Moving forward with anxiety

Hi Everyone, Well just a couple of things before I start. If anyone has been waiting for my book for a while now I am so sorry for the delay. I was let down by the printers on delivery and then the snow came last week and I was unable to get to the post office. All books have now gone, so again if anyone has been waiting I apologise.

Secondly I am going to stick to a post at the start of each month. I never want to just write for the sake of writing, I always want something to say that I think will help. Also I don’t think bombarding people with information helps anyway, its good to have some time outs.

O.k on to todays post.

A lady got in touch with me last week who I knew from a couple of years ago. She sent me a lovely email saying how well she was doing and now realised what really held her back in the old days, and this was that she realised she wanted to get better before she lived her life and not go out and live it while she had anxiety.

The point is she was right.

The whole point of this post today is to stop seeing anxiety as the enemy, don’t wait or demand to feel well before doing something you want to do. There was someone who posted on here recently called Trey who said he had just about recovered and in his own words.

I finally “got it” and realized what everyone has been saying and I let everything go. I did what ever a normal person would do who didnt have anxiety I travelled, hung out with friends ,anything no matter how bad I felt. I do feel normal again after years of anxiety and dp.

What he has done is go towards his feelings of dread and not let them stop him living his life, not only that but he kept faith that this would work in the long run. Too many think ‘Well I have been there today and I still feel bad, I just need to get rid of these damn feelings, that’s the only way I can get on with my life again’. The trouble is, this is why so many stay in a cycle, anxiety will always be the enemy if you spend your time trying to get rid of it, as it always has your fear and respect to feed on. Let me show you how the anxiety loop works in many cases.

Feel awful – spend all day trying to rid yourself of these symptoms- feel awful – worry about how long this will go on – feel awful – avoidence – feel awful – feel a failure – feel awful -get frustrated – feel awful – fight – feel awful – again start to google – stay bewildered.

The way to break this loop is to not see anxiety as the enemy and truly allow yourself to feel this way.

So then it goes

Feel awful – nothing, there is no avoidence as you are going everywhere at will – pride that you did not let anxiety rule your life – there is no going round in circles trying to rid yourself of the way you feel as you have allowed yourself to feel anything – there is no worry as you no longer care how you feel – the anxiety loop is begining to break here. You have done nothing to keep your anxiety going, you may still feel symptoms and that’s fine, but there has been a lack of worry and fear added to the mix. If it there was an anxiety shop and someone came in and said ‘I have anxiety mate, not sure why but it has been there a few years now, how come?’

I would say

‘Do you worry about it?’

‘Well yes I do, I want it to go away’

‘Do you go towards or try to avoid these feelings? ‘

Well I mainly avoid them as I don’t want to feel them’

Do you try and figure a way out of this or just get on with your day?’

Well I try and figure a way out, its tiring and I do go around in circles, but I have to get rid of these feelings don’t I?’

Have you ever thought about allowing yourself to feel like this, good or bad, this will stop the worry cycle, the tuning in, the fighting to ‘rid’ yourself, in fact it will break up this loop you are stuck in’

‘Actually no I have never thought of doing that’

‘Well you should as this is why its been around for a few years, you have been stuck in a loop of trying to not feel this way’.

This is the day a light went on for me, I have tried so hard to get rid of the way I feel and worry about it and the only result is to feel worse, why don’t I just give up and allow myself to feel this way. I need to do what someone would do, who did not suffer anxiety. The average guy in the street is not going around worrying all day, if he did he would feel awful and drained, no wonder I feel the way I do and seem to be getting worse not better, my body is just not having the chance to recover.

Never have the attitude of ‘I am not going out, I feel awful, what I need to do is get rid of these feelings then I will have my life back’ The only way to have that life back is to totally ’embrace’ how you feel and feel every symptom at will.

I felt awful for weeks into my own recovery, but I had for once broken the loop. Don’t get me wrong I had some testing days. I remember going out to a quiz each week and sitting there feeling dreadful and just wanting to go home. I would feel apprehensive at times and nearly go home, but I never did. I knew this was anxiety testing me. The total KEY point for me that night, was the point where I wanted to go home. That was the point when I just bought another drink and strayed, anxiety had lost my respect, I had said ‘Do what you want, I no longer care, I am in charge from now on’. In time I actually loved it trying to test me, It was ‘Yes we have been here before and I always win, I am staying, so do whatever you want’. Before this, at the first point of feeling uncomfortable I would go home, feel sorry for myself, try and mentally find a way out of this hell, when ironically I had just left the very place that would have helped me move forward. Instead I had given my feelings loads of respect, run away from how I felt and anxiety had won again.

I knew to get through I had to not care if I felt anxiety or not and this is the point I got to, by not avoiding and running away I had unmasked it as just a feeling, my body no longer had apprehension about going anywhere, my nerves had settled as I had not bombarded them with worry and self pity. My mind had began to clear without the daily onslaught it used to get. My confidence had come back, I had proved I could do anything and that I was in charge and not my anxiety. I was begining to take charge again and the old me was returning, by living like the avearge man in the street, I was begining to become the average man in the street, I was getting my life back.

I hope that helps people to understand a little more and I do try to add my own real life situations, as I think people can relate in this way more than just writing down information.

Also thanks for everyone who has sponsored me on the post below, I am up to over £200 now and its all down to the generous people who have sponsored me. I have also decided to not drink until after the event in April as I do need to lose a stone or more before the race and be totally primed by the time it comes around.

Paul

For more help with anxiety visit www.anxietynomore.co.uk

For more information about my book ‘At last a life’ visit

www.anxietynomore.co.uk/the_book.html

358 Responses to “Moving forward with anxiety”

  1. Mazza Says:

    Hi Paul
    What a superb post. I can relate exactly to what you are saying about staying in the anxiety loop. For some reason today, I’ve been doing just that, feel anxious, worry about why, try and find a solution and end up googling. Not a good idea. I think the thing with me is when I feel anxious, I find it hard to accept, and my thoughts seem to take over. For example, I start to think something must be wrong with me, I’ve got a bit of a cough at the moment and I’m a smoker, so I start thinking I might have something wrong with my lungs or chest,then I start to remember what a doctor told me a long time ago about smoking and empysema, and I think maybe I have that. What do I do then, have a cigarette, then I worry because I smoked. These thoughts go round and round in my head, I get more anxious and then I google all the symptoms of lung cancer etc and scare myself silly. I am trying to stop smoking but when I feel like this I smoke more.
    Your post makes so much sense and on days when I’m feeling positive, I can shake them off,and get on with my day, but days like today, I think I’m gonna be like this forever and that’s a very depressive thought.
    I’m sorry for rambling, but I seem to get myself in such a negative loop and I know what to do, but can’t seem to do it, if that makes sense. I’ve read other posters on here who make so much sense, like when they say live for the now, don’t worry about the future, and when I do that, I do feel so much better, but I can’t seem to keep it up.
    Thanks once again for this blog, it’s a real life saver
    Mazza

  2. lisa Says:

    a nice post at the right time paul. my feeling just seems to want to stay now, but i dont avoid anything, i go anywhere do anything, but i still think well if this goes il enjoy things more, or il wait til this goes if that makes sense. me and candie are on the same recovery path now of accepting which is our last hurdle, but its a buggar but together we know its our final bit. hehe :-) hope everyone else is doing well x

  3. Tracy Says:

    I read this post at the right time also. I had been doing great for about 3 weeks after reading your blog about obsessive thoughts, then me and my boyfriend got into an argument a couple days ago and my anxious thoughts came back. I get really frusturated when I get these thoughts because I know they are not me and I feel like they will never go away when I’m in the moment. but after reading this blog you posted today it makes complete sense. Thank you so much for creating this blog and your website it is truly helping me to the road of recovery!

  4. Michelle Says:

    Good timing Paul. I had been doing better the past few weeks, and haven’t been on much, but the past couple of days they physical things started kicking in out of the blue… More tingling in my forehead and “cold flashes” down my legs. Not sure why, as I don’t have any of the mental anxiety. So I started thinking, “Geez, will I ever be rid of this?” Then I quickly reminded myself last week I was fine, and this too will pass. I stopped my urge to feel sorry for myself dead in its tracks, and am hoping this bump in the road will pass quickly.
    I do thank all of you for giving me a place to go for some reassurance.

    And Candie.. I have read the past few weeks’ posts– Congratulations on your boy! My vote is for Jacob.

  5. Michelle Says:

    Oh.. and I should mention, I saw my psych today, and am going to wean off the Remeron starting tonight. Wish me luck!

  6. Sam Says:

    Hey Paul,
    amazing post, really helps at the moment. like you said in your post, i have been doing everything like the old days and not thinking of the anxiety. I stopped saying that i will do something when i get better, i am better and will get better sooner if i dont avoid normal everyday tasks. I am the boss, i make the rules.

    This site and blog as really helped me through my recovery. Paul, Scarlet and
    Candie, all of you please try and continue to give us the best advice and reassurance we need. All you people do is make us stronger..

    Paul, i am happy and waiting for your book to finally come and dont worry, some things are out of our control…

    Thanks
    Sam

  7. John S Says:

    Hi, i can relate to your posts Paul and understand the the concept of accepting. However, i am having two really bad days after a few weeks of gradual progress. I feel really down and almost like I am back at square 1. I know you say this is probably just a set back but it feels really strong. Even though the messge is accept and allow which I think I am doing my thoughts are then saying ‘am i really accepting’, ‘why cant i just get on with my day and stop thinking about it’. Should I just accept these thoughts aswell. The temptation to not get out of bed this morning was very strong but i have done and im at uni at the moment and Im gonna force myself to to the gym in abit aswell. Im just miffed that some symptoms seem to be stronger today and yesterday (weak appetite, blurry vision and feel quite sensitive and irritable to people talking to me). It all seemed easier last week? My girlfriend can tell when Im struggling because she says Im less giggly than I have been of late but the book says not to force emotions and try and be something your not. Im trying not to be depressed about being depressed if that makes sense but then I question that. I still have faith deep down because of the progress i made before this week but struggling today. Jesus, there is alot of analysing in this post!!!! Sincere apologies
    John S

  8. Candie Says:

    Hi John

    Your mistake is that you assume you have done something wrong and caused your setback- but even if you did you cant change it, its here now. The key is not to expect yourself to feel good like the week before, just go with how you feel and remember- this is habit, and you have to face the anxiety that caused this habit so the setback is a perfect opportunity. You feel like this now, so embrace it- by that i mean you dont have to like it, but dont think you should feel better or try make it go away. If you dont feel like going gym, think to yourself- ‘Yes i dont feel like going to the gym, but im going to go and teach my anxiety that i can go and it can be right there beside me’. Each time you do this your enforcing in your mind that anxiety is only as terrible and poweful as you let it be- remember its only ever as bad as you decide to perceive it. The more you live beside it the more your habits will be undone, i used to hate going anywhere if i felt anxious- avoided it for a while and it dominated my life. Now through going against the anxiety i learnt my mind and body not to care about situations. I can go anywhere and not feel automatically anxious, infact going out when i do feel anxious generally makes me feel better as i forget about it. But i had to take that anxious feeling everywhere with me for a while before i could do this, so dont feel your doing something wrong if it still hovers for a while.

  9. John S Says:

    Thanks Candie, its as if the knowledge is there yet Im not implementing it this week! Im going to keep doing everything and not stay in. Sometimes i feel I try to hard like last week I did not stay in one evening and went into uni every night even if I didn’t do any work and messed around on the net.
    Im actually quite emotional (teary) at little things at the moment. I watched the end of Last of the Mohicans and found myself welling up! I couldn’t believe it. It was almost nice tho, like I am experiencing an emotion if that makes sense. Im reading Clare Weekes book right now and she explains everyhting so well, just like Paul does. Im going to ride this setback out. Whatever!!!!

  10. Jude Says:

    Hi
    I just had to respond to that post too Paul. It was excellent. Here I am googling, for that very reason, having had a bit of a wobbly day today. I am going through a patch of anxiety again at the moment, all the symptoms, you name it – loss of appetite, then worrying why, then appetite does naturally creep back, then been getting hyperventilation feelings over past few days and ‘noticing’ my breathing. Then this morning as leaving for work I felt my heart fluttering and was getting palpitations, quite badly.
    Now there was my moment. i could easily have gone back indoors and not set off for work. I truly knew that I had to persevere and fortunately know enough about myself and symptoms of anxiety to intellectually know that this is all it was, but if i had been less familiar with anxiety could easily have got freaked out by my fluttery heart. So, I still drove off and most of the way driving I was thinking ‘shall I go back, I could go back, this feels quite far from home’ etc etc, but didn’t. Got to my appointment (i visit people at home) and even before I went in I was hearing myself say ‘I want to go I can’t do this’, but I focused on the calmer voice of reason somewhere inside (it is always there) and said ‘yes I can do this. It is only anxiety’ and went on in, and once I was focusing outside myself and talking to the other person it did ebb away. I really did feel dp when I first walked in as well!
    Then the rest of the day I have been kind of fighting off negative thoughts and ‘oh God I wish I didn’t get anxiety’ thoughts, which of course make us feel bad about ourselves etc, and there I was sitting at home and wondering how to get out of going to a craft group that I go to this evening, and I was feeling exactly that ‘if I could just chill out I will wait until I feel better to go back’ and then I thought I would check the site and hey presto!
    you have made my mind up for me, I will go tonight, in spite of how I feel. I actually feel really knackered as anxiety days are exhausting, but reminders like this are just so appropriate and absolutely hit the spot. It’s so comforting. I think I am starting to get the gist now, although I have struggled on and off for years. It’s when it is ‘on’ that I need remember to just think ;yeah, i get this sometimes’ and carry on!

    sorry this was long, but had to share!

  11. john s Says:

    Its as if you are accepting, but a setback knocks u abit fof six. A thought came to me when i was at the gym which was that because our nerves are sensitised we question if we are accepting. And its because WE ARE ANXIOUS we question whether we are ACCEPTING so i felt abit better. I have been doing well its just because im still sensitised. I hope that makes sense what Im trying to say
    John S

  12. Paul David Says:

    The problem John is you are still relating feeling bad to ‘There will never be a way out’

    If you truly understand and have read the book it will tell you ‘Don’t waste time trying to figure it all out’ and don’t wonder ‘Why one day is good and the next is bad’ if you read your statement beloe you are still doing it….

    Im just miffed that some symptoms seem to be stronger today and yesterday (weak appetite, blurry vision and feel quite sensitive and irritable to people talking to me). It all seemed easier last week?

    So what if last week was good, so what if today is harder, you don’t question the days that are better, so why question the bad days.

    Also you say:

    ‘am i really accepting’, ‘why cant i just get on with my day and stop thinking about it’. Should I just accept these thoughts aswell.

    It is your habit to think of you and how you are feeling and that is why the attention is on you, let it be on you for the time being, its just a habit but don’t get stuck into the ‘Am I doing things right’ don’t go down the road of questioing it all.

  13. Paul David Says:

    Jude that’s great, while we keep taking the easy way out ‘anxiety’ wins and you stay in the loop. And trust me to be you again you have to do as much normal living as possible, don’t let how you feel or negative suggestions hold you back. Even if a negative thought pops up, don’t try and fight it off, just smile at it and say ‘No I am going’ and your right once you get there things are not as bad as we thought, but its at that key point when you think ‘No I will feel awful, I am going’ that is the point when you float past this suggestion and go anyway, this is the key point where you can break that loop. And when you go and you got through it o.k, I mean what can happen anyway? You not only feel really happy that you did, but your inner confidence grows. Its more like, ‘Well I did it last week, so off I go again’ in time you don’t even see it as a problem, its not even an issue if you go or not. You begin to break the loop. Let us know how you got on and well donr for going, remember your always in charge.

    That ‘getting it’ part comes Jude, also your body is still stuck in the old ways of thinking, but this is what we are going to change, so the new way of thinking ebcomes the norm.

    Paul

  14. john s Says:

    You are right, last week i was thinking that people look way to much for reassurance and then I have done it today. Thanks for posting back buddy. I felt a bit calmer today than yesterday. Sos for being a bit analytical. I let impatience get hold of me again. Cheers
    John

  15. Katy Says:

    Brilliant post! just the words I needed to hear.
    I am doing well in my recovery, and although I no longer fear the thoughts and most symptoms, I do still find myself avoiding some situations unless I am feeling “strong”. Therefore I am holding back my recovery. I think I’m stuck in a place where I am comfortable and enjoying feeling partly normal again.
    your post has given me the push I need to do the things I have been avoiding.
    I havent posted for a while, but check in once a week. Big thankyou to paul, Candie and Scarlett.
    Candie how about calling baby Verne or Coolio, know how much a fan of big brother you are ha ha x

  16. Emily Says:

    I seem to keep on fighting off and on even though I know I have to just let it be there. I do accept and say, “whatever” sometimes, more than I used to do. Any little bit of change is better than nothing, right? Does this mean that I will eventually do it more and more even though my frustration and discouragement is so strong? My frustration and lack of patience is certainly holding me back from more significant growth. I keep trying to think about Candie and other’s examples about how they read everything and it didn’t sink in right away…I think that’s what’s going on with me. I want to “get it” so badly!
    All the best to everyone! :)

  17. Michelle Says:

    I’m in the same boat, Emily. We can cheer each other on. It’s much easier on better days to be strong and say “whatever,” but when the symptoms are strong, it’s much more hard to do. I start doubting whether I’ll ever be completely free of it, or if it’ll always be off and on. I am reassured that I am miles ahead of where I was a year ago when I was right in the thick of it, and couldn’t even function. But still… I think I’ve been doing everything right, acting and doing everything I would do without it, but the setbacks are really discouraging. I know I’m wanting too much too fast. I just wish I knew why the body has such a hard time healing from anxiety, and why it takes so long even after training the mind to pay no attention to it.
    I keep saying it over and over, but I really am thankful to have a place to come where other people have been or are going through the same thing. It’s a huge boost to morale to hear the successes, and the reassurance really does help, even if I appear whiny (which I apologize for).

  18. Matthew Says:

    Great Post Paul. I can totally relate. Many times I’ve been inviterd out on social occasions and that voice of doubt speaks out “but you feel lousy, you’ll feel out of place, people will notice you are acting weird” etc… but I’ve always accepted the offer, unless I geuinely don’t want to go out because I have something else on or I need to get up early the next morning. I am so glad I went and still do this when I feel anxious. I usually end up having a fun time, but if I don’t and feel anxious still there is that satisfying feeling inside that I am doing this despite the feelings. Often someone might say “Matt, you’re a bit quiet tonight… ” if I am maybe feeling anxious, but I couldn’t care less now as I know how anxiety works. Something I’ve noticed on my journey to recovery is to worry less of what people think of you.

  19. brian Says:

    has anyone ever made great progress with this website for a long time and then suddenly all the progress just went away? For around 6 or 7 months now I have not felt near as good as I did the first 4 or 5 after I found the site. I don’t really understand it. I read the site just like i did in the beginning and i still just know that it is the key to my recovery, but i just don’t feel like things are going the right way, i don’t think i’m making progress. Either i’m doing something wrong or something else is wrong, but I don’t know what to do.

  20. Paul David Says:

    Matthew that’s a brilliant reply and exactly what you should do and exactly the attitude you should have, it pretty much sums up everything I did and thought. ‘I won again’ not the ‘anxiety’ and in time it just go so much easier and like you sometimes I had a good night and if I did not feel great the whole night, I was still proud that I went and did it and that victory was stored in my sub concious, in fact the lousier I felt the more progress I made, as I had been put to the test and come through yet again.

  21. Jude Says:

    Hi again Paul and everyone,

    well yes I did get to the craft group and manage to stay for a while, it is 10 miles from where I live too so it was an effort to go to the group but I did it! I must admit I did feel quite nauseous in waves, which was difficult but it is a symptom I get when pushing myself and possible experiencing a bit of nervous exhaustion coz I was really tired last night. I did leave a bit early, but not on a panic, more of an informed decision as I wasn’t feeling great, but hey, I just felt glad that I had made the effort! Haven’t worried about the fact that I did not stay – yesterdays gone! Am I getting it? 😉

    having had anxiety for years on and off , I am used to being that type of person, and in the okay times it does seem far away, but I do get bad bouts if stresses arise, like in the last few months, and then I can feel really freaked out by it all that it has never properly gone. I am realising that this is because I never truly broke the loop because the truth is I do avoid some things, although they are not obvious day to day, but I don’t live life to the full by just saying yes to anything without having to consider anxiety!!
    It is really helpful to realise that I have in this case let it rule, and if I can practise more of what you talk about Paul then I could finally tip the balance and put myself in charge! it is quite a revelation when you start to understand it. I do agree though, I think my body has got used to reacting in a certain way to situations and I need to unlearn this.

    It is so helpful to know that there are people out there who understand.

    Thanks :)

  22. brian Says:

    Hey John S I’m a lot like you. I’m at a university right now and, like you, my biggest problem is wondering if I’m doing everything right. I remember when I first came to this site I understood the concept so well for months. I would wonder why people had such a hard time getting it because it felt relatively easy for me. But now and for the last few months, I find myself questioning and complaining more than ever. I guess the key is to just continue to do things whether your confused, unsure, or not confident in how you feel.

  23. Stephen Says:

    Hi Paul

    Just a question if you have time to answer, im still in a wee setback but still think im avoiding things? like when im watching tv or reading the paper and something about anxiety, mental illness or depression comes up i get a rush of anxiety and get that feeling and avoid watching it/reading it. it seems like clear avoiding to me. should i just not change the channel on the tv or read the article in the paper to move towards my fears/what makes me feel bad? just really confused about it atm

    Hi scarlet, we are all ok if ur meaning the fires, very scary stuff tho. our extended family who lives close to the danger areas were spared thank goodness.

    Stephen

  24. lorryt Says:

    hi

    just typed my post out and it dissappeared, so i shall make it short !.

    finally feeling realxed and no rushes of adrenelin, thoughts come and go and i can dismiss them for what they are. dont need to rush around examining them . im sure there will be days when it wont be soo easy but i will deal with them when and if they come. One day at a time. its all any of us can do. but pretty sure i wouldnt have got this far without Pauls book and this website, its such an inspring place to be. think the kids are beginning to see a bit more of the real me too, im starting to have fun and laugh with them. i had completely the wrong attitude for so long, no wonder i didnt get better!. if this is even half way to recovery bring it on.
    have a wonderful day allxxxxxxxxxxxx

  25. john s Says:

    Hey Brian, you are definately right mate. I have been way to analytical of late. Iv just floated through the last couple of days though mate and its been a bit better. Certain things seem abit more normal than they did so im just gonna try my best to keep on floating though my days and thoughts. Im lettin myself think about my condition aswell and its strange, even though Its hovering over me it doesnt quite seem as big a deal that it is anymore. A hell of alot of snow today amigos! I wish i was back at school and playing in it like the kids are!

  26. Michelle Says:

    Hi everyone. Today is day 4 of weaning off my antidepressant. I feel like I’m starting to get depressed again. Is this normal coming off antidepressants? Should I give it more time, or should I start back up and increase my dose. I know I should ask the doc, but she is clueless about anxiety. I’m not sure if this is just a bad day, or an effect of weaning. I just feel really low, and my facial sensations seem stronger today. I feel as if I’d cried all night long, even though I didn’t.

  27. Candie Says:

    Hi Michelle

    If you come of them really slowly, like reduce the dosage every 2-4 weeks you shouldnt feel bad from it. What i did was reduce my dose every couple of weeks then once i got to half a dose stayed there for 6 weeks to let my body balance and catch up. Then every couple of weeks again. If you are worrying about feeling depressed coming of them then chances are you will make yourself feel low, if thats the case then maybe you should do this really slowly like a monthly lowered dose- if you did that u wouldnt notice at all i reckon.

  28. Paul David Says:

    O.k just a catch up here….

    Firstly Jude, you say..

    if I can practise more of what you talk about Paul then I could finally tip the balance and put myself in charge! it is quite a revelation when you start to understand it. I do agree though, I think my body has got used to reacting in a certain way to situations and I need to unlearn this.

    That’s all I ask that you practice and not get down if you fail at times, I actually don’t think there was anything wrong with leaving early as you had done the hard part making it there, that was the key point, you just took a little of anxietys power away and it does come gradual, the same trip in a few weeks time may feel so much easier. This is exactly how it went for me, I had to feel awful many times in certain situations, but each time I took a little control back and my body started to de-sensitise to these places and situations. While we keep avoiding, we just stay in the loop, we can’t de-sensitise as we are not allowing ourselves to go through and feel these feelings, if we move toward them then we take away anxietys power to rule and our bodys get used to the situations and freak less and less if you like.

    O.k Stephen you ask below….

    Hi Paul

    Just a question if you have time to answer, im still in a wee setback but still think im avoiding things? like when im watching tv or reading the paper and something about anxiety, mental illness or depression comes up i get a rush of anxiety and get that feeling and avoid watching it/reading it. it seems like clear avoiding to me. should i just not change the channel on the tv or read the article in the paper to move towards my fears/what makes me feel bad? just really confused about it atm

    Right you only get such a reaction because your body is sensitised and you feel a rush of adrenalin on hearing this story, the reaction is not from the story, its your sensitised state. So what are you to do, switch the channel over everytime a story like this comes on? No, just carry on reading or watching the article which makes you feel uncomfortable, just smile at the exagarrated reaction you get, its just a realese of adrenalin after all on a tired body. I used to feel the same and get certain reactions about hearing about mental health on the T.V or in the paper, I felt a need to not listen or read, but I took no notice of the reaction that came my way and just carried on reading, this way in time I de-sensitised to these kind of stories, they bothered me less and less. I work with anxiety week in week out and can read any story and it does not bother me, as my body is no longer sensitised to react so easily, nothing has changed, the story is still the same, but my body is no longer sensitised. So if its not the story, then keep on reading it and avoid and shy away from nothing even if at first you do get a strong reaction, it dies down, it always does, its harmless and is just a release of harmless adrenalin on a tired body.

    And Lorry I knew you would start seeing some good days and you was pretty bad when you first arrived, but you listened and took things on board. It just shows that it can be just stuck in bad habits what holds you back, its never how long or how bad you have suffered. Well done and I am sure you will continue to see improvments.

    Paul

  29. Emily Says:

    Michelle,
    My guess is that you probably still have some of that med in your system so I betcha a lot of the “looking for down feelings” is a habit that you may have to bear for a bit. That transition was scary for me, but if you do it ever so slowly enough, like Candie suggested, you feel more in control that it’s easing out of your system.

  30. Natalie Says:

    Hello everyone!

    Firstly, I hope you’re all having a good day!

    This new post from Paul ‘Moving forward with anxiety’ is very interesting as i really feel this is what i’m tackling in terms of my anxiety right now.

    When my anxiety initially became bad and i felt i couldn’t cope, i left my job in the city and went back to live with my parents. This was 2 years ago.
    Although i feel by no means recovered, i am starting to feel a little bit better.

    So much so that lately i have often found myself thinking that i’d like to work again in the professional field i was in, maybe part time. However, everytime i have these thoughts, of course i have all the responses you’d expect – such as ‘ No way i wouldn’t be able to cope going back work’ ‘What if i had a panic attack’ ‘What if my work colleagues think i’m odd’ ‘You can’t go back to work with depersonalisation, it’ll be too wierd, you won’t cope’ etc..

    So, i understand that these are only thoughts and i can simply pay them no attention. However, i feel almost crippled in taking the next step to get a job, It’s like a force field i cannot get through.

    I have been analysing all of the things that could go wrong in going back to my profession. And so everytime i think about it, i end up putting it off and thinking it’s better to stay where i am as it’s safer, i’m in my comfort zone so nothing can go wrong.

    Since i’ve been suffering anxiety, i’ve always found it so difficult to make decisions. The smallest quandry in my life becomes a huge out of this world, life changing decision. And it’s putting too much pressure on me.

    The most fustrating aspect of this is that i know the answers to my questions, It’s just i feel absolutely paralysed in applying them. By stepping out of my comfort zone i am breaking the ‘anxiety loop’. I feel that i need to put more trust in myself, because what’s the worst that can happen? By breaking my loop there is nothing to loose and everything to gain.

