your work situation, its hard to say, don’t get uptight as I am sure I would be the same, public speaking would not be my strong point. All I could say is instead of starting all the what ifs, just acknowledge that you will get a little nervous, but you will cope fine, you always do, its only a feeling, don’t try to talk your way out of not feeling some anxiety, as you almost certainly will, but don’t see a little anxiety as a problem, again the less you see it as a problem, the less you worry about feeling it. You could also maybe have a word with your boss and see if you could take a little break, a lot of bosses are willing to listen, if you have a chat and just say you need a break from the presentations for a while, anyway you know your situation better than me.

    On the medication Ben, that is your choice, I just did not feel any benefits from my medication and just took a choice to recover naturally. I am really glad I did it this way, but only you know if the medication makes you feel better, if it does and you can work along side it then that’s fine, just don’t look for the answers in a pill.

    Right I have a family feast and drinks to go to today, this is my last pile the pounds on day and the I will be in full training for my half marathon in April. I have just started up with squash once a week to give me some much needed speed. I have put in my application for the run and on my next post I will hopefully put my sponser page up. For those who don’t know I am running to raise money for an anxiety charity ‘Anxietycare’ , they will also have a page up about my run aswell as me, so hopefully I will raise a lot of money for them. They have been very good to me in the past and work soley on volunteers, doing a lot of different stuff to help people who suffer and rely soley on donations, anyway more info on my next post.

    Shirley D, just got around to moderating your post so you have gone way up the page I’m afraid, not sure why it asked me to moderate them as you have posted many times before. The setback that came and went for you will show you now not to take them too serious, they do come and go, you are not back to square one.

    Hope you are well and happy new year.

    Just want to wish everyone a happy new year and lets make 2009 the best yet. And here is my perfect song for the new year, a beautiful record with a great message in it Perfect Year

    Paul

  181. james Says:

    Hello and happy new year. I have not posted on here for a while, my wife decided it would be in my best interests. However, since i was last on i have taken an unfortunate downward turn. I was in recovery, now my anxiety has taken hold, depression has set in as well as depersonalisation and all as the result of one thought about my past. In fact somedays i feel like i am surviving only on my sub-conscious mind, the same one which is eating away at my sanity. Oh cruel world. For those who i was in contact with in late November, i got married and am currently in Grenada as part of my honeymoon so i am not prepared to give in. However, i did have to give in to my GPs request to start anti-depressants and how i wished i had stood firm. The Prozac is driving me mad and when i ask if i can quit it the gp says i have only been on it for 4 weeks or that i should up the dose. In my darkest hours i still truly believe i am going mad. I wake in the early hours, stumble to the bathroom and struggle not to pass out. Am i still suffering from anxiety, i ask those people who have been there, does this ring true.

    Thanks for listening.

  182. Shirley D Says:

    Anxiety seems to manifest itself in so many forms James, as you have probably read on the many cases on these pages, it’s like a cold, some people get it more severe than others and different symptoms with that too. The symptoms are also worst in the dark hours so always seem to be worst then. It is better if you can survive without the medical intervention – Our minds are a delicate balance and I too have taken a little downward step over – as you say – just one thought, now it has made my mind go riotous – worrying over all sorts of things. I am to no extent any where near as bad as last year and it does pass quickly, You are in Grenada on Honeymoon – what a fantastic move – so positive, praise yourself for that.
    Reward yourself for the good bits and don’t beat yourself up over the bad.
    We all think we are going insane with the ‘thoughts’ because no one else can see them and we ramble on about such rubbish we don’t want to share it with anyone else, people would laugh, so whilst you are going through your small relapse keep in touch with the folks on here, you know you can always get help from those who are facing the same trauma’s as you. Keep your anxiety lifeline open.

  183. Candie Says:

    James this is just anxiety- when i first got anxiety i suffered panic attacks- i would feel as though i was gonna pass out and panic even more. If you really feel like your meds arn’t helping ask to speak to a diff doctor for a second opinion- they put me on the same med as prozac but a diff brand and it gave me extreme insomnia and night terrors. What might work for one person could make another feel worse- i made them take me of it after four days.

    Happy New year everyone, iv just had a carvary and now im stuffed!

  184. Ben Says:

    Paul,

    Thanks once again for the advice – it is good to speak with someone that has been through all of this and come out of the other side. Its actually quite a relief in some ways to know all of my symptoms are just anxiety and that I can just spend a bit of time on this blog as and when I need rather than an endless pursuit with google through many (quite depressing) forums. You are totally right when you say that the subject becomes us. I’ve spent the past 8-9 years looking for that miracle cure and spent thousands on various “treatments” etc all to no avail and each time working myself up even more.

    What do you think about all of this NLP/Hypnotherapy stuff that the web is full of ? I’ve tried it and it never worked, but do you think that it ever works for anyone, or is it just one big con ??

    I’m going to just let the job thing become part of my acceptance program. I think I am probably too critical of myself in a lot of respects in that I have had many meetings in work where I have thought that I came across terribly bad and anxious, only to then find out that everyone thought I did really well!!

    Good luck with the training for the half marathon. I did my first 10k back in August and really enjoyed it. How much harder do you think it is to step up to a half marathon after this or is this your first one ?

    Ben.

  185. Paul David Says:

    Ben if you want me to be honest the reason you have not moved forward and why as you say anxiety has become you, is because you have gone about recovery the wrong way. You have spent all these years trying to ‘rid’ yourself of anxiety and not for one minute allowed yourself to feel the way you do. I don’t want people to spend their days trying to rid themselves of anxiety, I want them for the first time to allow it to be there, but to not let it restrict their life or make decisions for them. If I said to you that your body and mind needed a break to regain its balance, what would say it needed? It needs you to allow anxiety to be there, your body is tired and worn out, hence the anxiety, how can you stop it feeling the way it does? You can’t, so for once give up this daily battle and just get up and however you feel, you feel and just move on with your day and allow anxiety to be part of it. This way instead of spending all your day thinking about it, watching yourself, trying to figure it all out, you may take an interest in other things, then the pattern reverses itself and you become more outward than inward, anxiety is not the first thing you think of in a morning and the last thing you think of at night.

    Think of yourself as a solider in a trench and your captain says ‘Ben its all over, you don’t have to fight anymore’ what a relief that would be. This is the same attitude you need with your anxiety, just let it be and stop spending your days trying to rid yourself of it, googling syptoms, looking for the next miracle cure. I lost count of the number of treatments I tried all those years ago until I realised the only way forward was to learn about anxiety, the only way to not fear it and to stop the worry cycle was to understand it, knowledge is what got me home. Anyway my next post is on this, so I will go into more detail then.

    Ben on the half marathon, my mistake it is a 10k, its my first one, so you will know more than me on training. I am up to about 4 miles at the moment, but I do a lot of hill training so I should be o.k

  186. Mazza Says:

    Hi Paul, everyone
    I hope you’ve all had a good start to the New Year. I just wanted to ask a question. I understand when you say “let the feelings be there and just carry on with what you’re doing”, but when I’m at work sometimes my head feels really heavy and tensed (don’t know if any of you ever feel like that ) my vision goes blurry and I feel awful. How can I just carry on with my work when I can’t concentrate. Hope that doesn’t sound a dumb question. Apart from that the last couple of days haven’t been too bad, I’m trying to not question how I feel, but I have taken St John’s Wort for the last 3 days, so I don’t know if they have an effect on how I feel. Has anyone else tried herbal medicine, or do you think it’s a waste of time.
    Hope you all have a evening and thanks to everyone’s great advice on this site.
    Mazza

  187. Lorraine Says:

    Hi Again:
    Nice song choice Paul – how true!! Off the topic of anxiety – I immigrated from South Africa to Alberta Canada(10 years ago) and its soooooo cold here today -23 degrees C without the windchill. Mind you it looks like a winter wonderland and is very pretty and warm if you are tucked up inside.

    Having a quiet new years day and staying warm. Am quite excited I am a big cricket follower and we just found out about a cricket channel that we can subscribe to so we’re going to be watching South Africa play Australia. Don’t know if anyone likes cricket but thought I would share anyway!!

    Anyway everyone have a wonderful day and lots of happy days for 2009! Thanks again to all for wonderful advice specially to Paul, Candie and Scarlet.

  188. Jo Says:

    Hi,

    I have not posted before but have recently read this blog and comments and just wanted to leave my experience of anxiety as i am recovering and if anyone can relate to what i am saying and take some comfort from it, that can only be a wonderful thing.

    I realised i had anxiety in the beginning of August 2008, i was about to start university in the Sept and was moving to Sheffield with my boyfriend of 4 years. I realised when i had these incredibly powerful intrusive thoughts, they we’re mainly about those closest to me, particularly that i didn’t love my boyfriend. I was so distressed when it happened because i just knew that this wasn’t true but i had no idea what was happening to me and just spiralled into intense panic! Lucky for me i have incredible people around me and i didn’t feel i had to keep this to myself, i told my boyfriend straight away that i was having strange horrible thoughts but didn’t tell him exactly what they were to save his feelings. I told alot of my family i just had to let people know how i felt as i didn’t knw what to do. I went to the doctors and they gave me some self help tips for anxiety, for the month or so at least however i didn’t get any better i was literally just surviving i felt, until i felt i had to go to the doctor again for some medication as i just wasn’t functioning well enough at all.

    I remember my mnd going in absolute circles all day in intense panic, a cycle of ‘what if i can never feel the same was again, i’ll have to kill myself if i can’t feel better, but i don’t want to do that i couldn’t hurt my family and boyfriend like that, but if i cant feel better…’, i would spend all day trying to calm myself down but also trying to figure it all out just saying things over and over in my head. I found the thoughts the worst thing for me and i felt the rest of the panic stemmed from the fact that these scared me so much. No one was safe from my thoughts i had horrible thoughts about everyone and everything.

    The tablets did help, they didn’t cure me or stop the thoughts but they take the edge off they symptoms, i didn’t feel so absolutely desperate!

    To cut a long story short i was doing pretty much everything wrong, i was trying to fight the way i felt which made all the symptoms so powerful and scary, i was trying to think myself better, until i found this website and started to understand what it was that was happening to me. I remember reading on here about people having disturbing thoughts about those closest to them and actually crying and laughing with relief at the same time.

    I started to give the thoughts their space and just carry on with whatever i was doing when they came, and my progress has been brilliant! I feel quite empowered actually that this doesn’t control my life anymore, i am feeling so much better and have recently come off my medication, i’ve felt a little dizzy and stuff but have actually felt so much better since coming off them. I’m at uni and loving it, i’ve made some brilliant friends and no longer feel like an emotional zombie i can enjoy life again!

    A good way of dealing with the thoughts i have found is not actually engaging then with any attention at all, i found that even if i said ‘whatever’ to them my mind would come back with something, so i just let them become background noise and i am normally singing a song in my head or something so i focus on this and just carry on with my life. I couldn’t even say what percentage of my day i have odd thoughts or feel anxious anymore because i’m not focusing on it. Its not all forward there are setbacks but they don’t last.

    I just want to re-enforce all the good advice on here, i think this site is wonderful and if only the doctors would point people in this direction or at least have proper knowledge and helpful advice instead of just giving you tablets. I honestly think i would have made very little progress if i had not found this wonderful place. So i would like to say thank you!!!

    Happy new Year everyone, don’t give up, there will always be people here to support you!

    Jo.xx

  189. Eva Says:

    Hi everyone

    I was just wondering if any of you have had any of the following two thoughts which unfortunately seem to have grabbed my attention way too much. (1) I feel like time is passing so slowly, like every day is so long and I just wish I could go to sleep so it would pass quicker; (2) Strangeness about being human and people being in relationships and infact I find the fact that I have a brother and sister quite sickening. The thought of being with someone, even just sitting with freinds or family makes me feel relly weird…like I cant cope with it.

    Sorry again to ask so many questions, I’m accepting how I feel bt it still puzzles me whether this is normal…for anxiety.

  190. Eva Says:

    P.S. Thanks for your post Jo, that’s exactly how I feel, really related to it. Im in need of practicing ‘not engaging with the thoughts’ at the moment, it’s the one area I’m falling down on… Really glad you are recovered now, gives me and everyone else here hope x

  191. Candie Says:

    Just a short post before i have my Dinner and settle down for the night. Would just like to welcome all the new posters to the blog and wishing everyone all the best in there recovery.

    Candie

  192. Shirley D Says:

    But, but Candie – did i not read earlier that you stuffed a Carvery at lunchtime? And now you are eating DINNER! Well, my girl, you must be eating for two. Ha Ha.

  193. Paul David Says:

    Hi Jo, So glad things are going well for you. Amazingly enough certain doctors and therapists are sending people here. I even had a doctor admit to ordering the book last week as he wanted to learn more about the subject, as he said it was by far the biggest problem he came across in the surgery.

    Your story also tells people want I keep saying, that its a habit we are trying to change and that if you stick with it, then it will. All the success stories come from people who had the belief and patience. And your right you do become empowered, you feel you can then conquer anything and you know you do have some control, there is a way out, one realisation can lead to so much more.

    Mazza you say………..

    I just wanted to ask a question. I understand when you say “let the feelings be there and just carry on with what you’re doing”, but when I’m at work sometimes my head feels really heavy and tensed (don’t know if any of you ever feel like that ) my vision goes blurry and I feel awful. How can I just carry on with my work when I can’t concentrate.

    O.k here is the answer to that. Say you went out and got drunk and then went to work and felt the same way, vision blurry, heavy head, unable to concentrate, what would you do? Well first of all you would not try to not to be drunk as you know that is impossible, so you would just go through it and do your best. That’s all you have to do, allow your vision to be blurred, allow your head to be heavy, allow yourself to feel awful and keep your focus on what you are doing the best you can. You will do far better doing this than trying to do your job while trying to control your anxiety. I am sure many can relate to feeling as they are somewhere else, even forget what they are doing, this is because they are more interested in their anxiety than what they are doing.

    Paul

  194. Candie Says:

    Haha Shirley- i had the carvary at 2ish and the other food later on the night. I called it dinner as i know we have some people on here from across the point who wouldnt understand the term ‘tea’ haha! Although at this minute i could so eat that carvary again Yum!!!!

    Hey Jo- your story sounds very simlar to my experience with anxiety and recovery, glad to her you are feeling and doing much better.

  195. Emily Says:

    What’s carvary?
    I’m loving the different words in some of the posts from the UK! I’m in Florida so I’m not used to some of the words. I guess some of my phrases sound funny to you guys, too. :)

  196. Emily Says:

    Here are annoying thoughts I keep having:
    what if I can’t stop being so affected by uncomfortable things from my past? (I get that wave of terror sometimes and think I’ll always be so bothered).

    what if I just can’t figure out how to accept and keep on fighting?
    (I heard this phrase about “accept” several years ago, but never got how to do it so I kept on fighting and worry I’ll keep at it.)

    These are just thoughts to let be there and pay them no mind, right? Man, so I want to “figure it out” why I keep thinking them and “solve it”! :)
    Ugh!! They just nag at me. They frustrate me.
    Paul, I saw you wrote once that you occasionally had a mini pity-party, but then got on with it soon afterwards. I find that sometimes if I feel the thoughts are really getting at me and I’m fighting, then that means I’m still
    “not doing it right” and think I’m not progressing. We progress even if we catch ourselves fighting, right? So long as we notice it and try to then accept once more?

    Emily

  197. lorryt Says:

    hi all

    Just read your post jo, sounds like you have come a very long way.

    i have managed to get over the physical side of things, but the thought still really bug me. i get ones about my hubby how i hate him, and what am i gonna do when my kids leave home they are only 9 and 5! but they seem to be in my head all the time at the mo and i let them be there and just get on with things but i am just existing. i seem to hav
    e lost the enjoyment and lust for life, certainly lost my sense of humour as my kids tell me !. its so strange. i know what it is but it doesnt stop my mind getting caught up in the fighting again. i am wondering when i wil;l come back to me , if you get me. but i will just let it all go, its not helping me, gonna go and have a look at the sales see if a bit of retail therapy helps !!!
    have a very happy new year all xxxxxxxxxxx

  198. Fiona Says:

    Hi folks, just a few words of advice for some of the new suffers. There is a lot of people describing there scary anxiety thoughts and symptoms of anxiety and some people are really struggling. You must understand that you have to go through it the hard way…. there is no shortcuts. When you realise you haven’t went mad, schizo, hurt yourself or anyone else but actually just got on with your life as best you can under the circumstances you can start letting go of some of your fears. You have been in this fuzzy cloud of worry and fear caused by the all the adrenalin in your body. The only thing you can do is stop worrying!!!! The difference between now and when you had no anxiety is worry!! You are worrying about everything and anything both rational and irrational.
    Worrying is one of the habits that you have developed and you need to relearn not to worry. As Paul says it is the most useless of emotions. Just let things go!
    The scary negative thoughts are called that for a reason! They are scary and negative! They are caused by adrenalin and your senstised body. If you imagine a normal situation that would cause your body to produce adrenalin eg a big dog, your adrenalin causes you to think negatively so that you protect your self ie you think it will bite me not it will give me big lick.
    Anyway, its not easy and no one says it is but just try and let go of some of the worry you are holding. Let the feelings be there….. realise how repetitive and boring they are.
    It gets easier with time….fact!
    Hope this helps anyone.
    If your a googler stop! There are only 2 things that i’ve found worth googling and that is the effects of adrenalin on the body and how the nervous systems works ie the sympathetic and para sympathetic nervous system. These help you understand anxiety from a more rational point of view.

    Happy new year everyone
    Fiona xx

  199. Paul David Says:

    Emily you say: what if I just can’t figure out how to accept and keep on fighting?
    (I heard this phrase about “accept” several years ago, but never got how to do it so I kept on fighting and worry I’ll keep at it.)

    The word does not have to be accept, it all depends what word you can relate to as they all mean the same thing. The word ‘allow’ is the same thing, it just means its time to allow yourself to feel how you do and cut out the worry and the fighting. I also teach understanding and feel it is important to explain why we feel like we do, it is far easier to allow ourselves to feel how we do and not worry about it, when we understand it. Its the same as if we felt a lump and worried we had cancer, we would check it, start googling it, worry about it daily and then when we got an appointement and the doctor said ‘Don’t worry its just an abcess, it will be gone next week’ We now understand it and all the worry and fear has gone and this lump would not be a problem or an issue in our day, its the same with anxiety. Once I understood why I felt like I did, so much fear and worry went and it was this fear and worry due to a lack of understanding that kept me in the cycle.

    These are just thoughts to let be there and pay them no mind, right? Man, so I want to “figure it out” why I keep thinking them and “solve it”!
    Ugh!! They just nag at me. They frustrate me.

    Emily if they may frustrate you and that’s fine, but you still have the power to pay them no mind, a lot of people get impatient and think well I have given you your space, yet you still come, it takes time to change a habit, just keep giving them their space and pay them no respect and in time you will do this without even trying. As the poster above said who is now clear of them, because she allowed them to be their and paid them no mind, she lost her fear of them and they meant nothing, they became unimportant.

    Paul, I saw you wrote once that you occasionally had a mini pity-party, but then got on with it soon afterwards. I find that sometimes if I feel the thoughts are really getting at me and I’m fighting, then that means I’m still
    “not doing it right” and think I’m not progressing. We progress even if we catch ourselves fighting, right? So long as we notice it and try to then accept once more?

    Emily don’t try to out think yourself here. Even though I just got on with my day with my anxiety, it would be frustrating at times, maybe after a really bad day and I would have a few tears or let it get me down, but I knew to stay on the same road, habit and memory may try and drag me back to worrying and avoidence, but I refused to let it, I still lived my life as normal as possibel, shying from nothing as I knew it was the repeated doing, the normal living that would eventually over ride the way I felt and that’s how it was. I had to go through the storm to reach peace, I wish it was easier, I wish I could have stayed indoors feeling sorry for myself, but that would have never worked, I had to go against my instincts and just live, even if I felt horrible as I felt at times.

    We progress even if we catch ourselves fighting, right? So long as we notice it and try to then accept once more?