    A good evening to all
    Natalie

  31. Michelle Says:

    Natalie, I can very much relate. The worst possible thing that could happen if you go back to work is it won’t work out, but you’ll never know if you don’t try. Imagine what a great sense of accomplishment it’ll be after your first day.. your first week! Maybe you could take baby steps and get a part time job somewhere you wouldn’t feel bad quitting if you absolutely had to.

    I’ll be rooting for you from the US!

  32. Michelle Says:

    Thanks or the replies. Today was not a good day at all, but I did what I had to do.. run errands and all to get ready for my daughter’s 8th birthday/slumber party tomorrow night.

    And I went out to play some Bunco with some friends who live around the corner. There were times I really felt bad, but I kept playing and tried to ignore the icky symptoms as best I could. My head is screaming, even my eyes are bright red. I feel a bit nauseous, my tingling had was bad, and I just didn’t feel “right.”

    For me it’s so much more physical than mental. I rarely have an anxious thought anymore, but the physical stuff gets me down. I woke up this morning feeling like I wanted to cry for no good reason. I wanted to reach for the anti-depressant and take the full dose, but I am going to bear with it and give myself a chance to get through. I was on 30 mgs. Remeron for 9 months and went down to 15 mgs on Monday. In 2 weeks I will go to 7.5 for another couple of weeks. I hope that’s not too fast.

    I have to try and remember to keep my eye on the prize. A life anxiety free.

  33. Candie Says:

    Hi Michelle

    In my opinion that is way too fast, halfing your dose in one go is not good for the system- a more gradual weaned approach would be better as you dont notice the effects. My doctor tried halfing mine straight away and i said no i want to do it slowly, so i did it 1/6 of the meds every 2 weeks to a month. Doing it this way has kept me in control and allowed me to recover from anxiety without been sidetracked by meds withdrawl aswell. Some people have gone cold turkey and done it quickly and after a while felt fine again, but if u feel your struggling take your time with it.

    Natalie you should go to work, avoidance is feeding your anxiety- i think you will be suprised though as work may turn out to be a nice distraction for you- it did for me. Your not in the same desperate place as last time you had to quit work, you have a recovery method to apply now that works- you are in control.

  34. Paul David Says:

    Natalie, there is only one way to find out if work would be good for you and that’s to do it, you have zero to lose and everything to gain. I have loads of people email me that say they are back at work and as Candie says find it a good distraction, a great way of having a new focus, different enviroment, it can be a great way of moving forward, another normality back in your life.

    If you decide to please let us know how you get on, but I have known plenty from and away from the blog go back to work and not one has regretted it, almost all saying they felt better for it. Just go part time to start, a nice steady introduction if need be.

  35. Emily Says:

    Do you think we’re better off or more challenged if our anxiety doesn’t stop us from doing things and going places?
    If we deal with obsessive thinking, strong uneasyness & distorted/sensitized thoughts, but don’t stay home and avoid places or things, do you think this is an advantage?

  36. lisa Says:

    what do you think emily? have you always stayed at home?avoided places? take a look what you used to do, what your doing now, and ask yourself those questions hunny, deep down you will no the answer :-)

  37. Ben Says:

    Paul – do you think blushing in a symptom of anxiety, and do you think the same technique can be applied to it also ? I seem to have started doing it a lot recently so I am wondering if this is just another challenge on the road to recovery… ?

  38. Helz Belz Says:

    Great post!
    I just have a quick question for anyone further along the recover path. when recovery is coming (and i feel that after 5 months now it is starting to happen for me) did you find that you are almost travelling through the sysmptoms you had on the way in, but in reverse on the way out? the really scarey and bizzare thoughts are nearly gone, and have been replaces by more normal, rational worries (but in extreme, exaggerated ways) now, with more physical reactions, and it feels a lot like i did back at the beginning, but different with the new ways of thinking i have picked up here. it doesnt scare me like it did back then. has anyone else found reovery can work like this?
    pink days all! h -x-

  39. Helz Belz Says:

    Natalie, i just read your post, and i am having the same trouble as you, making descisions has become a bane, so big and scarey the way i react to them. i think it is another anxiety thing, but it is horrible. when a descision is put to me, i sometimes feel this wave of dread come over me. it helps to know that its not just me, that it is the anxiety and gets other people too.
    get a job if you can! i recently started work, and am now commuting to london and back each day. it has done me good, (train journeys, especially in the dark, always used to bring on my worst anxious felings), facing some fears and getting out doing things and meeting people. it can only be a good thing.
    much luck, h -x-

  40. Katie Says:

    Ben, i used to blush quite alot and get a rash on my chest if felt a bit anxious( before anxiety even kicked in).my counsellor told me these are jus another symptom of an anxious person/person in an anxious situation, because do you find it happens if your feeling anxious or worry it will happen and then does?i did.now if it happens i use the same technique as paul and candie and all the others who are recovering use-accept it and think’ iv gone red-big deal’.when i worried bout it, it used to stay longer but now, with no reaction if it happens, it fades as quick as it came.
    An example of how it used to happen to me-at work we used to eat our dinner in our base(and the room were pretty small with alot of us sharing it).One day I felt id got my rash on my chest,be conscious of it there,point out to people that Id got this rash so that they wouldnt say it to me first,be more conscious of it.keep wishing it would go and then every dinner it would happen because i would worry before hand.then when anxiety kicked it, it continued, until i started accepting it as jus a physical symptom and now it doesnt happen half as much and if it does, then ‘so what’is my attitude.hope this helps xx

  41. Emily Says:

    I’m having a hard time. My distorted view of memories from my past leaves me with such great discomfort. It comes and goes, but when it’s intense, it feels terrible.
    Can anyone encourage me?
    It’s SO hard to dismiss and say whatever when I don’t believe it! I know someone’s been there before and I do trust I’ll get through it.

  42. Candie Says:

    Ben, What Katie has said is right- if you pay a symptom too much attention, it will seem far worse then what it is. I was testing this before and had real faint pins and needles in my arm, so i concentrated on them- dwelled and complained to myself how annoying they where…. in less then a minute the pins and needles felt painful and my arm felt really sore. Ofcourse i new i created the anxiety as a lil experiment, so it soon disapeared as i was aware of what i had done.

    Hi Emily, if you had distorted memories you would not recognise them as distorted but as actual memories- my guess is you have panicked yourself over thinking something may be true when you know its not(then by trying to put it right in your mind you have dome what we all do with obsessive thoughts- panic there may be truth in them as we cant rationalise them), a distorted memory would not make you anxious to have- as you would have no conflicting judgement on the truth in it- you would simply beleive it. Now i am no expert on this, but it is obvious you are trying to put an irrational thought right in your mind- if your doing this then its not a distorted memory as you wouldnt argue if it was rational, you would simply beleive it without doubt.

  43. Natalie Says:

    Good evening!

    A massive thank you to Helz, Candie, Michelle and Paul for your wise words!
    You all agree that work is a good thing for me, this is the encouragement i needed. I have thought about working for months and months, but keep putting it off and hiding away. I don’t have anything to loose so i’m going to give it a go!

    Candie what you said here- ‘Your not in the same desperate place as last time you had to quit work, you have a recovery method to apply now that works- you are in control.’

    This is so true. I was thinking that if i went back to work i’d be back in the same desperate situation. But now that i know what’s wrong, and i’m on the road to recovery, I’m much wiser.

    Thank you again –
    Natalie x

  44. Emily Says:

    Candie,
    I was a little confused on your post, but I think I got some of it. I guess I should have said that I’m having a overly distorted reaction to a memory. Whenever I think of it, I feel the strong uncomfortable feelings that are only brought on by my distorted view of it. I get that. I’m just having a hard time not trying to rationalize why I’m reacting that way and I’m trying to make it stop so it won’t bother me. (Which I know as I type is exactly what Paul advises us not to do).
    How do we keep saying, “whatever” when our brains are screaming at us and our gut feels the complete opposite and it doesn’t “seem” to be getting easier as I do it? Am I giving up too easily because it doesn’t ease my discomfort? Is this a classic setback because it feels almost as strong as when it came on last time so I think things like, “well, if it still feels like this, I must not be getting better and what if…on and on. I’m not encouraging those thoughts when they come, but I must still be fighting somehow…
    Paul, are you rolling your eyes and saying “how many times do I have to say this? :)
    Will I eventually get this concept of accepting even if I’m having such trouble right now??
    Thank you for any suggestions and encouragement!

  45. lisa Says:

    emily,it just takes practise thats all,we have all been where you are now. you hunny have to train your mind to say “whatever” to your thoughts,memories, feelings, allow them ALL to just come and go. its learning to get up each morning and getting on with your normal everyday things, and if a memory or a thought pops up let it,if you feel yuk when it does let it wash over you and carry on what your doing whether its washing up,cooking a meal,blow drying your hair,it just passes but its practise. your battling and worrying and analysing,i no its hard but the more you can let them come and go,the easier it becomes. its like learning to ride a bike and you fall off, do you sit and cry? put your bike back in the shed? sell your bike on ebay? NO you brush your self down and get back on the bike and practise. that becomes your new habit. :-)

  46. andrew Says:

    Hi everyone,

    The good part is that i don’t think about my anxiety as much during the day as I used to, and when I happen to think about it it doesn’t bother me as much as it did before. So in a way I am on my way to recovery. However, i noticed that i have been feeling lightheaded a lot this past week. I am wondering if anyone else had the same feeling. I try to ignore it and go on with my day, but it doesn’t seem to go away. Is this a common symptom of anxiety? Thanks.

  47. Mazza Says:

    Hi Andrew
    I get light headed sometimes, have you tried eating something, it could be due to low blood sugar levels, or for me it sometimes helps. I get lots of physical symptoms of anxiety, but as Paul says, you just have to get on with your day and accept them. I do find that hard to do, but Im trying. I know sometimes I do it to myself, cos I worry too much, especially cos I smoke and I know its bad for me. I start to think of all the things that might happen to me because of smoking. There again, I would probably worry about something else if I didn’t worry about smoking, lol!!
    I know the way forward is to put all symptoms under the umbrella of anxiety, and not analyse them, which is hard to do, but is the only way. I’ve had anxiety for many years, and probably had most symptoms, but I’m still here, and still determined to recover fully. When you say, you try to ignore it and get on with your day, but it doesn’t go away, Paul would say you aren’t ignoring it because your’e thinking about it by saying, it doesn’t go away. I think this is where acceptance comes into it, you just have to get on with your day with the feelings and thoughts with you, but not worry that there still there, if you understand what I’m trying to say. Paul and Candie can explain it alot better than I can.
    Anyway, enough of me rambling, have a good day
    Take care everyone
    Mazza

  48. Candie Says:

    Ooooh i see Emily, sorry- i thought you meant you where suffering from a condition ‘distorted memories’, i did about it when i studdied psychology ya see.. but obviously we both where talking about differant things :)
    Right, when you say whatever to a thought- it wont bring immediate relief, whatever is basically a way of telling yourself you have accepted the thought or feeling and wont be fighting or investigating it. When you say whatever, think of it as allowing yourself to be anxious- dont think of it as a saying to elliminate your anxiety. After a while the benefits pay of, and eventually you can say whatever to a lot of anxious thoughts and feelings and not feel the need to mentally investigate them for relief. The fact of the matter is that it is much harder to fight and worry, yet you are coping through that- so in time you can easily let go of your anxiety and leave it be.

  49. Ben Says:

    Cheers Candie/Katie, you are no doubt right the more you pay a symptom attention/respect the worse it becomes. I like the idea of your little experiment… I have tried this myself and it is so true! You can literally decide to focus all your energy on the fact that say your little finger is feeling sore and it will start to hurt! Its good in a way as it proves to you that you are in control of these things…

  50. Emily Says:

    Candie,
    It “feels” like and I worry that if I just say “whatever” to myself when that wave comes over me and don’t investigate it that I’ll always have that same distorted response to the memory. I want a healthy & logical response, not distorted.
    Somehow our perspectives change about it when we just stop entertaining it for long enough??

  51. john s Says:

    Hi guys, I had a couple of good days on friday and sat but then been abit down which is fine im just floating with it. Unfortunately this morning my girlfriend has said we should split up. Im a bit gutted but i can understand as she says she is beginning to feel down herself with illness. Im just worried how this is going to affect my recovery. Do i just try and float through everythin I am feeling right now. I understand that everything will feel worse cos im MY NERVES ARE SENSITIZED. I HAVE THOUGHTS COMING that are saying this will push you right back now!’. Im gathering i should just try and float past this. Its making me want to recover quickly just as i was learning to be patient! Sos about involving my relationship in this i just needed to vent a little cos she is on my mind now every second aswell as my condition is. I guess a healthy person would be down right now aswell
    JOHN S

  52. Kashawnm Says:

    Thank you Paul.

  53. andrew Says:

    Mazza,

    Thanks for your reply and sharing a little bit of what you went through. Today I had a headache all day, but I didn’t let my anxiety get the best of me. I just accepted it and moved on with my day. I still get palps at night when I wake up, which is frustrating, but again I just accept it by not paying too much attention to it. But I am still trying to understand why I am still getting the palps. I am wondering if my Mg and Ca levels are off because of the anxiety my body has been through. I heard that Mg and Ca levels are important for heart function and if they are off balance that can trigger palps. I’m planning to see my doc about checking to see what my Mg/Ca level is. The palps just don’t make sense to me. I go to bed perfectly fine and then the palps will wake me up from my sleep out of no where… I haven’t had a good night’s sleep in weeks. Really need it.

  54. fiona Says:

    Hi folks, really helpful post! I was away on a city break at the weekend and drank too much on saturday night and had the worst day i’d had in along time yesterdsay. But the good thing is it didn’t last very long because i knew what it was just rushes of adrelanin and tried not to feed it with too much worry or fear. For me that really represents progress as set backs dont last as long and there is more time between them.
    It all about a relaxed attitude, our bodies are so tense and stressed when filled with adrenaline. That is why we get all the syptoms like hyperawarness, eye floater, numb head. Once you’re experinced in dealing with anxiety and know that it just a surge of adrenaline (set back)you can actually monitor its progress and feel it wearing off. Eventually as your body stops releasing the excess adrenalin the tension and stress wears off and all the symptoms subside.

    Hi Andrew, your worry about sleep is adding to your stress levels and probably making you less likely to get a good sleep.
    Just cut off the worry thought about sleep and think about it rationally….. ok your not sleeping well just now and your a bit tired, its not great but your still getting on with life although your a bit tired…. its a temporary problem which will sort its self out when its ready. The palps are a common syptom of anxiety the are such a big problem at the moment bacause your giving them so much attention, i realise they’re not great but have they really caused you any harm? Arr they really worth the time and effort you’ve put in to worrying about them? Don’t bother going to your doc as worrying about Mg/Ca levels is just an anxious thought….. would you worry about them if you didn’t have anxiety? If you wake during the night read or put the tv on, don’t lie there worrying about palps and making them worse.
    Hope this helps :-)
    Fiona

  55. andrew Says:

    Fiona,

    You’re right. I got myself into this cycle without even realizing it until you told me. I do worry about sleep and palps a lot because it’s such an ordeal for me. Last night I had palps and it was so bad that afterwards i just laid in my bed shaking and trembling for some reason not because of fear but my body felt cold. Rationally I want to let go of all this tension and worrying, but my body does something different – it like wants to hold on to the anxiety, so it seems. Right now I am not working, so it’s hard to fill my days up with things to do and distract myself. I live alone, and usually that means it’s me and my own mind. I try to go out whenever I can and exercise, but they can only help so much. Being in transition really sucks, and being in this quandary makes everything worse. But I’m not going to let this get me down. Thanks for your reply.

  56. fiona Says:

    I dont mean to be nosey but why are you not working? Is it to do with anxiety? If so get yourself back to work if not well its up to you to fill your day and take the focus of yourself. Unfortunatley anxiety suffers are not really cut out for relaxing days at home. When you ‘ve recovered you’ll be able to do that but for now you need a good focus.

  57. andrew Says:

    Fiona,

    Got laid off, which was when all this anxiety started. The anxiety got loose and I let myself get caught up in the cycle. I will go out for a run later, which always helps. I am currently looking for work. Never thought I say this, but I can’t wait to get back to work.

  58. fiona Says:

    Its shocking about work!! Are you in the Uk?I’m a teacher so i’m one if the very fortunate one’s with job security! Maybe a college course in the mean time…. or bar work/waitering is always a not bad employer to tide you over…. i’ve done plenty myself in the past. Anyway enjoy the run and your right it does help and it just proves that all these weird thoughts and feelings are nothing but adrenaline….. god, its so easy to burn it off! When you/we eventually become desenstised to the thoughts and feelings our nervous system will stop producing the excess adrenline and all these symptoms which feel so intense just now will fade and become different memories. Its about learning to relax to the feelings rather than tensing against them and the slow process of cutting of thoughts.
    Fiona

  59. Christina Says:

    Hello everyone, I am new to this forum. I found it by googling (haha). I noticed this is a uk site, but I actually live in New York. It’s kind of ironic because anxiety entered my life for the first time when I was abroad in London. Anxiety is not completely new to me, as that was 3 years ago, but it has come and gone. Over the past 3 years, I have had months straight of being symptom free, and each time I think, I have overcome this for good. Now it’s back for the 3rd time, and has been going strong for 4 months. Like many of you, I have not given up my life. I have done everything I planned on doing, but I feel like it has robbed me of the free spirit I once had. When my anxiety is “on,” it is on constantly. I wake up every single morning, no matter where I am or what day it is, shaking and nervous and it just goes on from there. It’s SO hard for me to accept it because I have gone long periods of time in between not feeling this way, and not even thinking about the anxiety. I just wanted to introduce myself because this seems like a great forum to be a part of. I am 23 years old, and I work in digital advertising. Despite all the terrible feelings I have on a daily basis, I continue to lead as normal a life as possible.

  60. John P nursing student Says:

    Hi all. Its been a while since i been on. I been doing good and had moments of not even thinking anything unusal and me being back to my old self. i took a break from the website because I was using it as a crutch. My dad was in the hospital after breaking his ribs. I noticed this started all of my thoughts and noticed one thought that has been there but didnt notice i was repeating it…now i will always relate this to this illness or that illnes or i w ill always remeber this. its been hard on that front lately. The repetive thoughts slowed down and now they came rushing back. I been going about my day but noticed the aprehension is there. I also stopped going to my therapist because I felt obligated to talk about my anxiety or talk about some issue that bothered me and i resolved just so i could talk about something with her. It also seemed to put a exclamation point on my week and put anxiety in the forefront of my mind each weekend. I also just wanted to get on with my life and not focus on looking into my past anymore. My parents didthier best. The last post paul was pretty much what is happening to me. i have setbacks and it comes hard. I havent had a complete day yet of having repeating thoughts but my sleee i been great.
    The only thing now is sometimes i feel like crying because it puts its toll on me lately.

    Congrats on the baby boy!

  61. Jenny in America Says:

    I happened on this website last week, and have read everything on it. My anxiety started with panic attacks about 2 1/2 years ago, initially triggered by a tragedy in my sister’s life. Following the first panic attack, I became convinced I had MS due to constant tingling in my legs along with some other random symptoms. I feared going to the Dr. Eventually I went (to 3) and was repeatedly told I was suffering with anxiety and given an anti-depressant. The panic attacks lasted about 6 months, several times a day. They eventually subsided altogether. The tingling persisted, but has slowly minimized. Sometimes I go weeks and have none and then suddenly it’s back. I have noticed that it usually subsides when I have a “oh well” attitude about it, “it doesn’t hurt, it’s not affecting my ability to walk. It’ll go away in time.”
    My biggest struggle I have now, is that I feel like I am constantly trying to capture how I felt 3 years ago. I feel I am constantly “checking in” with myself. I feel like I am not the same engaging person. I have to force myself to interact at times, and the entire time am thinking, “what is wrong with me? How did I use to feel before the anxiety?” I feel like I go round and round in circles, in my mind, grasping for the old Jenny, the mom who could walk to the park with her kids and have nothing on my mind except how nice the weather was, or stop and chat with the neighbor, etc…. I’m always trying to get “back there.” When my anxiety/panic started, we had just moved back to a large city, where my husband and I initially met. So, I have seriously questioned in my mind at times, did we do wrong by moving? I hated the town we use to live in, but have at times longed to live there again thinking I could reverse all of this and somehow get the old me back….. SO, IS THIS DEPERSONALIZATION?

  62. Stephen Says:

    Hi Paul

    Have taken your advice and been not avoiding anything, if i hear/see/read/watch anything that relates to mental illness, anxiety or what ever i just keep listening,watching, reading what ever it is and finding myself getting slowly better in thoes situation. This morning however i was thrown off abit and have felt alittle anxious for the rest of the day. Paul when i have an anxious day these days i just feel anxious, but more wierd and like something is missing and not fully happy. i dont really panic fully as such just feel sorta crap. is this a normal feeling to have. im trying not to give it any weight but this is the feeling that is between me and full recovery.

    Hi scarlet,

    havent herd from you in a while, how have you been? went and saw my doctor the other day about my back becuase it was sore and she kept asking me about my anxiety ect ect, and i was telling her how far i had come and how there is a whole lot that doesnt really bother me anymore and she was quick to ensure that if uni stresses me out to come back and to go on some meds…lol i laughed at her almost thinking how pathetic you look trying to force people to be on meds when im not even close to needing them, doctors really have no idea with this.

    I’ve had this feeling lately like im close to being recovered….just on and off but its so strange like its near by. does this happen? like do you get and idea when your getting close, dont get me worng i still get off days for sure and still have setbacks thats why im confused with it lol.

    hope everyone is doing well
    stephen

  63. LORRYT Says:

    HI ALL

    after having a few good days last week , it has returned a bit, although i once would have panicked about it, im a bit dissappointed that it has but im going with the flow. just being patient and having a relaxed attitude has helped loads. i have realised that its mainly the future i stress about, and my kids. On my good days i feel sooo free, but on my bad days everything seems to get in my head, but i am learning to not let it bother me too much. it is the way forward and for me although it is slow, it is ure and steady !.nothing great was ever eachieved quickly ! ( i keep reminding my hubby !!!) SORRY !

    HAVE A GOOD DAY ALL XXX

  64. Claire W Says:

    Hi All

    I’ve been suffering with Anxiety & Panic attacks for almost 4 years now, since the birth of my second child. I have been taking beta blockers & anti d’s for most of this time. I got married last May overseas & even the stresses of organising a wedding, hen do, reception in the Uk etc didn’t seem to bother me or bring on any unwanted anxiety.
    Great I thought. I came off my meds gradually during the summer which all semmed fine, until I hit rock bottom again in October.
    I had a few weeks off work & went back on my meds, the company I work for arranged some counselling for me which was great. I seemed to be back up and running until New Years when my husband & I went on a belated honeymoon to Las Vegas.
    The anxiety & panic attacks seemed to take over every evening without fail. I thought that it might be to do with the time difference & my tablets. But, it seemed to sort itself out on my return home.
    I’d heard through a friend before christmas that the type of hormonal coil I’ve been using is a cause of depression & anxiety so of course I got googling, had the coil removed at the beginning of January & since then my anxiety has returned horribly.
    It’s almost like I’ve thought myself back into it as I’d put all of my hope into the removal of this coil solving all of my problems.
    The book was such an eye opener for me, unlike many I’ve never really stopped myself from doing anything, with 2 children that would be near impossible but, I do feel that it affects my day to day moods & irritability. I just want to get well & give my family the best of me.
    All of the comments on here help me to realise that it isn’t just me & I’m not losing the plot!
    I feel that I am letting the feelings come, do there worst, saying whatever to the negative thoughts etc but, I seem to be hit with more & more symptoms which I guess is my bodies way of testing me? I have booked in for some refexology which I am wondering if anybody else has tried? & I cancelled therapy at £80 per session as after reading the book I feel it’s an unecessary expense.
    I think that it’s very hard not to want to feel better now or at least soon but, I’m giving it my best shot, I’ve returned to my exercise class once a week but, must admit that I’m feeling very tired at the end of each day, is this common when you start to accept it? I’m having lots of early nights which I can only assume will help my body & mind to rest.
    Sorry for the life story.

    Good Luck Everyone!!

  65. Paul David Says:

    Sorry for being away so long, I am just very busy at the moment. Welcome to all the new people on here, I see there has been a few since I was last on. As there are so many posts since I was last on I will have to keep replys brief.

    Jenny the problem is you are trying to fight your way back to the person you was before and not let this become a natural progression and giving your body time to do this, you are demanding progress and getting frustrated when it does not happen, maybe filling yourself with self pity, you are putting your already tired body under pressure when all it needs is a break. Just accept this is you for now and you may find things far easier, just go for progress and don’t demand to feel a certain way, have the attitude of however I feel is fine.

    Stephen you say: This morning however i was thrown off abit and have felt alittle anxious for the rest of the day. Paul when i have an anxious day these days i just feel anxious, but more wierd and like something is missing and not fully happy. i dont really panic fully as such just feel sorta crap. is this a normal feeling to have. im trying not to give it any weight but this is the feeling that is between me and full recovery.

    Stephen if you have felt the same for months now and then you have noticed a change then your body is responding to your different approach to how you feel, like a transition. When I was in recovery I was such a mess at first, D.P was really bad, I was emotionless, my mind chattered, I could not seem to unclog my mind of thinking. After a while these subsided once I gave them no weight and then I was left with a tired anxious body, that was o.k my nerves were shot and would repair in time. This is why I say don’t care how you feel, put no importance on it, your body just wants to be left alone to repair itself.

    Claire you say:

    I think that it’s very hard not to want to feel better now or at least soon but, I’m giving it my best shot, I’ve returned to my exercise class once a week but, must admit that I’m feeling very tired at the end of each day, is this common when you start to accept it? I’m having lots of early nights which I can only assume will help my body & mind to rest.

    Yes your body is tired through the anxiety, its adrenalin on tired nerves that causes the fatiqued feelings, our bodys are working overtime even when we seem to be doing nothing, but excercise is a great way of burning the excess adrenalin off, I found it far more beneficial than any massage or reflexology and a lot cheaper. Also its better if you do these things for you and not just to ‘rid’ yourself of anxiety.

    Paul

  66. Scarlet Says:

    Stephen,

    Will be around soon to respond, I have guests at the moment and they are staying in the computer room…. so not able to get much time on here, as I usually do. They are gone soon mind you, hurrah!!!!! 😉

    Hope everyone else is OK and doing well. Back soon to answer.

  67. andrew Says:

    Hi Paul,

    What do you think about taking a beta blocker? My doc prescribed me a beta blocker to help with the palps that I get at night and the rise in my bp of late. My only thing about taking meds is that when I come off them the symptoms might come back. So how would I approach taking meds? What kind of mindset should I have about them? Thanks.

  68. sasha Says:

    Hi Paul,

    I’m practising what you are saying.giving more attention to whats happening outside me..and couple of times i felt like the old me who had normal feelings.It gave me the strength to get over moments of blankness and feelings of anxiety.I guess I am recovering because i have more of normal days. I just go ahead if my mind says no to certain situations.But sometimes I’m confused the way i react or take decisions is because of anxiety. But I’m a happier person because i felt couple of moments wherein i felt like the old me. But its a bit sad when we tend to get the setbacks…that drains the energy and positivity that we have developed.I’m practising that as well giving no attention to it. But they may be the moments where you have to interact or take key decisions and if you become blank its effecting my positive faith in recovering.. I know i will be alright. Please give me some reassurances Paul..Posts from Candie and Scarlet were equally helpful..
    Thank you Paul once again for helping a lot of people who is desperate for your right advice..