    This is true, as I say the habit and the natural instinct to fight will be there, it may try and drag you back to what you have always done, but as you say, as long as you notice and try and do the opposite no matter how many times you have to try to make it your new habit, it is one step back and two forward sometimes. A lot of the possitive posts above are from people who came here a quite a while ago, as it does take time, you may feel better instantly with a new understanding, but the real progress just takes a little time, but once you see new doors opening you feel like you can conquer anything and a new belief and understanding is born.

    Paul

  200. Paul David Says:

    Candie you still stuffing your face? lol

    I have just weighed myself and have put 3 pounds on Grrrrrrrrrrrrr. Well just going for a game of squash now to try and burn a few off, hope you had a great xmas and new year missy, I tried to get into the spirit, but I am sooo glad its over :-)

    Wheres the other blue rinse anyway, had an email from her wishing me happy new year, but apart from that she has been very quiet.

    Paul

  201. Candie Says:

    No Paul lol…. im full of cold so mostly drinking water at the moment! I had a good xmas thanks, glad you tried to embrace it- next year maybe you could go carroling? :) haha just kidding

    Lisa has had a few problems with her broadband, think shes sorted it now though.

    Have a god weekend

    Candie

  202. lisa Says:

    aww are u missing me..lol.my broadband all fixed now,but im full of cold again , never mind. i told you to watch the cider and steak pies paul..tut tut!!. iv been to the sales just got back,i want a wii but there still out of stock grrrrrr!!.candie, carverys are yummy we have a nice one in york. took my tree and decorations down yesterday all boxed away now. ben, paul is right let the battle fight on and you walk away from it,takes practise but it does work ,it did for me.wrap up warm tonight going to be very cold. :-)

  203. Lorraine Says:

    I lost a lot of weight when I first had anxiety but I’ve packed the pounds back on now – must be a sign that things are getting better!!! But I’ll blame Christmas and New Year.

    One thing anxiety teaches you is patience, sometimes mine is not the best but I’m learning. Candie you wrote that your symptoms started going in the reverse order that they came, I am also finding this. My physical symptoms were the worst to accept thank heaven I finally did accept them (I used to say members of my disliked family were visiting!!!) – the mental ones I found I coped better with. Lorryt your sense of humour and everything will come back – I am not back to normal yet but I am slowly noticing little bits of my old self return. If it works for me it will work for you!!
    Take care everyone
    Lorraine

  204. Mazza Says:

    Hi Paul
    Thank you for your advice, I do understand what you mean and I will try to not focus on the anxiety and just get on with what I’m doing. Do you think you can sometimes mix up feelings which are normal with anxiety. Sorry, I’m not good at explaining what I’m trying to say. As an example, if I’ve got friends coming over and I’m entertaining, I start to feel edgy, even though I’m really looking forward to it. I assume I’m edgy cos I have anxiety, but is that why or do people without anxiety feel a little edgy when doing these things. Oh, life is so complicated, lol. I really want to rid myself of anxiety this year, I’ve had it far to long. On a positive note I’m gonna stop smoking soon, been to the smoking clinic. I’m hoping it won;’t make my anxiety worse. Anybody else stopped this evil habit.
    Take care all
    Mazza

  205. Candie Says:

    Hi Lisa.. did you find any bargains in the sales? See you on msn soon x

    Emily you asked earlier what a carvary is- its basically a roast meal where you choose your meat and they carv it infront of you (beef,turkey..pork etc) then you pile your plate as high as you wish with veg,roasties stuffing and yorkshire puddings. There soooooooooooooooo yum! £3.50 well spent! God i want another one now lol

    Hey Lorraine… yea that is genrally the case for me… some thoughts and old symptoms do come and go again from time to time- but thats expected.

    Candie

  206. stef Says:

    Hey everyone…happy new year! well its been ages since iv posted on the blog alltough i have been droppin by over the months bar the last one as christmas time n uni work just dont mix! Hetic times!! well im glad to see people getting on with everything..n im pleased to hear candies expecting! Congratulations! Im posting really as iv been reading through the posts about fears of going crazy..well this has to be my worst symptom n hav been suffering a little last couple of months..allthough i have been pratically anxiety free bar a few ups n downs but iv not let it get to me as i know now what anxiety is and how it affects us…the fear of losing control being one of them. I guess the fear stems from how anxiety is making us feel playing tricks, feeling detached,and generally feeling unhuman! Well i finally told my freinds how i was feeling everyhing..from obsessive thought to feeling unreal and detached and how i had an overwhelming fear of developing schizophrenia or some other disorder..and they agreed that if they felt that anxious out of sorts and had no idea of how anxiety affected them theyd feel just as scared! I think the fact that we are that frightened of going crazy and dwell on it so much should tell us were not!i have also been that anxious of this i have listened to see if im going to hear or see things in the past…and have made myself so anxious through this my body has become totally sensitised to every little noise and movement anyway! This is going to sound completley ridiculous but before i knew what depersonalisation and anxiety really entailed i was in such an anxious state i used to be on pins all day waiting for the dreaded schizophrenia.. i even imagined that the cat would start talking to me one day…yes people the cat!!!! hahahaha! how stupid is that! i used to avoid it! because i was that convinced i was losing my mind! now im much more aware of my body and how the anxiety affects it..thing is it wasnt that long ago that i posted on here and was worrying about meeting somebody as id been single for little while nad worried about me becoming anxious and scaring them off!This i found was not the case because i have met someone, been with him for 6 mnths now and i confessed to having litlle bouts of “freaking out” with anxiety..and lo n behold so does he!!!! In a million years i would never have thought it hes so confident and ‘together’..yet he said same about me..obviously we dont have same symptoms but some we do infact quite a lot! he sort of sees his as a weakness though..and feels quite stupid by it..but when i talk to him and give him my advice (all thanks to this site and everyone on it :) ) he starts to realise its not as bad as he thinks! Anyway just thought id post and share bit about whats been going on in my life..and its good to see everyone still sharing there bit and to still see familiar faces on here..felt a bit guilty as i havent posted for a while..but i have been here just a silent reader! Love the fact u can post ur pics on here to..lovely pic of candie n scan :)! how do i post pics paul..or anyone?? Oh yes one last thing i have noticed the difference when i dont excersise for while i started running which gave me a real feel good factor and felt less stressed to.. i havent been for while and have noticed feeling more stressed anxious so on..so excersise is a big big help. Stef x

  207. Candie Says:

    Hey Stef!

    Havn’t spoke to you since we had the ‘forum’! Yes i am withchild haha, i have just started to feel the baby move- like something is swishing in my stomach… its so surreal! I’m glad to hear you are moving on with your life and met someone…. you sound well on your way to recovered now. Dont worry about fearing going mad, the cat thing is completely normal- thinking you may go mad and waiting for it to happen never sent anyone mad.. just a lil bit anxious! All the best for 2009, keep in touch from time to time too!

    Candie x

  208. lisa Says:

    hi candie,i didnt buy much in the sales..some new lights for the house,a chocolate leather 3 piece suite and a kfc meal..lol.. me and hubby decided not to buy each other for xmas and to buy something for the new house so a new suite it was.how nice you have felt baby move its wicked the first time.wait til its legs and arms start its really weird.iv got to say i love labour dont be frightened by it,painful yes but once they put the baby on you or in your arms the pain just melts away. did you watch big brother last night? :-)

  209. Jo Says:

    Hi,

    In response to Lorryt’s comment:
    ‘i have managed to get over the physical side of things, but the thought still really bug me. i get ones about my hubby how i hate him, and what am i gonna do when my kids leave home they are only 9 and 5! but they seem to be in my head all the time at the mo and i let them be there and just get on with things but i am just existing.’

    I had very similar thoughts, i remember coming home one day and these thoughts would come in saying ‘I’ll be alright when i get home and kill my boyfriend’! And they would come with such force and i’d get a sickening wave of anxiety come over me. I love my boyfriend beyond words and the fact i would think these things scared me so much, but all these thoughts are just adrenalin, give yourself permission not to worry about them, they may be awful but they are not your fault and certainly not your true feelings. The more you just let them be there and don’t be scared of them, don’t give them any power and you will become completely de-sinsitized to them – Honestly it’s true! It takes patience and time but it works.

    Thanks every one for all your kind comments, i read what people have written and i relate to almost everything, the Schizophrenia worries, the ‘what if i’m not doing it right’, thinking your going mad, but just have patience and trust. Let the thoughts be background noise.

    Ooh also i find excercise to be a great help. I try to walk as much as i can, to uni in a morning and it really helps.

    Jo.xx

  210. Shirley D Says:

    Candie:
    £3.50 for a Carvery – you lucky duck.
    Sorry, you’ve got a cold. Not nice.

    Well, our Christmas tree is shedding it’s needles like i don’t know what – i keep going up to it and shaking the branches and making it sprinkle down on to the cardboard box that’s underneath – highlly amusing, if it goes out of the back of the house, i think we will be up to our knees in pine needles, anyway, as you can see i am having a very good day again today and have been reading lots of offerings above.

    Just to say that keep beleiving and keep ignoring the nasties.
    When my anxiety first started to leave me, i used to feel real strange, didn’t want it to be there but at the same time couldn’t get used to it not being there. I suppose that the whole process happened over a period of a week or two with little blips in between.
    The last thing to leave me was the Urticaria – reactionary swelling which they eventually put down to ‘stress’ one morning i woke up and it was completely gone after having it plaguing me for over six months.
    Amazing what mind over matter can bring forth.

    I have returned to this site because i was a little wobbly over the Xmas period – i read with interest Paul’s comment about glad it’s over, so many people feel this way and again you get looked at like a freak because you haven’t gone out and got ratarsed, you haven’t stuffed your belly full of food, you haven’t enjoyed any telly or having the neighbours amd family round. Christmas is for families – how many fall out over the Christmas period. So, i don’t feel guilty that i don’t particularly subscribe to the wahayyyy brigade. I thought i was being a bit of a humbug.
    I went into work yesterday and a lad told me he thought i looked ‘grey’ I knew exactly what he meant because this time of the year is the most hateful time for me, no sun in my face, i wasn’t offended i was glad that someone noticed that i wasn’t as bubbly as i normally am.
    thank goodness – next weekend i am having highlights at the nicest hairdressers around and it will be the start of my brightening up process.
    All the best to everyone, will keep an eye on you and hopefully continue to help others with my messages of improvement as the year progresses.

  211. Candie Says:

    Hey Lisa- oooh thats a good idea that il have to rope david in on a present scheme like that next year- then i wouldnt have to nag at him to get of his god damn ps3 and spend time with me! Honestly girls, never ever EVER buy a man a console…. its the worst mistake i made. If hes not watching football, or out playing snooker hes on the stupid thing! Oh well i have my nintendo ds to console myself with… i have a game for it called brain training, its quite good as it learns you to use diff parts of your brain and helps with memory etc.

    Hey Jo- its funny you should say them thoughts about your bf as i had exactly the same ones! I new there was no truth in them, but as i couldnt understand why i wasnt able to rationalise them i panicked and spiralled into a worse state! I came to the conclusion that i couldnt rationalise with them as i had underying feelings of general anxiety which where hightening my reaction to everything making me feel uneasy. When that uneasy feeling wasnt there i had no problem been rational, unfortunately it took me a while to figure out and by the time i did i had developed obsessive panic- ruminating in my mind 24/7 trying to put things right. Your recovery sounds simlar to mine actually Jo… im getting nearer every day to recovery- you dont always feel it at the time, but then after a while you look back and realise how things have gradually got better.

    Haha Shirley- its £3.50 all the time except weekend and after 6pm. Its so lovely and the pub is a nice looking place too. I really could just it eat atm as im starving! I must admit il be glad to take my tree down now, i do love xmas but its so tiring and after boxing day loses the magic!

    Have a good weekend everyone, i shall try prise David away from the ps3 and watch some saturday night tv.

  212. Eva Says:

    Hi Candie

    Just thought I’d let you know that I think I’m progressing using your advice, yipee! It’s still there, the pondering over where this came from and if I’m always going to have these horrible strange feelings about life..but I told myself it’s ok to feel like this, the more attention I give it the more it will stay. I now see how important it is to keep busy, because it’s all too easy to slip back into rumination before you know it! Also I find myself noticing that time passes really slowly and i want it to hurry up…not quite sure what for though. However in the last few days I’ve been to the sales, visited a friend and actually enjoyed having more of my family round for dinner last night. back to work on Monday and I hope it’s not the same hell as it was three weeks before Christmas, but I know it will be better, not great, but better which is OK (no need to make it better…the old fighting eva)

    Jo I wanted to say that your post really helped me as i think the sensations and the strange thoughts about life were what initially gave me my dodgy thoughts about not wanting to be here…so it’s good to know that I’m not alone in that they are so bad and we get that desperate. But like you say Candie there is always that bit in you somewhere that says surely things have got to get better.

    Scarlet thanks for your comments too, all appreciated. I’d always debated if I’d been depressed all these years. I think I was sad for lots of reasons, but not depressed, just a sensitive girl who wanted to be liked with a bit of lost confidence in herself.

    Off to watch telly tonight, I watched Mamma Mia the other night, I loved it at the pictures, but this time I was constantly freaking out about it, I almost didnt watch it, as my anxious thoughts started about never being able to have a relationship with someone…VERY annoying!! However I watched it anyway and said just feel how you feel, dont try to work it out…

    Have a great evening everyone!! Love reading everyones posts! :)

    evax

  213. lisa Says:

    well i thought candie you always end up with an item of clothing you dont wear, or perfume,bubble bath etc… so now we just buy things we need for our house or pay a deposit on a holiday.i still get him things from the kids but it takes the stress out of what to buy him each year.so for the suite he chose the style,i chose the colour and how many seaters to get..fair deal eh!!. poor you, you spent ages looking what to get david for christmas, wait till the baby comes he wont have time for ps3, making bottles,changing nappies..lol. your carverys are cheap in hull ours are £4.95 in york, our meats are turkey,beef,pork,gammon and steak and guinness pie..i can see pauls mouth dripping as he reads..lol but as much veg as you can eat. well im off for a bath before big brother starts . :-)

  214. Jo Says:

    Your ded right Candie, you do look back and realise just how far you’ve come, even if your having a bit of a bad day you can just look back and think what progress you’ve made. It’s comforting to know you’ve had the same thoughts as me, i’m so glad you’re coming through it too.

    I’m ever so pleased that my post has been helpful to you Eva, when i read yours previously i knew i had been and felt like you when you we’re writing them, you will feel better, absolutely no doubt about it.

    This is such a positive place for people to put there anxiety to good use, to help others!:-)

    Even though the anxiety was horrible it has had a really positive effect on my life because i now realise whats important, i don’t worry about anything anymore, i’m so much more relaxed and am a happier more confident person.

    I hope everyone can take something good from the bad experience they are having.

    xx

  215. Candie Says:

    Hey Eva… thats all it takes, one step of progress to sow the seeds of recovery- things get easier as you go along and soon it wont seem like an effort to do… you may get irritated or upset occasionally- but mark my words your going to be fine.

    Yea you have more of a choice with the meats Lisa, Ours is beef turkey and gammon- but you can have all three if you want which is good! I have been watching big bro… lil mini vern is soooooooo cute, i think theres gonna be a few clashes in there! We shall see. Sounds like a fair deal with the sofa- just depends who hogs which chair haha!

    Hi Jo- glad to read your feeling well again- i think anxiety has braught me many positives too- i now appreciate people more and have more confidene too. I think if you can face your inner fears then you can face anything! I think you have recovered when you dont fear your symptoms- even if they persist through habit for a while longer… there is no way you can possibly go back to anxiety when you have no fear of it.

  216. Shirley D Says:

    Has lisa got one of those reclining seat sofas like they had on Royal Family Xmas special?

  217. Emily Says:

    Just wanted to share that I went away last night to a bed & breakfast with my husband as it was our first night away since the baby. We had a delightful time with an amazing dinner and some shopping today. I was so pleased with how I handled everything. I tried my best to not talk one bit about my anxious thoughts and feelings with my husband and I did well the whole time! By not talking about them in order to figure everything out, it didn’t give them the attention they wanted. I felt bad several times, but I just didn’t talk about them aloud. That was difficult because I usually have a lot of anxiety traveling (had a few rough times over the last few years) and we left the baby. Plus, I usually talk about it a lot with my husband when I feel badly.
    I hope that’s a sign of potential for the future!
    Thanks for the support!

  218. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Emily,

    Glad you had a good time with your husband. It’s nice to be able to get away from the kids once in a while. You are doing very well, and no doubt you will come on in leaps and bounds now that you are gaining a bit of self-esteem back. Try and have more occasions alone with your hubby if you can, even if it’s just for an hour or two once a week or so..it can make all the difference.

    “I tried my best to not talk one bit about my anxious thoughts and feelings with my husband and I did well the whole time!” “I usually talk about it a lot with my husband when I feel badly.”

    When you no longer need to seek reassurance from anyone (even partners), you are a ‘big’ step further in your recovery. I remember one day deciding that I was no longer going to talk about anxiety to anyone, and it really helped me, but it’s hard to let go sometimes, talking about it becomes a habit (addiction almost), and the pull is so strong.

    Back soon everyone, have guests this week.. and it’s crazy here, have a cleaner in at the moment helping me out, cos my house looks like a pig sty….driving me nuts.. 😉

  219. Stephen Says:

    Hey Scarlet,

    Having pretty much average greyish days with pinkish moments, I wanted to start a building project today and kinda had the “why bother thought’ and the ‘but i have anxiety’ thought which came as a tiny blow but i went against it and had a productive day. So this would be living with the anxiety and not letting it stop me doing what i want to? and this is what we need to keep doing to fully recover? right? lol. Felt a little anxious tonight and reading through some other posts of people not at thier best which didnt really help but i suppose you get that. Last night i was in the back yard looking over the lake and at the houses on the other side while having a drink before i went to bed as i had just got back from a friends house and felt at kinda peace with myself and content for a while….i love it..i didnt think i could feel that anymore.

    Hope everyone is having a good new year so far
    Stephen

  220. Candie Says:

    Hi Emily- i stopped talking about my anxiety a long time ago too- it really helped me a lot as it stopped been my habit as much. All day every day i would talk about it with everyone- although i beleive having someone to talk to can help, the extent i was doing it really made me feel worse. I felt like i had to explain myself to everyone and prove that i wasnt weird, however i now have the confidence to not care what they think and dont need to tell them. I also used to talk about it as a subject a lot, it really became my life and wasnt healthy. If you can retrain your brain to have new habits and hobbies instead of focussing on your anxiety it will make the biggest differance- it is then part of your life not you life and doesnt dominate it. Your mini break sounds lovely- just what i need infact! I may look into a weekend away for easter. Bring new things into your day and you will overcome this a lot sooner then you think.

    Hey Stephen- that is exactly how it goes yes- when you have any negative thought acknowledge it and have a so what attitude. Going against this re-inforces confidence within yourself that you will not be bluffed by how you think and feel. Other peoples posts may effect you for a while, i remember a while back when i was the same- but you have to remember our own posts may effect people in a good or bad way too! Again just float past any negativity and dont take the thoughts further.