  69. Jenny in America Says:

    Thanks for your quick reply! Having read so much on everyone’s depersonalization has really helped me, realizing this is just another symptom of anxiety. It’s quite relieving actually. I have had a much better today just accepting the fact that this “outta sorts,” detached feeling is just a very common side effect of all the worrying and over-analyzing I have done. That’s all it is, a side effect. Just like pregnancy brings on the side effect of weight gain, and even after the baby is delivered, that side effect persists for a while. But gradually, if you eat right and stay active, the weight will come off. Time is a healer. Now, if I can just remember this tomorrow! (I forgot to mention in my previous post, I am no longer on an anti-depressant. I weaned myself off, about 6 months ago. I did not feel like it was a long-term solution for me. )

  70. Nicole Says:

    Hi All,
    I have not been watching or posting much as of late as I have been having many more up days than down and the break from anxiety has done me some good.
    I still have the odd set back but they are generally not lasting that long.
    Funny though today I was walking home and came upon someone I usually pass on my way and I had a fleeting impulse to cross the street as I was not feeling up to the usual greeting, although it is only nod and hello.
    I know that we all have moments like this, but in that instant I had a “what if” thought that was “what if I become scared of socially interacting with people?” I know that the reason this is scary to me is that I love people and get loads of energy from talking (much to my husbands’ dismay sometimes) and being around positive, high energy people and to lose this source of comfort would be awful. Being “that time of the month” I am more prone to feeling anxious so I am aware of why this is affecting me. Reasons aside it is still wierd to find myself engaging emotionally in a thought that would normally not cause me a seconds notice. Scarlet, did you ever have a surprising reaction like this even when you considered yourself close to recovery?
    Thanks, Nicole

  71. Christina Says:

    Hey everyone, again, it’s so great to read all your stories. Does anyone have a particular terrible time in the mornings? I wake up shaking, my arms burn and tingle, and my chest is so tight I can barely breathe. It’s really tough to “accept” these feelings. I’m also on medication, as I hit rock bottom last year and felt I had no other choice. I’m only 23 years old, but I see some of you on here are married and have kids. One of my biggest fears since anxiety has hit has been that I will never be able to get married or have kids :-(

  72. Jenny in America Says:

    Hi Christina
    When I was in the throes of my anxiety, I woke up every morning feeling as you describe. Basically waking up with a panic attack. I too, got on medication during this time because I felt so hopeless. I felt terrified lying in bed, AND terrified at the thought of getting up to face my day. I eventually determined in my mind that I had to push my way through, and started telling myself, “maybe if i force myself to get up and do something, the panic will subside.” I would still go through my day fearing and dreading the next attack, and dreaded going to bed for fear of waking up to it again. But each day I went the entire day without an attack was a huge victory! I journaled alot, (and still do actually). It seemed to help me when I could get all my racing thoughts on paper, and then rereading it put it in better perspective. You will come through this. Even when you dread going to bed, or dread putting your feet on the floor in the morning, make yourself do it. Each time you do, your taking a tiny step toward conquering it, I think. I eventually stopped my meds, and have not had a panic attack in 2 years I think. They are terrifying but I finally realized they couldn’t take my life. I think they eventually quit when I quit fearing them. Now, my biggest hurdle is undoing the detached feeling I feel at times as a result of all the introspection and thinking about myself all day. That too, continues to slowly improve as I cease worrying about it.

  73. brian Says:

    Hey guys, do any of y’all at a university ever get really stressed out about schoolwork? I’ve always worried way too much about school, but with anxiety I am unable to focus and have a harder time understanding things. Sometimes I just get so mad when I can’t understand something and can feel my adrenaline just skyrocketing. There’s nothing I can really do about it as I have to take these classes, but hopefully I eventually will be able to calm down and focus better. Just annoying.
    Have a good day everyone, keep the faith

  74. Shirley D Says:

    Andrew,
    I was prescibed beta blockers and found them very useful for the plapitations. I don’t take them now but the doc informed me that i should keep them beside me in case i needed them for reasurance, having that reassurance is good and i have resorted to them once or twice in the last month – they are there but the resistance to not take them is far greater.

  75. Shirley D Says:

    Oh dear – typo! Sounds like another problem altogether!

  76. lisa Says:

    andrew all they do is slow your heart rate down, if you can accept your racing heart and not worry about it, let it palp, then you wont need beat blockers, nothing can happen to you but you already no that. :-)

  77. lisa Says:

    hi christina, there just worrying thoughts about you not getting married or having kids, iv two kids my self.let them thoughts come and go, laugh at them. dont worry about the tingles or tight chest just take slow breaths , and youl be fine.concentrate on today,and not on future worries that dont exist . :-)

  78. Scarlet Says:

    Nicole,

    “Scarlet, did you ever have a surprising reaction like this even when you considered yourself close to recovery?”

    Yes I did have plenty of episodes like this, and close to recovery as well…. It was like I was terting myself on things I knew in the past wouldn’t have bothered me in the least. Just go with it, dismiss the thought/emotion as rubbish and interact with folks as much as you can. If you fear something DO MORE OF IT……You are doing great!!

    ___________________

    Hi Sasha,

    “But its a bit sad when we tend to get the setbacks…that drains the energy and positivity that we have developed.I’m practising that as well giving no attention to it. But they may be the moments where you have to interact or take key decisions and if you become blank its effecting my positive faith in recovering.. I know i will be alright. Please give me some reassurances Paul..Posts from Candie and Scarlet were equally helpful”

    I know what you mean about the setbacks Sasha, but try and look on them as ‘learning curves’ and they will go quicker… They are a necessary part of recovery, and recovery wouldn’t happen without them. Getting over each one gives you added strength (even if you don’t realise it at the time)….
    You will be fine taking key decisions, like I mentioned to Emily, more social interactions is the key… practice, practice, practice…. even if it’s only going to chat to the local shopkeeper, or the next door neighbour, this will help build up your confidence …. and remember my philosophy (above) … If you fear something DO MORE OF IT 😉

    ___________________

    Stephen,

    You are doing very well and are close to the end. The last hurdle for me (last 5%-10% I’d say) took the longest to shift.. You have come to terms with everything, know the tools for recovery, and have accepted that you are in an OK place mentally, and you are not worried how long it takes to be 100% anymore, but you still have odd periods of mild anxiety on and off….. this is normal nearing the end, as you are still thinking about anxiety and it still dominates your time a lot, but as you engage with other activities which are more important and your ‘hobby’ with anxiety has totally disappeared, the last 5% will disappear. It’s just a matter of time….

    ______________

    Lovely day and hi to all the new members

  79. Nicole Says:

    Thanks Scarlet. Will do, I know deep down that my nerves are looking for another dose of adrenalin as that is what they have been fed the past few years, but I am going to acknowledge that old habit and choose the better path. Bring it on!
    Your advice is and has been so helpful. Thanks for your continued support. Your recovery and the place you are in today is inspiring.
    Have a great day all,
    Nicole

  80. John S Says:

    Hi, the main symptom that is frustrating me, as i feel i am doing well accepting eveything else is the constant inward thinking. Im trying to float past it and just chill which i guess i am doing but after two years it seems worse than ever, even though other symptoms are declining. Its an annoying habit and Im struggling to concentrate on things. Its boring me!! Is anyone else struggling with this at the moment. Any advice would be much appreciated. I know Paul says it over and over that you should just accept it and in time it fades but i just feel drenched in it. In the Claire Weekes book she says dont fight it and float with it. Im sure Im doing this as I am not tensing against it. I feel that by stopping inward thinking I will finally be free and maybe thats impatience but im sure thats what keeps the DP hanging around because we are still so aware of ourselves. Im going to go down the pub and watch Utd tonight anyway and try and feel some connection with reality :) Hey Ho!
    John

  81. Christina Says:

    Scarlet/Nicole, I know exactly what you mean about “testing” yourself. I have done this soooo many times! I actually did it a lot more when my anxiety first came back this year. I went 10 months symptom free, so as soon as it came, I immediately started testing myself to see if I was still “normal” as if I couldn’t believe this was really happening again. Now I’ve accepted that whatever I do is normal for the state I’m in. I also know what ya’ll mean about the disconnected feeling. That’s part of the reason why I fear dating now, because I feel like I really can’t connect with someone and that is sooooo not me. I am such an outgoing person who loves being around people (and being the center of attention haha). It’s a tough transition!

  82. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Nicole,

    An example of mine which periodically occurred (even when I was almost recovered) was “what if I never leave the house again” Of course I am a galavanter by nature 😉 and this is my worst fear…. so when a thought like this occurred, I always got on my coat and went out, I knew this was the right thing to do deep down, even before I came across Paul and inspiring sites like this.. you can do this as well, it’s the right way to go hun, avoid nothing that’s required for ‘normal’ living.

    “Your advice is and has been so helpful. Thanks for your continued support. Your recovery and the place you are in today is inspiring.”

    It’s nothing that you can’t do as well, you are inspiring too… 😉

    ____________

    Hi Christina,

    “It’s a tough transition!”

    It is indeed but one well worth doing in the long-run, small steps for big gains. Facing your fears really does work, I can vouch for it. So don’t avoid dating, get out and socialise, no matter how you are feeling accept it, and you never know you might suprise yourself. This ‘condition’ WANTS you to be a hermit, you must never allow this to happen.

    x

  83. Scarlet Says:

    “This ‘condition’ WANTS you to be a hermit, you must never allow this to happen”

    LOL sounds as if I am talking about some alien being, like the ‘body-snatchers here’

  84. Paul David Says:

    Ha ha Scarlet it does, but it is a good way of putting it. I know for a fact I recovered because I began to do exactly that. I used to hide away at home, hide if it looked like I may have to talk to someone in the street that I knew, make excuses not to go places. Then the light went on and I thought, am I ever going to move forward this way? I knew the answer and did the complete opposite of what my instincts told me and I thought ‘I don’t care how I feel, what happens, I am going everywhere, this is no life’

    And I did go everywhere, interact again with people, going towards as much uncomfort as what was there. And things heightened for a while, I was putting myself in places and situations I had not been for a while. But in time they just got easier and easier, my body was saying ‘Hey there is no danger here, you were avoiding a feeling and not the neighbour, not the pub, theres no problem here Paul’ and I began to desensitise, normal living began to feel normal again.

    So don’t let anxiety or should we say a feeling hold you back.

    Paul

  85. andrew Says:

    Hi Shirley,

    Thanks. I started taking it yesterday. It does seem to help, but I noticed when it wears off I still get the palps. I guess I have to let my body get used to the new drug and allow my nerves to calm down. Right now I am still very sensitized. I am glad that you are doing well, I hope I can get there one day soon. =)

  86. Candie Says:

    Hi Everyone

    This post is to say a big happy birthday to my friend Lisa, who is very much a breath of fresh air on this blog! Hope you have a lovely day lisa x x

  87. lisa Says:

    aww thanks candie xxx:-)

  88. Scarlet Says:

    Many Happy Returns on your 21st Lisa… 😉

    xx

  89. Shirley D Says:

    Andrew,
    You will get there. I still have the palpitations – sometimes they creep up on my at the most ridiculous times. I can be thinking about nothing and then the thudding starts, but i pay them no attention and they soon dissapear.
    We had a fire drill today at work, i am only a temp so don’t really feel like i fit in properly but i was given pre warning that the fire drill was going to take place. It made my heart beat rapid because the receptionist is supposed to be the deputy to the fire warden, it beat hard for about five minutes and then i thought, i’m going to enjoy this, gives me a sense of purpose.
    My heartbeat returned to normal – just an adrenilin rush that’s all it was.
    We did the fire drill and all went well.
    This time last year i would have worried so much about what i would be required to do.
    If you can pay the palpitations no heed, before long you will be able to say, oh my hearts going at a speed but turn to something else and pay it no attention, it’s concentrating on it that makes it stay.

  90. clara Says:

    I just have to say how fantastic your blog is
    you are helping me so much when I really thought all hope was lost and I was going to end up insane.
    trapped in my own worry cycle and riddled with obessive thoughts.
    I am always trying to rid myself of the thoughts and the anxiety too i always picture myself out and about enjoying myself when the anxietys gone but your blog for this mth totaaly makes sence.
    thanks so much

  91. andrew Says:

    Hi Shirely,

    I’m glad to hear that you have come to that point where you are able to move pass the fear and go on with your life. It gives me a lot of hope. For me, the palps don’t come on during the day and if they do they really don’t bother me at all. My palps come on at night when I am either asleep or when I wake up from sleep. And lately I have developed anxiety over going to sleep, which doesn’t help trying to get restful sleep. For some reason, when my palps come on at night they bother me a lot. I get so frustrated with my heart. I have a feeling that when I am asleep my subconcience is still running and probably my nerves are really sensitized. I tried the beta blockers and they seem minimize my palps, but I still get them. Funny thing is that I had this exact problem about 3 years ago and it went away by itself… for some reason I am not able to kick it this time, at least for now.

  92. lisa Says:

    thanks scarlet..lol xx :-)

  93. Shirley D Says:

    Andrew,
    I was the same with everything you say, my sleep was the worst ever, my heart was thudding into the mattress, now i sleep like a log. I think the fact that i didn’t have a job didn’t help because i had time to give the anxiety the full maximum.
    My mind would be running like a high speed train so i have been there well and truly but i am testament that life will get back to normal.

  94. Katie Says:

    nicole, i too have found ‘the time of month’ to be an issue whilst having anxiety. it definately is worse the week before for me. i find im more sensitive to my thoughts,and they tend to pop back more and more. i still continue to plod along and let these thoughts in. im no longer scared of them and i try not fight them, although i find they sometimes catch me off guard around the ‘time of month’. Iv discussed this with Candie, who too said the same thing. The joys of being a woman!!!!haha

  95. andrew Says:

    Shirley,

    I think you’re right about working keeping your mind off of the anxiety. Right now I am not working, so it is much harder to distract my mind. I’m looking for work, but you know how the economy is going… hopefully I’ll find something soon. How I wish I could sleep like a log =)

  96. andrew Says:

    Shirley,

    Do you remember if you ever got headaches or felt spaced out in your head during your periods of palpitations? For some reason I get brain fog and I think it’s from my heart racing too fast.

  97. Candie Says:

    Andrew, your palpatations are normal for anxiety- you are paying them far too much attention. Its just adrenalin speeding up your heart etc, i know it can be irritating but the fact of the matter is that your symptoms will seem far worse then what they are if you ponder over them. You wake up at that time of a night due to habit, you probably had one attack during the night… it frightened the life out of you so everytime you go to bed now your full of dreaded anticipation and on edge. If this is the case it will no doubt cause more adrenalin to pump round and wake you up during the night. Its like any fear, dwell on it and it will turn into something bigger then what it actually is. As for Beta blockers they are a personal choice, i went on meds and now regret it as they never did my anxiety one ounce of good. Meds can mask a symptom of anxiety, but the habit is still there underlying and will eventually find another way of presenting itself. My meds never helped my anxiety at all, infact they gave me derealisation at bed time, racing heart and giddiness- only now im down to a tiny dosage can my body tollerate them. I cant speak for beta blockers, i know they have helped others- just do what is right for you :)

  98. Fiona Says:

    Hi Ladies can i just say i agree with the ‘time of the month’ problem. My anxiety is much less than it was when it first kicked in a year ago but i do think that the week before i do feel symptoms more and i’m more sensitive to them. I don’t let it concern me though as i know pms symptoms are there with or without anxiety. For example when you cry at tv adverts and the likes!!!

  99. Carol R Says:

    Hi Everyone

    I have not been on this site for a few months now. I was doing really well with the help of my therapist and have reduced my meds. Then three weeks ago, out of the blue it came back to haunt me. I got the usual symptoms of nervous stomach, legs like jelly and lots of dp. I am very emotional at the moment and have a silly obsession that i am in love with someone else and do not love my husband. I know deep down that it is the anxiety, but why does it feel so real?. I carry on regardless of how I feel, even though I have been tempted not to go to work or out with friends. I do feel better when I am out but the anxiety still sits with me on my shoulder. I am so annoyed as I was really confident I was getting to grips with it. Close friends and family tell me I am much better than I was, but it really does not feel that way to me. Think I will always be like this!
    Any advice would be much appreciated. Thanks.

  100. Fiona Says:

    Carol its a setback nothing more nothing less. A set backs is when all those horrible feelings come rushing back even ones you haven’t had for ages or sometimes even new ones. Setbacks will happen…. fact! Its how you deal with the set back that matter and leads you to the full recovery. Just now you are anxious and scared of your syptoms whether its the scary thought or the phsyical feelings and yes they can be overwhelming but you must try and relax to them, not worry and let the set back run its course…. it will leave when you stop fearing the symptoms as they have no fuel. Setbacks are required to recover because when it gets to the stage that the symptoms have no effect on you…. well you have recovered. Just now that may seem like a distant memory but when you where feeling good anxiety seemed like a distent memory also. Stop fighting the symptoms, stop taking them so seriously and wait for them to pass as they always do! Once they pass you will stronger and closer to recovery than before.
    Hope this helps
    Fiona xxxx

  101. lisa Says:

    hey paul hows the training going? im off ten pin bowling today, its kids half term this week so keeping them entertained!! nice and sunny here today, which is unusual as it normally rains half term. i might just squeeze in a kfc ..sorry candie hehe :-) are your kids on half term scarlet??

  102. Carol R Says:

    Thanks Fiona. Your reply really helps. I have to look at this setback in a totally different light. Much appreciated.

    Carol
    xxx

  103. Scarlet Says:

    Hiya Lisa,

    Nope they don’t have half term over here, prolly becasue they had a month off in December, they are still catching up. 10 pin bowling sounds good, I used to love it…. ooo and kfc, yumeee!!! Did you celebrate your big day then????

    ____________________

    Carol,

    Like Fiona said, it’s a setback, and you need to learn to not overanalyse your thoughts and fear them which you are still doing (for eg. your thought about being in love with someone else, you should be dismissing this thought as rubbish). You can learn to do this by allowing the thought in, accepting it, but not taking it any further, and the sooner you grasp this concept again, the sooner the setback will go, and you’ll be in the position you were a few weeks back. Once the fear has totally gone from all your thoughts, the anxiety has nothing left to cling too and you will be recovered. Ride out this setback, and do not stop going to work, carry on with your normal daily living.. It will soon disappear from your shoulder.

  104. Paul David Says:

    hey paul hows the training going? im off ten pin bowling today, its kids half term this week so keeping them entertained!! nice and sunny here today, which is unusual as it normally rains half term. i might just squeeze in a kfc ..sorry candie hehe are your kids on half term scarlet??

    Hi Lisa, With all the snow I have only just got back into running, it set me back two weeks but no way was I going ice skating. Just kept up by doing 5 a side football and squash. Also I have found a vibe cycle at my local sports centre which I start on Monday. Its cycling to music and looks like fun.

    Kfc’s please don’t mention any nice food, I am trying to lose a stone before the run and its tough lol. Porridge for breakfast, fruity for dinner and then a warm tea and no beer. My cooker actually broke down yesterday, car is cutting out all the time, everything is going kerput and looks like I will have to replace them both, great just after xmas hey.

    Well happy birthday Lisa, you kept that very quiet. No more drunk pics on fbook as I will have to put them on the pics page this time!

  105. John s Says:

    I was just wondering how Candie, Scarlet, Lisa or whoever got over the inward thinking and being aware of your condition. I am coping better and I am off to scotland tomorrow from Yorkshire but being constantly aware of what im thinking is very frustrating. I went out last night to watch the football and i had a good time but i was still constantly aware of my thinking. I feel like il never be able to just let go again and lose myself in conversation. Its frustarting me more than anything, its not disturbing me. Any posts back would be appreciated
    Thanks John s

  106. andrew Says:

    Candie,

    Yes, you’re about my one time panic attack during the night that scared the heck out of me and ever since I developed a fear about going to sleep and waking up with an anxiety attack. I’ve had a couple more attacks after that but nothing recently. I’ve somewhat gotten over my fear of panic attacks. The main problem now are the palpitations. The palps some nights don’t bother me and some nights they do. I get so frustrated with them because after I get them it takes me a while to fall back to sleep. It is my thoughts about them that I have to learn to change, but it is so hard to do that. When I get nervous or anxious the first thing that goes is my heart no matter what the situation is, so that’s why it is so hard to get over this hurdle…

  107. Candie Says:

    Oh here she goes again teasing me with the KFC shame on you Lisa, i hope you feel guilty eating it lol.

    John, the way to lose any symptom of anxiety is to give it free reign. By that i mean let it go wherever it wants, dont try to control it- dont worry about it been there. I actually like getting some symtoms now as i can think to myself ya know what thats not so bad and i can clearly see where i went wrong before. Theres nothing wrong with checkin in as its a habit of anxiety, what is wrong is working yourself up about the fact your doing it. Trust me on this one, Paul couldnt even have conversations as his DP was so bad, so if he can move on from that i think losing the habit of watching yourself should be a breeze if you give your body space to recover.

  108. Carol R Says:

    Thanks Scarlett. It is so nice when people reassure you that you are not going crazy. I too am aware of my thinking all the time like John says, and it drives me mad. I had a spell a few weeks ago when I really thought I had cracked it and was recovered. I could deal with all the stupid and obsessive thoughts and was so looking forward to coming off the meds for good. I have even agreed to fly to portugal in the summer and I fear flying more than anything. Why does that good time seem so long ago? I look forward to feeling like that again one day! Thanks to everyone who has replied to my posts.

    Take care
    Carol
    xxx

  109. john s Says:

    Im going to Portugal in the summer Carol, just think, we could pass each other (unlikely i know) and we wouldnt have a clue! :)

    Thanks for posting back Candie

    Im understanding that the key is to take away the fear we have of all our symptoms and I have done to a degree with my symptoms even if occasionally the fear rears its ugly head. Its bound to after two years of not really understanding which is why I guess i never recovered. Which is why I understand that PAUL could never suffer again. He has absolutely no fear of these symptoms (because of his knowledge of them) so if they show up again for no apparent reason, they wouldnt phase him and he would just carry on with normal living and they would subside. Which makes me think that if people were made more aware of this condition (prior to suffering) and had knowledge and understanding about it then they wouldnt perhaps get so drenched in it because they wouldnt fear it. If no-one knew what a cold/flu was and they then picked up one they would obviously be very confused by it and might get very worried and stressed about it. Im beginning to understand how important knowledge is. We cant make ourselves not fear these symptoms straight away but the fear is gradually subsiding . As soon as the fear goes the symptoms will! I hope what Im trying to get across makes sense. I feel more normal when Im on here talking about anxiety lol :)

  110. Scarlet Says:

    “I was just wondering how Candie, Scarlet, Lisa or whoever got over the inward thinking and being aware of your condition. I am coping better and I am off to scotland tomorrow from Yorkshire but being constantly aware of what im thinking is very frustrating. I went out last night to watch the football and i had a good time but i was still constantly aware of my thinking. I feel like il never be able to just let go again and lose myself in conversation. Its frustarting me more than anything, its not disturbing me. Any posts back would be appreciated
    Thanks John s

    Hey John, The inward thinking can linger a while, as it’s become a habit, but as you get on with ‘normal’ living it will disappear in time. I remember reaching a stage where you are and where a lot of the people are on this blog, and it seemed to last a while, but it’s bearable. To be honest it’s not something I can pinpoint, as one day I was aware of my thinking and one day I wasn’t… it was a slow transition, I hardly noticed the improvement until it had disappeared.

    When I was at this stage though, I remember I used to play a game, where I would cut off all thoughts as they entered my mind, and not analyse anything… and this helped enormously with the mind chatter, because I was able to quieten my mind in the process. Also getting out and about with other folks and watching a movie, doing brain-taxing things that would distract me for a while helped.

  111. Shirley D Says:

    Andrew,
    Like Candy says, you are obsessing too much over the fuel that feeds the fire.
    You are getting great advice on this website, i only found this site when i was really at the end of my tether and didn’t know which way to turn.
    You must allow the advise on here to guide you. The more you question, the more it becomes an obsession and you are not concentrating on getting better. the more you question the more the anxiety builds up and you are back in that viscious circle.
    You fear going to bed (like i did once) because of what can happen. This morning my head was trundling on and i just said to myself – well carry on if you like but and then i was instantly asleep.
    No i didn’t suffer headaches, but again that is because you are fighting against the thoughts.
    We all suffer with palpitations to some degree in any stressful situation so you are suffering nothing different to normal – it’s just because you have noticed it more that it’s become more accentuated.
    As i said before, listen to some music at night time if it gives you something else to concentrate on, i have it on really quietly and then whilst you are straining to hear what the song is, you will fall asleep, try to remember the lyrics to the song before the artist sings it. Just distract yourself as much as you can.

  112. Scarlet Says:

    “Which is why I understand that PAUL could never suffer again. He has absolutely no fear of these symptoms (because of his knowledge of them) so if they show up again for no apparent reason, they wouldnt phase him and he would just carry on with normal living and they would subside.”

    John this is so true, a few weeks back I had a terrible row with my husband and didn’t sleep all night, and then next day I had DP like symptoms due to lack of sleep and chewing over what was said during the row. Now had I been suffering anxiety, this would have half scared me to death and I would be caught in a DP loop no doubt… but, I went to KFC with the kids, had a normalish day doing family activities… and I accepted the DP/snappiness as being a tired mind from the lack of sleep and all the overanalysing that I had done. The next day it had gone. When you are fully recovered there’s no fear of any of the old symptoms/thoughts…ever.

    “Which makes me think that if people were made more aware of this condition (prior to suffering) and had knowledge and understanding about it then they wouldnt perhaps get so drenched in it because they wouldnt fear it. ”

    This is so true… but A&D is so stigmatised that when it happens to them people hide their symptoms for fear of being called mentally unstable/mentally ill. It could most certainly be nipped in the bud if the knowledge was out there and accessible to everyone.

    and John yes you make perfect sense. 😉

  113. Carol R Says:

    Hi John

    We are going to Luz. Where are you going?Would be funny if we were there at same time.!

    You make so much sense Scarlett, but it is so hard when you feel rubbish. You think you will never be free, but the more it bothers you, the worse you feel. Thanks for the advice.

    Carol
    x

  114. April Says:

    Hi, I have a question about overstimulation. I know that some of you feel that exercise is good while in the anxiety condition, but what about strenuous exercise? Whenever I do strenuous exercise, ie. sledding with the kids two days ago and climbing a steep hill many many times. Now for the past two days I have felt really fatigued and thoughts seem to stick more than usual. Also, how much sugar is too much sugar during the day? I don’t eat or drink anything with caffeine, but I do have a sugar tooth and tried real hard this past weekend to not indulge, but I did. I think the too much sugar and the strenuous exercise really took it’s toll on me. What is the best thing for me to do?
    I’ve decided to not continue with the counseling as I don’t feel like I want to continue talking about how I’m doing and trying to come up with refute statements to my thoughts. I now know why my thoughts keep coming and now I just need to keep implementing the acceptance and be patient. And I really don’t feel that tackling underlying factors will help me at the moment as they just bring up more fear.
    Anyway, sorry that got so long, since I don’t talk to a counselor anymore, this blog is my only outlet. I’m so glad it is here:)
    Thanks so much, April

  115. john s Says:

    Thanks for the post back Scarlet. Im sure that soon I will lose my habit of fearing the symptoms and then things will really start together.
    Im going to be golfing in the Algarve, its a stag do so I’ll probably have to start drinking again a couple of months before I go to prepare myself! Im hopeful i will be alot better then but Im not expecting to be recovered either. Small steps
    xx

  116. john s Says:

    That end bit was for Carol R, sorry I forgot to put that bit in
    John s

  117. andrew Says:

    Shirley,

    I hear what you are telling me. And yes I am getting great advice on here. With time I will be back to normal. I am so much better than when all this started. My day goes by pretty normally – except there are moments when I think about my anxiety. My sleep issue will resolve on its own in time. My main complaint is the palps – they are so annoying. But you’re right, I have to let it go and don’t let it bother me. The more I question it the more it will be a problem. Thanks again for your support.

  118. Shirley D Says:

    Andrew,
    Yes, your sleep pattern will resolve itself, you say so many positive things in your posts which is great.
    I seem to get bad palpitations on a Saturday afternoon for some reason, at one time i would have thought and wondered ‘what is it doing that for?’ Why, why, why. now, if i notice it, i treat it with a pinch of salt and usually mention it to whoever is in the room listening and then get on with what i was doing. It’s soon gone.

  119. lisa Says:

    oh scarlet you like kfc too..lol!!!, we did burger king today as it was nearer to the bowling cos the kids were starving. there is more pictures paul on fb..lol :-) , john s, my inward thinking hasnt gone, it still lingers dont get me wrong but im not afraid of it, i dont worry or obsess or question it anymore, its been a habit for a long time so i know it will just go in time..it chattered today whilst i was getting dressed, eating my breakfast, playing ten pin bowling, shopping in matalan but i notice and accept it now and carry on as normal.i know its not easy but just let it,the more fuel you give it the more it chatters. ignore it and it eventually goes, mine just hovers in the back ground now, eventually it will pass in its own time.this time last year it was unbearable,listening, worrying about it, fighting it, argueing with it ,now i couldnt care less, its just changing your attitude which breaks the habit :-) hope that helps .