  221. Mazza Says:

    Hi Candie, Scarlet
    I am fairly new to posting on this site, but I have been reading the advice you have given for some time. It all makes perfect sense and it’s good to see that you can overcome this. I’ve had anxiety on and off for 13 years, and the thought of another year dealing with this makes me feel sad. I have been taking your advice and try to do things even though my thoughts seem to keep reverting back to me, it’s like I am aware of every thought and every feeling inside me. It’s hard for me to describe how I feel, but it’s like an underlying apprehension inside me, like something’s not quite right with me, then I think maybe there’s something else wrong with me and it’s not anxiety. I can’t seem to think I will ever just feel relaxed and get on with things. When I see people getting on with things and enjoying themselves etc, I wish I could be like them, but instead I think what’s the point of doing anything, we’re all gonna die someday so why bother. I hate thinking like this because I was always so happy go lucky before anxiety struck.
    I have read so much information about the subject, spoken to so many people and I know what to do, but can’t seem to do it. I’ve started to take St.John’s Wort, but I’m not sure if they do anything for me. I’m gonna stop smoking soon and that makes me anxious just thinking about how I’ll cope.
    Oh dear, I’m sorry if this post sounds so depressing, I’m not depressed but just fed up with feeling like this, I’m beginning to feel sorry for myself lol, and that won’t help me.
    Anyhow, I’m pleased that you both have come through this and are able to give people such good advice and the hope that they can recover too. Thankyou
    Mazza

  222. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Mazza,

    “It’s hard for me to describe how I feel, but it’s like an underlying apprehension inside me, like something’s not quite right with me, then I think maybe there’s something else wrong with me and it’s not anxiety”

    I know exactly what you mean, it’s becasue you are analysing your every waking breath, and it’s so exhausting, but there’s nothing else wrong with you, I think after 13 years you would know hun 😉

    “I can’t seem to think I will ever just feel relaxed and get on with things. When I see people getting on with things and enjoying themselves etc, I wish I could be like them, but instead I think what’s the point of doing anything, we’re all gonna die someday so why bother. I hate thinking like this because I was always so happy go lucky before anxiety struck.”

    Mazza even after 13 years you can get rid of anxiety and adopt a more relaxed approach to life, you just need to implement a few small changes, and you will notice a difference in the months to come. You have got yourself into a habit of thinking negatively and over-analysing every little aspect of your being. You have to learn to reverse this ‘habit’ by living your life regardless of how you feel ie. not avoiding anything/going places/meeting people, even if you can’t be bothered, and by learning to cut off your thoughts as they enter and not taking them any further.

    I know you have suffered a long time hun and it may seem like and upward struggle, but believe me following Pauls method of ‘going against’ the anxiety, ie… not giving in to it, really works, only you don’t see immediate results and it takes a while to be able to master it… but it is the way to go…. At one time I felt like you, now I have absolutely no fear of anxiety/depression/any other ‘mental’ disorder and I take each day as it comes, whereas when I was at my worst I wouldn’t leave my hospital bed, didn’t see myself ever getting well and thought there was no point to life.

  223. Scarlet Says:

    Hi stephen,

    ” I wanted to start a building project today and kinda had the “why bother thought’ and the ‘but i have anxiety’ thought which came as a tiny blow but i went against it and had a productive day. So this would be living with the anxiety and not letting it stop me doing what i want to? and this is what we need to keep doing to fully recover? right? lol.”

    Yep 100% it is Stephen 😉

    “Felt a little anxious tonight and reading through some other posts of people not at thier best which didnt really help but i suppose you get that. ”

    You do, but there will come a time when you can read anything and are not affected in the same way.

    “Last night i was in the back yard looking over the lake and at the houses on the other side while having a drink before i went to bed as i had just got back from a friends house and felt at kinda peace with myself and content for a while….i love it..i didnt think i could feel that anymore.”

    It’s lovely isn’t it, and you will get more moments like this as time moves on. You are doing great Stephen and I’m sure you’ll soon be rid for good, just a few more grey days to get through first before the pink takes over.

    Did you guzzle all that vodka down at new year.

  224. lisa Says:

    aww candie,you missed vearne getting his blankie out at bed time. i wanted to pick him up and put him into bed,as his stool was beside his bed.latoya looks very anxious and nervous doesnt she? i hope there kind to vearne when it comes to doing tasks bless him. hi shirley its a two and three seater that iv ordered,iv never watched royal family really so cant comment if its the same..lol.but il have the 3 seater,hubby and kids can have the 2 seater..lol. well off to get my yorkshire puds in oven im starving :-)

  225. andrew Says:

    Hi Everyone —

    Happy New Year! I hope everyone had a nice holiday. During the last few weeks my anxiety has lessened greatly and my intrusive thoughts have also disappeared. However, I am still dealing with heart palpitations upon waking up at night or during the night and this triggers my anxieties. It’s so hard to ignore this or accept this. It seems like I am mostly dealing with the physical aspect of anxiety and I can’t seem to rid them. They are so bothersome.

    Can anyone relate or give me some advice? Thanks.

  226. Mazza Says:

    Hi Scarlet
    Thanks for your advice. I do understand what you are saying, I’ve read Claire Weekes book and she says the same thing. When you say “cut off the thoughts” do you mean ignore them or try not to re-act to them but acknowledge they are there and carry on with what I’m doing. Like Andrew says above, I get physical feelings like I’m not getting enough air, I really hate that cos I start thinking somethings wrong with my lungs or something. I have read lots of people get this and heart palpitations but no-one ever explains what to do about them, like do you ignore them (which is hard) cos when you feel like it, it’s hard to believe it’s just anxiety. Sorry for all the questions, but I’m trying to get my brain to understand.
    Thanks
    Mazza

  227. Candie Says:

    How cute Lisa- hes lovely isnt he- just wanna squeeze him! Funny you should say that about latoyah jackson- the first thing i thought is that she kinda screemed i have anxiety. Could be due to shunning the lime light for years, but she looked terrified and really anxious bless her. God knows what she has done to her nose, its a shame aswell as you can clearly see she was an attractive woman.

    Hey Mazza i have had the symptoms of feeling like im striving for air- now if it gets too uncomfortable i dont panic myself but take slow deep breaths and maybe open a window to let some fresh air in for ten mins… it really helped me.

  228. Shirley D Says:

    Andrew,
    I had awful heart palpitations, could hear it thudding through the mattress, it’s all part of the anxiety, still sometimes it catches me unaware, yesterday afternoon in fact, but once my mind was moved on to something else it disappeared. It’s very naughty this anxiety, it is like the devil sat on your shoulder, cackling away to himself – “what shall i do to make him/her feel uncomfortable about now?” But, as has been said so many times before, these are all only feelings – it’s not real and if you can divert your attention in another direction they last a mimimul amount of time, it’s only if you pay it any attention that it hangs around, I was always analysing ‘ why did this happen’ why did that happen’ but as soon as i learnt to let it wash over me, the settling in both my mind and tummy was unbelievably fast.

    Everyone on here is at different stages of their anxiety and those of us who have come through to the other side would very much like to pass on to anyone at any stage that it is possible to get better.

    I left this site for quite some time because I was coming on in leaps and bounds and didn’t want to be reminded that, that ‘horrible’ thing once existed in my life.
    Now i have got stronger I have returned because i want to help others if possible, and now i feel a little bit like the counsellor rather than the counselled. You can achieve full recovery. I well remember the times that i would be hitting my head trying to make it all go away and now (most of the time) i’m level headed and look back on my anxiety as the worst experience of my life – but it was temporary – short lived and i just feel like the old Shirley again, able to rise above most things and not let them burrow away.
    I still have a tough year to come – like so many other people, but luckily i am in a loving relationship and have regained my confidence, this hits you particularly hard – lack of confidence – once that starts to come back again, you are the homeward run.

  229. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Mazza,

    “Thanks for your advice. I do understand what you are saying, I’ve read Claire Weekes book and she says the same thing. When you say “cut off the thoughts” do you mean ignore them or try not to re-act to them but acknowledge they are there and carry on with what I’m doing. ”

    Yes, let the thought float in, and don’t take it any further, sometimes saying something like ‘as if’ helps. The idea is to get out of the habit of analysing every little thought (especially the irrational ones)…. and it really works with practice, in fact you can learn to cut off all thoughts for a while and let your brain rest. Try and do it whenever you can, it really does helps (I do it even now), and when you gain control of your own thoughts, your confidence improves no end and the fear of anxiety/depression fades.

    Mazza/Andrew,

    I suffered heart palpitations at the beginning as well. I read that you should not try and control your heartbeat, if it beats fast for a moment or two then so be it, you need to learn to trust your heart and allow it to beat faster if it needs to, it’s adrenalin, and is a common anxiety symptom. My palpitations disappeared when I stopped obsessing over them, so like Candie says take some deep breaths and try and distract yourself from them.

    Andrew if they occur in the middle of the night, get up and make yourself a camomile tea… anything to stop yourself ruminating in bed for a while and worrying about them.

    I used to do yoga and this helped to relax more, don’t know whether a visualisation technique would work for you, like imagining yourself on a lovely beach and listening to the waves. I found visualisation difficult to do to be honest, but there were times I woke up panicking and I tried it.

  230. Shirley D Says:

    Lisa,
    The sofa thing was two reclining seats on either end and they were having great fun pushing on the buttons and sending the foot rests out – it was about the funniest bit of the feature really, apart from the carrots being put in to the saucepan – dirt and all.

  231. andrew Says:

    Scarlet —

    Thanks! I had palpitations a few years ago but at that time I had no idea it was anxiety, and it eventually went away on its own. Now it’s back. I need to stop thinking about it and with time it will go away. But when you are in the moment and it’s happening to you, it’s so hard to just ignore it. Sometimes it feels like my heart has a mind of its own. Sometimes I feel like my body craves for the adrenalin and anxiety. When I am calm and finally back to normal my body finds ways to seek out the anxiety and messes my day up. Normalcy is what I want… wishing that for everyone here.

  232. Candie Says:

    Hey Scarlet- i couldnt make the visulisation work for me either- then i downloaded a hypnotherapy mp3 and put it to my mp3 player. I was at the worst during my suffering yet at any time of day it would send me to sleep- it was lovely. I wouldnt advise anything to avoid how you feel, but if you need some sleep but cant switch of a little help would do you good. I dont particually agree with hypnotherapy, but what i downloaded left me in complete control- but the suggestions helped me relax and the background music was lovely.

    I also downloaded some tropical rainforest music. One was so relaxing and soothing yet too quiet so i had to turn the speakers on my pc up- just as i was dosing of i herd loads of crashing and thunder which frightened the life out of me and really sent my nerves of lmao! Turned out i had downloaded a tropical rainforest storm. Lesson been, test what you download first!

    I am litrally on the tiniest amount of meds ever now- in 5 days i will be of them for good. The only good thing about them is they made me sleep right threw for about 12 hours. Lately iv been looking at other ways of relaxing myself as my pregnancy hormones play havoc with my sleep- horlicks seems to work well. I tried nytol before i was pregnant too- they are sooooooooo good! I didnt beleive it till i tried them, but if you have trouble getting to sleep try them before considering anthing prescribed. Good news is im sleeping a lot better anyway and get a full nights sleep with a couple of awakenings… i supose thats normal but it was a shock to be such a light sleep again compared to how highly sedated my meds made me!

    Thats my ramble for the night, big bro has just finished so i think il get myself to bed. Have a good week everyone x

  233. selma Says:

    hi all, have just had a bad setback today. traveled to the cayman islands over christmas and was really making progress. had periods of days where i felt almost 100% normal, but now just getting back home to the dreary weather and stress of moving, something sort of snapped (i’m also 25 weeks pregnant!). driving home from errands today with my husband i suddenly felt faint, shaky, and really really agitated. i think i had pushed myself too hard. but the waves of panic were so intense and scary, it was like waves of terror! i just had terrible thoughts and felt like i wanted to jump out of my own skin. everything seemed to slow down and it was hard to get words out, yet at the same time i was very racy and agitated.

    all i could think was…is this a mixed episode of bipolar disorder (since my biggest fear is that i am bipolar)? when i google agitated depression that is all that comes up…bipolar. well, as soon as i got home i had some juice and rested and felt about 70% better right away. i was able to clean the bathroom and take the dogs out. but now i still feel shaky and scared of those thoughts. i seriously still think i am bipolar and it’s driving me nuts. something rational inside tells me a mixed episode would not improve with some juice, but the irrational part of me says there’s no way it could be anything else. i really need some help here, feeling really down. it’s that feeling of wanting to escape from my own thoughts in my head that really freaks me out. any supportive advice would be so treasured right now.

    am feeling overwhelmed with the pregnancy and wondering if this makes me a bad mother!!!! i want nothing more than a healthy and happy baby.

  234. Nicole Says:

    Hi there,
    I just caught the end of a British program called Hard Talk with a cricket player called Marcus something who it appears came through years of depression. I only caught the end and watched it thinking that it would not bother me, but I have managed to get a little psyched out in thinking some scary thoughts again. Instead of feeling assured that someone suffered and recovered, I feel rather un-nerved that in order to recover I have to hit rock bottom like he did and I am afraid that I may not have hit it yet. This up and down business is frustrating. There are days when I feel so strong and empowered then there are moments like this when I can’t stop the worrying. I know that the best way to look at this is to recognize that he has survived well. Maybe it was the interviewer who makes it all seem so dreadful and dramatic that bothers me. Sometimes I feel the urge to know for sure where I am in the scope of recovery and when I start to slide back, I worry that I am a lot farther back then I thought. Alot of ‘worry” and ‘what if’s” in this post!
    Does anyone in the UK have more insight into this as I am not familiar with this cricket player and I only caught the last 10 minutes of the program? Thanks, Nicole

  235. John Says:

    Hi everyone and Happy New Year! Im doing better anstarting the next semester in the morning. I still feel a little bit of anxiety and my sleeping is got a little bit. I have ridicoulous thought and different words and thought seem to bring back old memories and thoughts. I ger tired of it at times but have had a great few weeks. Babysat my niece and spent time with my family. I still have that what if from time to time that I will relapse to where I was before. I sometimes think I oush myself to enjoy each moment like I did before and to see things through my eyes the way I did before. I took a break from here for a while to try and get off anxiety and it helps. I noticed my friend all she does when I talk to her is about anxiety. She seems to constantly talk about it with me and it sometimes brings it back for me. Its tuff I want to help her and Im there for her but she keeps going on about it. I sent her the book and she promised she would read it but I dont know what to do to help her. I just keep telling her what I learned but she doesnt take my advice. Thanks everyone again!

  236. JR Says:

    Michelle – It’s good to see another Texan on here. I live in north Texas in a Dallas suburb. This blog is a lifesaver and has helped so many people (including myself). Keep reading the blog and soaking in the information.

  237. Nicole Says:

    Good morning all,
    Had a bad night of little sleep due to that interview I watched and pushing myself too hard to recover. Now that I have had moments, even weeks when I feel “recovered”, I react too hard to the return of symptoms and thoughts. In the wee hours I realized that what I fear is suffering. When I saw that cricket player talking about his experience it for some reason set me off. I know as Paul says that I should move towards these feelings but I am not too sure to go about this without obsessing about them.
    Off to start my day and will bring my adrenalin along for the ride! On the plus side, I am able to pretty much observe my bodies response to my thoughts without getting too worried about it. I know that my body will survive, but not too sure about the mental part sometimes!
    Have a great day, Nicole

  238. LORRYT Says:

    hi all

    the cricketer is Marcus trescothick , he has a book out about his life which features his periods of depression, anxiety and recovery. i havent read it myself but am told its very good.
    i am having a bad few days again, but am trying to keep positive, they are just thoughts that bear no weight, or significance, all thats real is today, and just deal with the one day at a time thing. have managed to do something to my back in my sleep and i am in agony. its all very testing, and i am feeeling tested!. i am not avoiding, but just lsitening and letting go is that right ??????? do i realy need to keep reminding mysefl what to do .its crazy today !.

    have a good dayxx

  239. Candie Says:

    Hey Nicole- what makes you think you have to hit rock bottom to get better? thats not true, we all have differant levels of anxiety here some with depression that has reached differant peaks- yet people at all levels of anxiety can recover without making themself be the worst ever! Your worrying over getting real bad is what you need to work on, if ya have to the thought dare the anxiety to do its worst. Nothing bad will happen you will see.

    Hey Selma- im pregnant myself and as a mum to be we naturally worry about how good of a parent we will be and if we are ready to be one-its like that for everyone! As for bipolar trust me you are not bipolar- a lot of people worry about this as they have a good few days then a really bad one and worry how there mood can do such a U-turn… but this is what happens during recovery. I have the odd niggle with other mental health problems, you cant rationalise the thought as an anxious mind cant prove what you want to beleive- it will always think the worst! As you recover more confidence comes and the thoughts come with less impact, i can almost think some of mine without caring if i was for example- bipolar. Its like i have accepted so much now i dont question my mind often and often accept if i have an other illness so be it… deep down i know i dont, but eventually i just didnt care to prove differant to myself… this attitude will come to you aswell eventually.

  240. LORRYT Says:

    after thinking about it , i guess i always have to have a reason to feel crap, like im thinking my back is bad, i am tired as im on pain killers and am attending docs every day for dressing changes. i cant just let myself feel low for no reason if you get me??. i cant just be, but i guess if i could it would make things a lot easier i would be letting the worry go ?. its silly, i always feel better once i have posted on here seems to clear my head a bit and offload. its not so much looking for approval but trying to answer questions i think ?. i dont know ….. . I know paul says you dont have to analyse , but my head wont leave it alone !, im listening to it though, guess thats what i need to switch the volume down on !.
    sorry to go on
    hope you are well Candie, scarlett and everyone

  241. fiona Says:

    I just want add a bit about depression. My anxiety was brought on by stress but i’ve never really felt depressed during the time i’ve been anxious and i really do think you can have one without the other. Sometimes you fell a bit crap but that is just normal feelings…anxious or not. Don’t worry about depression as i do think it is a different condition and probably the reason why antidepressants don’t seem to work for people with anxiety but self help does because we do not have a chemical inbalance just developed some bad habits and alot of adrenaline in our bodies.

  242. Nicole Says:

    Thanks Candie,
    I know I am thinking in an irrational way about my fear of hitting rock bottom, thanks for the shake. What starts me off is that I read in a Claire Weekes book that we should not fear depression but constant worrying about it anxiously could in a way open the door for it. Living in the moment and not worrying about some imagined crisis are what she prescribes, but I guess I fear not being able to do this and sliding off into some abyss is the fear and when I saw him talking about it for some reason it really scared me. I think that I am over tired too and this made me more sensitised. For some reason when I read about your experience and recovery, or Scarlets or Pauls it gives me hope! Wierd little brain of mine.
    I will call its bluff today and see what happens.
    Thanks again for the response,
    Nicole

  243. Paul David Says:

    Lorry heres some advice and please try to implement it.

    First of all the reason you analyze so much is because it is your habit to do so. So its fine that you do this, now what I mean is don’t add to your natural analyzing. It is like a record stuck at times, the idea is to let the record play itself out, but don’t analyze, why you analyze, if you understand. I had the same problem and thought to be better I had to stop analyzing, I did, but the habit that was there, I just had to let it just burn itself out and just go with it, just realise that this came through habit and I had little control over it. Its like this with any habit, you can’t just switch it off, you have to let it burn itself out naturally and it will, the reason it has not before is because we have continued to add more analyzing on top and the cycle has continued. Trust me I know as this is how I came through this stage myself, I just had to go with the chatter and the crazyness and not try and figure it all out, question why, and this is when the changes began to happen.

    So you don’t need to switch the volume down, don’t try to control it, let it chatter if it wishes, without the need to try and stop it or work it out and trust me it will burn itself out as you are no longer adding fuel to keep the habit going.

    I hope that makes sense. I honestly did not wake up one day understanding my anxiety and the world was great. I had unraveled anxiety and its symptoms enough to not let them bother me anymore, they were still there, but I saw them in a different light and was able to get on with my day with them in the background.

    So someone could say in my days of recovery.

    Paul do your symptoms still bother you?

    Yes they are annoying and not pleasent and I wont try to like them, but I no longer worry or try to figure them all out, its not worth it and does me far more harm than good. Good or bad I just try to go with the day.

    Does your mind still chatter?

    Yes but thats just a habit, it is bound to, I have been thinking and questioning myself and how I am feeling for months now, what else do I expect, but I understand it and will I just let it get on with it without questioning it or bothering me too much.

    How do you cope with a bad day, a real setback?

    I have these days and boy do they test your reslove, but I have had so many that I know deep down its temporary and a great way of testing my willpower and to not give in and start worrying and analysing once again. Once I come through them I feel proud of myself that I did not go down that route and a little bit more confidence comes.