  120. Kamini Says:

    Hi Candie/Scarlet…

    Went to the gynae… Just to let you know, i am going to have a baby girl. I wan’t be much on this blog, as i want to take a break from anxiety. This blog is great, but over dependence on it can lead you to downfall again, as it has done for me. I feel I am back to square one, but anyway i am accepting it.

    I know i have taken too much information in my mind and got confused. I am now giving my mind some time to digest the information. Its really hard sometimes to practice acceptance, but this is the way forward.

    Ok you all.

    Bye.

  121. Scarlet Says:

    Congratulations Kamini,

    I think it’s a good idea to take a break from anxiety and reading blogs/googling for a while.. Paul advocates it as being necessary for recovery.

    You are not back to square one hun, but you are pregnant and it’s difficult to do normal everyday activities at the best of time when you are carrying a baby, and it’s an anxious time even for those not with A&D. You probably have too much time on your hands to ruminate. Try and get some puzzle books and crosswords, novels, other reading material.. I always found that this helped,, and if you can take your reading material outside in the lovely weather (which you probably can) all the better. …

    Take care

    xxx

  122. Candie Says:

    Cogratulations Kamini, a little girl how lovely :) Bet you are really excited. As Scarlet says you wont be back to square one… just give yourself time and rest as pregnancy hormones can play havoc with your mood etc anyway!

  123. Nicole Says:

    Hi again,
    I have read about this symptom several times, but it is one that is hanging on with me and I am starting to get slightly concerned about it. My emotions feel quite flat regarding my husband and a little with my kids, although with them I feel more in touch. I find this particular symptom upsetting because my husband and I have always had a very close relationship and I used to feel so close with him and really “in love”. There are moments when it comes back fleetingly, but I really would like it to stay, but I know clinging to any emotional state is recovery no-no. I am working on allowing this and practicing patience and trying to have faith. But I just thought that I would enquire to see if anyone else has gone through this and experienced a return of their feelings. Thanks, have a great week-end!

  124. Scarlet Says:

    Yes, Nicole, although not with my husband but with my baby, as I had PND. I was numb for the first year, and had no feelings whatsoever towards him, and I convinced myself I didn’t love him.. but slowly when I got to grips with acceptance, and non-avoidance of normal everyday things and the cutting off of thoughts before analysing them, slowly I got glimpses of the real me (like you are saying above), and these days I can say that I absolutely love my baby with all my heart…. your feelings will come back for your hubby when you don’t dwell on the way you are feeling… let it be and accept the numbness/lack of emotion for the moment…

    x

  125. Candie Says:

    Hi Nicole

    I felt like this at times too, but its anxiety dampening your emotions as your mind will be so tired. Mine was about my fiance, i new i loved him but felt emotionally drained and flat. Its completely gone now though and im back to thinking and feeling the world about him! Dont worry about it, its a natural feeling with anxiety.

  126. Nicole Says:

    Thanks Candie and Scarlet,
    It helps to know that others identify with this disturbing lack of emotion.
    One of my Mom’s sayings as I grew up was “let it be” so I will do just that; in fact I am pretty good at floating past most emotional states now but I just needed to know that this one will pass eventually as it involves my family.
    I keep thinking that I am sooo close to recovery and then something else pops up, but I guess that is just the way it goes. Frustrating though.
    Have a relaxing week-end, Nicole

  127. Dave M Says:

    Paul, I would just like to say once again…

    Thank you for setting this blog up and taking your time out to help us out and talk to us.

    You know as someone who went through anxiety that a helping hand from someone who has been in your shoes is really really nice to have. So many people just try to turn anxiety help into a money making scam. You are a good person for this.

  128. sasha Says:

    Hi scarlet & Nicole…
    I too have the same feelings as Nicole had described… i had moments of the real me ..but again , moments of numbness creeps in… As nicole said I’m a person who is very fond of socialising and meeting people which gives me loads of energy.and when you cannot do that it frustrates you a lot..But as Scarlet said I just go ahead with moments of oddness during the conversation.
    I’m following Scarlet’s advice..If you are scared of any situations do more of it..
    As nicole said even i feel emotionally flat…as in I dont feel anything..And I used to feel bad about why I dont feel any emotion towards my dear and near ones I used to get easily irritated.I knew before this condition i was a very loving understanding and caring person and a very confident person. As people who have recovered have written in the posts that these are stepping stones to recovery i have trained my mind to not analyse on how i feel and get over it .. Praying for all who is recovering.. Thanks Scarlet for your reassurances, Lets Hope nicole we overcome the state of not feeling anything emotionally in due course …I can empathise with you.

  129. Shirley D Says:

    Dave M,
    Yes i too agree with your post. Without this site i would not be where i am today. no doubt i would have dealt with the anxiety in my own way but it was like an angel was sat on my shoulder the day i discovered this site. I read on and on avidly taking in all the details, page after page of information and even a friendship page. It allowed me to release tears that i couldn’t release when i read the things that related to me.

  130. Scarlet Says:

    “Lets Hope nicole we overcome the state of not feeling anything emotionally in due course …I can empathise with you.”

    Hi Sasha you will, promise you… just go with the flow and allow the numbness to be there…

    Lovely day

    x

  131. Ben Says:

    Oh well, another week and another setback. This one has really been quite hard though, where as the others were not as bad. I feel completely back at square one at the moment and very down.

    I guess this is to be expected as otherwise it wouldn’t be called a setback and we wouldn’t talk about them so much on here! I know what I need to do, its just a case of accepting regardless how bad I feel and ignoring the overriding temptation to wallow and question all the symptoms etc.

  132. Claire W Says:

    Hi everyone

    Well I went for my massage the other day & it was lovely, she concetrated on my spine & head area where the nerves can be found using aromatherapy oils & she was most pleased when I said that I knew it was not going to be a quick fix but, a treat none the less. I floated out of the treatment room & it was a nice break.
    Since I last wrote the physical effects have reduced even more which is great, the tingling, tummy knots & tight chest are still there but, I let them in & they go off pretty quickly, it’s great not being scared anymore. I still have the thoughts which again come & go I think they bother me more now so that’s my next project. I’ve been watching anything & everything that I may have previously avoided.
    Because of my massage I didn’t go Spinning this week, Paul I think thats Vibe Cycle in your case. It is fab we have a dark studio with disco lights & load music! It’s tough going & you have real up’s & downs during the class but, you feel great when you’re done & it burns upto 2000 calories!!!
    I am abit confused when Candie & Scarlet talk about still having anxious feelings, is this because you are not fully recovered? Or simply because you no longer fear the feelings? Will they always be around even when I fully recover? Sorry I’m having abit of a doubtful day, too many thoughts & what if’s.
    I’m not trying to rush things & I’m making lots of plans anxiety or no anxiety. I have also really cut down on my Coca Cola & Chocolate intake & am drinking more water & eating yogurts & getting plenty of sleep. I guess every little helps (without sounding like a supermarket commercial).
    Anyway I’m babbling again, thanks for this blog it’s nice to have a look at how everyone’s doing.

  133. Candie Says:

    Hi Claire, when i talk about having anxious feelings i mean because i am recovering, not fully recovered- however i think what Scarlet talks about is past tense feelings of anxiety, as i know she has been recovered for well over a year now.

    If you can let any anxiety thoughts or feelings be there and not try to change it, eventually your nerves and mind will respond correctly and not over react as you have learnt new ‘good habits’ which over write the anxiety habit. Thats what acceptance is, its about staying in the moment with the anxiety and not entertaining the other possibilities or fears- just floating past them and dismissing any suggestions of perceived threat. It can be a daunting thing to put yourself on the front line like that, but a very rewarding experience that will help you recover. The more you practice these new habits, the more you will free yourself of your anxieties.

  134. sasha Says:

    Hi Scarlet & Candie..

    i dont feel great at the moment which is to be expected on the way to recovery..But my worry is I live with other people who are not aware of my condition. They assume my low profile attittude is because of other reasons like something to do with them and i feel so helpless and sad that i’m being tested each moment. And i had to make them feel its nothing to do with them . I’m in a condition wherein I cant tell I have these odd moments or this condition that drains my energy and make me feel depressed nor can I sit peacefully thinking that let them think what they want about me if I dont seem to be happy or getting engaged in the conversation. Hence it becomes an effort to make myself into the group each time. Please help..
    I know I’m on my way to recovery as i had moments of real me unlike before but these situations makes me ‘act’ normal because people are watching me and making their own reasons of why I act that way . Thats really efecting my way of acepting however odd i feel…i try to be cautious and pretend Im ok.

    In a way its right trying to feel that we are ok faking it…that really helps you join the group..but during the conversation unknowingly you check yourself whether you are doing ok. I find it hard to break the loop, especially since i was a person who was very confident in interacting with people and that was one of my very interesting activities…socialising..and i knew I was good at it… But when this condition took me over i feel…that i cant engage in a conversation…i know i’m saying the same old thing again… I’m trying..
    What scarlet said when thoughts come just switch it off and do something automatically mind chatter stops but sometimes I dont know what to think about and i jump from one topic to another without any relation people listening to me will be wondering what i’m speaking…everything becomes analytical…Pls help with some advices…this place is such a boon to people like us who cannot turn to anyone because no one understands the way we think or the way we feel…
    Thanks alot…

  135. Emma Says:

    I just wanted to leave a quick note to say everything that has been said on here is true. Just over a year ago I had a breakdown and was initally worried I would be suffering with anxiety for the rest of my life, in fact most websites I came across before I found this site stated it would be something I would have to learn to live with.

    This site has ‘saved me’. I haven’t taken any medication, I have (fortunately) not taken any time off work and have done everything that has been said on here. I ignored the thoughts (yes, it is hard at first, but they do slowly disappear – it just takes time for the body to heal), I just let them be there…and they have now pretty much gone. I still get the odd thought that comes back very occasionally, however I know this is me thinking about things, however the main thing that is different is that I now know how to cope with the feelings/thoughts if they ever return.

    Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. I don’t know what I would have done without the information on this site.

    All the best, E.

  136. Scarlet Says:

    Emma,

    Lovely to hear of your progress. No-one has to live with anxiety for the rest of their lives, we are living proof.. I think amyone who comes across this site can recover 100%. The information is all here.

    ________________________

    Hi Claire,

    “am abit confused when Candie & Scarlet talk about still having anxious feelings, is this because you are not fully recovered? Or simply because you no longer fear the feelings? Will they always be around even when I fully recover? Sorry I’m having abit of a doubtful day, too many thoughts & what if’s.”

    I am fully recovered, and don’t have an anxiety condition any more… but I’m a mum and a wee bit of anxiety comes with the
    territory 😉 .. but only important stuff and it’s short lived, and not the same as before, because my underlying anxiety has totally gone… I live my life like someone who never suffered at all. So no the feelings will not always be around.. and you won’t live your life with anxiety… not at all.

    _______________________

    Sasha back to you soon.

  137. Scarlet Says:

    Claire,

    I read what I wrote above and perhaps I contradicted myself a wee bit. The anxiety I am talking about with my kids, is just odd worries and nothing more, not something I dwell upon…. it’s not like what you are suffering at the moment.. Hope this makes sense, as I am cooking dinner at the same time as writing this….

    x

  138. candie Says:

    Hi Sasha, the key to this is not letting it get you down if people find how you come across as odd- so what. Dont pressure yourself to appear happy as larry just because people are wondering if something is up- sure give it ya best shot to make the most out of situations but go into them with a whatever attitude. You dont owe everyone an explanation because you feel a bit crap. My take on faking it to make it is that if you go into a situation and feel really bad and anxious so be it, just take what enjoyment you can and as scarlet says model the behaviour you want to acheive. There should be no pressure on yourself to be a certain way, just go with it and make the best out of the situations. Just think of when your friends are in a bad mood, they dont consider how it makes you feel do they- they dont really care as there too absorbed in themself…. so cut yourself some slack and put yourself first, people are not going to lose sleep if you dont come across super upbeat and happy.

    Emma that is brilliant news :) Its good when people come back and tell us how well they are doing, really pleased for you.

  139. andrew Says:

    Shirley,

    Did you ever get a major palpitation after coming off your beta blocker? I stopped taking the beta blocker because I thought I was doing much better and wanted to come to terms with the palpitations without depending on the beta blocker. Last night I had one of the worst palpitations; it so intense and it took much longer to settle down. I thought maybe it was because I had stopped taking the medication. I only took 5mg only at night, which isn’t much. I was just wondering. Although it was really intense I didn’t let it bother me, but it was pretty scary.

  140. Scarlet Says:

    Sasha,

    Candie has put is brilliantly… nothing more to add, except you don’t need to tell those around you anything about your anxiety, just go with the flow and practice faking it until it becomes the norm… and it will do, it’s only a matter of time, the self-checking will become less and less, and don’t worry if you jump from topic to topic, I found that most folks do anyway, probably they haven’t even noticed, it’s just you being too hard on yourself. I questioned some folks when I’d recovered, and they weren’t aware I’d had anxiety/depression at all… I faked it so well 😉

    Also just wanted to also say Sasha, cut yourself a bit of slack now and again, becasue there’ll be days when you just can’t be bothered, and no doubt on those days/moments you won’t always be able to implement what we are saying here… it goes like that, let those days be and move on. :-)

  141. Shirley D Says:

    Andrew,
    Half an hour ago my heart had the thumps, i paid it some attention for 2 seconds and then moved onto typing some more – feeling gone!
    I also had major palpitations yesterday, walking up a damned steep hill on the Malverns, i once had palpitations coming round from a dream because it had been scary, it’s all to do with the body encountering adrenilin, all the same sensation, one was exertion, the other was me thinking about going to work tomorrow.
    Yes i had major palpitations after i came off the beta blockers, so yes they don’t just go away like that, because you then stand alone, so you must learn to deal with it.
    Sadly, they are a part of the anxiety but if you pay them attention they will continue to dominate. I’m glad to read that you paid it no attention – though you must have, to feel that you had to mention it. Do you see what i mean?
    So the more often you can ignore them the better. (Hope i don’t sound too harsh)!

  142. Christina Says:

    My biggest problem is…I can’t sit still. I try to do things I normally would, but I can’t even relax around people sometimes. I’m ok when I am out, but I had a friend visit and spend the night a few weeks ago, and the next morning when I woke up really anxious I was just basically counting down the hours until she left because I felt like I was going to blow up. It’s just so hard especially being around people who know “the real you” and you don’t feel like yourself around them and can’t enjoy anything. I just feel like this alternate version of myself. It’s not new to me because I’ve been here twice before, but god, when will it end. I do whatever I can to live like I normally do, but there are just some things that make it so hard. I do make plans, or try to, but it all feels fake.

  143. andrew Says:

    Shirley,

    Not harsh at all. Sometimes I can’t help but ask “why”? It’s just aggravating. I feel like I am 90% better than when I first started, but the last 10% is soooooooo hard to get to. I know I shouldn’t worry and question.. and I know it’s just adrenalin and all that, but I just hate that I still wake up and get palpitations. Last night’s episode was so intense I couldn’t believe how fast my heart was racing. And then I start worry about my blood pressure. Sucks. The only thing that I can think of is that deep down I am still holding on to some anxiety and fear that I am not able to let go yet… And letting go is hard because it leaves me feeling vulnerable I feel like I have to put my guard up.

  144. Shirley D Says:

    Yep, i still feel very vulnerable, but i will still say that i am completely recovered – in my mind i am completely recovered – even though i have the odd symptoms. But it’s just the way that i have learnt to handle it all. I did feel strange on my road to recovery because i felt lost without the symptoms.
    I can sympathise with your racing heart – it’s horrible, it seems like everyone can hear it. My blood pressure is on the lower side of normal and the palpitations have done me no harm, so please rest assured that it’s going to do things to you regarding your blood pressure.
    We probably all hold on to some anxiety, it’s not going to be gone completely but it’s up to you to bury it deep enough that it doesn’t bother you any more.
    I get anxiety when a large nasty dog runs towards me, i get anxiety at travelling but it’s just a little bit not as it was last year – all consuming.

  145. Nicole Says:

    Hi there,
    A commercial is on from the Oscars and I have a moment to write.
    I wanted to let Scarlet and Candie know that I have been feeling better about the emotional numbness. Since my last post and your response, I have felt more grounded in the knowledge that my love is still there for my amazing husband.
    I do need some wise words though on this set-back. I know that it is hormonally related but I feel that I make it worse by expecting it to come then fighting, doubting, and feeling shame that I am again back in this place after learning so much. This one feels rather intense and I am really trying to have some faith but I am finding it hard not to dip into the doubt and low feelings. It is all so hard some times. Should it be this hard?
    Sorry to be so negative, any response would be appreciated. Nicole

  146. andrew Says:

    I was just wondering for those who have a tendency or habit of thinking about anxiety too much or obsessing over it, should we make a conscious effort to not think about it? I know we are to not fight it and let it be… but for instance when a thought comes to mind should be just ignore it and not give it any thought? I tend to ruminate and it doesn’t do me any good, it wears my mind and nerves out. I hope that by doing this eventually the habit of obsessing will break.

    Shirley,

    During the day I don’t get palpitations and if I did I guess I’m not aware of them. Because I get most of my palpitations when I am in bed, I can feel my anxiety level move up as bedtime draws near. I know it’s just my body and subconscious mind playing with my fears. I need to stop going over and over in my head trying to figure this out… so I think I should consciously try to avoid going down that thinking process of rationalizing. What do you think?

  147. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Nicole,

    “This one feels rather intense and I am really trying to have some faith but I am finding it hard not to dip into the doubt and low feelings. It is all so hard some times. Should it be this hard?”

    Setbacks are hard Nicole, and they can be very intense sometimes, even near the end of recovery, especially since you have had periods of feeling fine, you can get more disheartened.. but, you will come through the other side of this one as well, and be stronger for it. Just carry on with normal daily activities and let the anxious feelings be there with you. As you are recovering, you will feel worse during that time of the month for a while and then this will subside as well. You are following the pattern that I myself did… ride it out hun, it gets better.

    ________________________

    Hi Andrew,

    “I was just wondering for those who have a tendency or habit of thinking about anxiety too much or obsessing over it, should we make a conscious effort to not think about it? I know we are to not fight it and let it be… but for instance when a thought comes to mind should be just ignore it and not give it any thought? I tend to ruminate and it doesn’t do me any good, it wears my mind and nerves out. I hope that by doing this eventually the habit of obsessing will break.

    The idea is to let the thoughts come in, as they are not under your control (i.e. subconscious) but do not feel the need to analyse them any further than the initial thought, and get yourself into an anxious loop. It takes practice, but really does work, and when you are able to control your thoughts like this, the element of fear which is keeping your anxiety alive disappears.

  148. Shirley D Says:

    You have given me all the answers, so try to put them in to practise.
    Like i said before, put the radio on or wear your personal stereo headphones in bed and listen to something else – not your mind rattling, it’s just trying to trick you.

  149. Nicole Says:

    Thanks Scarlet,
    It is so easy to become self analytical and very critical while there is so much inward thinking. I have studied anxiety almost exclusively for the past few years so that my inner dialogue is just a mish mash of self help statments that lose their meaning when I am full of adrenalin! This is why I get so frustrated with not getting better. Obviously, I have become way too concerned with recovery. In the back of my mind though, I have a strong willingness to move on, and I will because I have seen improvement. It just those bloody hormones, ARGH! I envy men sometimes. Have a great day, Nicole

  150. Michelle Says:

    Hi everyone.. I took a couple weeks off because I was doing better, and wanted to get my mind off anxiety. I had a great couple of weeks, except the first 4 when I cut back on my meds. Mentally I’m feeling better and better all the time, but the tingling in my forehead remains. I am trying to come to terms that the tingling is one symptom I may have for the rest of my life.. as it’s constant, day and night– even when I feel no anxiety. It does get worse when I feel more anxious though.

    Yesterday while playing a game on my computer, I got a wave of anxiety wash over me. But insead of saying to myself, “Oh no, it’s back,” I tried my best to ignore it, and it subsided! Before I found this site, I would have spiraled downward again. So I think I’m on the right track. A bit disappointed that recover takes so darn long though.

  151. samantha Says:

    hi everyone

    i havent been around lately i have been doing really well and can see complete recovery in the horizon but at the moment i am feeling very strange i will try and ddescribe it

    i feel really detached again and kind of trapped in my own head if that makes sense all my other symptoms have gone i just feel i am so near to recovery but yet so far and this feeling of detachment scares me i know it shouldnt its like i have hit a brick wall

    any ideas anyone?

    samantha x

  152. john s Says:

    Wow, my trip to Dundee was tough! Felt overwhelmed at times but glad I went. Constantly thought about my condition and then got annoyed with myself. But i forgave myself for fighting. Its like im in a setback and being back to square 1 like Paul says but im just floating through it.
    Anyways, i was reading some old post on depersonalisation and there are alot from TARMO and others who dont post anymore. Are those guys recovered now?
    When i read about people recovering fro dp and sayin its like being let out of prison I cant imagine how good that feeling must be. I cant wait for that special day when I realise. Though im not demanding it!
    John S

  153. Scarlet Says:

    Samantha/Michelle,

    You are both doing great.

    Samantha,
    The feeling of detatchment can happen right up until end. I think only for the last 5% or so is when it disappeared for me completely…. You haven’t hit a brick wall, just accept this lack of emotion and carry on as normal, it goes fully when your fear for anxiety goes.

    Michelle
    I think you are still preoccupied with the tingling by the sounds of it, and while this happens it will still remain…. You are right about recovery taking a while to shift, even when you have all the tools the last bit can be difficult to shake off, but it will go, and you are doing very well and most definitely on the right track.. 😉 .

    x

  154. Michelle Says:

    Yes, unfortunately I am preoccupied with the tingling. Even when it’s my only symptom left, I look for it. If I’m doing something else with my mind off it, all of a sudden my mind snaps back and says, “Yay, the tingling has subsided,” then it’s back. I try to ignore it, I really do. It doesn’t bother me nearly as much as it used to. And even if I do have it forever, at least I’m in my right mind– I will take what I can get.

    Any suggestions on how to not think about the tingling? I do have a “whatever” attitude about it, but I do notice it’s always there.

  155. Scarlet Says:

    “It doesn’t bother me nearly as much as it used to. And even if I do have it forever, at least I’m in my right mind– I will take what I can get.
    Any suggestions on how to not think about the tingling? I do have a “whatever” attitude about it, but I do notice it’s always there.”

    Michelle you are adopting the right attitude not caring about it, as it’s an annoyance more than anything, and a habit you have got yourself into checking to see if it’s there all the time. Like all the other symptoms it will subside gradually. Perhaps when a reminder that it’s still there comes into your head, say to yourself ‘hi, thanks for popping back to see me… missed you’ and see if a change in response and emotion works..

  156. Stephen Says:

    Hey scarlet,

    how have you been? Just getting back into the uni routine, but have been doing quite good laterly, i seem to have 4 or 5 good days then have a little set back or one or two days between when i feel abit bad again. Kinda in that period now and it all started from a single thought last night that randomly poped into my head and i felt a rush of anxiety and felt a little bad/not happy today. So just not letting them get me too down or anything. I hate how i feel so close to recovered and then i get this tiny little setbacks. did you get them all the way until you were recovered?

    I’ve taken pauls advice and everytime i see anything about mental health or anxiety or whatever i dont look away or run away i just keep doing what i was doing to get over the anxiety i feel when i see them. At the moment there are a few mental health commercials on tv here at the moment and i use to change the channel when they would come on. now i just sit there and watch them and let myself feel the fear and anxiety i have for them and i think its getting less and less each time. when you reached recovery did you know it like paul did? how did u feel, like did u wake up onday and u just felt it? or was it more oneday u realized i havent felt anxious or bad for ages and i know i wont agian? sorry about all the questions, is bit is very confusing for me, its like im normal but not quiet there yet at times

    hope all is good
    stephen

  157. Shirley D Says:

    Sorry, my last post should have been for Andrew.

  158. brett m Says:

    Hi everybody
    I posted a while back about having derealisation for 15 years , I recently saw a pschytriast in sydney ,Australia who is well known and has had his own practice for over 20 years , he had a look at this website and found it very positive and told me what paul is saying is spot on , i just wanted anyone on here that is doubting this site , they shouldnt and after all these years of my suffering I feel im getting better including the setbacks and i really appreciate all the positive stuff that is on here, Thanks heaps everyone

  159. sasha Says:

    hi Scarlet and Candie,
    Your words and experiences are so inspiring reassuring and consoling. I feel I am recovering as i have glimpes of real me inbetween and setbacks are to be expected.. so i go ahead with it..i’m not analysing any setbacks though my habits makes me do that i consciously divert my attention from it and faking is also a good thing to do when u feel crap…but i wonder when i will achieve that FULL recovery and lead a normal life .sometimes when someone has some issues with me , before i knew how to handle , to think of it logically. but now i get so low profile,like as if i dont know what i should do as thinking gets paralysed and it bothers me so much and i start comparing myself before and now like how i could solve any problems regarding life, relationships etc and now i get numb..and any failure gets linked to this ‘condition’. in a way its blaming on this condition for any failure rather than taking it normally before we had this problem.Pls give me some positive thoughts. I may pester u for some reassurances though i have the right information.Pls dont get bugged with me.after all i have reached this stage just because of you guys.

  160. LORRYT Says:

    i just posted on the wrong page, silly sod that i am.

    anyway doing well, starting to see things for what they really are, and its feeling good. it feels like i have climbed a big hill and am starting to see the downward slope. i am not good with words but i am under a bit of pressure at the mo workwise as are most people isuppose what with this credit crunch ( i hate that expression), but i am not concerned about it . what is gonn happen will do , and no amount of me stressing about it is gonna change that. my bad days are not that bad any more and certainly the physical side of things has almost gone, i think, i cant say i notice em that much either!. thoughts wise well , its work in progress.

    its feeling great though , i was stood in my daughters school playground this morning and i felt like i was on top of the world, could of laughed all day , and its a feeling i used to get all the time before all this started. we are all so lucky to be here, and have what we have so lets get on and enjoy it no matter what !.

    hvae a very pink day all, and Hope that you candie are keeping wellxxxx

  161. Paul David Says:

    Great to have some positive storys here regarding Emma and Brett, also someone ementioned Tarmo spoke a lot of sense about DP a while back but no longer posts. Well Tarmo was well on his way to recovery and felt he no longer needed the help on here and was doing great the last time I spoke with him.

    After reading through a lot of posts, I think I know what my next post will be on and that is the feeling of being locked in your own mind. Sorry I am unable to post as much recently, but I am working on the updated version of my book everyday and its taking me a long time. The book is being reviewed by the largest medical organisation in America and could really open some doors and spread the word if they like it, so it is vital I get it just right and I keep swapping things around and adding bits, re-reading and changing, but it will be all worth it when it is finished.

    Also is great to see so many are doing so well, as you can see it is people who come back that say how well they are doing, they take it on board and put themselves under no pressure to feel good instantly, it takes time for the old you to come back, so don’t let impatience hold you back, progress with a few bumps along the way is fine. Only about 10% of people who have read the book come here, so that leaves 90% who just go away and read the book and I get so many positive emails on a regular basis of how well people are doing, so keep the faith.

    Paul

  162. John S Says:

    That sounds great Paul as that is really a really annoying symptom (feeling like you are locked in your own mind). Good luck with the book, its the only one that makes sense!
    I watched a film today with matthew perry (Chandler from friends) were he plays a writer who suffers with depersonalisation disorder, its called Numb. It was pretty good and I could totally relate to his symptoms. Its all about how doctors throw medication at him and he finally accepts who he is and stops trying to just get rid of the condition with a miracle drug. Although DP is no joke (i KNOW this very well!) there are still some funny moments.
    Im glad people come back to the blog and let us all know that recovery is possible for everyone. Thanks again Paul and I look forward to your post.
    John S

  163. andrew Says:

    Shirley,

    Thanks again. I am putting some things into practice. I find that it’s about breaking down my old habits of thinking too much and over analyzing. But I can say that my palpitations are less intense and even when they come I am not panicky. I am learning to go with the flow as these symptoms come.