    Lorry so just go with the crazyness for a while, don’t try to not stop thinking the way you do, just go with it. The habit you have no control over, but you do have control over, ‘Why do I analyze’? ‘Why can’t I stop thinking this way’? ‘Why do I feel so rotten today’? This is the fuel that keeps the habit alive.

    Hope that helps

    Paul

  244. John Says:

    Hey Scarlett and Paul,
    I was wondering does the thinking ever go away completely. I have had great days but some days I guess im scared that I will go backwards. I want enjoy life and not have to think about anxiety everytime I go outside. It doesnt bother me as much as it use to but its still there. I noticed Paul that in your last reply its says the chatter is still there but was this in the time of your recovery and is it there today that your fully recovered?Thanks to you both. I wouldnt have passed this last semester without your help

  245. Scarlet Says:

    Hi John,

    “I was wondering does the thinking ever go away completely. I have had great days but some days I guess im scared that I will go backwards. I want enjoy life and not have to think about anxiety everytime I go outside. ”

    If you are talking about the over-reaction to thoughts and obsessing, yes it goes, of course there may be occasions when an odd intrusive thought enters your head, but you will be able to dismiss it as rubbish, and it will have no effect. As you recover you will find that you don’t analyse every thought that enters your head and you basically become like you were before the anxiety took hold really, only you are much wiser for the experience ;-). These days ‘anxiety’ is just a word to me, and soon it will not have the same hold over you that it has now either. So for the moment get on with your everyday life, let the thoughts be in the background and carry on as you have been doing.. and like Paul says to Lorry above, do not feel the need to figure anything out, …recovery will come to you in time, I am confident of this John… you are doing great.

  246. Emily Says:

    Paul,

    In regards to your next post ideas, here’s something I would have wanted to know about you during recovery:
    When you say, “whatever” to a thought or feeling, do you feel confident when you say it each time or is it a matter of just saying it even if you feel like you’re treading water to stay afloat at that moment?

    I sometimes get so frustrated when I try to do positive replacement thoughts, say a prayer or say “whatever” because it often doesn’t feel better when I do right away. But, I’m beginning to get that when we do those things in order to make it stop, we’re fighting; just like your example of taking a run and expecting it to make things feel better… I think that’s SOOO common and not very obvious because I’m just now seeing it when we do things or say things only as a method for making it stop or fixing it. Or like Candie said about she thought “accepting” meant that she’d be feeling good about it or that accepting made it stop.
    (I think I just answered the initial question! :))

    Another thing I’d want to ask:
    Did you keep getting tripped up with fighting? Was it really gradual that you starting getting better at accepting or did you “give up fighting” fairly quickly and then have to keep working at recovery from there?

    Like I said in an earlier post, I worry I’ll keep fighting and not get out of my own way for LONG ENOUGH to recover.

    If you don’t do a post with Q & A, then I’d be interested in ways that worked for you to have the patience when you’d catch yourself wanting to fight and not getting frustrated that you’re not “fixed” yet.

    Thanks!
    Emily

  247. Candie Says:

    you really have just answered your own question Emily! For a long while i would say whatever to my anxiety, thinking that saying it was gonna put how i felt into perspective and make it right (fighting)! Now when i say whatever i mean whatever, i mean whatever to how i feel- basically it means i accept i feel crap, but im not going to try do anything about it. Its about getting as comfortable as possible with allowing yourself to be this way, i dont ‘like’ how i feel, and now and again have a day of self pitty… its not about been happy with how you feel, its about been able to have it there and create more positive habits that will eventually over ride it.

    Have a good weekend everyone

    Candie

  248. Nicole Says:

    Hi Paul,
    Just another idea for a Q & A if you do it. I have been doing great but I stumble when confronted with the reality that people do suffer from bouts of major depression and with these thoughts come rushes of fear and then I get caught up in a swirl of anxiety and low mood. How would you move toward these feelings appropriately in order to face them head on?
    Thanks again for creating this wonderful place where we can come for encouragement and info.
    Nicole

  249. Paul David Says:

    O.k as some people noticed I did reply earlier that I would do a question and answer in my next post. I have a very good idea of what I will say to the questions asked already. I will do about 10 or so, so if everyone else has any then I will pick what I think will be the most helpful to the majority.

    Please post them in this thread and then I will take them to the next post. These will be answered in my next post, which will be next Monday.

    I will try and make this next post as helpful as I can, as I wont be around as much for the next 3/4 weeks, as I really have to finish updating the book, which is taking far longer than I thought.

    Paul

  250. Candie Says:

    Ok for those of you that i may of confused i have changed the name on the post that i last sent to Emily from me. My tired little mind led to me accidently putting her name into the ‘name’ box when we post on here instead of adressing the post to her! Silly me, sorry Emily!

    Hey Paul, new post sounds like its going to be really interesting. Something i was meaning to ask you was if you ever worried about if your anxiety was other illnesses instead. I have more or less got past this myself(after a lot of worrying) but i know there is a lot of people that still find it hard to move past these what ifs and thought it would be good for them to know about your experiences with these thoughts. Hope your having a good week and enjoying sorting the new book.

    Candie

  251. John Says:

    Thanks Scarlett
    I just been feeling great and then last night it hit me like a truck. I woke up after three hours and was sick this whole weekend and then my mind starting roaming. I dont want to fail nursing and give up on it because of it when I didnt have it I loved everything about it. It was science and I was going to be around it all the time. Its funny how anxiety mad me get scared of the things I loved the most. I been enjoying things but think its also the shock of going back to school and having a set schedule again. The memories of what happened started coming back again. I also realized on how much I missed my parents when they came down to stay with me. I just want to be able to help again and enjoy it again. Thanks Scarlet you are the best. You are there when Im down and I know your there when Im up. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. When I fully recover You will be the main cause of it! Thank You!

  252. Scarlet Says:

    Paul I think a good question (and one I always asked myself when suffering) is “What does it feel like to be fully recovered” and “How do you know”

    John,

    “I just been feeling great and then last night it hit me like a truck. I woke up after three hours and was sick this whole weekend and then my mind starting roaming”

    No worries, sounds like a wee setback to me, and you will still have them right up until the end, but of course they become shorter in duration and less intense. Don’t give up the nursing, do it regardless of how you feel, live alongside the anxiety whilst you complete your studying.. you can do it, and soon you won’t associate science with anxiety anyway, it will soon become something associated with work.

    “The memories of what happened started coming back again. I also realized on how much I missed my parents when they came down to stay with me. I just want to be able to help again and enjoy it again.”

    Perhaps you are having a bit of a lull after your parents visit, and also the period after the holidays (and January in particular) is always gloomy. In fact over in the UK January was voted the most depressing month of the year. .. not surprising really.

  253. Stephen Says:

    Hi scarlet,

    Yes, the vodka got a good workout on New Years Eve, had a really good night actually didnt finish until about 6am new Years day haha. It seems like a lot of people on here also fear depression like i do so i dont feel so alone with that.

    I’ve only been suffering about 7-8 months but kinda not sure what direction im heading in. Sure i get up every morning and do what i need to do and think i have moved quite abit forward but still getting thoes intense feelings like if im having a good time and happy i may get this thought that comes and says “what if im depressed” or What if i get depressed” and i feel a rush of anxiety and kinda down? does this sound normal for anxiety?

    I know you took 20 months to recover so 8 months is nothing but its a little hard to believe i can just be relaxed and enjoy life like before when i recover. Like i think i’ll never get there. Kinda feeling abit cappy about it being january too haha, just thinking about going back to uni and everyone back to work makes me a little sad, but i suppose thats way we enjoy holidays so much. So im guessing im asking is it normal to feel like i might not recover or get back to my happy self. i guess i feel like im just hovering and not really going anywhere. I just get the feeling like im not doing enough, say i get a thought when not thinking about it and feeling pretty normal like what if im depressed – i then dont really do anything but try n think of some thing else..sure it might circulate in my mind for a while but i just eventually get pre-occupied and forget it. Is this ok or should i stop what im doing and say “whatever”.

    The Q&A thing sounds like an excellent idea for a post, will look forward to reading it!

    Stephen

  254. Ben Says:

    Does anyone on here ever go through a period of recovery and then suddenly notice that they are feeling OK and then start worrying about the symptoms returning ??

    I’ve really started paying to Paul’s advice over the past 5 or so days and then suddenly this morning thought oh no I’m not feeling anywhere near as anxious any more and then started worrying about what happens if it returns to how it was last week ?? I guess it is all about not being afraid and just accepting it so I suppose I have answered my own question. Just wondering if this is a common way of thinking for people like us…

    I suppose in some respects I should be happy that I have validated Paul’s ideas personally. I have made myself do so much stuff that normally I wouldn’t because I couldn’t be bothered etc and guess what? I haven’t had time to let all the stupid thoughts rule my life. I’ve also binned the tablets that the doctor gave me the other week. I just can’t be doing with a load of side effects for a questionable gain at best…. I’ve found the few runs and swims I have done have done so much more for me. When Paul talks about exercise in his book I think he is bang on – when I look back to when I was feeling OK last year it was the point when I was training for a 10K run!

    Ben.

  255. Paul David Says:

    I knew something was odd Candie as I had to moderate your post as it did not recognise it as you, then I saw your email address under someone elses name and I thought I had been on the cider….lol

    Candie the book is coming on, its just re-reading making sure things sound right, then my mother actually proof reads it bit by bit, her english skills are second to none.

    Apart from that I have promised myself to lose a stone before my run in April. I am hoping to do it under an hour so I have upped my training and added squash into my weekly exercise and also they are doing a 1 month cycling course at my local sports centre, all bikes are ridden indoors (front wheel off and going nowhere), but I have been promised they guy in charge really pushes you. To be honest I have never felt as good since I did all this excercise, I have far more energy and sleep far better. Mike who posts on here is coming with me and also my permenant running partner who is the main reason I can now run more than 15 yards without stopping, he worked me so hard I hated him at times..lol. It should be a good day and I am looking forward to it, we are hopefully going for a drink and something to eat after, if I can still stand. The charity ‘anxietycare’ have sent me some sponsership forms and are putting a page up on there site, I will also have a sponsership page up and bring awareness on my site and this blog, so hopefully I can raise quite a bit for them.

    On the question and answers I will certainly use the ones given to me already and Candie and Scarlet’s suggestions are very good ones. I will also make up one I want to answer myself.

    One point I want to make is that what you learn here is in your sub concious, you don’t lose what you learn. Its the same as not having to wake up everyday and remind yourself how to drive your car, its just there. What I am trying to say is you don’t have to go over things or remind yourself of anything over and over, like any subject once you learn it, the knowledge is always there. The reason I say this is because I thought I had to carry with me and remind myself of what I had learnt all the time otherwise I would lose it for good, I learnt I did not, it was always there, maybe a quick reminder now and again, but the crux of the knowledge never left me.

    These are the Questions asked so far.

    1. In regards to your next post ideas, here’s something I would have wanted to know about you during recovery:
    When you say, “whatever” to a thought or feeling, do you feel confident when you say it each time or is it a matter of just saying it even if you feel like you’re treading water to stay afloat at that moment?

    2. Did you keep getting tripped up with fighting? Was it really gradual that you starting getting better at accepting or did you “give up fighting” fairly quickly and then have to keep working at recovery from there?

    Like I said in an earlier post, I worry I’ll keep fighting and not get out of my own way for LONG ENOUGH to recover.

    3. I have been doing great but I stumble when confronted with the reality that people do suffer from bouts of major depression and with these thoughts come rushes of fear and then I get caught up in a swirl of anxiety and low mood. How would you move toward these feelings appropriately in order to face them head on?

    4. Hey Paul, new post sounds like its going to be really interesting. Something i was meaning to ask you was if you ever worried about if your anxiety was other illnesses instead. I have more or less got past this myself(after a lot of worrying) but i know there is a lot of people that still find it hard to move past these what ifs and thought it would be good for them to know about your experiences with these thoughts.

    5. “What does it feel like to be fully recovered” and “How do you know”?

    If I have missed one then please let me know, I will take another 5 and then prepare my answers and post next Monday.

    Scarlet its been a while since we caught up, so I have just popped you an email, hope you are well after your busy xmas.

    Paul

  256. Claire R Says:

    Hi everyone & happy new year, this is my first time on here.. Cannot believe how many people suffer with anxiety. Was diagnosed about 18 months ago & thought I was clear of it shortly after, but came back with avengeance
    few weeks before Xmas 08. I had purchased your book Paul, last Summer but had not read as I thought I was clear! Oh, how wrong I was! So read it about three weeks ago, twice over and it has saved my life! I know I have along way to go but feel as my old self has come back over the past two weeks..Still suffer from odd thoughts & depersonalisation but hopefully these will fade soon, but do not want to rush recovery as that was the mistake I made before. I cannot thank you enough for writing this book Paul & I’m sure everyone on here thinks this too! Kindest regards to you & everyone on here..Claire R

  257. John Says:

    Hi all, I found the site in November and have purchased Pauls book recently. Just thought I would post to say hello. I have had anxiety and depersonalisation for a couple of years after smoking alot of weed and then panicing. It died down a bit but never went away as i was still checking in and fighting, but i foolishly had some weed in November after being off it for two years and i started to panic and worry and it came back stronger because I feared it coming. After reading Pauls book though Im beginning to see changes. I have joined a gym again and I only had two weeks off work. Im not trying to fight anymore and im developing a ‘so what’ attitude. I am in my last year at uni though and it looks like I may have to put it back a year because I have missed so much and im still finding it hard to concentrate. I find myself re-reading the book daily though, not sure if this is good or not but i find it helps. The thing i do notice most with my Depersonalisation is the sky always seems strange, almost like its been painted on! It is bothering me less though. Anyway, i just wanted to say hello really and thank Paul for setting up the site and writing his book.

  258. John Says:

    Hi Paul
    I guess one of the biggest questions is exactly what Candie said is wondering it was something else. Another thing is when do we know we are recovered? It hard for me to judge where I am right now. I am probably more worried about going backwards and want to be a postive person moving forward. I also noticed I started doing the I miss looking at that that way or I use to look at that and feel this way. Thanks Paul for all your help.

  259. JR Says:

    OK something happened in my recovery, I don’t know if it’s a setback or if I am doing something wrong. I was going about my recovery pretty well having good days and bad days. Then I was having some pretty good days for longer stretches. I felt like I had everything figured out, I was could remember things clearer. I still struggled sometimes, but my overall outlook was good. I had two weeks off of work for Christmas and was pretty busy with a relative’s wedding, watching their kids, going out of town for four days. I just went with the follow, I didn’t always feel well at during these times but I tried to just float through everything. My mind was refreshing and my whole outlook on life was getting clearer.

    Then slowly over a few days (I hadn’t been on the site or reading the books much because I thought I had absorbed it all) WHAM. I am completely lost again and in a severely deep depression. I feel like I did at the very begin of this all and I not sure what happen. I know I’m supposed to accept a setback, but this is the worst one of all and a part of me thinks it’s from getting away from reading and refreshing the material. Boy I feel lost. My mind compares how I am feeling now to how I felt when all this DP/anxiety set in around four years ago. Now it’s a struggle to get up each day and I can’t help but think that I don’t have the strength to start learning the material all over again. I think I have put a lot of pressure on myself recently, when I feel somewhat better I can laugh and have fun, but then I think I’m too goofy at times so I try to be more serious. Also the existential stuff is really bad.

    I don’t know if this is even a rational thinking but I feel that I’ve felt better around people I work with before and they saw some of the real me, then as my bad days start coming I may be putting on an act like I actually feel like the real me, but it’s hard to tell that I’m putting on an act.

    I’m lost right now and need any insight that any of you may have. My worst fear is that I’ll never recover. It’s been about a year since I started reading and working towards recovery with Paul’s book and this blog. Deep, deep, deep down inside I feel that this is a hard setback that comes when you’re close to recovery (I remember Claire Weekes mentioned that the worst setback maybe when your close to recovery).

    I sure appreciate it.

  260. Paul David Says:

    Yes John I will answer the question Candie and Scarlet asked me to, which is what you mention above.

    John I have read some of your posts and Scarlet has been giving you good advice, as usual. Here is something I wanted to add as I feel it is important in your case.

    You say: I am probably more worried about going backwards and want to be a postive person moving forward. I also noticed I started doing the I miss looking at that that way or I use to look at that and feel this way.

    John you truly need to accept the person you are now, how you think and feel, and not try to scramble or look back to how you used to be, your desperation to be better can have the opposite effect and hold you back as you are building your day around getting better, worrying that you may go backwards, questioning it, putting pressure on yourself to feel good, thinking if you don’t you have slipped back. The whole day again is built around anxiety and the need to feel good, to be yourself again, building yourself up for dissapointments if you don’t.

    As I have stated before, let recovery come to you, don’t go chasing it. You are going down the road of self pity of looking how you used to be, getting down and punishing yourself because your not the person you was or how you want to be, you are trying to force feeling normal. This does no good at all and if I had one statement to say to you it would be ‘Stop thinking about how you used to be and live in the present’ We can only move forward once we accept the way we feel now.

    I used to try and scramble my way back to how I used to be, I used to question why I could not feel and think the way I used to. I used to think I had to be on top of it all and one day I just gave in to it. The attitude you need to get to is ‘However I feel or think, I do’ I wont fight or worry about it anymore, its not worth it’. Let go of this fear of going backwards, its another fear for your anxiety to feed on, if you go backwards it will be temporary, its not a problem, we all have bad days, don’t try and keep a grip on yourself, just let go, the day will be far easier. Just do this for one week and see hopw you go, let go of every fear and insecurity you have.

    Paul

  261. Paul David Says:

    Claire and John…Welcome to the blog, glad you both enjoyed the book and it helped. I hope you get something from the blog also. John on the D.P as you say just pay it no mind, its not harmful in anyway, its just your bodys way of protecting you and makes the world seem hazy and odd, I suffered terribly at one stage but fully recovered from it, its power comes only from the respect you give it, the less you worry, the less your body needs to protect you, there are some old posts on here on the subject that you may find helpful.

  262. Scarlet Says:

    “Scarlet its been a while since we caught up, so I have just popped you an email, hope you are well after your busy xmas.”

    Hey Paul, just replied 😉

  263. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Stephen,

    “I’ve only been suffering about 7-8 months but kinda not sure what direction im heading in. Sure i get up every morning and do what i need to do and think i have moved quite abit forward but still getting thoes intense feelings like if im having a good time and happy i may get this thought that comes and says “what if im depressed” or What if i get depressed” and i feel a rush of anxiety and kinda down? does this sound normal for anxiety?”

    You are going in the right direction Stephen even if you are having doubts. Getting up and doing what needs to be done is all you need to do. If you get the thought that you may become depressed, say to yourself ‘so what, I’ll live with it’ and repeat this as often as necessary (with a don’t care attitude) until the fear of depression goes and you start to believe in yourself a bit more. What you are feeling with this thought is absolutely normal when suffering anxiety.

    “I know you took 20 months to recover so 8 months is nothing but its a little hard to believe i can just be relaxed and enjoy life like before when i recover. Like i think i’ll never get there. ”

    You will get there, you are a lot further than I was at 8 months. I know it’s hard to believe that you will ever get back to being ‘normal’ but you will, I never thought it either… thought i would remain with my constant obsessive thoughts and with a dull grey cloud over my head living in a haze for the rest of my life.

    “So im guessing im asking is it normal to feel like i might not recover or get back to my happy self.

    It is indeed 😉

    ” i guess i feel like im just hovering and not really going anywhere. I just get the feeling like im not doing enough, say i get a thought when not thinking about it and feeling pretty normal like what if im depressed – i then dont really do anything but try n think of some thing else

    I know what you mean about the hovering, I spent a long time in this ‘grey’ period trying to learn acceptance (unknowingly really, cos I muddled through myself, didn’t have Pauls help back then).

    When you get a thought like “what if I’m depressed’, instead of trying to think of something else (distraction), say ‘so what if I am, I couldn’t care less’ and let the thought float away into insignificance. You are learning to not fear your thought Stephen…

    “sure it might circulate in my mind for a while but i just eventually get pre-occupied and forget it. Is this ok or should i stop what im doing and say “whatever”.