  164. Fiona Says:

    Hi i would just like to reitterate what Lorryt has said about getting better and Shirley also. When i first found this site last May i had NO IDEA what had happened to me why i was scared of knives, full of negative thoughts, not sleeping, feeling detached, trapped in my own thoughts…. i was terrified and confused but i guarantee that recovery is possible. In fact its inevitable if you follow the advice here. So many people recover. Like Paul i never went back to the doctor after i found this site because i knew it was not something a doctor could fix with a magic pill. It takes time, patience and understanding but it does work! Its slow and steady with the inevitable ups and downs but when you really start making progress you know you have. It takes time for your nerves to heal after all the stress and worry but they definately will…… it just takes time so begin to let some of the stress go and take faith from the people who have come and gone from this website who have fully recovered.
    Have a great day all
    Fiona xxx

  165. Shirley D Says:

    Hey Paul,
    Can we all come to your book launch? Is it going to be somewhere exciting like New York?
    I hope you won’t go all ‘lovey’ and a recluse in a Los angeles mansion.
    Joking apart, i hope it brings you great rewards as you have brought us great rewards.

  166. Fiona Says:

    I just want to say to Paul congratulations on getting your book recognised. I dont think the medical profession choose to be ignorant about anxiety. They just dont have access to information that an ex-sufferer can provide and fortunately your determination to help people with anxiety has provided them with a tool to understand the condition so much better. xx

  167. Scarlet Says:

    “Pls give me some positive thoughts. I may pester u for some reassurances though i have the right information.Pls dont get bugged with me.after all i have reached this stage just because of you guys”

    LOL Sasha back to you soon, no worries about being bugged 😉 .. and you Stephen.. just busy at the moment, my husband is starting a new business (fingers crossed if it all works out) and working 16 hours a day and I’m at home LONE with 2 kids who are both shouting me for things. If I get chance I’ll be back when I get them to bed..

    x

  168. Scarlet Says:

    Just to say I found that movie ‘NUMB’ (about depersonalisation) JohnS was talking about above, FREE online… on FastPass TV (watch online movies for free)… can provide a link if Paul approves (it’s a reputable site) or just search for it yourself.. put in Fastpass tv in the browser, and search the A-Z for this movie…. I have book marked it for later.

  169. Paul David Says:

    Sure Scarlet put it up, I trust your judgement on links that suit. If you want to just put it below and I will place it in the post above for you, saves people having to look at two posts.

    Of Course you can Shirley, ill save a place for you, in fact you can take my place, you know me, I just like to stay in the background. I am hoping to get it on the shelves in the next year or so and this review could really help. No chance of me going all lovey at all, I promise. My real rewards come from helping people come through, you can’t put a price on that. I can’t look back, but I wish there was somewhere I could have gone all those years ago, life would have been so much easier.

    Thanks Fiona, It means a lot, the site and book has grown so much, far more than I ever imagined, a lot of people think it has been here a long time, but its still only 2 and half years old, the whole site will also be having a revamp after the new book is done, I am never satisfied :) I was actually helping people in my spare time when someone I was advising suggested setting a site up or writing a book to help others, I thought then, mmmm maybe I could do that, just thinking a few people a week may land there.

    And I agree with you on the doctors, I tell others anxiety really is a subject in itself, you can’t expect them to know everything about it, but I know they are trying to educate themselves more as I do have them write to me and one or two have bought the book. My own doctor said it was by far the biggest complaint he came across, hopefully the internet has brought far more awareness to the problem and things might change, even if this is just the doctor being able to pass you on to someone who can help in some way.

    Anyway I hope to do my new post in the next week or so, maybe Monday or Tuesday.

    Paul

  170. Scarlet Says:

    Thanks Paul,

    here’s the link

    http://www.fastpasstv.com/numb-2008/
    (note skip the ad if it comes up)

    Back tomorrow, lovely evening everyone

  171. Michelle Says:

    Paul.. that is such wonderful news. I know I told my psychiatrist and my therapist that your book and this website helped me more than anything could. It’s because of you that I’m better, and also why I’m coming off my meds. I think I might purchae them each a book so they can see and understad what I had such a hard time expressing to them. Neither of them had any idea what I was going through. My psych thought I had aggravated depression and wouldn’t believe me no matter how many times I told her my depression came because I was feeling so horrid, and my therapist thought it all stemmed from my childhood. They really are clueless. You really deserve some Nobel prize or something.

  172. lisa Says:

    hey paul, dont forget about your blue n pink rinse girls for your book launch :-) well done mate.

  173. Paul David Says:

    Thank you Michelle and I was the same when I went for help in the medical world, I justy seemed to get nowhere apart from ‘Try these pills’ it was very frustrating, so glad you are getting better and I am sure you will continue to make great strides.

    Lisa I seem to be having one of those weeks, yesterday my training partner and the guy I am doing the run with has pulled out as he has done his cartlidge in and can’t train or run, so it means I have to train and do the run myself, its just one of those weeks. Anyway it will all work itself out, so just got to get on.

    Glad to see you posting after your troubles, see I had not barred you lol

  174. mike Says:

    im still doing the run paul so dont worry

  175. lisa Says:

    hehe..lol, youl get there mate :-)

  176. Ben Says:

    Quick question for you all… Whilst I think I am certainly getting there with accepting the way I feel, I am starting to think I am not 100% there in terms of overall acceptance which might be holding me back a little bit. Deep down I think it still bothers me what other people think so when I am in a panicky situation I am trying to avoid letting others see me come across strange etc, which I normally manage to do. The problem is, because I am doing this I am obviously not fully accepting things as I am trying to fight the feelings in certain situations.

    Any tips/advice – I know I am getting there with this, but this bit is really difficult. Everyone perceives me as a very confident outgoing person so it is a huge shock if I even mention I am nervous/anxious about something….

    Hope the above makes sense ?!?

  177. mike Says:

    hi ben,
    been good since had 10 weeks off work last may with anxiety. put pauls great ways to the fore everything going good. having a setback at moment but just accepting and not showing any fear to these feelings.
    plus im in training to do the run with paul and i certainly wont let him dow.

  178. sasha Says:

    Hi Ben

    Even i have the same issue…i am on my way to recovery i was a very confident person before but now i try to accept the feelings going… through at times i too am worried about how people percieve me . but what i do is fake it as if ur fine …just like one among them so even if u have moments of not following what the other person says get into the conversation be more outward looking…its in our mind that we accepted that we have this condition and people will be observing us but if you think ur happy and fine even if u have moments of oddness u will get over it..snap any analysing or checking out….i know its hard but through practise and going to situations that scares u the most willl help u get over it…even i’m trying to practise it …God Bless!

  179. Scarlet Says:

    Sasha just wanted to say you are doing great.. and especially advising others, this is the way to go. When I started helping others/giving reassurance myself, this was one of the milestones in my recovery,, and I gained a lot of confidence… as Paul once said to me ‘kudos to you’ (I still remember), and this goes for you as well Sasha.

    Will get back to you on your question soon, just having a few things to sort out at home.. husband come home early and wants to offload 😉

  180. Scarlet Says:

    Hey Sasha,

    “Your words and experiences are so inspiring reassuring and consoling. I feel I am recovering as i have glimpes of real me inbetween and setbacks are to be expected.. so i go ahead with it..i’m not analysing any setbacks though my habits makes me do that i consciously divert my attention from it and faking is also a good thing to do when u feel crap…but i wonder when i will achieve that FULL recovery and lead a normal life .”

    You are doing very well, and are on the right track. Of course we can’t say how long it will take, but there will come a time when you won’t worry how long anymore. When you get to around 90% recovery you will be happy with your progress and stop being concerned about the last 10%. It works like that. Candie and a few others are at that stage, they are almost there, and not concerned any more… the last bit drags a bit, but you don’t worry yourself about it. I remember this period in my recovery very well.

    “sometimes when someone has some issues with me , before i knew how to handle , to think of it logically. but now i get so low profile,like as if i dont know what i should do as thinking gets paralysed and it bothers me so much and i start comparing myself before and now like how i could solve any problems regarding life, relationships etc and now i get numb..and any failure gets linked to this ‘condition’. in a way its blaming on this condition for any failure rather than taking it normally before we had this problem.Pls give me some positive thoughts.”

    It’s difficult to think logically when your mind still has irrational thoughts, but as you get better able to cut off your thoguhts without analysing them and they diminish, your full logic will return. Probably at them moment you still have a fear of analysing thoughts and getting anxious about them (even normal/everyday things you used to analyse before)…. and numbness takes over… I had periods like this as well, but when the fear totally disappears you will be able to analyse again without getting anxious in the least bit…… “oooo hope I made sense here, sounds a bit duff as I read it back”.
    Comparing yourself with the past has become a habit, accept the new and improved you… becasue this wil be the case when you have recovered, you just need a bit more brain re-programming 😉 , so get out and socialise more, talk to anyone and everyone, continue to fake it if you have to, and the more you practice… the more the old habits will fly out of the window.

  181. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Ben

    “Quick question for you all… Whilst I think I am certainly getting there with accepting the way I feel, I am starting to think I am not 100% there in terms of overall acceptance which might be holding me back a little bit. Deep down I think it still bothers me what other people think so when I am in a panicky situation I am trying to avoid letting others see me come across strange etc, which I normally manage to do. The problem is, because I am doing this I am obviously not fully accepting things as I am trying to fight the feelings in certain situations.”

    I remember reading an article where a doc was writing about depressed and anxious mums and telling them to ‘Fake it to Make it’ basically to hug their babies, tell them they love them, smile, tell themselves they are fine… It is actually putting on a mask… but as you start to model this new behaviour, it becomes the norm… and I found that this did work for me.

    Basically you need to go against what the anxiety is telling you to do, which is to “withdraw”… so instead, accept that you feel crappy inside/are anxious, but smile and carry on regardless… model the behaviour you wish to ultimately achieve…
    but of course don’t put pressure on yourself for others, do it only for you… so if you are lying to others (or yourself) that you are confident, so be it… the more you practice it, the sooner believing it will take over.

  182. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Stephen,

    “how have you been? Just getting back into the uni routine, but have been doing quite good laterly, i seem to have 4 or 5 good days then have a little set back or one or two days between when i feel abit bad again. Kinda in that period now and it all started from a single thought last night that randomly poped into my head and i felt a rush of anxiety and felt a little bad/not happy today. So just not letting them get me too down or anything. I hate how i feel so close to recovered and then i get this tiny little setbacks. did you get them all the way until you were recovered? ”

    4 or 5 days is great, and you are well on the way now.. no doubt about that. No worries about the odd setback/doubts.. you will have them right up to the end, it’s the nature of anxiety to be a doubting Thomas.

    “I’ve taken pauls advice and everytime i see anything about mental health or anxiety or whatever i dont look away or run away i just keep doing what i was doing to get over the anxiety i feel when i see them. At the moment there are a few mental health commercials on tv here at the moment and i use to change the channel when they would come on. now i just sit there and watch them and let myself feel the fear and anxiety i have for them and i think its getting less and less each time. ”

    This shows how far you have come. At one time I was afraid to watch Beautiful Mind and Sixth sense, and also this movie about a psychotic woman who put wet clothes in her cupboards (saw a glimse of it when I was suffering and it petrified the life out of me).. Thease days I can watch anything and have watched the above movies since, although haven’t yet watched SAW I,II, III, IV, apart from the first 5 mins…hmmm maybe i should take Pauls advice myself when it next comes on 😉

    “when you reached recovery did you know it like paul did? how did u feel, like did u wake up onday and u just felt it? or was it more oneday u realized i havent felt anxious or bad for ages and i know i wont agian? sorry about all the questions, is bit is very confusing for me, its like im normal but not quiet there yet at times”

    I thought to myself one day, hey i don’t feel afraid anymore in the least, and it happened about a month after i read Wills book and the last pieces fo anxiety slotted into place, I felt I knew everything I was meant to know to get well again, and it probably took me that long (a month) to digest it and to believe what he was saying.. but it was sort of a Eureka moment for me I have to say…

    Ask away anything that helps Stpehen, I know it’s confusing at times.. but you wil get there as well.

  183. selma Says:

    It’s been a while. Scarlet- a special thanks to you for always answering my posts! I have been doing SO well and am feeling great progress, even though some days/moments still feel like hell! Overall the trend is so good and I am analyzing and contemplating everything less and less. My biggest hurdle I’ve gotten over is that when I do have a bad day or bad hour or something, I don’t freak out and analyze and try to come up with reasons why. I just take it for what it is. That is huge for me.
    My last symptom that still haunts me are these sort of out of the blue feelings that really scare me. I’ll feel like I just get tripped up in my own thoughts and it feels so overwhelming and undescribable and give me an intense desperate feeling of no way out/almost like a depression. It’s so scary that it freaks me out for a while afterwards.
    Anyone else have this? I just need a little encouragement on that front.

    Thanks everyone!

  184. Scarlet Says:

    Oops Ben, reading my reply, don’t think i really answered your question, which was how can faking/putting on a mask to others be acceptance…. Well personally i think you are accepting that you are anxious, but over-riding what the anxiety is trying to make you do.. ie. withdraw from socialising becasue you feel strange. Acceptance to me is acknowledging that you are anxious, but getting on with living whilst modelling the behaviour you want to achieve. Perhaps i shouldn’t have put ‘Lying to yourself’ rather deceiving the anxiety might have been a better phrase.

    Oooo hope I made sense here, my brain is mush today..

    Lovely evening everyone

  185. Scarlet Says:

    Selma, will get back to you tomorrow.. my computer quota is up for this evening, as my husband is shouting me to get off here and come watch the telly with him, plus i don’t think I could write anything sensible judging by the last post ha! ha! 😉

    x

  186. Claire W Says:

    Thanks Candie & Scarlet, I too am a Mum of 2 and agree that some anxieties come from being a Mum & wanting to protect our babies!!!
    I have been doing really well recently, the physical effects are pretty mild now, they completely ceased on Sunday & at the end of the day I found myself looking for them, they didn’t come & that was great!
    I have such a lovely husband & family & I am just keeping that at the front of my mind. The thoughts come & go but, I feel so much better now that I understand. The book was a dream come true, I might even lend it to my doctor.
    I have been offered some hypnotherapy for my negative thoughts but, have turned it down for the time being as I have faith in what I have learnt.
    I’m still taking my medsbut, am dealing with 1 thing at a time.
    Lots of sleep seems to be key, does abit of the other help too? (sorry) just curious……tee hee.

  187. Christina Says:

    Does/did anyone have a real hard time in the mornings? I wake up every morning and start shaking and feel really nervous. I am usually ok on weekdays because I’m focused on going to work, and I can get distracted. However, weekends are AWFUL. Not only do the feelings stick with me, but I can’t relax, and I feel too depressed to do anything fun that I would normally want to do.

  188. Christina Says:

    Also, is there a way to get this book if you live in the US? I don’t have a paypal account either.

  189. sasha Says:

    thank you Scarlet!!!!!!

    ..your replies often gives me a boost and a positive faith towards life..your words bring in a feeling that a change could be achieved!! it would be great if you could write to us if at all there is any positive outcome after u recovered from anxiety ….person before and after anxiety..i remember Paul saying that it made him a REAL confident person than before as he had overcome the biggest hurdle that nothing can be as big as that!!

    Because we are always conscious of how others are feeling and trying to please others in the long run not realising that we are losing ourselves for giving undue importance to others. I guess once you recover you can give more importance to urself and thinking less about how others are feeling !not adjusting ur life to accomodate to others liking!

    One more thing to ask its about my mood i look and feel depressed as if there is no interesting thing to do in life it is all messed up because deep down i feel i got inflicted with this conditioning of mind…so even without any reason i feel low..any quick tips on that? like faking? to boost our mood?

    Have a great day!!

  190. lisa Says:

    christina, do you have any hobbies? plan what you would like to do on a weekend.whether its shopping, swimming, getting your hair or nails done, a girly lunch, it gives you something to look forward to and stops concentrating on how your feeling its having “me” time as you work all week.it does wonders for your mood. right iv got the kids off to school, housework done so im off for a swim now have a good day all :-)

  191. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Sasha,

    My eldest is off school today (teschers day), so I took him and my 2 year to the outdoor pool nearby, what a palava mind you, as my 2 year old wouldn’t stay in the pool and wanted to constantly run around it.. I really wanted to concentrate on my eldest as he’s learning to swim, but didn’t get chance.. So I am home now after my brief paddle and jog around the pool and about to take the kids for lunch… phew!!!!!

    “your replies often gives me a boost and a positive faith towards life..your words bring in a feeling that a change could be achieved!! it would be great if you could write to us if at all there is any positive outcome after u recovered from anxiety ….person before and after anxiety..i remember Paul saying that it made him a REAL confident person than before as he had overcome the biggest hurdle that nothing can be as big as that!!”

    Well to be honest, I’m pretty much the same as I was before, trying to juggle motherhood on my own with a workaholic husband whose never at home these days, so basically i am a single mum with no support/no family nearby.. and we have only been here for a short while so I haven’t had chance to make any good friends either,, (but I have organised to meet up with some of the other mums with kids in a few days).
    I would say that I think more deeply about things, never take things for granted and perhaps am a bit more cynical, but ultimately there’s nothing that I can or won’t do. Coming through anxiety/depression has taught me to face things head on, so I am much more stronger and able to tell folks what I think, and I don’t pussyfoot around generally, if someone makes me upset I tell them. Also i communicate better and feel I have a sixth sense when it comes to other folks issues, and of course i can spot an anxious/depressed person a mile off, like a radar I am atuned to it.

    “Because we are always conscious of how others are feeling and trying to please others in the long run not realising that we are losing ourselves for giving undue importance to others. I guess once you recover you can give more importance to urself and thinking less about how others are feeling !not adjusting ur life to accomodate to others liking!”

    I am not a people pleaser to be honest, perhaps in the past I was moreso.. but yes as you recover you generally know what’s important in life…

    “One more thing to ask its about my mood i look and feel depressed as if there is no interesting thing to do in life it is all messed up because deep down i feel i got inflicted with this conditioning of mind…so even without any reason i feel low..any quick tips on that? like faking? to boost our mood?”

    You need to treat the depression the same as the anxiety, that is to carry on as normal, no matter how you feel and it will go in time, it’s all part and parcel of the anxiety condition, and nothing seperate. Both the anxiety/depression will subside together. It’s normal to feel resentment when suffering, but I promise you this negative thinking will go eventually as you stare in the face of the anxiety/depression and go against what it is asking you to do, which is withdraw…

    “Have a great day!!

    you too, just off out now.

  192. lorryt Says:

    hi there

    well i was feeling ok till yesterday when we all had to go for a meeting at work. We learned that 14 of our jobs are to go and we will find out today. i am not at work today so am a bit in the black about things. my mind went off on one last nite about if i lose my job my hubby may loose his we may loose the house etc… and so you i ithnk you all know where in coming from.. i am not panicking as much as i would have done last year, but i am not feeling good ! but hey i guess ill just have to roll with th epunches as they say. i could sit and cry as i love my little job, but i could still have it. its this negative thinking and bad habits thing has come back today to test me. somebody put a positive on it for me !

    well done paul on your book being recognised, and so it should be, it has brought so much happiness to many people including me. i know realise hwo we get all caught up in ourselves and believe our thoughts too much.

    well only time will tell today about my job but i shall carry on with stuff and not worry too oo much !

    have a good day allxx

  193. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Selma,

    “My last symptom that still haunts me are these sort of out of the blue feelings that really scare me. I’ll feel like I just get tripped up in my own thoughts and it feels so overwhelming and undescribable and give me an intense desperate feeling of no way out/almost like a depression. It’s so scary that it freaks me out for a while afterwards.
    Anyone else have this? I just need a little encouragement on that front.”

    Paul said his next thread is going to be about the feeling of being trapped in your own mind so keep a look out next week, … all I can say is that it’s a feeling we all get when suffering, becasue we are inward thinking instead of looking outward. As you learn not to analyse irrational thoughts, you will think less like this and the fear will go… all the peices sort of fall into place towards the end and everything subsides together. oops sorry if I haven’t explained this well but my 2 year old has just piddled all over the floor and is stood next to me right now and my eldest is laughing. Better go get the mop out…

  194. Christina Says:

    Scarlet, you said coming through anxiety taught you all these things and it makes you more confident. Well, I don’t know if anyone can answer this or not…but like I mentioned before, I “thought” I came through anxiety twice before, but it’s back again and just as bad as the first 2 times. Each time I came through a bout, my life took on a whole other meaning and I became this bold person who was even more confident than before, who was willing to try anything, and had a new appreciation for life. Now that all the anxiety is back, I feel worse than ever because it’s even harder when you thought you already defeated it, but I guess I really didn’t because the fear of it coming back was always still there.

  195. mike Says:

    christina,
    its just happened to me for the 1st time a setback and im gutted it has. i am accepting and showing the feelings no respect and just making sure i dont stop doing anything i was doing when i felt 110%

  196. mike Says:

    + im in training for the run with paul and this setback is going to make me more determined to raise as much money as possible for the anxiety charity.

  197. lisa Says:

    lorry, alot of people are in the same boat, my husband got made redundant 2 weeks before christmas.you have to give yourself the positives and believe things happen for a good reason and that things will get better. i did and hubby starts new job on monday :-) we can worry ourselves silly but it always turns out right in the end x

  198. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Christina,

    “Scarlet, you said coming through anxiety taught you all these things and it makes you more confident. Well, I don’t know if anyone can answer this or not…but like I mentioned before, I “thought” I came through anxiety twice before, but it’s back again and just as bad as the first 2 times. Each time I came through a bout, my life took on a whole other meaning and I became this bold person who was even more confident than before, who was willing to try anything, and had a new appreciation for life. Now that all the anxiety is back, I feel worse than ever because it’s even harder when you thought you already defeated it, but I guess I really didn’t because the fear of it coming back was always still there.”

    I think you hit the nail on the head at the end Christina, in that the fear was always underlying and this is why it returned again. This is what you need to work on for it to disappear 100% and you do this through full knowledge and understanding of anxiety. You need to be in a position where you will never be afraid of your thoughts ever again, even when an anxiety provoking situation occurs in your life… and this can be done. I know that whatever life throws at me, I will be able to cope, this is what you need to aim for and what this site is here for. 100% recovery is completely achievable.

  199. Scarlet Says:

    Lorry/Lisa same with my hubby, lost his job last July and since then we have moved country and he’s now in the process of setting up a wee business. Worries that were around last year have completely changed tack… … this time next year we will have a whole new set of worries to contend with no doubt. I so agree with Paul when he says that worrying is the most useless emotion.

  200. Scarlet Says:

    “I feel worse than ever because it’s even harder when you thought you already defeated it, but I guess I really didn’t because the fear of it coming back was always still there.”

    Christina, meant to also say that now I am fully recovered, I no longer view anxiety/depression as an ‘it’ in that sense anymore… more of an ‘old’ state of mind, and my attitude has changed totally. I basically know what got me there in the first place and know what got me out again (one of Pauls sayings I am nicking here)… so when you have pieced together everything and there is absolutely no fear.. it will never be forgotten.. it’s like you have the tools for recovery implanted in your brain always….

    I have had so many events that have happened to me since I recovered, thigs which perhaps would have made me a nervous wreck at the height of my suffering, but I applied all the things I’d picked up along the way and lived through it. A thought will never make me fearful ever again, and I think the more you read on this site, the more you will realise that you can be this way as well… honestly this is true.

    x

  201. Shirley D Says:

    This time last year i was worrying myself sick about not having a job because i needed to get my finances together for a much looked forward to holiday. A job came along just at the right time – in fact two.
    With the current situation everyone sadly is in the same boat regarding employment, i am going to know my fate in April, but i just think – well this time it’s not my mind and body that’s going to let me down but other circumstances so if i lose my job then i will try to make the best of my time, especially if the weather is good. then hopefully things will have picked up again by next winter, basically looking on the positive side instead of the negative – it definitely does you no good.
    Fate has a very funny hand sometimes.

  202. sasha Says:

    Hi Scarlet..

    Do you mind sending me your email id? I just wanted to ask you how to deal with certain people who actually made me get into this condition ?just wanted to mail you in detail.

  203. Annie Says:

    Hi Christina. I read your post and I can relate 100%. I went through my first bout of anxiety for most of 2006. I recovered, using the works of Dr. Claire Weekes and Bronwyn Fox. I traveled, spoke in front of hundreds of people, tried new things, took classes…. I was filled with gratitude daily.

    The anxiety came back out-of-the-blue in March 2008, and there hasn’t been a peaceful day since. I run, meditate daily, see a counselor (I don’t take meds). I don’t know what to tell you. I truly don’t feel like I fear the symptoms. In fact, I still live a very “normal” life, yet, every day, I am physically ill. I’ll be on a 3,000 mile plane ride in two weeks, which I’m determined to do. I’m 43 years old next week and in perfect health. I’m a stay-at-home mother, with two children in school, so I have enough “down time”.

    I don’t know what the answer is here. If you figure it out, let me know!

  204. Nicole Says:

    Hi Scarlet,
    I just wanted to touch base after your last words of advice. As you may remember I was in a set back and asking if they should be as hard as it felt. I put into action your advice and viewed the anxiety as just a sensation in my body that was there, that I can bring with me where ever I go, but didn’t have to mean anything at all.
    I have not come out of a set-back so quickly before, and I feel that the puzzle pieces are starting to come together a little quicker now.
    In a book I have been reading called, “Evolve your Brain”, the author discusses why our mental circuits get literally stuck in a loop making it hard to get out of, but he also sites many individuals who were able to consciously change their neural pathways in their brains so that they overcame anxiety/depressive states. He said that they brain wants to think what the body feels and vice versa, but if we can consciously see this and go against it, we can become unconsciously skilled in a whole new mind set that is positive so that our bodies and minds stop creating anxiety without us even trying. Your recovery also proves this to be true and energizes me to keep moving forward.
    Thanks for providing so much encouragement to so many,
    Nicole

  205. JR Says:

    just a quick update on myself…it’s great to hear all the positive posts on here. I just had some great days and really “felt” myself without anxiety. Wow! I can feel a setback coming on but I know it will pass. The good days sure are great!

  206. Scarlet Says:

    Sasha,

    I’ll ask Paul for your email address and email you soon. Just to say it’s weekend over here now and it may be day after tomorrow I get back to you.. hope that’s OK.

    x

  207. Scarlet Says:

    Oooo and Nicole just noticed your post, back soon to respond..

    x

  208. Tracey Says:

    I have been using the advice from this last blog and I have really been starting to feel better. I’ve had a couple of moments of potential set back recently and I’ve had set backs in the past but then I just stick with what I know and it truly helps. The thing I noticed for myself is it tends to be a little worse in the morning right when I’m waking up because it’s habit for me to wake up and think that my bizarre thoughts are going to still be there. I finally realize that everything is habit. It’s not that easy to break but I know eventually it’ll pass because I’m already starting to feel better.

  209. samantha Says:

    hi everyone

    just wondered if anyone has issues /probs with sleep . i usually go to sleep at 10 pm then sometimes i wake at twelve and find i cant get back to sleep this is made worse because my mind seems to go into overdrive i worry i cant get to sleep worry i will never sleep properly again etc then adrenaline kicks in and i can get quite tearful i know what i am doing wrong but i am finding it hard to practise what i have been told i just get so agitated if i wake . i think i just remember all the nights whe i was severe with anxiety that i laid in bed panicking etc

    any ideas on how to break this cycle would be great

    samantha xxxx

  210. mike Says:

    hi sam, unfortunately in in a setback at moment and this week has been tough with the sleep patterns. i woke up at half 1 the other night and didnt get back to sleep really did my head in. im just trying not to think about sleep because i think this is adding worry and adrenaline. i was the same the other night when i woke i looked at the clock and started to feel worried about getting back to sleep. xx

  211. Shirley D Says:

    I think the worst thing is the sleep deprivation – i was despairing at it – dreaded night time coming, dreaded getting into bed and the outcome. in the end i just took the attitude of tonights another night and slowly (please note i say slowly) my proper sleep pattern returned, now i can’t wait to get into bed.
    As i said to Andrew, don’t just lie there and let the darkness overwhelm you, have the radio on or put your earphones in and listen to some music if you can, distract yourself.