    You do not need to stop what you are doing, carry on with what you are doing and let the thought come in and give it no weight.. I personally found it very helpful to say something like “I couldn’t care less” in my own mind when a thought entered, this is what worked for me… but you can let it float on by and not say anything. Someone once said imagine thoughts are butterflies and let them fly away without catching them.

    Lovely day down under

    x

  264. Scarlet Says:

    Hi ben,

    “Does anyone on here ever go through a period of recovery and then suddenly notice that they are feeling OK and then start worrying about the symptoms returning ??”

    Yes towards the end of my recovery I had periods like this…
    I had an underlying fear that everything that I had learned would fall down like a pack of cards… this fear is normal, means you are on the right track, just not at the end station yet…but very close 😉

    “I’ve really started paying to Paul’s advice over the past 5 or so days and then suddenly this morning thought oh no I’m not feeling anywhere near as anxious any more and then started worrying about what happens if it returns to how it was last week ?? I guess it is all about not being afraid and just accepting it so I suppose I have answered my own question. Just wondering if this is a common way of thinking for people like us…”

    Yes it’s a very common way of thinking when suffering anxiety, it’s about not being afraid of your thoughts, and accepting the way you feel as normal for you at this moment in time….

    “I suppose in some respects I should be happy that I have validated Paul’s ideas personally. I have made myself do so much stuff that normally I wouldn’t because I couldn’t be bothered etc and guess what? I haven’t had time to let all the stupid thoughts rule my life. I’ve also binned the tablets that the doctor gave me the other week. I just can’t be doing with a load of side effects for a questionable gain at best…. I’ve found the few runs and swims I have done have done so much more for me. When Paul talks about exercise in his book I think he is bang on – when I look back to when I was feeling OK last year it was the point when I was training for a 10K run!”

    You are doing very well by the sounds of it Ben and are having a wee setback with a few ‘what if thoughts returning, this is perfectly normal and recovery is full of ups and downs like this. Great to hear that you have managed to bin the ADs,, when I binned mine I felt crappy for a while, but I am glad I did when I did. I know I said before but I read that in Russia they don’t dish out ADs becasue they can’t afford to, so they give subsidised membership to the gym for those suffering instead, it works a treat apparently, builds up self-esteem and stops rumination.

  265. Mazza Says:

    Hi Scarlet, Paul
    Just been reading the above post about recovery,
    ” Does anyone on here ever go through a period of recovery and then suddenly notice that they are feeling OK and then start worrying about the symptoms returning ??”
    After reading all the great information and advice on this blog, I am beginning to understand a few things which I was doing wrong. For instance, when I was feeling on edge, like not feeling quite right, like something was gonna happen, I would have a couple of drinks and the feelings would go away. I realise that by doing that I was running away from my feelings and not facing them. Well, for the last week or so, I’ve stopped doing that and I’m beginning to feel better, not completely 100% but a lot better than of late. Getting back to my question on recovery, when I start to feel ok, instead of worrying about the symptoms returning, I do the opposite, I have a sort of lost feeling, like what do I do now, I’m feeling o.k and I start to analyse why I’m feeling o.k, it;s hard for me to explain what I mean, but it’s almost like I’m scared to let the anxiety go.
    Does this seem crazy, am I the only person who thinks like this.
    Hope this post doesn’t sound silly, thanks for all the advice, and thanks Paul for this website.
    Mazza

  266. Shirley D Says:

    John,
    Are you the same one at both 3.19 and 4.43 jan 6th?

    Keep on rereading the book, i read it several times and it was always in the drawer alongside the bed – just in case. It was literally my bible!!!
    It is still close to hand but in a plastic bag, always there.
    There are no hard and fast rules and like everything else, YOU need to be the one to decide everything.It’s all a process of letting go! As time goes on you will realise that you’re not doing this and not doing that and need support less and less but only you alone will make those decisions.
    I hung on to my Beta blockers and then thought one day – “right that’s it” – no more, i visited this site so many times a day – an avid reader and then slowly it got less and less and in the end i didn’t come on it much at all.
    Everyone who is so desperate to get info at the mo will recognise these words a bit later on, and will be back with their success stories.

  267. Paul David Says:

    Mazza that was a great realisation that you were running away from your feelings and not facing them, while we shy away or try and control how we feel we are building up the respect we give those feelings, they must be avoided at all costs, we can never move forward with this attitude. Once you face them and nothing happens you lose your respect, is that it? You may say, but you can’t do this until you do allow and go towards feelings. This is how I unmasked a lot of my anxiety and was no longer bluffed by it.

    On the other part where you feel lost, this is something that happened to me and many others. Anxiety has been part of you for so long and when it is not, even for fleeting moments, you sort of feel lost, in a no mans land and thats fine, allow yourself to feel lost. Feeling odd sometimes can begin to feel normal as you are so used to it, but eventually feeling normal, well feels normal again. Also you may find you have nothing to concetrate or worry about, again making you feel a little lost, its like someone has taken part of you away, a part that shows progress.

    Paul

  268. Nicole Says:

    Hi,
    I need a little guidance today as I seem to be slipping a bit. Just reading these last few posts has helped a little but I am feeling confused and down and extremely frustrated about this set-back. I have not felt like this in a long time, and I was feeling soooo close to recovery which is the hard part. I started to cut back on the AD’s this week and I think that it may be affecting my ability to let things go.
    Paul, Scarlet or Candie – did you ever in a set-back start to tire of this whole process? If that makes any sense. I just feel fed up and weary at the moment with all of this anxiety business and I have moments when I feel like I am sliding quickly back to the very beginning three years ago. Can anyone relate? many thanks and my apologies for being negative,
    Nicole

  269. Nicole Says:

    I just read your post JR and it looks like we are in the same boat.
    I too was feeling very close to recovery and now… not so much!
    So lets not let it get us too down, life lies ahead and I am not looking back anymore, just forward. I think that it feels so awful because we were so close. Hang in there,
    Nicole

  270. JR Says:

    You’re right Nicole. Thanks for the inspiration! I’m so drained at the moment it’s hard to remember or give a lot of brain power to anything. I’m going to take it easy and try not to be so hard on myself the next few days. There is a lot to learn from this setback. We’ve come so far…let me know how things get on for you…

  271. Kamini Says:

    Hi Scarlet… I Was doing so well these days and out of the blue i got this setback. When i do brain retraining, i feel the term i use to accept don’t have any weight, they feel meaningless when i say them to myself.

    Deep down i know its only anxiety trying to fool me again. But sometimes it seems so real, as if they are really meaningless and useless. in fact, it was these term that made me recover in the past. but why they seem like this now. I am still using them, i know the feelings i have about them will pass. Memory and habit is holding me back. But i just want you to clarify it to me?Please dear.

    Thanks again for your usual help.

    You know Candie had already replied to my question, asking me to change the term as she used to do. But still i am feeling the new term meaningless. PLEASE SCARLET AND PAUL DO HELP ME AS I AM STUCKED AT THE MOMENT. PAUL I WOULD BE GREATLY HONOURED IF YOU REPLY ME. YOU REPLY TO SO MANY.. BUT I NEVER GET A DIRECT RESPONSE FROM YOU. I KNOW YOU ARE BUSY.

  272. Kamini Says:

    For example, when i say to myself,”It’s only a bad habit”. Then automatically my mind will start questioning, what’s a habit, are you sure it’s a bad habit.” i don’t know what to do. I have tried with new sayings, the same happens. It’s soo confusing, please advice.

  273. Kamini Says:

    It’s like i am having doubts.

  274. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Kamimi,

    ” I Was doing so well these days and out of the blue i got this setback. When i do brain retraining, i feel the term i use to accept don’t have any weight, they feel meaningless when i say them to myself.”

    So sorry you are having a setback hun, but you are pregnant and it’s an anxious time anyway… but you will get over this setback no worries about that.

    It doesn’t matter what term you use, or whether you change it 100 times, also you could try not saying anything Kamimi but nod in acknowledgment at the thought. I know what you mean about the term feeling meaningless, you will have times like this, but just go with it.. you are learning not to fear your thoughts and this takes times and doubt does creep in, but this setback will make you stronger.. so accept it as a necessary setback and carry on with your day as you have been doing alongside the thoughts.

    “For example, when i say to myself,”It’s only a bad habit”. Then automatically my mind will start questioning, what’s a habit, are you sure it’s a bad habit.” i don’t know what to do. I have tried with new sayings, the same happens. It’s soo confusing, please advice”

    Try saying “I accept you are there thought, but I choose not to take you any further”, this worked for me sometimes…

    I so know what you mean thoguh Kamimi about having setbacks, they can knock you for six, and I always felt I was back to step one, but I can tell you from experience that this is not the case, despite the way your mind distorts things… inside you are getting stronger and more able to cope.

    Any more questions please ask, we are here for you.

    Huge hug
    x

  275. Kamini Says:

    Hi Scarlet, thanks to reply. Hey dear, don’t mind but my name is Kamini. LOL.

  276. Kamini Says:

    You know Scarlet, I can do almost everything. In fact, i do everyday things normally, get up, have a bath, prepare food, go to office, return home, again prepare food, have anice chat with my hubby in the evening, almost everything i do. Just this setback is discouraging me.

    I have random thoughts, but i know it will pass. Anyways thanks Scarlet. Do yu live in Dubai.

  277. Nicole Says:

    Hi again,
    I was reading an article in a yoga magazine on dealing with fear and there was a phrase that is helping me little – it said that in order to find that part of you that is untouched by fear you have to become present to the experience of fear itself rather than simply trying to get rid of it and this is what you are being given the oppotunity to do.” Just thinking of this as an ‘opportunity’ puts this in a different light. Hope it helps someone here as well.

  278. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Kamini,

    Oops sorry about the sp..

    Don’t let the setback discourage you, you are doing very well Kamini. You just need to master the acceptance and non analysing of the thoughts, which will come I promise you… and when it does, there will be no more fear of any of your thoughts… and you will be fully recovered, it’s only a matter of time.

    Yes I live in Dubai, lovely weather here, nice and pleasant. Hows thngs in your beautiful country?.

  279. Paul David Says:

    These 2 questions would be good for my next Q & A post.

    Paul – did you ever in a set-back start to tire of this whole process? If that makes any sense. I just feel fed up and weary at the moment with all of this anxiety business and I have moments when I feel like I am sliding quickly back to the very beginning three years ago.

    Paul – I Was doing so well these days and out of the blue i got this setback. When i do brain retraining, i feel the term i use to accept don’t have any weight, they feel meaningless when i say them to myself. For example, when i say to myself,”It’s only a bad habit”. Then automatically my mind will start questioning, what’s a habit, are you sure it’s a bad habit.” i don’t know what to do. I have tried with new sayings, the same happens. It’s soo confusing, please advice.

    Kamini – I don’t pick any posts out to answer and have no idea who I have replied to and who I have not, sometimes I may not have the time to come on for a few days and I miss a lot of posts, so its totally random depending on when I come on here and also if I think it is a question that I think will help a lot of people.

    You may have seen more of me over xmas, as I had more time to spend on here and sometimes the more time you give, the more people demand it, but I also have many, many emails to get through daily, not just on my main site, but I also have 4 other sites that I own, completely seperate to this, one being a web building service, so apart from designing and building sites on a regular basis, I spend about 2 hours a day just answering emails and working on other things, I honestly don’t have the time to be here as much as I would like. The blog was not set up to be a question and answer facility when I started it, more just monthly advice from me, but as it has grown it has gone this way and as I like helping I do try and come on here as much as I can, but it is always a time thing.

    Anyway your question will be answered in my next post, basically though you are putting your faith in a saying and not an attitude and putting pressure on that saying to make you feel well.

    Paul

  280. Nigel Says:

    I posted a little while back about how I seemed to be worse in the morning but felt better by late afternoon and in the evenings I’m fine. I seem to be stuck ihis cycle at the moment and I would appreciate any advice or suggestions. I don’t seem to be having disturbing thoughts, but mainly a lack of confidence in what I can do. This is affecting me in my job, which I used to enjoy and felt confident with. Now I find I am nervous of meeting people and feel I can’t remember how to do things. Does anyone else have this problem?
    It’s as though my mind is telling me to avoid these things, but it’s my job and I want to get back to enjoying it again and feel confident. I have a similar lack of interest in my hobbies, so weekends are difficult to fill and I get stressed thinking about them.
    I know there’s no magic cure but if anyone has any suggestions I would really appreciate them – it’s starting to get me down as I can’t seem to find a way to get on top of it. The annoying thing is I can think about things with confidence when I feel OK, but the very same things fill me with anxiety when I’m not OK, so I realise it’s me and not the things I have to do that is the problem.
    I feel that this anxiety is taking over my life as I seem to thinking about it all day every day. I know that’s not a good way to be but I am finding it very difficult to set it aside and get on with life during the day, wheras evenings are fine and I feel almost normal again. I almost wish there was a way to hold the good feelings and carry them over to the next day, but I guess that’s just over optimistic!
    Thanks everyone – this is a great support site and I would really appreciate any thoughts and advice.

    Nigel

  281. John S Says:

    To Shirley,
    Hi, im the John from 3.19. We are two different ones. Thanks for your reply. I find it does help to re-read because Im just keeping the knowledge fresh in my mind. Felt awful at work today and then found out i was training someone but then i just thought so what and even though i felt strange it wasn’t that bad. Nothing bad happened! I have fallen into the trap a little bit of worrying about regressing and getting worse but i just dont care now. Its too much effort fighting. What is annoying is does anyone feel nauseas and not have an appetite at all. I dont know whether this is because of the anti-depresseanst i have been on for 6 weeks or because of my anxiety. Not sure i want to be on the anti-depressants anymore anyway because they don’t seem to do anything. Anyway, back to work, take care everyone.
    John

  282. Ben Says:

    Paul,

    I’ve got a question for your next post. You mention a lot about not going in search of that magic tablet or secret cure etc and just letting recovery come to you through acceptance. You also however recommend a few things such as exercise, avoiding alcohol, massage etc to help with recovery. How do you draw the line between the two and when do these things stop being just aids in our recovery and represent us searching for a quick fix ??? I’ve thought a few times about trying meditation or something to help me relax, but then wonder if it might be a step to far and means that I am not accepting the way I feel.

    Ben.

    Ben.

  283. Paul David Says:

    ok Ben I will add that to the list in my next post, a couple more and then I will leave it at that.

  284. fiona Says:

    Hmmmm, really trying hard to think of a good question so as not to waste this golden oppertunity!!!

    When you first recieved the help you needed was the doc you spoke to an ex-sufferer and how much did the reveal about there own anxiety issues and recovery and do they still practise and help?

    I know that information is not really much use to anyone…. i’m just really nosey and want to know!!
    Fiona

  285. Candie Says:

    Nigel, the only reason you are more anxious during the day is because you wake up and expect to be anxious, probably spend the first few hours hating how you feel and wanting it to go away. It will go away when you stop fearing how you feel, to do that you have to allow yourself to feel this way- you dont have to like it, just dont add fear to it.

  286. Kashawn Says:

    Hello Everyone

    Im Kashawn, 21, 4th yr nursing student. I suffered an anxiety attack in April of 08 and went down the road of deep thinking, constant worry of how Im feeling which left me with constant anxiety and depersonalization. I found Paul’s information in the summer and started applying it to my life. It took a while to understand the information and truly apply it to my life. I just want to say that my anxiety has been leaving me, layer by layer. I want to tell you all, or reassure you all that it is TRULY a process.
    The key is to LIVE as normal as possible and focus on outside OUTWARD tasks; reading, exercising, socialising-this stops the constant inward thinking of your condition and gives the mind the break it needs–As I applied this behaviour- I noticed moments of Normality that keep adding up as the days pass!!!!

    I am not fully recovered however I feel it just around the corner, its just a matter of keeping my mind busy and focusing on outward tasks.
    I HOPE THIS ENCOURAGES PEOPLE
    recovery is on its way:)

    Kashawn.

  287. Nigel Says:

    Thanks, Candie for your reply. It’s true I wake up thinking I’m going to be anxious today and yes I do hate how it feels. Iam trying to just go with it but that’s the hard bit for me. It certainly seems to have become the focus of my life at the moment so I do need to try and keep it in proportion. Of course it’s easy to say that now because I’m feeling fairly OK but tomorrow will be different (see – that’s me expecting it to be there – I must stop that!).

    best to all

    Nigel

  288. Paul David Says:

    Kashwan that is exactly what I try to get across and I am really glad you were able to apply it and also keep the faith that this would work and not go for the quick fix. Too many people are influenced by the way they are feeling at the moment, they don’t see past today. Rather than searching for recovery or demanding it, you have let it come to you. There has been a lot of talk on here about people having a bad day and again thinking they are back to square one, ‘Its back, so this is me forever then’ is there attitude, you may have to go through these bad periods many times. I have mentioned many times about setbacks and you will have some up and down days. Again I will say ‘Enjoy the good and don’t get down about the bad, they will pass’. Don’t be influenced by how you feel at any given time, its not important, its the continued ‘living’ that will bring peace. And your right it is a process, its not about how you feel today or tomorrow, it will come in its own time.

    Back to a setback, people think with anxiety, if they feel good its gone and if they feel bad its back for good, if this is you, then please believe me when I say I had some of my worst days during my best days, it was o.k, it was all part of the process, I had enough setbacks to know they would pass. As Kashwan says ‘Its a process’ and I am sure she still has some bad days/weeks, the difference is she has the faith that they will pass and not enter a stage of questioning it all over again, worrying and self pity. Please take this on board as it is very important.

    Paul

  289. samantha Says:

    hi paul

    just wondered if you could answer a question along the lines of the more psychological symptoms that often remain after the pysical symptoms have gone ie dp, racing thoughts , and that worry that it will all come back

    as i know a lot of people appear to be at this stage

    samantha x

  290. andrew Says:

    Hi everyone,

    On the subject of setbacks, I just wanted to share my experience. I think for everyone who has dealt with anxiety has had setbacks. Setbacks make us feel scared and bring us back to that anxious feeling all over again. Mainly it’s the fear that we will never get better. But I’ve had many setbacks since my anxiety started in October of 08. It all started with a panic attack and spiraled from there. But as odd as this may see (for me), having setbacks were the beginning of my recovery process – of course I didn’t know this when it all started Each time I had a setback I learned something about my body, my mind, and why I responded to something with anxiety. After going through a few setbacks, I began looking at them as challenges, and with each one I was able to conquer that particular fear or feeling or thought. So I stood up to my setbacks and almost looked forward to them because I needed to go through the experience in order to beat whatever it was that was perpetuating the fear.
    For me it was knowing that I went through the setback without going crazy or debilitated or whatever gave me the confidence to free myself from that particular fear or thought or sensation. And when that sensation or thought came at me again I was prepared and it lost its affect on me. So next time try not to respond to setbacks with fear, rather look at them as another challenge another opportunity to beat this thing one layer at a time.

  291. Paul David Says:

    Worrying about symptoms coming back Samantha really has been spoken by me and others already a few times on this thread, if that is what you are asking.

    I am really just doing more direct questions in my next post about my recovery and as there will be a few, I wont have the space or time to go into loads of detail with each one, but will give as detailed answer in a few sentances as I can.

    O.k I wont be around now until next Monday as I am very busy, so I will take the questions I have received so far and post then, I hope they help.

    Paul

  292. Manuella Says:

    Wooow! I can’t even read all the posts…there’s far too many!

    Well, I’m one of the oldies…just coming to say HELLO and HAPPY NEW YEAR! Paul, Candie and everyone else!

    I’ll try to come more often from now on. Promise!

    A big bear hug to all of you!

    Manuella :)

  293. Shirley D Says:

    Hello Manuella,
    Nice to hear that you have popped in.

  294. Shirley D Says:

    John S.
    i am terrible for the feeling sick thing – it’s all very temporary, usually cough until i heave and then once that’s done a couple of times, i’m ready to go! I make light of it because this is the stage i’m at with acceptance.
    this time last year I would have played that over and over in my mind, why did my body do that? will that happen again tomorrow, how many more mornings will it happen, but it’s no good worrying, it will only lessen when you stop the worrying, it’s just getting over that threshhold.
    I suppose before you realised that you were training someone today you had time to wallow and spend on your own thoughts, when you knew that you were going to be training someone then your attention was diverted to that particular task. did you feel a sense of achievement once the training was done? I hope you did because you earned yourself a gold star with that achievement.
    I lost a lot of weight with my anxiety it was like eating straw, swallowing was difficult, now i wish i could lose weight!
    Be positive, stay positive.!

  295. samantha Says:

    hi paul

    yes i realised when i had posted then looked at the posts that i was repeating what you have already said lol

    samantha

  296. Candie Says:

    Hey Manuella! Happy New Year! This place is busy lately so it is really hard to keep up with all the posts. Nice to hear from ya x

  297. andrew Says:

    Hi Shirley —

    For some reason I missed your response. Thank you for your advice and sharing with me your experience with palpitations. It is good to hear from someone who went through the same experience and is recovered from it. I still get the palpitations – I am only aware of them when I wake up from sleep. This happened to me several years ago and it went away completely on its own. Now it’s back, and one of the reasons it is back is that I allowed my anxiety to take over. The positive side is that the palpitations don’t bother me as much as they used to and they aren’t as intense as they used to be either. My anxiety has lessened greatly, but the residual effects are still there and they manifest themselves as physical sensations. Thanks again for sharing.

  298. Eva Says:

    Hi Candie

    I seem to be getting the hang of the acceptance thing now and not fighting how I feel, however i have a wee question. I know it will take more time for things to quieten down in my head, but I still get concerned over the fact I feel I dont have any motivation and the meaning of life seems to have lost its significance, it’s like I’m existing with no real purpose. When this happens I try to accept that this is how I feel just now and it is likely to change (it will right?), but it panics me and makes me feel like I dont want to be here to live with feeling that way (that’s how severe the thought is). I presume this is all quite normal for anxiety? I feel I am making progress (I think), work is hard, but i managed to go out for lunch with my bosses etc (which got me majorly panicing), I’ve been more interested in conversations and my work, and i’ve also been more interested in some eye candy at work :) I still have strange feelings about other things in life, which I just accept and try not to think too deeply about or worry about. It is dificult, but I hope as you say this will become easier in time. Being at work is good though, as I actually look forward to coming home a little now, which is nice to feel.

    Hope everyone is ok and making progress xxx

  299. Candie Says:

    Hi Eva- i promise you this does go, im experiencing this feeling of having not much interesting in anything with life atm (little setback)- but its temporary. Now you have a choice, you can accept you will feel crap for a bit- but whiles you do this acknowledge doing this is going to stop you tensing against your feelings and eventually they will subside. You only hate this feeling as you dont like the idea of spending your life like this, but the fact is that wont happen as you have never always been this way. All anxiety and depression is temporary, how long it sticks around depends on your attitude towards it. Paul felt nothing for ten whole years, he was way passed depressed- deeply depersonalised and feel no emotion. If someone can reverse the effects of that then i beleive with patience, acceptance and knowledge you can recover from any level of anxiety or depression.

  300. Paul David Says:

    Hey Manuella, I only saw your post through my emails and just had to say hello to my brazilian/portugese mate. Happy new year to you to, we miss your smiles and humour here and your right it has grown a bit since you were last here.

    Take care

    saudades de você e você sempre será meu amigo

    Paul

  301. Sam Says:

    Hey everyone,
    first off happy new year to everyone, and wishing all of u health…Hey scarlet , Candie + paul…wow took me 1 hour o read all the posts…well got back from my vacation from jamaica and i might say not all that much of anxiety…some grey mornings but the rest were pink….you were right candie and scarlet i thought to much about getting anxiety on vacation which ended up being a great week of relaxing. My days are split like nigel, mornings hard but as the day goes on better…distraction is the key.

    Well i first thing i will do tomorrow is order Paul’s book…i have been with anxiety for 6 months now and this site and Paul has helped me alot and he missing puzzle i think is to finally read he book and support myself with more knowledge and also support Paul’s great work…

    Ps:Scarlet we just got 30 cm of snow….ARRRH

    Candie hope all is ok with you and hope you are hanging in there, by the way i never gave ou my names for babies, here i go with some italian names:

    Boy:Matteo
    Girl: sienna

    Ciao
    Sam

  302. Eva Says:

    Thanks Candie, sorry to hear that you are going through something similar at the moment. It really is pretty awful. I get myself into a bit of an aghhhh pacing mode, not knowing what to do. I’ve taught myself to just stay calm though and just accept that this is temporary (although longer than most temporary things) and try to engage in something. I dont think anyone who hasnt experienced this can really relate to it, so I’m glad in a way that we are both going through similar things.

    I also suffer from terrible sore heads and feeling kind sicky faint for most of the day. Again though, same principal applies, accept and carry on. It’s all quite draining though, sometimes I just want to give up, but then I think well I already have as I’m accepting how I feel. I was just talking to a girl at work who knew I’d been off withe anxiety and she said I looked so good…that’s where this illness is confusing for people, on the outside we can look ok(ish) but inside is rotten. Have you got any plans for the weekend Candie? I start back horse riding this Sunday and I’m going to try and enjoy an extra hour or so in my bed, plus the sex and the city the movie dvd (sorry guys…girl talk! ).

    Hope you all have a lovely weekend xx

  303. Helz Belz Says:

    Hi Eva and Candie, I am having one of those ‘whats the point/no enthusiasm for anything’ periods too. but i’ve been through them before, so am trying to ride this one out too. its really crap feeling, don’t know whether the depression feelings are caused by this or bring this on. but it doesnt matter really in the long run.

    don’t know if this helps, but i’ve found that when the feelings wash over me (have been having problems with the feelings i had 2 years ago when this all started, panic/depression/existential all rolled into one) i’ve been saying hello to the feelings, and it makes them less scarey and they don’t get in the way so much. managed to get through a 3 hour night-time train journey that way this week, and thats usually when these feelings are at their worst.

    pink days, -x-

  304. Eva Says:

    Hey HB!!

    Sorry to hear that you are in this boat too…although gives comfort that we’re not alone at least. It’s interesting to note that yours gets worse around certain situations, a classic anxiety attack. Mine are just with me all the time really, although I probably notice it more when I’m getting up or when I’m alone. At the moment I think to myself, right ok this does freak me out that I might be like this forever…but whats the point in it going over and over in my mind, it wont change anything, so just let it be… the mind is a weird thing.

    xx

  305. John Says:

    HI Kashawn,
    I in my 2nd yr of nursing school. I guess with my anxiety attaxk in june 08 I spiraled downwards too. I had a constant headache before that an an allergy that made my eyes itch. I eventually came to a point where the headache was so strong I thought I was having a stroke. I panicked went to the hospital and the dr said I might have ms. This started everythingd and unfornutely for me, I was taking psych and had thoughts pop up about that. I got scared about this and about that. I guess it is that as a nurse student its great to hear that another nursing student is getting through it.

  306. Shirley D Says:

    Must be the time of year – i’m going through the no interest in things thing too!!! Even talking to one of my nearest and dearest friends – just not interested in making conversation – yet i have been perfectly ok at work this week. Weirddddd!

  307. Scarlet Says:

    Eva,

    “I feel I dont have any motivation and the meaning of life seems to have lost its significance, it’s like I’m existing with no real purpose.”

    I felt like this for a long time, and it’s very normal for anxiety to feel this way, I remember crying a lot when I felt like this, and I had a young baby to look after as well, but as Candie says it goes with time…. and I can vouch for that as well, you will not always feel this way.

    Have a great time horse riding hun, I have never ridden a horse myself, but would love to. You are going to get well again, no worries about that, especially since you mention ‘eye candy’, now that sounds like a distraction, and a purpose 😉

    For the ladies (meant to mention before)

    I think for us ladies we can feel particularly bad at ‘that time of the month’ as well and as you recover you will feel especially bad during this time for a while (some of your worst setbacks you will notice around this time), which is very normal. Some docs recommend AGNUS CASTUS to stabilise mood and balance hormones during the month. On another forum which I moderated on, some of the ladies said it helped them enormously.. It’s for both anxiety and depression and insomnia, headaches (not for use during pregnancy mind you) and is very good for menopausal symptoms as well as PMT/PMS.
    http://www.boomer-healthcare.co.uk/product/pms-balance-hormones-with-agnus-castus/

  308. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Sam,

    How was Jamaica, warmer than Canada I expect. Brrrrr. -15 I think it said in some parts. I love snow.. not when it goes all slushy mind you, only when it’s white everywhere.

    Sounds like you had a fabulous time relaxing and having fun in the sun, no worries if there’s a lull on returning, it’s usually the way… but you are doing just fine.

  309. Eva Says:

    Hi Scarlet

    Thanks for that, it makes me cry too as it feels so horrible. Was this one of the last things to go for you? You did so well getting through this with a baby, having said that a baby would allow you to focus your attention onto something. Also I guess it means you would have a loving family around you too. My eye candy at work is just simply that…a seat with a view!! Very handsome indeed, but I think out of my league :(

    At Christmas time…infact christmas day I had my ‘time of the month’, along with IBS and my ‘dodgy’ thoughts. Was honestly so bad. I might try your suggestion actually, sounds interesting! I do hope i get fully well again, I know and am prepared for it to take time, it’s just really horrible…as in the worst thing I could imagine. However maybe that means some goodluck will be round the corner for when I’m better :)

    Have a lovely evening xxx

  310. Michelle Says:

    Hi everyone.. and a very happy new year to you all. I have been reading here every now and then, but there have been so many posts, I wanted to get through them all before I posted, in case whatever I was going to say has been said or answered already.

    How long can setbacks generally last? I had been doing so well for a few months, almost 100% (but never got to 100% since my anxiety started one year ago). I had a setback right before Christmas, seemed to get better right after Christmas, but the last day or so I haven’t felt well again. I keep trying to say “whatever” to myself but it’s hard when the physical feelings are strong. The past couple of days I have had periods of feeling like I can’t breathe well mixed with butterflies in my tummy. I haven’t been doing anything stressful, in fact, it hits me out of the blue when I’m actually feeling otherwise great. The physical stuff is hard to ignore. I can forthe most part just roll my eyes at the stupid thoughts and depersonalization. The only depersonalization that bugs me the most is when I look at my youngest daughter (7 years old), I think it seemed like a million years ago since I was her age, and that life is so, so long. That gives me anxiety… it’s such a viscious circle.

    After you reach what you claim is “full recovery,” do you ever have anxiety of the blue again? Or is complete recovery when you are completely rid of it forever? It’s really hard to get my thoughts into words.. so I’m sorry if I don’t make any sense. I guess I’m saying, when you reach full recovery, can full recovery be temporary “windows” and then you can still be hit with it again. Like full recovery is just as temporary as the anxiety? I thought I read a post from Paul a few days ago that even though he considers himself fully recovered, he still has setbacks?

    We all know to expect bad days. I have had bad days like everyone before the anxiety happened. So when I say setback, I’m not saying a “bad day.” I’m saying the whole anxiety thing.. which 1 minute to me is worse than a whole week of bad days before.

    I have a hard time not wishing that I wasn’t who I used to be and that this never happened to me. I know I need to accept how I am now, but I just don’t know how to. I go over and over in my mind that I can’t fix it, so I might as well just accept this is how I feel. Mentally I can, but the physical symptoms seem to prevent me from full acceptance.

    I don’t want to set myself up for disappointment. I don’t want to think I can be fully recovered, only to have it hit again. I know I’m acquiring tools to help me through any setbacks, but that won’t stop them from coming. Yes, I am still afaid of anxiety. How do I stop being afraid of it? It just seems like a big black hole, and I want nothing more than to be out in the sunshine again.

  311. David Says:

    Hello everyone, my name is David and I am new to this blog. Happy new year to everyone. Hope everyone is ok. Finally after nearly two years of doctors visits, brain scans, food intolerance tests, to name a few, I finally think there might be a name for what I feel. Depersonalisation! Since Feb ‘07 I have fely spaced out or dizzy/lightheaded everyday and none if the specialists know why. This all started suddenly one day.

    I find that reading, working on a computer can make the feeling worse but I generally get it everyday and very sporadically. It’s hard to describe, like a congestion in my head or a lack of clarity. This whole problem makes concentration very difficult. I am glad to see that I am not alone with this and finding this website really does help. I also have a tightness around my forehead that gets worse towards the end of the day. I just wonder how anxiety or dp can manifest itself in physical symptoms.
    Basically my question is, am I experiencing depersonalization?

  312. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Michelle,

    “After you reach what you claim is “full recovery,” do you ever have anxiety of the blue again? Or is complete recovery when you are completely rid of it forever? It’s really hard to get my thoughts into words.. so I’m sorry if I don’t make any sense. I guess I’m saying, when you reach full recovery, can full recovery be temporary “windows” and then you can still be hit with it again. Like full recovery is just as temporary as the anxiety? I thought I read a post from Paul a few days ago that even though he considers himself fully recovered, he still has setbacks?”

    When you reach full recovery you don’t get yourself into an anxiety loop anymore, and any periods of anxiety are generally short-lived. For eg. I took my kids to the zoo a few months back and my eldest (aged 11), went to the loo, and I waited outside for him, and he didn’t come out for a while, so I went into the loo and he was no-where to be seen. I went into panic mode, my heart pounding, lots of ‘what if’ thoughts entered my head… and this went on for about 5 mins (seemed a lot longer at the time). I eventually took a walk to the entrance gate and there he was, he hadn’t seen me waiting for him outside and had gone to zoo gates. Now had this situation happened when I was suffering anxiety, I would no doubt have had severe dp and panick attacks with terrble thoughts I couldn’t rid myself of. But having now recovered… as soon as the stressful episode was over and I hugged him, we went around the zoo and had a great time and I thought no more of it. This is the difference, so yes you do have times when you are anxious/ stressed out, everyone does, but as soon as the anxious episode is over you are able to move on. Those suffering anxiety have difficulty moving on.. this is the difference. Hope this helps answer your question.

    With regards to a post of Pauls, If it’s the same post I think you are referring to, he was describing a time when he was still suffering setbacks and not talking about nowadays…

    “Yes, I am still afaid of anxiety. How do I stop being afraid of it? It just seems like a big black hole, and I want nothing more than to be out in the sunshine again.”

    By getting on with your normal life, not avoiding situations you did before the anxiety took hold, and by not giving any weight to irrational thoughts (ie. not analysing them), your fear will disappear in time…

  313. Michelle Says:

    Thank you for your reply, Scarlet. I feel such a sense of relief when I come here and see that I am not the only one to feel this way. I know people that have panic attacks, but I have yet to actually meet someone who had a breakdown like I have… so it’s hard to find anyone to talk to. I hate the looks of pity when I talk to people, because they just have no idea what I’m going through. I try to explain it as a panic attack that doesn’t go away in a few minutes like most do.. a panic attack that stays with you day in and day out. I would never want anyone to go through this, but I always thought it would be nice to meet someone who actually has, just so I’d find understanding. That is what I find here.

    Hi JR.. so sorry that you are sufferering. Hopefully this will be a great new year for all of us. It’s nice to have a fellow Texan here.. just sorry it’s under these circumstances! Maybe we’ll soon have success stories of our own to share!

    Hi David– I have that same feeling in my forehead. Even when I thought I was 95% cured, I still had it. Even when I’m feeling no anxiety at all, I still have it. When I find I don’t have it, as soon as I think about it, it comes back. It’s one of my most annoying symptoms, as even when I felt totally back to normal it was what kept me from saying I was 100% better. I do hope it will go away someday. Then I know I’ll be truely recovered. But as soon as I think of it, it’s back. I do hope this site helps you get through your DP. I often feel spacey too, like there’s something chemical going on in my head, even if I have no other symptoms. That’s why I often wonder if I do have a chemical imbalance of some sorts, and this isn’t a mental thing after all. Sometimes my face feels like I’ve cried hard for several hours, even though I haven’t. I have been to the doc for this.. had MRI and all, everything is normal, so that’s a good thing! They thought it was either trigeminal neuralgia or MS. Both came back negative!

    To those of you with children.. do you find this horrible anxiety harder on you because you have the kids? I feel like I have lost a lot of precious time with them because I wasn’t free to totally “be present” with them. I had been so self-absorbed. I haven’t stopped doing things with them, I still do everything “I used to do” but I’m not the relaxed, easy-going, fun-loving mom I used to be, and that makes me so sad.

    Do you think any of us anxiety sufferers can also suffer from PTSD from the really hard days of anxiety? Sometimes I think because the memory of me when I was at my worst is still so raw, the memory can sometimes drive me back. I wish I could stop myself from remembering how horrible and dark those days were. The more I think of it, the more anxiety I feel. Sometimes I feel like I’m just one breath away from being “that bad” again. I think that if my pregnancy could put me over the edge, when it’s supposed to be the happiest time… what if something really wrong happened? It makes me feel like I’m mentally weak.

    anyway, that was quite a pity party I just had, eh? It does help for me to get this all out though. I really can’t talk about this with anyone but my therapist, and she thinks it’s all tied to my childhood and all.. which is really of no help. So coming here and getting to ramble on and on is very cathartic.

  314. Candie Says:

    Hey Michelle- by the sounds of it you still let anxiety have a lil hold over your day, you can actually be recovered from an anxiety disorder and still have symptoms for a while until new habits overtake them. Like Paul mentioned before he classed himself as recovered when he wasn’t bothered by any symptoms, not when they had gone…. you really can wait forever if you wait to be 100%! Doing that can kinda place too much importance on recovery and the remaining symptoms. Like if i think and still fear a certain physical symptom it will come when i concentrate on it, but when i dont its not there…. we can trick our mind and body to feel certain things if we make an issue out of it. If i was to sit here for a while, dwelling and watching my heartbeat, eventually it would start to thud in my chest and scare me. Although iv never had a problem with my heartbeat racing, it would be easy to make a problem out of it if your used to analysing everything! Thats why accepting stops you seeing symptoms as a problem, gives your body the rest it needs and your mind the confidence to dismiss symptoms as irrelevant. If you got to 95% before, you can easily do it again :) this time though you are wiser, so you can create habits which mean it will be gone for good!

  315. Sam Says:

    Hey Paul,

    I just ordered your book with my credit card because i do not have a paypal account…my nickname is sam but my real name is Salvatore. Let me know Paul i all is good..waiting for the book to come to Canada….

    Scarlet, i love the snow too but to shovel 30 cm ah no i hate it…ut amazing for sking…

    Ok here is where i am if someone could answer:
    I wake up in the morning with stomach cramps and then as the day goes by i feel better, the night time amazing…why are mornings so hard and sometimes i fel dizzy…

    thanks
    Sam

  316. Michelle Says:

    Thanks Candie… I really try to not “go there” with my mind. Sometimes I feel like by ignoring it, I’m actually just trying to avoid it. Then I think if I avoid it, it’ll try to grab my attention another way until I give it all my attention. I try to let the thoughts just float in and I try saying “whatever,” or lately, “here we go again.. you’re such a pest and then “whatever.” It seems to help, but again, I feel like I’m avoiding thinking about it, and it wants to be heard, so maybe that’s why the physical symptoms came back. It’s like the anxiety is saying to me, “Oh no you don’t.. you can’t ignore me!” Man, do I sound crazy or what?

    I can’t wait to get Paul’s book. I’m sure a lot of what I am asking is right there. Hopefully it’ll be here soon. I know since I’m “across the pond,” it’ll take a bit.

    Just seems like if anxiety is just a run down body and mind, the body wouldn’t torture itself further, it would help you relax not wind you up further.

  317. Paul David Says:

    Sorry I have just had the time to pop on, Michelle and Sal I have as many orders abroad as I do from the U.K and I have your books here ready to go, delivery outside the U.K is usually 10/14 days, any problems whatsoever let me know.