  212. lisa Says:

    i lay listening to my breathing, or the wind outside,or like shirley says some relaxing music,i let my thoughts chatter away and pass. samantha i think your expecting to wake up now hun, when you do accept it, let it be and find an aid what works best for you whether its music, breathing, reading, just keep practising.it is just a habit like you say. your mind will keep wondering of to your habit but accept it . :-)

  213. Candie Says:

    Yes the sleep thing was a big problem for me for about a week at one point, then i started sleeping for 12 hours a night! At the min during pregnancy i wake up a couple of times throughout night but its not anxiety based its needing to go to toilet so much so it disturbs my sleep- im soon back to sleep within 5 or ten mins though. If you cant sleep then get up and do something, dont lay dwelling and wondering if every night will be the same- i used to put the tv on or read… it does pass though like everything eventually!

  214. andrew Says:

    Hi Samantha,

    I had been struggling with the same problem. I know how you feel – it’s horrible. But like with every habit it takes time to break, and you will. I still wake up at night (less palpitations because I don’t pay it any attention now), but I fall back to sleep eventually. For me it was the fear that I would wake up with palpitations or not being able to fall asleep, but you see, it’s all in your mind and your thought process. If you have positive thoughts you won’t dread going to bed, but if you constantly have negative thoughts then your mind and your body will feed off of that and cause more panic and fear… so just to let you know, I had the same problem, and while my sleep pattern isn’t back to what I want it to be, but I am getting there, and you will too.

  215. Stephen Says:

    Hey scarlet,

    been doing ok, a more grey-ish days at the moment but its a setback so they r not going to be pink lol. i have a weird question to ask i sometimes think back to my childhood and even did before my anxiety and get sadf, but not because my childhood was bad, i thought it was fabulous really, i just miss it alot, simple things, weekends off, primary school ect ect and when i see things in my street that havent changed for example it takes me back to the good old days. these are really good memories and fun times but i feel sad because i’ll never get to live them again..i know it must sound soooo stupid but its what does get to me with this anxiety. i think i need to accept that i will make many more good memories and stop grieving for the past.

    This set back isnt too bad actually, just feel it lingering in the background and get some moments of rushing anxiousness throught me and feeling overwhelmed but it will be gone soon. its just this little hurdle that i cant get over to get to the end thats holding me down…. like ive gotten to a point where just not fully accepting to get to the end. Almost like im still thinking about it most of the time and thats whats holding me in. if i didnt think about it anymore, id be there as i have no physical symptoms at all and i dont think i really fear that much anymore. oooh thats my other question when you feel paranoid or scared do u just accept it also, like for example when ur lying in bed and u hear like noises outside i tend to get up and check to make sure know one is uno breaking in and stuff lol, i know it sounds stupid but i get nervous and like that in thoes situations or if a huge group of people are walking towards me at like night and im by myself i get scared and think, what if they came after me ect uno cuz stuff like that happens alot so i always think the worst possible situation haha. am i spose to just accept these and think what ever…just another anxious thought? i

    anyway sorry for the long post, must work out what im doing tonight re going out…staying in haha lol hope all is well for everyone
    thanks scarlet for your last response, really appreciate what you do for all of us,

    Stephen

  216. Candie Says:

    Stephen,

    All the situations you mension in your last post are natural moments of feeling sad, anxious etc…. nothing to do with an anxious mental state, sure your anxiety could exagerate your feeling slightly but i dont think you should worry about getting over these things as your reactions are very normal to have. For instance i always look back at my childhood and feel kinda sad to have grown up as been a kid was so easy, no pressure just lots of fun! Also, if i herd noises outside my house id check too and i also wonder if a gang of youths where going to cause trouble at times like when i go to the local takeaway…… its natural to have anxiety slightly at these times as your body needs a certain amount of it to protect you and keep you on your guide in these situations- so dont think that you have to banish all anxious reactions or habits as some are very much neededed to keep you safe!

  217. Scarlet Says:

    Stephen what you describe about your childhood was similar to how I felt. I went through a very ‘sentimental’ period towards the end of my recovery… yearned for the time when my eldest was a baby, felt sad when I visited places that we had been to together. It was a period of self-reflection I felt… and of course grieving for the person you once were.

    I personally think this is a ‘normal’ progression into full recovery… and just you shaking off your old skin before transformation into a new and more improved you… with more depth, empathy and understanding.

  218. Scarlet Says:

    Stephen,

    “when you feel paranoid or scared do u just accept it also, like for example when ur lying in bed and u hear like noises outside i tend to get up and check to make sure know one is uno breaking in and stuff lol, i know it sounds stupid but i get nervous and like that in thoes situations or if a huge group of people are walking towards me at like night and im by myself i get scared and think, what if they came after me ect uno cuz stuff like that happens alot so i always think the worst possible situation haha. am i spose to just accept these and think what ever…just another anxious thought?

    Stephen I think you’ve gotta get things in proportion. By all means check, but don’t over-react, the odds of anything untowards happening when you pass by some youths etc.. is remote… but possible, and nothing that you can’t handle. Try not to anticipate things… but no harm in looking and protecting your property. I would check myself.

    for eg. at 3am in the morning I heard a plane fly by, and it was real low and noisy, and we are not in a flight path, and I had a rush of adrenaline, like what if it’s about to crash and what of it hits this house… you know one of those crazy thoughts.. then I sat back and started to put things in perspective and the liklihood of it happening and my mind accepted the reasoning and I went to sleep after that. We ALL have moments when we are anxious, but they never spiral beyond that moment.. as we have learned the tools for recovery. You have too Stephen, and are almost there.. 😉

  219. sasha Says:

    Hi Scarlet,

    I’m doing good today. Instead of diagnosing each dialogue i could speak freely.
    But my current problem is when I’m in the flow of speaking all of a sudden this irrational thought about anxiety will come out of nowhere like how come you speak so easy and freely!!! phew…gone!!! I’m stuck for few minutes not knowing what to say.that creates a gap in speaking. then this increases my adrenaline a bit . i would have forgotten what i have spoken till then ..then a new topic comes in…now hereafter its sentences by sentences…i ‘ll be too careful then as there is no thoughts to talk from …and the normal mode has gone back..then i may try to keep talking without giving much notice to whats happening inside me..but that good feeling of speaking is gone and now its hardwork to go on..
    Please help me with this as your other remedies have helped me :)
    I’m too fond of talking and an enthusiast…Wants to make friends and start socialising…as i have seen glimpses of real me…its so wonderful…Give me some tips please…
    I wish I could see you some day to thank you..
    Cheers
    Sasha

  220. Scarlet Says:

    Sasha,

    “But my current problem is when I’m in the flow of speaking all of a sudden this irrational thought about anxiety will come out of nowhere like how come you speak so easy and freely!!! phew…gone!!! I’m stuck for few minutes not knowing what to say.that creates a gap in speaking.”

    Some of the others have mentioned that periodically during the day they are reminded that they still have anxiety, and what you describe above is one of those reminders, which is occuring when doing something that is making you feel uncomfortable ie. socialising/speaking… it’s a habit that needs to be broken. What you need to do is give it no significance, when the little voice in your mind reminds you that you feel uncomfortable/still have anxiety, dismiss it and carry on.. You need to not give it any emotion, or even give it one of contempt if you can muster this emotion up on the spot during a time like this all the better, the same sort of emotion when you are saying ‘yeh right, as if’ Try adopting this new attitude to the thought and not one of caring, and don’t worry about the gap in speaking, so what…. it will soon go.

    I’ll be emailing you shortly re: the other thing 😉

  221. Scarlet Says:

    just emailed you sasha

    x

  222. Claire W Says:

    I seem to be in the middle of my 1st awful set back.
    I
    t’s my time of the month so any girls advice would be appreciated. I started feeling anxious on Thursday whilst in town with my daughter I had the thoughts, tingles, tight chest etc, I carried on & even went out that evening with friends from work. Friday was some of the same but, not as bad. I was really tired very early though. As for today, I’ve not stopped crying!!! Everytime I’ve seen somebody or spoken on the phone I’ve started again. I’ve had some tingling & hot flushes but, don’t feel that anxious. Thoughts aren’t great because I feel so tearful.
    I was supposed to be going out in another town this evening but, I’ve not gone as I feel soooo tired. Without rest I don’t feel that my nerves will ever recover. I know that we should never not do anything because of how we feel & I reallly never do but, I am literally falling asleep at 7pm.

    My meds were increased a couple of weeks ago & I think that it is them making me so tired. Has anyone else found this when increasing anti d’s?

    Also I know that the time of the month can add to anxiety, how can I help this? I had my hormonal coil removed 2 months ago as I was led to believe that, that may be effecting my anxiety & depression so I’m not used to feeling this was for years.

    I’m sorry, I’m having a reallly bad day, I feel bad for my kids, my husband & my friends. Like I’m letting them all down! I just need some reassurance.

  223. Scarlet Says:

    Claire,

    It’s normal to feel especially bad during this time of the month, and a lot of your setbacks will happen during this time no doubt. Crying and irratibility is par for the course, and it will subside.. Hormones are funny things, even now I can feel very confused, cranky and weepy at that time…

    Have you heard of agnus castus… it’s meant to regulate hormones and moods, ‘especially for women’, PMT, menopause etc… some mums on the PND forum I used to moderate swore by it, and said it worked wonders. Do check with your doc before you take it alongside your ADs though hun. It’s herbal and can be found in most healthfood stores.

    Also don’t feel the need to always push yourself, if you can’t be bothered. if you feel tired then sleep. It’s possible that the ADs are making you more tired, it could be your body adjusting to the extra dose.

    You’ll get back on track again, so ride it out, rest as much as you can if you are tired, but don’t lie in bed ruminating.. if this occurs get up, setbacks are necessary and to be expected and it will come and go.

    x

  224. Katie Says:

    Iv definately found time of month is worse for your anxiety.seems even though you try to let the thoughts be there and the other symptoms, your more sensitive to them and find it harder to accept them.it always subsides-iv found a few days after you come off so try not to worry.jus carry on with the accepting of it all-even though its harder and it will soon pass.

  225. Stephen Says:

    Thanks for the reply Scarlet and Candy. You are right Candy, they are just natural anxiety response to defend/protect myself if i had to, and its always over the news about breakins, gangs attacking people ect so once u read or hear something like that im sure anyone in a situation where it could happen would feel some anxiety. Because it is our fight or flight response.

    I like how claire weekes says “anxiety is an illness of how you think, not how you feel, it may certianly feel like an illness of how you feel, but it is not as how you think greatly impacts on how you feel”

    Like sasha mentioned how you get that “but i have anxiety feeling”, i still get that and it happens when im looking forward to something or having a good time…its almost like i cant let myself have a good time. lol i know it will pass it is no where near as bad as it use to be. i also get that sorta feeling when u hear someone say ‘ive just been so happy’ i think…well have i been happy, why havent i been happy, its because of this anxiety when really i have had many happy moments just good at focusing on the negatives lol.

    I had a very important realisation the other day that before the anxiety we were not always happy, we got sad, tired,angry or just in a average mood but we never questioned it. i think when recovered we ecpect to be happy all the time because we have felt so bad for so long. and we also think everyone else is happy which is not true, most people just feel average or content when not doing anything that makes them happy like we did before the anxiety as we never quesitoned the way we felt. for example in a normal working week i know i would just do what i needed to do go to uni, work, assignments and i certainly wasnt jumping for joy lol and i dont know who would be, i just new i had to do it and you are in that ‘average’ working week mood or state of mind. Then you do something fun on the weekend and you get excited and happy ect. i really do think we expect to be happy all the time when recovered when actually we return to our normal functions and feeling. i certianly can see how questioning the way we feel is the sole cause here and expecting to be happy all the time to be recovered.

    hope that made sense,
    steve

  226. Emily Says:

    That makes total sense to me, Steve. I’ve noticed it a lot lately. I was experiencing average crappy moments and stopped myself during one to say, “oh yeah…this is normal”. It’s so easy to assume it’s anxiety and feelings of depression rather than average human emotions. I know I have lots of practice ahead of reminding myself of that truth!

  227. Candie Says:

    Yes Stephen, that is very true- if you have realised all that yourself then you have grasped stuff pretty well. Anxiety will latch onto everyday thoughts, feelings and emotions- causing you to have a closer look and blow then up into something bigger. When i first started to recover i imagined how exstatic i would be if i recovered and always happy, but really as you recover you realise life is full of mixed emotions and expecting yourself to have a mindset of pure happiness is setting yourself unacheivable goals. I do think you can be happier then before anxiety though, as you learn to not respond to life in a negative way.

  228. Scarlet Says:

    “I had a very important realisation the other day that before the anxiety we were not always happy, we got sad, tired,angry or just in a average mood but we never questioned it”

    You are so right Stephen, you can have good moments, happy moments, anxious moments even.. and down right crappy moments, and your mood can change from one moment to the next depending on the situation… but the difference is that those without anxiety don’t question how they feel.. they just get on with life, and accommodate these differing moods, crappy times etc… those with anxiety tend to over analsye their moods, and worry about them way too much. I can tell you I am a moody old bag some days (well my husband tells me I am) 😉 Do I care, not one iota, bring it on.. ha! ha!

  229. Paul David Says:

    Just a quick note as I said I would be doing a new post this week, but I have to have the new version of the book to the printers by next Monday and am working on it nearly everyday to make sure it is finished, so the new post will be delayed a week, sorry about that and I know I have not been around a lot recently, so I hope everyone is doing well.

    Also I ran 5 miles today without puffing and panting or stopping, so ready and primed for my run for chairty in 5 weeks time. I will post some pics up of the day and thanks again to everyone who has been kind enough to sponsor me.

    Paul

  230. Kashawn Says:

    Hi Everyone

    I have been making alot of progress with my anxiety. Paul, can you please confirm this for me: Sometimes during the day, my attention reverts back to me and I do understand not to question or run away in these circumstances. When the attention is on me suddenly, I understand just to go on with whatever task im doing and focus on the outside (outward environment); so i must allow the attention to be on me just pay it no attention and move on with my tasks-is this correct? And does this attention reverting back to me fade away as I pay it no respect?
    -all answers are appreciated,
    Thank you:)
    Kashawn

  231. Scarlet Says:

    Kashawn,

    “Sometimes during the day, my attention reverts back to me and I do understand not to question or run away in these circumstances. When the attention is on me suddenly, I understand just to go on with whatever task im doing and focus on the outside (outward environment); so i must allow the attention to be on me just pay it no attention and move on with my tasks-is this correct? And does this attention reverting back to me fade away as I pay it no respect?
    -all answers are appreciated,”

    I know this is adressed to Paul, but just in case he can’t get back to you at the moment Kashawn, thought I’d respond 😉 . Towards the end of recovery, there will be times periodically through the day when the anxiety reminds you that it’s still around and you start focussing on yourself again. This subsides gradually when you pay it no respect, and one day you will realise that you are no longer reminded. For the time being adopt a ‘whatever’ attitude when it pops up and carry on as normal.

  232. Claire W Says:

    Thanks Scarlet & Katie, yesterday wasn’t quite so bad, but last night I really struggled to sleep. It’s as though I’m having everything thrown at me. I wake up feeling dread as to what the day holds in store for me.
    I need to be strong for my family but, am so tired. I’ve read all the books & am trying to do everything that is meant to help, but I still have the physical feelings.
    I am going to be hypnotised tomorrow night to see if this gives me some light relief, has anybody else tried this?

  233. Scarlet Says:

    Claire,

    I haven’t tried hypnosis, but have always wanted to try it. Let me know how it goes.

    x

  234. Paul David Says:

    Claire in my desperate days I did try this, it was not really for me although I found it relaxing, just go to it with an open mind without expecting it to work miracles.

    Kashwan you say: I have been making alot of progress with my anxiety. Paul, can you please confirm this for me: Sometimes during the day, my attention reverts back to me and I do understand not to question or run away in these circumstances. When the attention is on me suddenly, I understand just to go on with whatever task im doing and focus on the outside (outward environment); so i must allow the attention to be on me just pay it no attention and move on with my tasks-is this correct? And does this attention reverting back to me fade away as I pay it no respect?

    Kashwan yes you are correct and an another example of how things begin to slot into place. Your attention will revert back to you through memory and habit, don’t try and stop it doing so ‘if the attention is on you, so what’ has to be your attitude, its a cloud that lifts and decends when we pay it no respect, what people tend to do is fight it, start with the ‘oh no its back’ and then start having an internal battle with themselves to try and ‘right’ themselves. So yes just carry on with your day and the cloud will lift in its own time, the more outward things we do, the more outward we feel, its just about patience. So carry on regardless, don’t see it as a problem.

    Paul

  235. Kashawn Says:

    Scarlet and Paul, thank you so much for your responses:)

    All the best to everyone
    Kashawn

  236. Christina Says:

    Stephen, your post really felt like I was reading my own thoughts in writing! The part you wrote earlier about how you get really sad about thinking back to your childhood and life pre-anxiety…that is one of the hardest things for me. I even get upset when I’m around people who remind me of the happy times I had pre-anxiety like my college and high school friends. Last year at this time, I had just completely recovered from a 6 month bout of anxiety. I was getting on with my life, and I finally felt free again. This year, I am still battling with anxiety that started up again in October, and everything that comes up now that I did so freely last year just makes me upset. Last spring I flew down to Florida to visit my aunt, I went on my yearly ski trip with friends, etc. This year, all these things are coming up again and I know I need to do them regardless of how I feel, but it just sucks so much to know that I’m going through this again.

    Also the part where you said “I get that “but i have anxiety feeling”, i still get that and it happens when im looking forward to something or having a good time…its almost like i cant let myself have a good time.” I do the SAME thing all the time. My thought process is almost automatic in that something will come up whether it’s a trip, a concert, a party…anything that I’d normally be so excited for. I’m immediately be like “oh yeah! I wanna go!” and then immediately after that the thought of “oh what’s the point, I have anxiety and my life sucks” pops up. I’m trying not to let this change what I do though, and so far I’ve done everything I would normally be doing. I enjoy it in the moment, but I know that overall, this is all still going on. I also still have very STRONG physical feelings. I feel shaky and like I can’t relax, I get dizzy, my chest is always hurting and tight, and I have a very low appetite.

    Anyone have advice on appetite/weight loss? I am already thin to begin with, and I finally got myself up to a normal weight this past year and felt happy about myself, and now since all the anxiety has come back, I’ve lost about 8 pounds, which is very noticeable on me and tends to draw unwanted attention which makes me feel like my suffering has been brought out into the open.

  237. sasha Says:

    Hi
    have anyone heard or read about Mind Over Mood: Cognitive Treatment Therapy Manual for Clients by Christine Padesky,Dennis Greenberger.
    This site has helped me a lot to overcome anxiety and the things Paul say is working though I have at times anxiety coming out of the blue.
    I have become more outward looking and I have started enjoying life more than before.
    I’m interested in reading on articles and books related on Personal development. Have anyone heard of this book?

  238. sasha Says:

    Sorry the bookname is Mind Over Mood: Change How You Feel By Changing the Way You Think
    by Christine A Padesky, Dennis Greenberger

  239. Scarlet Says:

    Sasha,

    I haven’t heard of this book, but if you go to Google books and put in the name, you can access it there (top one)… it says limited preview, but if you come across a page that you can’t access just clear your cache and try again. I just had a look and most pages are ‘viewable’ (is this an actual word???).

    Lovely day hun,

    xx

  240. John S Says:

    I totally relate to the appetite thing and weight loss Christina. Its very annoying. I went right down to 11 stone from my normal 12.6 and boy did i get alot of attention from people about it. It was over christmas time and it was at this time i started to use the site and got Pauls book. I have managed to get back up to 12 stone but i still dont particulary enjoy food like i should. Im just eating whenever i can, even if its just snackin on biscuits, nuts or whatever. I force down big meals and try and eat them quickly. Im not saying its easy but you need the nourishment even if your body is making you think you dont want it. Fruit is good aswell. I eat about 3 bananas a day! Aswell as apples and oranges. Bit of wind though!

    I woke up and decided to doze this morning which is the worst thing to do because I personally always feel really out of it and terrible on a morning and its worse the longer you dwell on it nad laze in bed. I keep telling myself to get up as soon as my eyes open on a morning but I never do. I still feel spaced out and not with it at all today. I drove to uni and went to my lecture and Im just not adding any second fear.
    I have a query though for anyone. When everyone talks about setbacks they always seem to say its after a good week. I havent had a good week yet, just a not too bad day followed by a couple of bad days then maybe a good day followed by bad days. My energy levels are still up and down which is confusing seen as that is supposed to be related to tension yet as far as i am aware I am not worrying anywhere near as i was two months ago and im eating ther right foods. I still force myself to go the gym and do stuff but I figured it would be startting to get a bit easier by now. Anyone else struggling with energy levels and everything stilll seeming such an effort? Should I continue just to accept this and float through it all?
    John S

  241. Stephen Says:

    Hey scarlet,

    just a quick question, sorry to bother you by the way had a very pink morning and while driving to uni i was just thinking back to my past suffering when i had a oanic attack and what i felt like only to experience a rush of panic and for a few moments felt really panicy, i just accepted it and was like what ever and it was quick to go. and just been abit of a greyish arvo. did you ever get panic attacks for like no reason? this is very much how my anxiety condition started and the panic attack bit hasnt been a problem for absolute months, it just threw me sideways abit today.. but i still went to uni sat thru all my lectures with out a problem really. just worried about haveing a panic attack now lol even though i dont think i could have one. i suppose im just gonna have to accept this like everything else.

    Other then that minor hickup ive been pretty good and coming along nicely
    i like how u said we can become a doubting thomas lol, and it seems when im having good moments which is pretty often these days i think where is the anxiety and expect to feel bad at any moment almost like im not alowed to feel good uno, is this normal scarlet?

    Christina i too after 2 or 3 months into my anxiety recovered almost like was pretty much back to normal because i just forgot i suppose and was pretty busy, i never posted here when my anxiety stared and it came back full force a month and abit after i though i was over it. i didnt have all the tools as scarlet said. but if u felt recovered at the very least it proves to you that u can feel normal again, i keep reminding myself its how we think, not how we feel and not to give the thoughts any weight. and about the childhood thing, it would be good to go back sure, but i now think why? i wouldnt want to change one iota of it!

    Steve

  242. Christina Says:

    Stephen, I have “recovered” twice since anxiety first hit me my junior year of college. I had 10 months of freedom, then it came back for another 6 months, then this past year I was great. It’s amazing how you can completely forget about how it even feels to be anxious, and then in one instant, it can all come rushing back and it all seems way too familiar. Now I can’t even remember what it feels like to not have these feelings.

    John S, you mentioned mornings. Mornings are the WORST for me. I wake up shaking…literally. It’s like that feeling when an alarm wakes you up early in the morning and you’re all jittery and nervous…except there is no alarm, it’s just my body. How do I deal with it? It makes me just want to disappear every morning. I miss the days when I could get up and relax, watch some tv, eat breakfast…

  243. Christina Says:

    Oh also, did/does anyone have trouble with chest pain and tightness? It feels as if it just happens automatically. I wake up, feel really nervous and jittery, and then bam..my chest tightens. I feel like it’s my own fault, but even when I try to just relax my muscles, it seems to just happen.

  244. John S Says:

    Hi Christina, I dont personally wake up shaking or have chest tightness. I just feel really lost but I know that it gets easier when I get up and have a shower and get ready. The reason you shake and feel jittery is because your sensitised nerves are startled when you wake. Clare Weekes mentions it in her book and goes on to say that the feeling of apprehension on a morning and foreboding is completely normal in our condition and is something that will carry on for a couple of months and is another thing to accept. Dont try to relax your muscles or try and not feel jittery or anything. Its normal and i understand your frustration, believe me I have many, but trying to work out why you feel like it wont get you anywhere. Just let it be there for the time being. You have recovered before and this time you have all the knowledge so id say your pretty well placed for recovery Christina.

  245. Katie Says:

    Hiya claire, i too had a sleepless night the other day and iv not had one since before christmas, so it kinda made me worry whether id start having problems sleeping like i did when anxiety first came along. I also found because i was so tired yesterday because of the lack of sleep, this too made me more sensitive to my thoughts. But then i treated it like i treat the thoughts and gave it a ‘whatever’ attitude and tried reverse psychology-rather than force yourself to try get sleep, try staying awake. This really works and last night i was asleep whilst watching a film!!

  246. andrew Says:

    Hi everyone. Last night just as I was waking up I heard this loud screaming noise in my head, and it continued after I woke up. It was so weird and scary. The noise would be in my dream usually as I am waking up and get louder. I am wondering if this is because I’ve been stressed and anxious for a while.

  247. louise Says:

    Hi everyone ive just finished readind Pauls book and found it to be the best advice ive ever been given.Im trying to put the advice into practice and id love to become a part of this wee network,im so glad it exists!!Trying to look forward to the future and hoping that one day i will recover.Louise.

  248. Emily Says:

    I also get excited about doing things, but then get that dread that my anxiety will ruin something yet again and it feels awful. I still do everything and don’t avoid. There’s just been so many things over the past few years that have been tarnished by anxiety that it’s quite discouraging.
    John you wrote, “When everyone talks about setbacks they always seem to say its after a good week. I havent had a good week yet, just a not too bad day followed by a couple of bad days then maybe a good day followed by bad days…I figured it would be starting to get a bit easier by now.”

    I’m wondering the same thing..is this to be expected for a while?

  249. Christina Says:

    Yeah, I haven’t really had any periods of remission yet, and my anxiety came back in October. Last year, I had weeks of good in between before I fully recovered after about 6 months. This frustrates me a lot. I saw my doctor tonight and he wants to add in more medication..a mood stabilizer. I was like um, no thanks.

  250. Scarlet Says:

    Emily/John,

    ‘John you wrote, “When everyone talks about setbacks they always seem to say its after a good week. I havent had a good week yet, just a not too bad day followed by a couple of bad days then maybe a good day followed by bad days…I figured it would be starting to get a bit easier by now.”

    I’m wondering the same thing..is this to be expected for a while?’

    I didn’t have good weeks as such, had OK days … they started being ‘bearable’ after a while and remained this way for a long time. I had odd good days/moments but not clear weeks really until I was recovered. My anxiety tapered off gradually…. so majority grey days are the norm I’d say.

  251. Scarlet Says:

    Hi Stephen,

    “just a quick question, sorry to bother you by the way had a very pink morning and while driving to uni i was just thinking back to my past suffering when i had a oanic attack and what i felt like only to experience a rush of panic and for a few moments felt really panicy, i just accepted it and was like what ever and it was quick to go. and just been abit of a greyish arvo. did you ever get panic attacks for like no reason? this is very much how my anxiety condition started and the panic attack bit hasnt been a problem for absolute months, it just threw me sideways abit today.. but i still went to uni sat thru all my lectures with out a problem really. just worried about haveing a panic attack now lol even though i dont think i could have one. i suppose im just gonna have to accept this like everything else. ”

    Stephen, it’s normal to have a rush of panic once in a while. I went out the other day with my two year old to the park, and got chatting to this woman passing, and turned around and my son had gone.. I got the rush of adrenaline and panic and a few seconds later found him on the slide.. phew!!!!… So no worries about the panic… just dismiss it.. and it will go, as it happens to everyone once in a while.. it’s how you deal with it that makes the difference.

    Lovely day

  252. Nicole Says:

    Hi Andrew,
    When I first had anxiety I had tinitus in one my ears. It was really hard to focus and sleep etc., but I learned that the ringing (mine was more like a constant hum or whooshing sound) is common to anxiety sufferers and this symptom faded over time.
    Hope this helps,
    Nicole

  253. andrew Says:

    Hi Nicole,

    Yes, I get tinnitis. I wasn’t sure if what I heard was from the tinnitis or something left over from my dream. My tinnitis can get pretty loud at night. I’ve had it for a while now, and it comes and goes. It’s true that when I am stressed and anxious, the ringing in my ear gets worse.

    Thanks.

  254. louise Says:

    Hi everyone,ive had a strange couple of days,after reading pauls book i felt really confident and was sure i would recover,this was short lived and the other day talking to my best friend on the phone i started to feel strange and that was me right back at square one,only it felt a million times worse,i guess i was being naive in thinking i was better so soon.I worry alot because my doctor has diagnosed me with social phobia and i wonder if this is different from normal anxiety,i certainly have alot of the symptoms you guys talk of.ohhhhh its all so confusing!!!!!One of my biggest problems is that i have these strange thoughts where ill constantly imagine myself in social situations,sometimes feeling strange other times being confident,these thoughts are always around ruining my days,i feel im going mad sometimes!!Do any of you believe this to be anxiety?Hope to speak soon xx

  255. Scarlet Says:

    Louise,

    I’d say it’s 120% anxiety hun. I’m not fond of lables myself and it depends on the doc as to what you’ll be labelled with (also how you felt at the time, and what you told him/her), but it all falls under the umbrella of anxiety, and you need to follow the same rules for recovery.

    To picture yourself in social scenarios is very normal, only you are having a negative reaction/emotion sometimes with these scenarios due to your anxiety, this is what you need to work on… you need to learn to adopt a whatever attitude to thoughts that are making you anxious, and in your case they are thoughts regarding social situations. Also if you fear something, DO MORE OF IT, sure way for the fear to disappear, so get out and about and practice, say hello to the next door neighbour, shopkeepers, bus driver, go out with your friends, make more opportunities for socialisation. I read an article where a specialist on phobias/anxiety was saying that you need to do something around 15 times for the anxiety/phobia to disappear…. and I’d say this number was about right looking back at my own anxiety.

    Also like I told Stephen it’s normal to be a ‘Doubting Thomas’ when you have anxiety, so reading Pauls book and feeling temporary relief and then doubting again is normal.. this will be your pattern until you start to build confidence again, and you do this by living ‘normally’ alongside your anxiety, and not avoiding anything that is required for normal living.

  256. john s Says:

    Some days everything really makes sense, or it even makes sense for a few hours on a particular day then not again for another few hours. When it doesnt make sense, I find this is the testing time. Your natural instincts are still there telling you to try and work it out and fight it. Thats why sometimes i feel like it all comes down to just putting your faith into something you naturally dont want to. Its very hard when you feel so strange and odd or awful and you have to tell yourself to let it go and that it is perfectly fine. Its hard to explain (but its how im feeling right now) that when your not trying to fight I feel sort of lost and anything could happen. Its a very strange feeling not worrying if that makes sense. I think im getting quite good at it, apart from occassional blips. I assume that the further down the road we keep going it will make sense for longer. Im not being naive because iv only had pauls book and started recovery this way for twelve weeks so I am not expecting miracles.

  257. Emily Says:

    Again, I understand what you’re saying John…When I “get it” I feel more confident and hopeful. When I’m “fuzzy” and stuck in believing lies, it feels bad. But, like somewhere in Paul’s book it says how he knew that if he could feel clear and confident some moments, then that must be the real person underneath the anxiety. That’s hopeful!
    Here’s something I else i’ve noticed: I don’t know what the heck to think about! I’m finding that it’s challenging to think on “normal” stuff when it’s been so cluttered with anxious or obsessive thinking for so long. I am more clearly seeing myself doing my standard obsessive thinking simply because that’s been on the top of my list of things to think about. I have my top main thoughts or topics that get me stuck, but it’s a bit of a help to see it’s almost just a filler for time or really an automatic habit. I’m still stuck on them, mind you, but they’re looking more and more annoying rather than frightening…that’s got to be a good thing, right? :)

  258. louise Says:

    Scarlet,thanx for taking the time to give me advice,i will take on board what your saying and try to live alongside my anxiety,i must admit it feels good having people to talk to who really understands.I think recovery will take a while but after reading pauls book ive decided not to take my beta blockers anymore,i want to recover without meds i believe this way i will be truly facing my demons head on,i do understand that fear keeps my anxiety going and im going to work on reducing this fear by facing it.God help me!!!!!lolxxxxx

  259. Nicole Says:

    Hi all,
    For those who are recovered – I seem to have been in the same place in my recovery for about a year now since reading Paul’s book, which seems long in my opinion. My anxiety started a little over three years ago. Most of the time I don’t mind where I am, the anxiety is in the background of my life. But there are always days/weeks where I feel like nothing has changed. I think that Paul said when things came together for him it took several months to say he was recovered. I don’t like thinking that this might be “me” for the remainder of my life and I know that an MD would tell me that and that I need to be on medication to feel “normal”. Deep down I have faith that we all have the potential to recover completely but when change doesn’t seem to come after a year, it is hard to maintain the momentum. There must be something that I have not grasped yet in accepting. There are days when I truly feel like “Ah-ha!” this is what he means, I have it now. But then it slips away again and the cycle starts. I have read enough to know that recovery is possible and I refuse to feel sorry for myself that it has not 100% happened yet, but if anyone has any insight as to what I have to do/not do to make some more progress I would welcome it very much. I hope that I have made sense and also that this does not make anyone worry about their own recovery. I believe that we are all different and will all reach that place in our own time. My schedule just seems unbearably long at times!
    Thanks for taking the time to read this, have a great day – Nicole

  260. sasha Says:

    Hi,
    I have a party to attend today. i would be the most excited person to be there before i got this..but today i dont feel any enthusiasm to attend that one..but i’m going ahead as thats how its supposed to be..right now I’m quite anxious may be deep inside about the event..not calm inside i’m worried what if i dont have anything to talk to or what if i have odd moments.pls give me some positive thoughts..
    i know its all i have read about but to hear from someone is more assuring..

  261. Fiona Says:

    Hi Nicole, you sound a wee bit down at the moment but don’t worry! Think back to how you felt before you found Pauls site! I have came on leaps and bounds and to be honest i dont really feel that bothered by symptoms any more… they are still there but i’m just not scared of them. They are slightly annoying yes but i just dont feel like i used to… even on a bad day. The changes are slow and i bet you’ve made loads of progress but just haven’t realised. I’m not that bothered about full recovery as i’m coping fine with the mild anxiety i have. But i look forward to the day when it goes completely. So just think positvely about it as you can and will recover. PLENTY of people have on this site but they just dont hang around they have no need to. And for god sake dont listen to your doctor!
    Fiona xxx

  262. Fiona Says:

    Hi Sasha, you have got your self into a worry loop about the party. Your anxiety is causing you to create a worry where there shouldn’t be one. But that is the nature of anxiety. Dont worry about how much you would have enjoyed it before because you can enjoy it just the same today…. and i bet you do. Take a big deep breath, shrug your shoulders at the daft thoughts and feelings that gives and be happy that your a strong person who can deal with this sort of thing.
    Fiona xxxxx

  263. Katie Says:

    Hi louise, i too am on beta blockers and for the past week iv had the physical symptoms back after cutting my dose in half. i think i did it too quick so im goin bak up to 60mg(originally on 80mg and for the past week been on 40mg).I still feel like im facing anxiety head on despite doing this as these symptoms i havent faced with fear, they have been more of an annoyance!so i know iv come far with it all as i no dont fear them anymore, but for the time being, i just want my body to get used to reducing the dosage. so if you find it happens to you also, dont feel bad if you feel you need to still take them.As long as they are more of an annoyance rather than something you fear, you are still on the right track!x

  264. Tracey Says:

    so I’ve been doing really well lately but late yesterday was the start of one of those annoying set backs. When my mind is completely clear which I can have weeks where i’m great and others where I not, but when it is clear I can see how stupid and ridiculous my thoughts are and I tell myself don’t let yourself get back into that circle again…and everytime i do it, i get myself caught up in the thinking loop, its like never ending. As I’ve commented on the Obsessive thinking blog before I have had a multitude of thoughts but the one I am on now is a sexual one and it can be very very intrusive. I have a boyfriend whom I love with all my heart and I know its anxiety thoughts but sometimes my mind gets so caught up in thinking that I think that I might start to believe it one day or it will never go away…i also know that those thoughts are anxiety, I guess that is why I get annoyed with myself even tho Paul says thats one thing you shouldnt do. Candie gave me wonderful advice before but I guess I need to hear it again, I catch myself analysing myself when I look at someone, expecting I’m going to have the thoughts and I know thats exactly where I’m going wrong. Scarlet, Candie, or anyone if you have any advice to give me. Also Ive noticed a pattern when my thoughts start coming back strongly its like a couple days before my time of the month..is that normal? Thanks for all ur help on this road to recovery

  265. sasha Says:

    Hi
    when i hear people say that they have recovered fully and was ok for like 6 months or more and then they had a setback which will be alomost unbearable..its like having led a normal life and then going bak to the loop…thats scary..because by then u have developed a strong mind that nothing can hamper ur mental status but then what if it comes back? is there no freedom from this damn thing..or is it like a person who has gone through this condition once will have to live with it on the side though not giving much importance?
    for me its always like when i’m doing good this will come out of the blue making me feel ‘fuzzy’…i am tired now …
    pls help me..

  266. Nicole Says:

    Thanks for respond ing Fiona. Sounds like you are doing really well. Most of the time I am similar where the anxiety is fairly mild to moderate, but this particular bump on the recovery road is a nasty one! You are right too about just being happy where we are in recovery. I think that I was feeling so good that I started to think about getting to the end too much, which was creating some anxiousness, then I had an increase in symptoms and we are off to the races again.
    I have learned a lesson here about just letting it be and not concerning myself with emotional perfection. I still feel wretched and the thoughts are freaky, but I will do my best to allow and move on. Have a great day, Nicole

  267. Fiona Says:

    Sasha, relax you are over thinking it just let it go. You cant predict what will happen in the future but as any suffer says once you understand it you cant go back again. Anxiety feelings come and go, eventually they will go all together but only if you stop worrying about them if you feel rubbish and anxious so be it. Some days you feel great some you feel bad and eventually you will be fine but takes time and that can be hard to understand when you are in a setback. Just relax and let it do its worst because its worst is really not that bad. A few anxious thoughts and feeling a bit weird, big deal it will pass with time.
    Fiona xx

    Tracey, those thoughts are very common anxiety thoughts….. they are very scary that is why you get an anxious response to them. You have to neutralise your response, you know they are silly so treat them as so and quickly move on….. try and let your thoughts flow…. don’t grab at any particular one. You’ll actually find that when your relaxed you dont really think at all, the brain is not designed to think all the time that is why it gets tired through anxiety.
    Fiona
    Fiona

  268. louise Says:

    Hay everyone,ive been doing some thinking you know how in Pauls book he talks about facing your fears and realising that nothing bad will happen well i understand this but the thing with me is that when i imagine the worst thing hapening eg.shaking in a social situation everyone being able to tell im a bag of nerves head going blank etc etc….well this is worse case scenario and guess what………9/10 it does happen!!!!!!So do you think if i learn to simply accept this then it will eventually go away?Is it just habit?And how comes around some people im so confident and with others im a total wreck?I went to my fitness class last night and for the first time ever felt totally out of it with nerves but i did to some degree put pauls advice into practice,i carried on despite feeling strange,i smiled and maintained eye contact,which i believe to be important.Walking home later that night i did do a wee bitty of a post mortem but i thought hey whatever others opinions have to start meaning nothing to me if ive to have any chance of getting better,i have to learn to accept myself and my flaws and go with the flow,with or without anxiety life is too short weve got to live!!Im going to a party tomorrow {yikeyyyy]but im taking my acceptance attitude with me and what will be will be!!This is a biggy for me so ill let u all know how it went.Speak soon xxx

  269. Tracey Says:

    Thank you Fiona, I’m doing a little better today I think I was just having a set back. As you said I’m taking my thoughts too literally and need to just relax cuz I have noticed that when I’m perfectly relaxed or with my boyfriend my mind is pretty clear. The thoughts only come when I think that I’m going to react to them, when really if I would stop thinking like that I would have no reaction to any of it. Sometimes I notice I react after the fact, remembering earlier what was said/done on tv etc. But I know how silly that is.

  270. Fiona Says:

    Hi Tracey, Its just because your nerves are on edge it doesn’t take much to get them going. As you learn to relax, not care and have a whatever attitude to all the symptoms mental and physical your nerves will slowly heal. Its good to know your in a set back because you then know that a lot of the time your fine and how much you have improved. Your setback will pass they always do, i’ve been feeling symptoms myself the past couple of days but to i’m not that bothered by them because they’re kinda boring now, there not nice but there quite predictable and nothing new. It always passes.
    Have a good weekend.
    Fiona

  271. Tracey Says:

    thanks again fiona for your advice I really appreciate it. It helps to hear that from someone during a set back just to keep you on the right track.

  272. Stephen Says:

    Hey scarlet,

    been doing really well laterly and having huge periods of pink i suppose. However had a little grey bit today as this girl who i work with has bipolar and she was going on and on about it and i started to question myself again even though quite good these days and have come so far. is this normal? i spose i’ll be fully recovered when things like this wont bother me anymore? what do you think? anyway must be off, just wanted to ask you that,

    hope everyone is well
    stephen

  273. John S Says:

    Im thinking about going to see a friend of the family who is a pschyiatrist becuase although certain feelings have subsided the DP just seems to be getting worse. I played football last night and it was like when i first went back playing 10 weeks ago. Even with the ball at my feet I was thinking about my condition. I couldnt get into it all. Not for one second do i not think about it and im very very tired. Last night i just really didnt care about anything anymore. There is not as much fear anymore and i understand why the dp is there because im constantly inward thinking. Im not trying to stop inward thinking because this is what people say is the key but I have been accepting it for weeks and its worse than it has ever been. I have ended up losing my girlfriend because im so emotionless and very tired. This is not me saying that acceptence doesnt work because it has got me back to work and back at uni (although difficult) but Im thinking that talking about things with a pschotherapist might help as I dont really have anyone to unload on so to speak. I know its all just a tired mind but mines really tired at the moment and I feel like a prisoner. This is in no way meant to put people off what this site says because it is the right path, too many have recovered from it to say otherwise. I just think i need extra help with my DP.
    John S

  274. Candie Says:

    Hi John, i used to feel really trapped in my own mind… i still do sometimes, however to move on from that you have to let go of the habit to think about anxiety- i found the best way of doing that is to get on with life, do new things and make your day about living not anxiety. By all means if you feel seeing a psychiatrist is right for you go for it, however i know of a lot of people who found talking so much about the anxiety made it worse as it highlighted the problem. Do what is best for you, but dont expect miracles as recovery is really and you have to persist with the new habits. Some people feel good for a bit, have a bad patch again think there back to sqaure one and then start the cycle of worry over again. Your best bet would be just to take the DP with a pinch of salt, i know Paul was really bad with his, the worst case iv ever herd of and yet hes perfectly fine now… its all in the attitude and your knowledge of the condition :)

  275. John S Says:

    Thanks for your post Candie, its almost as if the DP is getting worse though which is the weird thing. I read pauls book and claire weekes aswell as the old blogs so i feel I have a jist of accepting and floating. I might be being impatient, its just that when i had this condition before i could play football and lose myself in the game. I have no interest in anything. I feel no love for any member of my family even no deep down i know its there. Im not going to go on meds or anything its just Paul also mentions he had someone to unload on. I used to love the way my mind was, my imagination, the ability to think of anything without fear, fear which is still there to some degree even though i have read over and over what the problem is..ie tired mind and tired nerves. Im not sitting here as a jibbering wreck as i type this, im doing it in a relaxed manner. Last time i felt like this i paniced and couldnt sleep at night and im refusing to do that at least. When i feel awful for moments during the day is that still sensitised nerves or is that depression?
    John S

  276. Kashawn Says:

    Hi everyone
    I have been making huge strides with Anxiety; the pieces of the puzzle are truly falling into place. I went from waking up feeling fear all around me trying to figure these feelings out to the point where I am now which is truly shrugging my shoulders with a whatever attitude and going on with my day. I want to share tips that truly helped me make HUGE strides with this anxiety condition (the tips I share are from Paul and others on the blog like Scarlet :) )
    Tips that helped me :
    -I stay busy, i read, i go outside and look at nature, I keep my focus outward and as Paul says I pack in as much normal living as possible
    -When I feel anxious (tingling, high heart rate) I learned to shrug my shoulders in a whatever attitude and go on with tasks knowing that this condition is normal for the circumstances I have been in
    -I do not try to justify irrational scary thoughts, I let them flow in and literally ignore them; pay them no respect, kind of laugh them off:)
    -When my attention reverts back to me (like when im out and conversating or doing any task) I allow it to be there and move on with tasks-very important because trying to figure out this reverting back feeling makes us fight our condition
    -FAITH-that what you are doing is right, PATIENCE
    -MOST IMPORTANT: I moved towards my feelings of fear, I would sometimes have a feeling as if I cant breath or just sudden fear like to a point where I want to leave; this is the point where I invited these feelings, I let my body rage inside of me and continued on with my tasks paying these feelings no respect; this means not questioning them nor running away; This is truly the “water to take out the anxiety fire”; the most important behaviour.

    These behaviours I have taught myself have led me to a point where I almost feel 100% normal, I do have set backs however I now know how to deal with them and they do not scare me, as time passes, things fall into place and the anxiety fire dies out as we face our feelings of fear and allow them to be there:)
    I hope this helps

    its all about Faith and Patience
    All the best to everyone
    Kashawn.

  277. Kashawn Says:

    To John S:

    I feel your pain brother and I know the feeling of being trapped in your own mind with high Depersonalization. I went home many nights bewildered with this feeling of detachment; trying to figure it out. From what you wrote, I can tell you have been paying this anxiety symptom of Depersonization huge amounts of respect!!! You say things like ” even while playing football I think of my anxiety condition”. I know how you feel, its as if you cant stop the attention from reverting back to you-the key for this is to ALLOW the attention to be on you, to continue with your task and KNOW that this is a normal part of anxiety and as many have said on the blog including Paul the author; this feeling of constantly thinking about yourself subsides in its own time as long as you accept the attention being on you . John, you gota keep living as normal as possible regardless if you feel good or bad, this LIVING is the water to the anxiety fire. I have had anxiety since april of last year and things started to fall in place a few months ago, I almost feel normal, its all about understanding. And lastly, you gota HAVE PATIENCE…give it time youl see!!!
    All the best:)
    Kashawn.

  278. Mazza Says:

    Hi Kashawn
    It’s inspiring to read that you have made lots of progress. I just wanted to ask you something, When you said “I moved towards my feelings of fear, I would sometimes have a feeling as if I cant breath or just sudden fear like to a point where I want to leave; this is the point where I invited these feelings,” One of my obstacles regarding anxiety is I sometimes feel I’m not breathing properly and that I can’t swallow, my throat feels really dry. When this happens I worry that I must have something really wrong and because I smoke I start to think really scary things, especially with all the recent adverts. How do you ignore those feelings, I mean I do try to ignore them and carry on with what I’m doing but it makes me feel really awful.
    I’m pleased that you are feeling better, I just hope one day I will be feeling the same
    Take care
    Mazza

  279. April Says:

    Hi all,
    I just wanted t add something real quick about depersonalization. Not only do we need to rid ourselves of the anxiety, but also high stress. If you feel that you have finally come to a point where you no longer fear the dp and have been patient but still have the dp feeling, make sure that you check your stress in your life as this tires your mind also. I find that if I rush around all day that I feel much worse. Make sure to get sufficient rest also as your mind and body heal while you sleep.
    I guess that’s it, just wanted to add that little bit because that could be a hinderence in some that are having a hard time getting over a hurdle.
    April

  280. Kashawn Says:

    Mazza:
    You said: “One of my obstacles regarding anxiety is I sometimes feel I’m not breathing properly and that I can’t swallow, my throat feels really dry. When this happens I worry that I must have something really wrong and because I smoke I start to think really scary things, especially with all the recent adverts. How do you ignore those feelings, I mean I do try to ignore them and carry on with what I’m doing but it makes me feel really awful”

    You see your doing the right thing, the WHOLE point is to feel awful, that very behaviour of allowing yourself to feel awful and continue living is whats going to take away your anxiety. I had the same problem, I would feel as though Im not breathing correctly but i learned that its anxiety playing its tricks. Its all in your attitude Mazza, you should have the attitude of “Yes I do feel awful but its okay im not going to think of the awful feelings and focus my attention on other OUTWARD tasks such as socializing, reading etc”. So if i answered your question correctly, your doing it right mazza; ALLOW yourself to feel awful just dont question it or run away from the awful feelings and to add, if you do notice yourself questioning those feelings or that your mind reverts back to you, allow it just dont add questioning to the mix, dont obsess, with time it will all fall in place; youl notice changes, its a up and down thing, but youl notice improvements.

    All the best.
    Kashawn

  281. Kashawn Says:

    April,

    I agree with you, the stresses of life really can add anxiety. But I must say its the constant questioning/thinking of the anxiety condition that keeps anxiety going and truly tires our minds. I found that the more things I did to keep my mind busy the more I felt better despite my stressful lifestyle (school, work, issues). The mind is really resilient when we do outward things other then thinking about our condition. Despite my very stressful lifestyle, when I applied the behaviours taught by Paul, I noticed that my mind was healing even though I had alot of stressful things going on in my life. I hope this adds to your discussion:)

    all the best
    Kashawn

  282. April Says:

    Hi Kashawn, I agree with you:) For me though my problems all started with lack of sleep and having 5 kids within 10 years and trying to run my own sewing business which equaled to high stress and no sleep. Of course I am not complaining because I would do it all again in a heart beat, but if I could do it again I would have taken better care of myself. I also have a passive personality and am a yes person, meaning I have a hard time saying no. I also have a tendency to rush around instead of taking my time. These are things that I am working on along with the acceptance so that when I do reach full recovery I won’t find myself back to the anxiety condition.

    April

  283. Ben Says:

    Hi All,

    Just after a few more pointers and tips (as usual). Despite thinking I have “got it” in terms of what Paul says I think there are still a few areas that I need to work on, one being anxiety related to performance/presentations/meetings at work etc.

    Although I always get told that I come across OK, I always feel that I don’t. Anyway these tend to be a great source of stress for me especially presentations. Although I have delivered a few, I did one last week where there was a point where my mind went blank and I ran out of things to say. No-one commented after the meeting, but sub-consciously I have been worrying about it and analysing it and have probably unfairly categorised it as a failure. I am really trying not to, but as I have another coming up in a few weeks, I am now thinking “what if this one goes worse”. I know Paul has a whole section on what-if and I am trying to do what he says but it is like there is a deep unease I am aware of.

    Most of the stuff that Paul mentions on here is I find reasonably easy to put into practice as you can try some of it every day, but how do you apply it to things like this that only come round now and again ?

    I suppose this may be evidence of me not fully accepting my anxiety because I guess with full acceptance the context of worrying about sounding strage etc is irrelevant.

    Just be interested in people’s opinion on this.

    Ben.

  284. Stephen Says:

    Hi scarlet,

    turns out what i said in my last post has triggered me into abit of a setback :( with the few days before it where i was feeling so close to 100%. Just one thought that has really got me this time is the fact that i might crack and lashout or hurt someone..i know i wouldnt but i was so worried about it saturday night when i was out i felt like i had to run away from where i was. i didnt of course and stayed. Im also still such a people pleaser and i found out that i had upset someone and i cant stop thinking about it and how i could of not upset them ect. i dont feel like i’ve slipped off the recovery path more just an expected seback on the way.

    stephen

  285. louise Says:

    Mazza,i read your blog and it brought back so many memories,i used to suffer from really terrifying panic attacks,and like you i was a smoker so when i felt i couldnt breathe id automatically link it to my smoking and convince myself that i was having a heart/asthma attack!!!Although i still suffer from anxiety i havent had a panic attack in years and not only that i dont believe i could ever have another panic attack again!!The reason being i simply stopped being afraid of the symptoms,i learned that i had been terrified so many times thinking that my god this is it im going to die this time and i realised that guess what i never did!!!!I always went back to feeling normal,my regular breathing returned i dindt die!!Everytime a panic attack came on i let these feelings curse through me and reminded myself calmly through it all that it will pass and the worst thing NEVER happens.I know its so much easier said that done but try your best to not fear any of thede symptoms because trust me when the fear goes so does the panic.Good luck doll!!I mentioned a couple of days ago that i had a party to go to and was going to try and put pauls acceptance advice into practice,well i did and things went really well,probably the most comfortsle ive felt in a social situation in along long time.I felt nervous but i totally accepted this and as a result the feelings didnt turn to terror or make me want to run away.I think i showed parts of me people havent seen before and i had a lovely evening.My partner and i had a bit of a fall out the night before and although i can be quite stubborn i decided to make the first move and sort it out,there was no point adding to my anxiety with stupid pointless arguments,i think we should all take heed of this,dealing withanxiety is hard enough ,so if theres any wee things nagging at you with others family etc,sort it out,make life as sress free as possible and this doeasnt mean be a doormat just learn whats important and whats not!Speak soon xx

  286. Nicole Says:

    Hi there, happy Monday,
    I have been experiencing a new sensation lately – just largely dread but it seems more enveloping but i recognize that this is just adrenalin putting my brain on guard against an imagined threat. Not going to pay it any attention although at first I found it bewildering, but I know what it is now.
    It’s funny, the closer I feel i am getting to recovery, the more creative my anxiety is getting in coming up with new sensations, new things to worry about. I guess it is craving the same old chemicals that i have been feeding it and it is trying to find a way to get more. It is hard to “stay the course”, but there is no other way except forward. One other trigger of mine that I have seen mentioned on the blog in the past is coming to terms with the whole “mental illness” word. It seems like most medical organizations, books etc. and the media like to categorize anxiety in this way. There is an awareness campaign going on where I live, which is largely positive, but one of the spokespersons is using his sisters struggle with GAD as his reason for getting involved which is nice but his publicity material all starts off with him talking about his sisters bout with “mental illness.” I am trying to find a way of de-sensitizing myself to this as it always makes me feel inferior, like there is something really wrong with me. I also feel resentful when the people who are trying to draw awareness to an issue have never experienced it. I am rambling here, sorry! I don’t see mself as mentally ill. All I know is that my body has responded to life’s stresses and produced an abnormal amount of adrenalin and I am learning how to approach it in a logical, loving and healthy way. Yes it can screw up your thinking at times and confuse you, scare you etc., but it is largely a physical issue that I am using my mind to heal, if this makes any sense!
    I should get the kids up and start my day, hope to see Paul, Scarlet and Candie appear soon! Have a great day all, Nicole

  287. Fiona Says:

    I don’t see mself as mentally ill. All I know is that my body has responded to life’s stresses and produced an abnormal amount of adrenalin and I am learning how to approach it in a logical, loving and healthy way. Yes it can screw up your thinking at times and confuse you, scare you etc., but it is largely a physical issue that I am using my mind to heal, if this makes any sense!

    Hi Nicole, you are so spot on with that. Anxiety is caused by worry and stress over a prolonged period. Its caused by excess adrenaline. I really dont think the brain chemistry is effected in the way that depression or a ‘real’ mental illness changes it. Hence the reason antidepressants dont work. I tried them for twice for 2 days and felt worse and more anxious than ever before. I dont think there has been anyone on here how has spoke the praises of ADs. We have a condition where we feel anxious easily and lots of bad habits and fear and worry. We just feel every day events more keenly because our nerves are jangling. In fact my friend told me she was on the escalator the other day and got the horrible feeling she might jump….. she doesn’t have anxiety but still had a weird thought. I had to smile to myself when she told me as i thought about what an anxiety suffers response to such a thougvht would be!
    Nerves heal with time. But to begin to heal you need to be totally unimpressed by symptoms. You literally need to let anxiety be, i think when you get that you know the difference form previously when you where fighting…… normally unconsiounsley with anxiety.
    Fiona xxx

  288. Michael Says:

    I wanted to take a few minutes to talk about my experiences and how Paul’s book, and this blog have helped me. I will start at the beginning, so please bear with me as this will be a long post.