    I only had time to scan through some posts, but the next post on Monday should answer a lot of questions. Candie stated earlier…..Paul felt nothing for ten whole years, he was way passed depressed- deeply depersonalised and feel no emotion. If someone can reverse the effects of that then i beleive with patience, acceptance and knowledge you can recover from any level of anxiety or depression.

    And she is totally correct I was bad if not worse than anyone I have helped since but I did come through and my life is richer now than ever before.

    I know exactly what got me to where I was and I know exactly what got me through. If I had a lot of symptoms because my mind was tired then it needed a break, that break did not come through worry and questioning how I felt everyday, it came from just letting go and however I felt I did, just go with the crazyness and not question it, I just gave in to it. If my nerves were sensitised the last thing they need was to be bombarded with worry and self pity, ‘Whats wrong with me’ , ‘Why me?’, ‘I will never get better’.

    When we feel bad our instinct is to ‘fix’ it and this is the cycle we need to break as when we try to fix it we never accept the way we feel, its like being drunk and trying to be sober, you can’t force it, only time will do it.

    When our mind needs a break, we bombard it with questions, when are nerves need a break we bombard them with worry and this is the very reason we stay in the cycle.

    Paul

  318. andrew Says:

    Hi everyone,

    I just had a bad anxiety attack. I was lying in bed reading a book and started noticing that my stomach was really bloated and my heart started to race. For some reason this time I wasn’t able to calm myself down and I got up and kept walking around to calm myself. Just hate this feeling. I hope I can sleep tonight. Feeling pretty bleh…

  319. john s Says:

    Hi guys, just a quick one. Im back at work and go to the gym and even played 6 aside last night. I didnt particulary enjoy it as i was still concious of my condition whilst playing but i was glad i went anyway. The thing that is bothering me a little is, even though im accepting my feelings of apprhension regarding going to the gym or work ect and the strong DP i still seem to focus on my condition. I can go a couple of minutes without thinking about it but it still reverts back. Im not fighting it and i just let it happen. The fact i never have an appetite is very frustrating aswell as im getting very skinny! Anyway that was it and any posts back would very appreciated
    Thanks

  320. Nicole Says:

    Hi there,
    I am coming out of the fog from that set back and Paul you are so right when you say that when you are having a bad day it feels like you will be like that forever. What helped me come out of this past one was a very brief moment when I was waking up and was startled to hear a snow plow drive by outside. When I realized what it was I dismissed that startled feeling quickly (like we all would do) and then I realized that must be what ‘not mattering’ feels like, when you feel a rush of anxiety you can dismiss it because you know it is just adrenlin etc., and get on with your day. It’s the constant instrospection and worrying that makes it and any other negative emotion feel worse and last longer.
    Scarlet I have know for a long time now that I have set-backs at a certain time of the month and have been taking Evening Primrose Oil which has helped me alot. Thanks for the info on the other supplement, I will look into it.
    Candie, I realize now that my fear of ‘hitting bottom’ is there because I worry about there being a place or feeling that I have yet to face or experience and there is a concern that I won’t have the tools to get out it.
    This is definitely one of my top concerns and I am working on allowing these thoughts but not reacting to them and living in the moment.
    Off to the ski hill with the family. It is frigid out there (-17) but at least the sun is shining! Have a great week-end everyone. Nicole

  321. Candie Says:

    Hey Andrew- trying to calm yourself down and worrying about sleeping later is fighting and tensing against symptoms. Let any come, if you try to ‘rid’ yourself of them your making an issue and making things worse. You dont have to like them, just give the feelings chance to wash over you and then see its not that bad- like the time Paul talks about in his book when he had one major panic attack. Had he tried to control it or calm himself, worrying over it etc- then he would of worried if it would come back and got into repetitive panic. We all slip into fighting how we feel occasionally, just give yourself chance to see there is no real threat- overwise you could live in fear of otherones as you never let it run its course and show you that ‘yea it feels not too good, but theres nothing to actually be frightened of’.

    Nicole great news, sound like your grasping things :) Learn not to fear future periods of fear or anxiety. A person without anxiety wouldnt sit threatening of possible outcomes of everyday, eg- will the be safe getting on a bus.

  322. Eva Says:

    Hey Candie

    Had a really rotten day today, a real feeling of uneasyness and sadness combined…its like a prolonged moment of suspense that I dodnt know what was going to happen i.e. whether I was going to be able to get through the day…weeks etc. I think it’s probably because I stayed in the house all day today and i should really have gone out, I guess boredom and anxiety really dont mix well. Having said that, going out seems like such an effort. Tomorrow I have horse riding at 10am so that will maybe help me, I will try and muster the strength to have a browse round the shops too…that way I will maybe feel better.

    Have you have days like the candie? I had this all over Christmas too. I do get it at work, but theres people and distractions there i guess. It’s the main one that i find hardest to give in to, and use the tools I’ve learnt…will keep practicing.

    Hope you and the baby are keeping happy and well!xx

  323. Shirley D Says:

    Hello Andrew,
    I can feel the desperation in your words, just reminds me so much of my own experience. Now looking back, the harder i fought everything the higher the tension. Can i ask? are you on your own? or do you have people around you? Do they know what you are going through? I just remember feeling so on my own even though i had people around me who knew what was going on. It was because i didn’t want to admit to people around me that i was out of control, that is what you are when you get these feelings and it is very difficult to get them under control. I was always fighting to get them under control and now looking back it just didn’t work.
    It’s only because i bought and read Paul’s book that i found the answer.
    And found this website.
    I was taken away for several very nice weekends in the height of my suffering and now feel really sad that they were overruled by my inner anxieties. Missing out on hotel breakfast because i had had hardly any sleep and my anxiety had risen to such a level that the horrid sick feeling would stay with me all day. It totally spoilt everything. I misssed out on such nice things.
    I will pass on to you – that if you let this get hold of you like a stranglehold to the neck it will continue to grip.
    Once you can get over that tallest hurdle, the setbacks will just become a nuisance, there are little setbacks on the road to recovery, bound to be.
    I just remember everything being such an urgency – making loads of appointments to go to the Doctors, making sure that i was in the front of the queue at the pharmacy to get my beta blockers, almost setting my alarm clock when i needed to take my next tablet, always counting them to see how many more days i had left and all this was feeding the habit – i was making myself a slave to the anxiety, instead of putting my prescription in the bag and delaying collecting it, it was top priority and whilst we make the anxiety top priority, it puts it on a pedestal, what we need to do is look down on it not up to it.
    You don’t have to change your attitude in a major way to get over the hurdle, just try to return yourself to your normal self.
    Which makes you feel better? Clenching your fists and curling your toes or relaxing in a lovely warm bath with lots of smelly stuff (i know you are a guy) but i am trying to set the scene. Relaxation is the key, relaxation into the feelings instead of clenching. I know how difficult it is not to clench but by God it takes a lot less effort to relax than it does to be tensed.
    It is quite a difficult thing to help someone through words but i hope that just knowing that i was suffering anxiety till i was almost crazy with it and am now very much returned to my old self will help you.
    Horrid whilst you are going through it i know, sometimes these things have to run their course before they get better but you can certainly help it on it’s way by letting the anxiety come, its far better than tensing against it.
    This is why we women are taught the art of breathing through the contractions when we are in labour, it gives us something to focus on and helps to relax you, labour pains come in waves too, they build up to a crescendo and then recede. much like the anxiety.

  324. Candie Says:

    Very true that Shirley- i was thinking about my labour actually, how much worse the pain would be if i was to fight it and make a monster out of it! So i decided im going to accept whatever is thrown at me, i cant change how im going to feel- but i can make the exprience less dreadful if i dont tense against it. Supose thats what you mean about anxiety!

    Eva- yes i do have days like that, they go away when you dont threat about them been there and soon pass. Im feeling well today thankyou, hope your feeling better soon. A bit of advice for you though :) and anyone else in a simlar boat. Whiles i know how you feel can feel awful, but you must take the brave decision to reassure yourself through these hard times and feel how you feel without expecting yourself to feel better. I decided a while back i would learn to reassure myself and gain confidence through recovering, so i stopped coming here for reassurance and instead came for the good advice and to post my victories and good experiences. A positive mental attitude really helps, i honestly mean this in the nicest way possible too- as i said this to lorry a few months back and shes been in a better place since. I’t is easy to want to come here and vent about how hard things are, hoping someone may say something to make things easier or help us understand- but everything you need to know is already written here or in the book! Look at some of my old posts and you will see how much of a transition i made adopting this new attitude. I would come on here and use the blog to explain away my anxiety, hoping someone would reply with something that helped me understand it- but whatever people tell you wont help unless you put into practice the good advice. I learnt the hard way, took me months to grasp that- which is why im telling you about how chnging my attitude really helped me. I found talking about how far i had come instead of focussing on how far i had to go helped, it also really helps to keep this place positive too. It helps other people to read victories and success, not to concentrate on what you havn’t acheived or how bad you feel. Hope you can make some sense of that, i do try my best to word things but as shirley says it can be hard to explain! Hope you enjoy your horse riding tomorrow- remember its ok to feel bad and its ok to think anxiously- its not ok to worry if you will be!

  325. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Eva,

    I agree with what Candie says about the reassurance. There comes a time when you are well enough recovered, and basically know all you need to know (everything is on the pages of this blog), you just need to be able to put it into practice, which takes time. Making a conscious decision not to ask for reassurance brings you nearer to recovery, and your confidence improves a lot, because are not having to rely on anyone but yourself for the answers. I remember when I decided not to ask for reassurance anymore (can’t even remember how it came about, but I just knew it was time) I then became the reassurer, instead of the one asking to be reassured, helped my self-esteem enormously. It’s a hard step, but one worth taking Eva, and you can do it as well hun, you are far enough recovered like Candie said, plus there’s some eye candy on the horizon..worth working a wee bit for 😉

  326. Scarlet Says:

    Ciao Sam,

    “Scarlet, i love the snow too but to shovel 30 cm ah no i hate it…ut amazing for sking…”

    We don’t have snow over here sadly, but I can’t ski anyway. We drove to Italy once (when I lived in Europe) and got stuck in the mountains in thick snow and had to stop at an Inn in the Austrian alps. In the morning we couldn’t see the car, it was under 6 feet of snow. We had to wait 3 days until the snow cleared enough to drive on to Italy… Had a lovely time though.

    “Ok here is where i am if someone could answer:
    I wake up in the morning with stomach cramps and then as the day goes by i feel better, the night time amazing…why are mornings so hard and sometimes i fel dizzy…”

    Your morning routine has become a habit that’s all Sam, and when you stop expecting it, it will disappear…

  327. Eva Says:

    Thanks girls…think you are right! I just get that desperate sometimes though…will take your advice and hope for the best. Scarlet…things are going well I think on the eye candy…and your last comment brought a smile to my face…I totally agree!! xxx

  328. Shirley D Says:

    Yes Candie, forgot to finish off there, should have also read ‘but thankgoodness it is all very short lived’ and the rewards magnificant.

  329. mike Says:

    hi everybody.
    just a quick note to john s. i remember my 1st game back after about 8 weeks worth of excuses about injuries to my team mates , manager and although feeling really bad on the pitch just accepted and got on. 8 weeks i avoided playing basically lying that i was injured. anxiety took over i guess, but im back in control now and i am 100% confident we can all get there with this wonderful site.
    have a great saturday night. off to have a few beers now. x

  330. mike Says:

    john. i lost 2 stone went to 10 stone and when my mates saw me they thought i had been very ill. soon put it back on with the relief that all i was suffering was a tired mind and nerves and not going crazy and mentally ill.

  331. Michelle Says:

    How to you get to the point where your physical symptoms don’t bother you? That’s what I am struggling with. I know I need to accept that I feel horrible, and I think I do accept it. But they still really bother me.

  332. andrew Says:

    Hi Shirley —

    Thanks so much for your honest and encouraging words. I live alone. Some of my friends and family know about my anxiety. But they don’t understand how crippling anxiety can affect someone. My anxiety all started several months ago, and since then I have gradually gotten better. I am definitely moving in the right direction, but still have some way to go. There are days when I feel like I have made it – like I am my old self again. But for some reason, my thoughts always manage to revert to thinking about “anxiety” and how it made me feel, which makes me wonder if I will ever recover. I hate the fact that there isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think about my anxiety… because each time I think about it it reminds me of how awful it made me feel. When these thoughts come to mind, I tense up and I feel the adrenaline rush through my body again.

    There are times when I will be reading a book or watching tv and for some reason my mind consciously or unconsciously will trigger my anxiety and my body involuntarily starts to react. My heart begins to race and my stomach knots up. It’s weird. I can’t quite explain. And I don’t know why it happens. But I try to face it head on. I am afraid of it. Last night after I finished posting my last post on here, I went back to reading and those terrible symptoms came at me again, but eventually disappeared. I felt really good.

    I am at the point in my recovery process where I don’t get the intrusive thoughts as much and they don’t trigger attacks anymore, which is really great. But I am still dealing with the physical symptoms. One of the problems that I have is that I associate almost every physical symptom with my anxiety. If my stomach begins to feel funny I automatically think about anxiety. If my head feels funny I think it’s the anxiety that did it. And I still wake up with palpitations. The palpitations aren’t as bad, but they are still there.

    When you are recovered, can you go through a day without thinking about anxiety? I just want to wake up and the first thing that comes to mind is not anxiety and go through even just one day without thinking about it. I really hope that is possible.

  333. andrew Says:

    Hi, Candie —

    I eventually calmed down. In the moment it was hard to think straight. I guess I can take this as another learning experience. Add it to the many other lessons I’ve accumulated through setbacks. Thanks for reminding me to not fight this horrible thing. =)

  334. Michelle Says:

    Andrew, you sound just like me. Even on my best days, I still always think about how horrible it was for me. I have never gone a day, even a great day, without thinking about it. I hate how it pops into my mind whenever it wants.

    I hope beyond hope that we will ALL find healing this year.

  335. Kashawn Says:

    Hey guys

    Paul thank you for your reassuring message. I have learned so much on this anxiety subject, i feel like i can teach a course:P haha

    I want to thank Scarlet and Candie and the rest for their awesome posts,,,its so encouraging to read what you guys have to say, support through this blog is sooo helpful.

    To John: when i had my anxiety attack in april 08 I also went to the ER. They told me it might be a heart issue so you can imagine the worrying thoughts that bombarded my already tired anxious mind for hours!!! Its cool to see a another nursing student on here,,,its a stressful profession but all the while worth it…we are helping people:) About my recovery, I had alot to learn man, I needed to read Paul’s info a couple of times to actually get it haha now i get it though. Keeping the mind busy is key, thinking outward is key. I wish you all the best, keep your head up and keep the faith , recovery is on its way!!!

    Kashawn.

  336. Candie Says:

    Hi Michelle,

    By trying to reach any stage of peace or less anxiety, you are forcing normal feelings and fighting. The good thing about Pauls method is you dont have to try do anything, and then everything falls into place and then the physical symptoms lose impact as you desensitize to them. There is no short cut, its a bumpy road and worth while eventually. By the sounds of it you still arn’t wanting to allow yourself to feel how you do- but you need to gradually learn to grasp this, as when you do- it doesnt feel that bad! I will give you an example, yesterday i was feeling good- now to me feeling good isn’t when you dont have any symptoms, but been able to be ok with them been there. I had a couple of cups of tea, and then i felt the effects of the caffeine (im sensitive to it)- now because i new it was just caffeine, i was able to goto bed- watch tv, with no panic regardless of the ringing in my ears, pounding heart beat and slight DP. When you accept you learn through experience and knowledge not to fear something, so you are ok to experience them and thats how you desensitize and they go away. Now i know my anxiety was braught on by the caffeine at that moment, but i still added not one bit of fear and it didn’t feel that bad- just a slight irretance. If i was to of got myself flustered, questions why its back- id of panicked and had no sleep then woke up today totally stressed about it, having obsessive thoughts and the feeling would of carried on into today, but as i had the right reaction and attitude it has gone and didnt scare me at all. Dont spend forever trying to figure out your symptoms, acceptance isnt about making them go away- its about changing your attitude and reaction which makes them less important and they go away anyway! Before anyone thinks ‘yes but you have grasped things i cant seem to’- i was just as bewildered as everyone else at first, didnt think i would ever understand how to live beside this- but i did, and everyone i know who has took on board what Paul writes about has grasped it too. Dont make the mistake of thinking you are suposed to feel or think a certain way, your not- you have anxiety, its fine to be like this- just dont go fuelling it and things will gradually subside.

    Andrew glad your feeling better, a setback will make you feel like your doomed forever- but infact these are the best times of your recovery, the times you have the biggest opportunity to acheive acceptance. You can not recover without a setback, as a setback is what makes you gradually come to terms with the worst of things. You will eventually see that although they make you feel crap, they dont feel quite as bad. Mine never overwhelm me anymore, just make me tired and low mood with average anxiety. Is all about coming through them and learning from them.

  337. Shirley D Says:

    Andrew,
    I know what you mean about the intensity of the anxiety, people think that you might just be agitated as in biting your fingernails, but if the body were transparent when anxiety hits, there would be light bulbs flashing in all directions, when you first see the scan of a baby the thing that stands out most (not gonna be rude here) is the heart beat, it is like a flashing light and that is the nerve centre of the body, that flashing light, when i had anxiety it was like a flight of a flock of birds heading out to different parts of the body and you don’t know what to deal with first. It can affect you from your very hair line to your toes.
    I never think of myself as anxiety free because certain situations can trigger off a bout – the only thing i can say is that it matters less and less and instead of a certain thought hanging around and torturing you for hours, it comes, you deal with it and then it passes. It is very hard to explain what i mean but at this moment in time my heart is having a good old banging session, i know that i am going to go out to my car and drive it 40 miles to visit my sister. I know that if i took the cowards way out and said i’m not going to do that today, the anxiety would have won and i would be kicking myself for taking the easy option and hiding away. You just learn to rise above it, you can’t give people predictions on how long it will all last for. I was lucky enough all the way through last summer and late spring not to have felt any effects of anxiety at all, but because I know that i have a divorce impending and an impossibly greedy ex husband that each time i receive a letter or notification from my solicitor that this is going to give me stress, but instead of all the ‘what if’s’ that used to race around in my head, i have now the attitude of ‘whatever’. So, yes, the anxiety can pop up but once you have got over that hurdle you handle it all differently. I used to get up some mornings and expect anxiety to be lurking around the corner and then when it wasn’t there it was really weird, but you get more and more days like this and then that is the start of your road to recovery.
    So yes it is possible to have days even weeks where you are anxiety free and then as time goes on probably months.
    If you could have seen me this time last year you would never have beleived that i am that same person.

  338. Paul David Says:

    Hi Johns here you say

    Hi guys, just a quick one. Im back at work and go to the gym and even played 6 aside last night. I didnt particulary enjoy it as i was still concious of my condition whilst playing but i was glad i went anyway. The thing that is bothering me a little is, even though im accepting my feelings of apprhension regarding going to the gym or work ect and the strong DP i still seem to focus on my condition. I can go a couple of minutes without thinking about it but it still reverts back. Im not fighting it and i just let it happen. The fact i never have an appetite is very frustrating aswell as im getting very skinny! Anyway that was it and any posts back would very appreciated
    Thanks

    John this is something I went through and I did give an explanation before but you may not have been around at that time. Allowing yourself to feel the way you do without worrying, fighting, questioning, obsessing is what will get you home, but don’t fall into the trap of thinking ‘Well I have and I still feel awful at times’ you will as you still have a tired mind and tired nerves, but for once you have given your mind and body a break, you have given up the daily battle with yourself. Now as I said before and it was something I had to work out for myself and it worked. Our attention will keep reverting back to us as this is our habit, its like singing a song for months on end, its our habit to think this way and we will keep reverting back to ourselves. But its just another thing just to accept, shrug your shoulders at, just go with it, realise it is just a habit and the less you bother that the attention is on yourself the less it will be, its a habit that dies in time. It wont die if you think ‘Why do I feel like this’ , ‘Why can’t I stop thinking about the way I feel’ . ‘I must be doing something wrong’ Do you see how you have fallen back into fight mode, a need to feel right and again your attention is on you and how you are feeling and the cycle continues. John trust me its just a habit that goes in time, just don’t get frustrated that the attention reverts back to you, it does pass when you pay let it be and pay it little respect.

    Hope that helps

    Paul

  339. Sam Says:

    Hey everyone,

    John look i gt om good days and bad, sometimes the days are split in half good and bad…but like everyone says if we pay attention to the bad it stays longer with us an trust me i over analize my symptoms sometimes and thats no good…my problem sometims is that i wan this anxiety to go away for ever and when its there i ge upset at my self…the habit i have is that in he morning i wake up and see how i feel which is wrong…but i still go on with my day…

    Keep the faith
    Sam

  340. john s Says:

    Thanks for the posts back. I understand what you guys are saying. I have been getting annoyed at myself for a long time because i cant stop reverting back to me and i realise that im fighting. Let it happen. It does no harm and dont give it respect. Thanks alot you guys

  341. andrew Says:

    Hi Candie & Shirley —

    I am still learning to accept my feelings and stop reverting back to myself. Last night I woke up with palpitations again and had a slight panic attack. I ended up worrying and reverting back to thinking about why this and why that? which didn’t help trying to fall back to sleep. I feel as though if I didn’t have the palpitations upon waking up I would be so much better, but I can’t figure out why my heart beats fast when I wake up in the middle of the night.

    I hope the palpitations will resolve soon. Thanks again for sharing with me your journey and encouragement.

  342. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Michelle,

    “I often feel spacey too, like there’s something chemical going on in my head, even if I have no other symptoms. That’s why I often wonder if I do have a chemical imbalance of some sorts, and this isn’t a mental thing after all. ”

    Michelle I felt spacey right up until I recovered, it’s anxiety making your brain tired with all the thinking that’s all..not a chemical imbalance. It goes as you recover and stop analysing your thoughts. I never feel spacey as such nowadays, cept when I’ve had a few glasses of wine, then it’s a similar effect 😉

    “Sometimes my face feels like I’ve cried hard for several hours, even though I haven’t. I have been to the doc for this.. had MRI and all, everything is normal, so that’s a good thing! They thought it was either trigeminal neuralgia or MS. Both came back negative!”

    I also had this feeling, my eyes always felt heavy and I felt an underlying feeling of unwellness, although I couldn’t really put my finger on it, it was quite vague…

    “To those of you with children.. do you find this horrible anxiety harder on you because you have the kids? I feel like I have lost a lot of precious time with them because I wasn’t free to totally “be present” with them. I had been so self-absorbed. I haven’t stopped doing things with them, I still do everything “I used to do” but I’m not the relaxed, easy-going, fun-loving mom I used to be, and that makes me so sad.”

    I had ‘Antenatal’ and ‘Post Natal depression and anxiety’ and missed the first 2 years of my babys life really, like I was walking around in a dream most of the time, preoccupied with myself and my own thoughts, doing everything on auto piilot, so yes I know what you mean totally, but I don’t feel guilty these days becasue I did the best I could at the time.. I have made up for it since mind you, I spend lots of time with my kids, and cherish every moment I have with them…. you will be the same when you recover… just remember to carry on as best you can, do all the things a mum does, but do it with the inappropriate emotions anxiety places upon you, and you will notice that the appropriate ones take their place slowly but surely.

    “Do you think any of us anxiety sufferers can also suffer from PTSD from the really hard days of anxiety? Sometimes I think because the memory of me when I was at my worst is still so raw, the memory can sometimes drive me back. I wish I could stop myself from remembering how horrible and dark those days were. The more I think of it, the more anxiety I feel. ”

    I have met a few people suffering from PTSD, and the symptoms are very similar, only they have suffered something very traumatic that has made them anxious in the first place, which they can’t forget. One of my husbands familys relatives was a political prisoner in the ME, she was tortured and she still suffers, becasue she can’t get rid of the memory from her mind. Memories of a time when we are particulary bad with anxiety are not the same really, although they can feel the same, and you will get over these painful days as you recover.

    “Sometimes I feel like I’m just one breath away from being “that bad” again. I think that if my pregnancy could put me over the edge, when it’s supposed to be the happiest time… what if something really wrong happened? It makes me feel like I’m mentally weak.”

    I had antenatal depression as well, and lived on the edge for a long time, thinking I was one breath away from a breakdown again… but as you recover you become stronger, and to be honest pregnancy is a pretty anxious time in a woman’s life anyway.. the majority of anxiety/depression cases in women are seen during pregnancy or post partum (up to 30% suffer to some degree)… You most definitely are not mentally weak, and when you come through the other end, you will see true strength.

  343. Shirley D Says:

    Andrew,
    I’m back safe and sound from my sisters.
    I suffered badly with panic attacks when i was 18, dumped a boyfriend and got better! Ha Ha.
    Then i suffered for three years with panic attacks when my first husband told me he was leaving me! Once he’d left ,they left me. I have had both panic attacks (with a gap of 12 years) before the onset of the anxiety.
    Do you have a radio/cd player in your bedroom? I found having one on really low just to give you a feeling of someone else in the room helped, it stops that horrid silence that seems to surround you when an attack starts.
    i think that we are conditioned to think that night should be silent but if you feel comfort hearing another sound it helps you to steer away from that dreaded silence.
    I also feel that the weekend should be the time that you should feel better, don’t beat yourself up if you don’t.
    a lot of my problem was guilt, guilt that i had let myself down with my parents because i’d left my second marriage, guilt that i had left that marriage for my former first ever love. Even through my most horrible time i had strong times too.

  344. Stephen Says:

    Hi Scarlet

    Just got a question that has been on my mind for a while now, i know that people with anxiety often thinkg too deeply about very normal and appropriate feelings to make them feel weird and different…is this true? and my second part to that question was how do you know when your avoiding doing something because you just dont want to/do have an interest in it or because of the anxiety? This has been a little hard as i was ment to go overseas again at the end of the year with friends but have had thoughts that it doesnt really interest me a whole lot at the moment what they want to do (just because i’ve never been terribly into it) and i might want to spend the money else where…i’m not really sure if its the anxiety or me just thinking about how to spend my money wisely and to satisfy me the most.

    I just dont want to be avoiding anything i shouldnt be to help my recovery. Hating january at the moment!! grrr just the usual stuff with everyone coming off holidays and going back to work..never understand how the best and worse month sit side by side haha.

    Stephen

  345. Sam Says:

    Hey Scarlet,

    I have a question:

    The thing the is very hard at the moment is that my stomach cramps are very hard to accept and handle…i started to read IBS and got thinking that i might have that…but i strongly believe that its anxiety…for me this is the hardest hurdle….Scarlet while u were going through anxiety was the stomach pains hard to handle..+ The doctor did blood work and i think he would of found out if i had IBS unless he was not looking for it???

    Thanks
    Sam

  346. andrew Says:

    Hi Shirley,

    I am glad you got home safely and that your life is back together again for the most part. I can’t imagine all the things you went through, but I can honestly say that it has made you a stronger person. For me anxiety is still new to me. I am still trying to understand it. I am so impatient when it comes to anxiety. I just want it to go away now. During the day, I can handle my symptoms and get through okay because there are things going on that distract me. But at night it seems as if all the anxiety come at me and I can’t get them out of my mind. I will try playing music and see if that helps. Life’s a struggle, but I guess that’s how we grow and mature.

  347. Shirley D Says:

    Andrew,
    I was exactly like you, “please make it all go away” those words came out of my mouth so many times.
    If you have time, can i suggest that you read not only the blogs but all of the other information pages which Paul put together.
    The printer was going non stop when i first read them so that i could keep them close by. There is so much good information in those too.
    I can’t talk you better – somehow the strength came out in me to help me get on my way.
    But i do know that whilst i was using the “go away” words, it was a form of fighting and fighting doesn’t work.
    As time goes on you will see more and more new names join this site, and you will look at their posts and think ‘yes, that was me once’.
    My anxiety was 24/7, so already you are showing great signs of improvement if it just bothers you at night, but night is the lonliest and longest time – even when you have a partner by your side. it is your own silent world of demons.
    Today i have been really bad and i have phoned in sick. Now i feel so guilty that i really am not feeling bad enough to have taken myself off to bed – but i did, i was so tired from lack of sleep last night and i really could have gone to work, just a little blip and i will make sure that i push myself in tomorrow because again i have allowed the slight anxiety to dictate to me instead of me throttling it.

  348. sasha Says:

    anyone could give me some advices and assurances….

    its really sad that people like me who once were so effecient in doing things and good at communicating with others have been effected badly by anxiety that it really keeps me aloof from all the things i enjoy because i fear that i wont be able to communicate properly and i dont get to feel the emotions or good feelings. i am trying to do all the things paul said..just paying no attention to the ‘feelings’ but its hard to let go especially when you are outside. Paul had helped me come this far.still need to make improvements

    i just want one peice of advice regarding how to speak without being another person listening to what i say and inturn not being able to interpret what the other person is saying or the mood prevailing hence making me a person who doesnt know what to speak and when.sometimes i dont feel anything when i say certain things which you will feel normally.i just need an assurance that people suffering from anxiety can lead normal lives and be back to normal in due course..that itself will give me some courage and positivity because this is all anxiety playing its tricks on the mind.is there anyone in here who got completely recovered by this disastrous thing.!!

    i feel so embarrased to speak. hence i lost my self esteem and confidence too..please help .this is my only problem..and when i try to think of some events or happenings i just cant do that so no thoughts as well.sounds foolish but please help

  349. Shirley D Says:

    Ok Sasha,
    Just you and me, we seem to have lost everybody to the next blog!

    I had severe anxiety for six months, worst experience ever. Reading what other people wrote I realise that i didn’t have a lot of the symptoms that they had, don’t think i could have coped with anymore anyway.
    The answer is yes, you can fully recover – i am living testament, i still listen to myself speak sometimes and wonder what i am saying but i just laugh at myself and think well if they didn’t understand that, tough!
    It is a vicious circle, you lose confidence and self esteem and so you are in your shell. You need to regain that confidence.
    The more you dwell on the looking for recovery – the longer it takes because you are still letting the anxiety win by paying it attention.
    anxiety does play tricks on the mind and whilst you are listening to it, it’s got your attention and so will continue to play you up.
    Yes, there can be days when things don’t go smoothly – even for me but if you have a little blip then the intensity isn’t there and the feelings disapear as fast as what they came, as long as you don’t dwell on them or question them.
    I was Secretary to a Carnival committe for eight years, doing all the organising and communicating and really put my all into it, and everyone came to me with their questions. at the height of my anxiety i always had such a black mood and quivering tummy.
    But, today, i would gladly get back to an organising role. my confidence went and has come back. Anxiety is only temporary and you must treat it as such.

  350. sasha Says:

    Thanks a lot Shirley!!!

    it just made me feel good when you said you came back all the way to ur normal self…even i am just waiting for that. but did you get into situations where in you cannot converse anymore because your concentrating on yourself . you cannot understand the non verbal communication and stuff..? because i was good at it before .At least that will give me a hope i too can recover.i think people who are soft and sensitive gets effected by things or people around them. they are so concerned about whats happening around them. So self conscious.i have been suffering from this since 10 months.it was severe for 6 months, now it has reduced.but subconsciously when i meet people some inner voice says it all and spoil the real me. ..anyways thanks shirley for ur piece of advice. Even i want to do lots of things in my life.but people around me doesnt know what i am going through and hence they complain that i dont interact much, dont keep in touch .i am always serious and uptight .and it hurts when you know its not purposeful or intentional but something is holding you back and normally people dont understand why we feel this way..anyways thanks shirley.would love to ask you in future for tips because when i tell this people around me they think im exaggarating things!!

  351. Shirley D Says:

    Sasha,
    I went through a time of just soleley concentrating on myself, didn’t know what day it was, didn’t want to speak to people on the phone, it was always doom and gloom when i did because my only thoughts were the anxiety and what it would be doing to me.
    I would talk to anybody and everybody about it, but it was never in a calm way, i was like a gattlin gun, running faster and faster in both mind and body and verbally.
    You are right, it does seem to happen to people who are soft and sensitive the majrity of the time, i was always wanting to please others and when it cam to me pleasing myself for once, it all went wrong and i ended up in an anxiety state, een though it had taken a great deal of courage on my part to end my second marriage and i paid for it big time.
    I used to have an inner voice that would tell me to stop laughing or smiling because i had anxiety and you don’t do that when you have anxiety, when the laughter started to win through it gave me confidence because then i knew that i was coming out on the other side – then there were longer spells of laughing and smiling and then the anxiety lessened. It doesn’t just shut off overnight it has to be worked at – as in ignoring the nasty anxiety and allowing the nice smiles.
    don’t hide your condition, tell people about it, if you can’t talk about it it makes it worse, if not close friends, keep coming on here and talking to the people who know what it’s like.
    As for tips, there really aren’t any. You have to find what works for you but you must not dwell on the things that make you feel bad. this only quadruples the problems.

  352. sasha Says:

    thanks shirley.are you a regular visitor here?

    Even i feel better speaking about it..but you know people around me including my loved ones gets bugged listening to me and i feel sorry for myself and i cant blame them as well.

    so as u said need to concentrate on what makes me feel good at the end of the day. trying to please others and ending up like this is saddening because its only us who suffer .

    i have hope in me that i will be back to my confident self dont know how long it will take.the urge to feel better is so much that it puts pressure on me…but anyways hoping for the best to happen in my life after months of suffering without any reason. but just being nice and good to other people all the time had put on a lot of strain in me…its time i take care of my inner self..

  353. sasha Says:

    thanks shirley.ru a regular visitor here?

    even i feel better talking to other people but then people around me including my loved ones gets bugged and i feel sorry for myself and i cant blame them.

    trying to please others and ending up with this dreadful thing is saddening.being good and nice to others all the time had taken its toll in my life its time i take care of my innerself.hoping for the best to happen in my life after months of suffering which other people cant understand and they expect a lot from u. i know i will be bak to my confident self but dont know how long it will take.

    as u said it better to engage doing things that we enjoy.hope i’ll get over it in due course..

  354. Shirley D Says:

    Sasha,
    Not sure how to delete things – have to ask Candie.

    Yes, when i was at the height of my anxiety i was on here every day, in fact the page was never off my computer but then when i got better i necver came on here for probably six months, but i went a bit low over christmas and needed to be in contact again.
    Which Country are you from? England or across seas?
    Shirley

    Edited: Just to let you both know that you can’t remove your own posts- maybe there was an error on the page or something. Only me and Paul can moderate and delete posts, although we only ever do this if they endorse other products or sites, or if its talk that doesn’t coinside with Pauls method of recovery- which is rare. :) Candie

  355. Shirley D Says:

    Nice little smiley there Candie!

  356. sasha Says:

    hi candie,
    just wanted to know because i could not find my post so i thought it got deleted.it would be great if people who got better and recovered could publish their stories in here which will give more faith in people who is waiting to hear something positive.

    hi Paul candie & shirley,
    I am far across the seas but i was there for quite some time and loved the place. you know what though m practising whatever paul is saying that total freedom..which he said..i wonder if i’ll ever be able to enjoy, without any strings attatched!!!
    because whenever i feel happy all of a sudden it comes with a bang and reminds me of this thing…and phew…gone!! all the enthusiasm…and suddenly i start feeling nervous and start monitoring for no reason and i’ll say to myself hey leave it dont care give ur attention to whats outside and unknowingly its chaos or freeze..
    so it blackmails me in a way to be happy.i am always under the fear of wat ifs and its so hard to ignore.
    then i started practising of let go but each time its happening its a process …i dont know im messed up…and i dont remember to do things which i should which is obvious a mind preoccupied by anxious thoughts can never perform well …not even in doing their daily chores.
    Paul…i feel its all in the mind..how about CBT or psychotherapies where in the root problem is removed by going to our sub conscious mind and telling it you have no such problem its just a creation of mind just a blip…will it do any good because its the fixed thoughts in the mind that has become a habit and keeps reminding you of this..what do you hav to say?just curious…

  357. sasha Says:

    Hi
    people who have no one to turn to as the rest of the people dont understand how we ‘feel’ ..this is a great place to share your feelings and thoughts and worries and go back with some relief motivation and positivity….God bless all those who suffer from this to recover…

  358. Paul David Says:

    Sash I will get back to the above later, but can you please refrain from using text talk as I have to go through all your past posts and moderate them as it makes it very hard to read for others and the search engines will penalise me for it.

    Thanks Paul

  359. sasha Says:

    Have i used so many short forms? Sorry Paul….i was in a hurry to put all my thoughts into words …i shall be careful next time and try to avoid it.

  360. Eva Says:

    Hi Candie, Scarlet & HB!

    Hope you are all well!! This blog certainly seems to be really busy these days, which is really good…well done Paul, your post obviously hit the mark with everyone! I just thought I’d post some positive things on my recovery…feeling quite a difference in my every day recovery now which is great, all thanks to everyones advice. As usual the girls were totally right in that i wasnt quite accepting how I felt and kept challenging it, subconciously. Things are really on the up I think, my appetite is back at full force…which for once I’m glad of haha! i’ve had two weeks in a row where I’ve enjoyed my horse riding so much more, I’ve started playing badminton for 2hours of so every week – I actually feel I have the energy to do this which is great. Sleeping is alot better and I’m making sure I socialise alot more, going to the pictures, visiting friends etc. I’m a wee bit annoyed at myself as I turned down 4wks work in Dubai next month, due to how I’m feeling (plus we have a really busy workload)…avoidance I know, but I quickly got over that because I know my body well enough and at this stage it may have set me back a little and I dont want to let my work down. The opportunity will happen again with work though, so something to look forward to!!

    Anyway, just wnted to say thanks for all the advice I received and I will keep going with what i’m doing – it’s strange how suddenly I feel what I’m doing is right, I think Paul mentions that in his book, how even through setbacks he still felt that what he was doing was the correct thing and that kept him going. The way i look at it is that ok I’m still not fully recovered and I have horrid thoughts every day, but my reaction to them has changed. Like a habit, it wont change over night and I’m willing to accept that.

    Happy Days to all

    evax

  361. David Says:

    Hello David

    I have suffered from anxiety for as long as I could remember
    and have read many different schools of therapy trying too work out what I had and why I had it. I read your book and in front of me was the reason and the answers and I thank you for that. As you know anxiety is a very lonely place to be and I’m asking do you run workshops or know of any groups of sufferers who meet or would like too meet.

    I look forward to your reply

    Thank you again
    David H

    I am so keen to keep moving on with my recovery

  362. Colleen Says:

    David,

    I have suffered from anxiety since I was 18 years old – I am now 31. Every few years I experience a long period (1 to 3 months) of anxiety filled days. Every day is in complete panic mode. I recently have given birth to a beautiful baby boy (7 weeks old). The birth was brutal and my first child so I was not sure what to expect and what I went through was a complete shock. I have been told that I have developed post traumatic stress syndrom from the birth, plus have post partum depression and three days after I got home with him the horrible anxiety set in! I came across your book and have found new hope and a totally new approach to handling this “beast”. One thing that I did not notice in your book is any reference to why we associate anxiety with certain situations and certain objects. I unfortunately have linked my anxiety feelings towards my new son and it is breaking my heart. I get paniced when I have to pick him up feed him or change his diaper. I know that this is just a nasty trick my brain is trying to play on me, but then the guilt circle starts and the thoughts “You’re not going to be able to love him right” – You’re never going to be able to handle him without linking some kind of anxiety to him…etc. etc. Why does this happen? I was told by a therapist that this is because anxiety or what I like to call the “beast” likes to attack what is near and dearest to our hearts. If you have any suggestions or helpful info to break this torment, I would be more than greatful. It seems to be what is fueling my anxiety the worst! I love your book and it is wonderful to see anxiety spoken through the eyes of someone who totally understands what I am experiencing. It makes me feel normal for once.

    I look forward to hearing from you.

    Thank you so much for your efforts and devotion you have put into helping so many strangers!

    Colleen, CA

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