    I would describe myself as someone who has generally always been a little anxious or highly strung, but it never really caused me major problems. My problems really began about two and a half years ago shortly after moving into my new house. I returned home from work one evening to find my lounge full of coal smoke from my next door neighbour’s fire (it had been sucked down the adjacent unused chimney). We rectified the problem, but I then became obsessed with smoke coming into my house. I would find myself sniffing the air to see if I could smell smoke, and going outside to check the chimneys to see if my neighbour had a fire burning. Now I think back about it my behaviour seems silly! I developed a cough, which of course I attributed to smoke coming into the house (I only had the cough when I was in the house). I basically spent the entire winter miserable about the whole affair and tried to spend as little time at home that I could. I was scared to return home, and was basically anxious all the time I was there. I didn’t realise this at the time of course, but now I understand it all. I was relieved when spring came and I could forget about it; which I did. That was until winter came around again last year (2007) and my neighbour was using her fire again and all the feelings came back again.

    It was only when I was staying at my parent’s house that Christmas that I realised I didn’t have the cough, yet when I started to think about it it came back even though I hadn’t been home for a week! I realised this was all in my head and I was doing it to myself. This is where the real problems began. I returned home in early January but I still didn’t feel comfortable at home, I was also starting to get the beginnings of physical symptoms which at the time I took to be a serious illness. I went to the Doctor’s for tests, they were negative, but the symptoms were still there. How can the tests have been negative when I had all these symptoms? Of course I didn’t recognise what the symptoms were at the time, though my Doctor had told me to “chill-out a bit and have a kebab” (quite a bizarre statement when you think about it) so he obviously knew what was going on but never said. When I look back now, I realise all that was happening was that the anxiety over the house had eased, and so my brain had turned it inwards onto me, thinking there must be something wrong with me.

    I then spent the next 2-3 months in a downward spiral, my symptoms became worse and I became more and more obsessed with them. I pretty much had the entire gamut, dry mouth, tingling feet & hands, BAD depersonalisation, blurred vision, humming in my ears, dizziness, electric shock like feelings in my legs. In May ’08 I reached a point where I was barely functioning, I didn’t understand what the hell was happening to me, so I went back to see the Doctor again.

    I wrote him a letter explaining how I was feeling and presented it to him in his consultation room, my head was such a mess I knew I wouldn’t be able to convey how I felt properly. He did a HAD Scale test on me and told me I had severe anxiety and moderate depression, he booked me in for counselling. He offered me meds, but suggested they should only be a last resort so suggested I not have them, which I didn’t.

    This is where I fell off a cliff, I made the classic mistake, I Googled. Of course after reading on the internet I convinced myself I had a major problem and would probably have this for the rest of my life. I had to wait eight weeks for my counselling to start, and within a fortnight I was back at the Doctors asking for tablets, a quick fix. He gave me Diazepam for two weeks only, told me it wasn’t the answer and I was having no more after that. At the time I was so mad and frustrated with him, but now I see how that was the best thing he could have done for me. I eeked the Diazepam out for three weeks, it didn’t help at all.

    My counselling started, and to be honest it wasn’t much help. I wouldn’t say it made me worse, but I remember getting very frustrated with it. All I was interested in was getting better, why wasn’t it working? Of course I now realise the reason why it wasn’t working was because it was making me do the very thing that was worst for me, and that was think about my anxiety. The counseller was basically saying pretty much the same things Paul does in his book, but without any context and nowhere near as clear and concise! I just didn’t get it.

    I was in counselling from late June ’08, and by late August and there was very little progress. By now my work was really suffering badly, and it had gotton to the point where I abandoned my house and had been back living with my parents for three months.

    That was when I discovered Paul’s book in August, and it all suddenly made sense to me, I finally understood everything the Counseller had been telling me. Since then I have been making slow but steady progress. It has taken me quite a long time to learn how to accept things, and I think now I still haven’t fully.

    However, my crazy thoughts have all but gone, my DP has lessened significantly from being in it almost the entire time to just occassionally now. My physical symptoms have pretty much gone as well, though the humming in my ear still returns now and again (I’ve had it for the past few nights, but it’s not bothering me any more). My sleep is still not great, I don’t have that much trouble getting to sleep, but I do tend to wake early still. I’m no longer thinking about getting better (at least not very much), and I’m back to doing things and trying to live a normal life no matter how I feel. I am working to get things back on track at work, and am happy in my house! In fact a few months ago I did the very thing I thought I could never do, I opened up my fireplace so I could have a coal fire of my own, I brought the very thing that triggered this snowball effect right into the centre of my house; that helped a lot.

    It’s a rare day when I am anxiety free, but I am finding I can have periods when I feel relaxed, especially in the evenings. I guess the best way to describe how I feel now is that I am still anxious quite a lot, but the difference between the anxious and non-anxious periods is becoming more apparant, and the periods of non-anxious feelings are becoming longer, and the anxiety is feeling weaker when it is there. I also gained two stone in weight during this period, so I am now on a diet to get back down to my proper weight. Two months ago I could not have typed this post without it making me feel bad, but I am sitting here at my desk at work actually feeling more relaxed than I did when I started!

    Moving forwards I intend to continue exactly as I have been. I am particularly looking forward to reading Paul’s post on being trapped in your thoughts as I think that may be a problem I have. I also have problems with being a very negative thinker, which is probably what got me into this mess in the first place. Thank you for your help so far, and here’s to full recovery whenever that may be.

    To close I wanted to give everyone a link to a page that also helped me immensely as it explains the cycle of anxiety and how it works perhaps in a little more detail than Paul’s book does.

    You can find the page at:
    http://www.algy.com/anxiety/files/barlow.html

  289. lisa Says:

    fiona, taking ads wont work if you only took them for 2 days, it takes 6-8 weeks for them to work . right off to get me roast dinner ready yum yum :-)

  290. Paul David Says:

    Well done Kashwan on your progress. Its very true that going towards and inviting fears is the way to umask them for what they are and realise it peaks and then dies down, nothing bad happens and these feelings can’t harm you, your confidence builds and builds.

    Thanks for your story Michael and I am glad you are making progress and trust me you will continue to do so. I to felt so lost and bewildered when I first suffered and found little help.

    Just to let everyone know the latest post will be next Monday. I am still updating the book, it is taking longer than normal but should be done in the next few days.

    Paul

  291. Fiona Says:

    To be honest drugs aren’t for me and i’m so glad now that i never went on the mediication round about cos most people cant wait to get off them. I guess for some people they do work e.g. Katie Price got rid of PND with them. But its a personal choice i guess. x

  292. Candie Says:

    I was on a certain anti-depressant for nearly two years, sure they can mask certain feelings and relax you slightly but your anxiety will remain with you and build up a resiliance to the medication eventually- so i was often having my dose upped by the doctor. Eventually my anxiety hit a peak where i was on 175mg of Dosulepin- which helped me sleep, but got me into avoiding my symptoms even more… i just took them to sleep and get away from it all. Now i am no longer on meds, i gradually reduced them and its the best thing i did- my mind is clear and instead of avoiding i am facing the anxiety. I even mock it and invite it in, trually allowing the thoughts and feelings to be there and letting my mind see that although my body will react with adrenalin, it cant harm me.

    As for Katie Price she had a serious form of postnatal depression and recovered, yet she would of never recovered without the help of the experts she saw, tablets alone generally are not enough.

    Hi Nicole
    I see where you are coming from worrying about having a mental health illness, the fact you are here for help though does say you know you are not functioning 100% mentally. However, i wouldnt say anxiety is a mental health illness, more a condition of not functioning at optimum mental performance due to prolonged worrying. Also, anxiety is 100% self curable, so that suggests its not an illness- an illness is something we generally cant control, yet anxiety is self inflicted and self created… this suggests alls you are suffering from is tired nerves. I dont think of myself as mentally ill, mentally tired maybe at times!

  293. Paul David Says:

    Hey Candie, Been real busy lately my stretchey mate, catch up with you on the puter tomorrow if you are on. Went vibe cycling today, only guy there and my legs ache like mad :) Hope you had a good weekend.

  294. Christina Says:

    Hi everyone. I have the flu or something right now, and let me tell you, being sick with anxiety is probably the worst thing ever. I have enough trouble sitting still and sleeping, but now I am stuck here trying to relax and my body won’t stop shaking. I bought Paul’s book, and have been reading it, but I just can’t shake the fact that it won’t work for me. It seems impossible for me to live alongside my anxiety. My anxiety is mostly physical. I wake up every morning and begin to shake and feel really nervous. I try to just sit “with it” but I can’t. I am trying to do things that I would normally doing, but it’s really hard because I am only 23 and feel like a big freak that I’m dealing with this again. I really just want to disappear so badly.

  295. Candie Says:

    Hi Paul, less of the stretchey lol. I am shopping tomorrow day but should be online after it, oh how awful it must of been for you to be left with all them women in the lycra shorts lol… i hope there was a granny on the bike infront of you with cellulite and wrinkles :)

  296. louise Says:

    Christina,ive only very recently read Pauls book and i remember when reading it my thoughts where all over the place,there was a voice telling me ‘this will never work for you’but i finished the book and knew it all made sense,im now reading it for the second time to totally absorb the info and ive also purchased a clare weekes book,which paul recommends.Its important to gather info because through this we learn.Christina have faith,really believe that you will recover and take all the unpleasent symptoms on the chin,dont be afraid anymore,theres loads of us all on the same boat,you r not alone doll.I have developed so much more faith since finding this site and when i feel at my worst i imagine what advice the people on this page would give and i take great solace in this.Have faith and have patience,take the good with the bad and do not fear,things will start to get better.I have recently stopped smoking and ive started exercising 3 times weekly,i must say this coupled with pauls advice has left me feeling quite good,i actually have days when i dont feel anxious at all and when i do im definatly getting better at accepting,but does anybody feel really 60/40 about saying they feel better its like theres a wee voice telling you not to count your chickens before theyve hatched.Speak soon.xxxx

  297. Jenny in America Says:

    Is it normal to still have some physical symptoms even though the mental worry/anxiety/anguish feels completely gone? I don’t feel bogged down by my thoughts, I feel engaged when I see/talk with people, and yet my legs will tingle, seemingly out of the blue. This symptom began when I had my first panic attack. The symptom lasted for months. I was terrified to go to the Dr, fearing I would be told I had MS. I finally went, was reassured it was only anxiety (by 3 Dr’s). It has completely stopped at times, sometimes weeks at a time, only to start up again. Seems to happen more, when I am just generally stressed about work, too much to do, etc… But then I’ll start thinking, why tingling now? I’m not panicking, nowhere near it….

  298. Nicole Says:

    Hi Candie,
    I laughed at how right your statement was when I read it – “the fact you are here for help though does say you know you are not functioning 100% mentally”. I had not thought about that and it is obviously true, as much as I try and convince myself that I am fine which is in a sense fighting, not accepting. There is a difference between understanding that I am complete, with or without the anxiety and acknowledging that something is not 100% and can be remedied.
    Thanks! Nicole

  299. Christina Says:

    Jenny, I think this is normal. I had trouble with that during my first episode. My thighs would feel tingly/restless, and I actually got an MRI for that reason. Then I thought I had restless leg syndrome. During my second episode of anxiety, that feeling came back from time to time, but I knew it was part of the anxiety so it was just annoying. My anxiety is mostly physical it seems…last year I hit rock bottom and woke up not only to terrible anxiety but also a feeling of dread. These days, I just feel shaky, nervous, and my chest gets really tight and I can’t sit still. I don’t worry about the feelings themselves because I know they are anxiety, but my fears are just “when will they go again.”

  300. Candie Says:

    Lol glad what i said made u realise Nicole, i wouldnt accept this for ages either- which made me shy away from the mental health adverts etc. Now i can watch what ever and dont tie myself in with the same brush as a mentally ill person, im my eyes your not mentally ill with anxiety- your mentally exhausted.

  301. lorryt Says:

    hi candie hows it going?..

    i have kept away for a bit as i feel every time i had a set back i was right back here for reassurance which in itself says that i wasnt believing in my own recovery. i know you guys are great and always offer positive advice as you too have been there. at the mo things are going ok, i am having good days and dont really worry too much, had quite a challenging weekend and suffered a bit monday as i was getting myself in a state about things, but it seems to be getting that if i do have a bad day i seem to get through it without too much worry and depression. dare i say i am beginning to see some more light at the end of the tunnel.i now am understanding things a lot more too, taking a big step back and looking at things for what they really are than for what we perceive them to be. 2 different points of view totally. i wont go on, but hope Paul you are doing well with your training and look forward to hearing how things go with the run, dont forget to send me details of where to send the cheque to .

    have a good day allxxxxxxxxxx

  302. louise Says:

    Hey everyone,i was hoping someone could help me with this!Ive suffered from anxiety for so long that everyone who knows me axpects me to be on edge difficult etc etc [people actually avoid me ive been told]so now that im defo starting to recover i find myself feeling that people can see right through me,like they know im not right!!Ive spent so long being introvert that acting’normal’feels weird.I really only feel this way around certain people so i guess that means theres a whole lot of issues surrounding it.I do feel intimidated around self-assured people,and i wonder if this will ever go.Can anyone relate to this?xxxxx

  303. Jenny in America Says:

    The tingling (tops of my legs) really feels like excess adrenalin. It feels like I’m “keyed up”.But it’s not like I can live in a cave as a hermit. Life, in general is fast paced and hectic. I only work outside of the house 2 days a week. The rest of the time I’m at home with my 2 kids. 1 is in school. When my feet hit the floor in the mornings, I feel like I immediately start feeling stressed, like my insides are just running. I don’t feel panicky, like I use to. But if I stand still or sit down and am not fully engaged in something, the tops of my thighs and sometimes more, just tingle, tingle, tingle. I never experienced this until I had my first panic attack. For months, I had several other symptoms: dizziness, constant fatigue, metallic taste in my mouth…. Those all completely subsided but the tingling. Which does subside for various lengths of time. But if something new, nothing big even, stresses me, it starts up again. And when it does, I feel sucked into the fear cycle again, of “Oh no. What if I have a debilitating disease???” Which I know prolongs the tingling. Is it just a matter of more time for my adrenalin to get back down to normal so that the littlest thing doesn’t set this off?

  304. Jenny in America Says:

    Ooops, I signed in as just “Jenny” in the previous post. And can’t go back and change it.

    Edited: Changed the name on ya last post for you.

  305. Bob Says:

    Hi Paul, everyone

    jenny I also use to suffer from fatigue but that passed but know that i am recovering i feel that when my legs feel restless and tense (lower legs) that its keeping me from recovery did anyone else have this condition or simular to this and it passed Please help

    Bob

  306. Christina Says:

    Oh Man Jenny, I can so relate. The minute I get out of bed, I’m struck with anxiety…except I feel it in my whole body. My chest gets tight and I feel an overwhelming need to “escape” or hide almost. I’m having trouble understand parts of the book where it says you feel awful if you leave a place because you feel anxious, but what about when you do things anyway and you still end up upset because you were anxious. For example, I rarely leave places early or at all even if I’m anxious, but I still get upset that I couldn’t enjoy as much as I normally would because I was so anxious if that makes sense.

  307. brian Says:

    Hey guys,

    I am still struggling with how I feel. The last few months have been very tough. After discovering this website, the first few months were incredible. I made so much progress and changed my whole outlook on life in about 5 months. But since that I suddenly lost this new “attitude” I had. I’m not sure what happened but I just know that the last few months have not been right. It’s especially upsetting because, since I know about this website, I know exactly what’s wrong with me and exactly what to do but am completely unable to do it. I’ll never forget the few months after I found this website because they were great. By the end I was having many moments where I was completely recovered. But something changed and I lost the attitude I had, lost everything this website says to do, and now when I read this website it doesn’t feel the same, it still feels like something is wrong. If anyone has ever experienced something like this or knows what I am talking about I would love any advice or input. Thank you and good luck to everyone on here. I still know this website is the answer, I am just having trouble getting back to the right attitude.

  308. louise Says:

    Hey brian,listen ive only very recently found this website and like you said you felt at the beginning is how im feeling now,but to be honest i dont shout about how good im feeling cause im always afraid the bad feelings will come back.I hope one day this will go also.Like you i understand everything that is being said to me and i know this advice is bang on but i also know and fully accept that recovery will take time.Im no expert brian but it sounds to me like your simply going through a setback and giving it way too much thought and respect,let it go and carry on with your life,do a bit of exercise if you can it helps me really focus,eat well and try to remain positive!!I know fighting this thing will never work for us but my god never give up on the belief that through time we will recover!!There aint nothing wrong with you brian its just that devil anxiety playing its tricks.Speak soon,and remember your not alone!!

  309. Candie Says:

    Hi Brian, yes you are having a setback. Things where so good for you before you got comfy and when the setback hit it probably caught you of gaurd and you began to fight again. You know recovery works as you have recovered a lot previously, so that isnt the problem- you have got yourself so worked up that you cant apply it that your forgetting to do the basic things to help you recover. Why dont u start from the begining, a fresh- read the book again and take recovery one step at a time. Dont strive to be at the same stage as before, just allow yourself to feel however you feel and accept the symptoms as anxiety without ruminating about them. Eventually you will catch upto where you was before. Its the pressure your putting on yourself to ‘get it’ again, thinking if you can do that you will feel better- but remember to ‘get it’ you have to allow yourself to feel crap and not question it so much. Trying to strive for any level of recovery is fighting, which is why things have been a struggle for you lately.

    Bob, read what you put… ”i feel that when my legs feel restless and tense (lower legs) that its keeping me from recovery ”. If you beleive a symptom is stopping you recovering, you arnt fully accepting as true understanding and acceptance would lead you to beleive its your reaction to the symptom thats keeping it at the forefront of your day(as if you never made such a big deal of it mentally it would pass). If you dont give your anxieties free reign, you put pressure on yourself to be a certain way- thats how symptoms persist. Its an anxious loop but easy to break if you understand that allowing yourself to feel like you do will help you be free of your anxieties.

  310. Tracey Says:

    Candie–

    I have a quick question. I find myself still checking, like checking in with myself to see if I’m thinking the thought or when I look at something or someone. Would you consider that fear of checking or still fear of the thought, cuz I hate checking lol it drives me nuts. Did you have this problem also? This is probably something I also have to become nuetral to right?

    -Tracey

  311. andrew Says:

    Hey everyone,

    Still have anxiety over sleeping. During the day I am fine. But once I’m lying in bed my anxiety and tension rises. I can’t do anything about it. I try to ignore it, but it’s there. It’s hard to explain. It’s hard to fall asleep and stay asleep most nights. I have good days but more bad days over this. I know to just accept it, ignore it, and don’t pay attention to it. It’s so frustrating. I feel like I’m so close and yet so far at the same time from recovery. The pieces of the puzzle aren’t fitting in right now…

  312. Candie Says:

    Tracey that is just memory trying to drag u back in, i was the same but it subsides when u pay it no attention… allow the memories to be there but dont force yourself to check.

  313. Tracey Says:

    Okay that’s what I thought because a couple weeks ago I was fine and didn’t check at all and then this set back really got to me and started dragging me back in. but alright I will do that, thank you for all your advice it really is helping me!

  314. Fiona Says:

    Hi Candie, just say that bit of advice you gave Brian on his setback is the best advice that has been on here in ages! You go girl!!!!!!
    Fiona xx

  315. Rhianon Says:

    Hi Paul,

    So I guess you’re saying I should just get that 9 hour flight to San Fransisco next month, ignore the nightmares and my friends advice to take tranquilisers and get hypnotherapy? Okay, it’s not going to be easy but doing exactly what you just said (plus cutting down on booze & spicy food & increasing excercise and meditating) has gotten me to my current almost anxiety free state so it can probably get rid of these last vestiges!

    I knew I was giving it way too much thought but it has a habit of suprising you when you least expect it…

  316. Stephen Says:

    Hey scarlet and candie,

    been in a setback for about a week it hasnt been too bad but just normal and grey periods. made me feel a little down today but im just going with it i suppose, had my main fear has been i’d crack and go insane and like myabe hurt someone which i know i never would but its such a strong thought and it get myself so worked up about it. i felt so close to the end before this setback but there is obviously more to get throught.

    how have you been scarlet, havent seen you post in a while hope all is well, hope to here from you soon.

    hope everyone has a good weekend

    stephen

  317. Kashawn Says:

    Hi everyone,

    I wanted to discuss something very obvious when it comes to Anxiety. It is very important to think about what brought us into this condition in the first place; this could be certain obsessions, constantly dwelling on certain problems etc. It is very true that our lifestyle and how we live affects our anxiety. What I am trying to say is; in addition to Paul’s teachings of how to get out of the Anxiety condition, I think it is also important to modify our lifestyle that put us in this condition in the first place. It is important to follow the teachings of Paul and also modify our lifestyle to make it as least stressful as possible. Anxiety can live on unhealthy habits/lifestyles and the constant dwelling of our problems. For me, I had to seriously reconsider my “life” habits, I was the type of person that constantly dwelled on problems and mistakes which led me to this condition.

    Just something to think about, Iv come to realize that our lifestyle habits are a crucial part of recovery in addition to following the acceptance behaviours we have been taught by Paul’s work.

    All the best to everyone
    Kashawn.

  318. Kashawn Says:

    Bob,

    Try to see Anxiety as a condition your body is in because of what you’ve been through; your nerves are tired. I would not use the term “cureable” because its not an illness but rather a condition:) If you follow the acceptance behaviours given in the book, over time your nerves heal and you no longer have the Anxiety condition; there is nothing wrong with you, just look at Anxiety as a tired mind thats all. Iv also researched anxiety and read alot but these websites look at Anxiety as something pathological (something wrong within the body) which is not the case. So have faith in yourself, work with Anxiety there, give your body the space it needs, and your nerves will heal and you will no longer feel Anxiety. Just give it time, patience, and a little bit of faith:)

    All the best my friend
    Kashawn.

  319. clare Says:

    i have sobbed my heart out today, im finding all this too much the depression has hit an all time low with me right now i feel lonley, lost and whatever else, i dont have any family, friends or any other relatives apart from my 3 kids ages 15, 8 and 15 months being a single parent too its hard to ever relax. im finding it very isolating im stuck in 24 hours a day little scared to go the shops on my own so stay in instead. any advice or support would be welcome x

  320. louise Says:

    Hey kashawn,i totally agree with you we should all modify our lifestyles to help ease anxiety,ive done just that and as well as folowing pauls advice ive noticed big changes in myself.I quit smoking 5 wks ago,this has heped in the sense i constantly stressed over the ill effects of smoking and also because it aggravated any palpitations i was getting,i definatly notice a reduction in these.Ive started exercising which has honestly given me a new lease of life,the benefits of exercise should never be underestimated.I ve also given up one of my weekend morning shifts,which has been beneficial in the sense i get one morning a week where i get to simply chill……….[not easy being a mum to 3]!I just thought id reiterate what you where saying because i believe it to be true and without doubt is helping me.The whole acceptance thing is such a simple concept and yet so effective,i just hope to continue to get better and start living i feel like i do have a lot to offer and ive missed out on so much,i cant thank paul enough for sharing his amazing advice in his book and also everyone on this page who continue to offer support to each other,its such a massive relief to know theres others out there,take care guys!!!!!

  321. brian Says:

    Hey Candie, Louise, just wanted to say thank you so much for responding to me. It really helps and I appreciate it. I don’t like to post on here a lot but just wanted to tell you I keep up with everything and your responses mean a lot.
    You know I am starting to think a lot of my anxiety “resurgence” was due to going back to college. I am remember that first semester of college a few months ago was so unbelievably stressful. I felt so bad and so unlike me. For some reason even reading this website would make me feel worse which was never the case before and is not the case now. Now that college is coming to an end for the year, I can feel everything calming down. Has anyone else in college experienced this at all? I know college can be stressful for everyone, anxiety or not, because people change in college and everything is just different.

  322. Kashawn Says:

    Clare,

    I understand your pain and sadness. With all do respect, the truth is you are feeding your anxiety and allowing it to grow by crying and staying at home with self pity. Although easier said then done, you must allow yourself to feel anxiety and move on through your day. You can’t stay home and think about your anxiety because that only make you feel more sad/depressed and feeds anxiety leaving you feeling worse and worse. Try to do normal living things, go for walks, do things and live as normal as possible. Living as normal as possible with anxiety there is the key to getting out of this anxiety condition; doing so will heal your tired nerves and ultimately make you feel better. I know its hard and tough at times to feel anxiety but you really have to face your fears and do normal every day things, As Paul says: Face your fears and they dampen. Keep your head up:)

    Kashawn.

  323. John S Says:

    Good Morning, I was just hoping for a bit of advice please. I am supposed to be going on a stag do the first week of June but i am expecting to still feel crap with DP and anxiety. (Im still only 12 weeks into recovery) Under normal circumstances i would go on the holiday regardless but the fact that it is a stag do and would involve alot of drinking everyday Im not sure whether it would be wise to go. I went last year but i was functioning better with my anxiety back then. I feel like I might be putting preesure on myself to feel better for the holiday aswell. I was just wondering whether i should perhaps cancel going and take some pressure off or would that be letting anxiety win?
    Any thoughts would be appreciated.

  324. John S Says:

    No one on the holiday would be aware of my anxiety condition either as only family and one or two others know about it. They are all friends but not the most understanding!

  325. clare Says:

    kashawn thanks for the reply, i do understand what your saying now, think i just got a little sidetracked in my own self pity. i dont blog at all i seem to more just read other peoples stories they give so much inspiration knowing that were not all crazy people just more wiser about life.
    thanks again x

  326. lorryt Says:

    hi there

    Bob , it takes as long as it takes to recover, I used to ask myself that question a lot believe me. its a csae of taking on board what advice you are given and putting it in to practice. then its doing it without thinking about it, it sort of becomes inbuilt. believe me it comes back in bits, it did for me.will post laster on as have to get kids to school and find out who got voted off dancing on ice !!, BUT STICK WITH IT , IT WILL COME.

    HAVE A GOOD ONE ALL, IM TRYINGXXXXXXX

  327. louise Says:

    Please can anyone help…….im just back from a session with my therapist and were trying cbt.The session didnt go very well,basically hes encouraging me to question my irrational thoughts he believes that by doing this i will unearth the deep seated beliefs about myself that keep my anxiety alive,i do like the sound of this but it kinda goes against pauls advice which i also like,ive never felt better since following pauls advice but i dont want to go against my therapist,he wants to have a look at pauls book and im worried and very anxious that i will have to choose what advice to go on,i dont think im qualified.I feel more anxious than ever hope someemne can help xxx

  328. Annie Says:

    Louise,
    Here’s where I think CBT has failed as a therapy to treat anxiety (I too did CBT in 2006). Most thoughts happen so quickly that it’s impossible to slow it down and dismantle it. Also, challenging every thought is laborious, time-consuming and largely ineffective. For example, millions of people smoke cigarettes everyday. Is this from a lack of information about the harmful effects of smoking? Not at all. Certainly smokers understand cognitively what they’re doing. In fact, one can sit with someone that smokes and challenge every belief they have, yet the person will continue to smoke. Obviously it’s more than a physical addiction.

    Accepting your thoughts is the way to go, IMO. Meditators are taught to watch their thoughts and not identify with them. Paul is teaching the same practice. I’m not discouraging you from therapy. Therapy can be very effective at uncovering the patterns that we keep repeating that are not enhancing our lives. However, CBT in particular places too much emphasis on controlling that which you CANNOT control – namely, every thought that you have. What about people that wake up from sleep with a PA? There’s no effective way to “challenge” those thoughts. One would either fight against the PA or accept those thoughts.

    Right now I’m in my hometown in NY, having traveled 3,000 miles from the West Coast of the US. I’m here for a family reunion. I was determined to make it here, no matter how I felt. You know what? I’m having a great time! I’ve had to travel with my two young children without my husband, because he couldn’t make it. I got a cold and my period came early. I’ve accepted, accepted, accepted. There have been moments where I’ve wondered how I would go on to the next thing. I’ve just accepted those thoughts and kept going. I literally do not care how I feel. I am not going to miss this opportunity to see my parents and siblings, because we all live far away from each other.

  329. teresa Says:

    Hi
    I like, Clare do not blog much as I am anxious of becoming ‘trapped’ in it I find myself scanning the positive anwers and looking for something which will lift my ‘fear/mood’. I have had anxiety for about 10 years – i am considerably better than I was years ago but after a bit of a bad time found Paul and decided this was the road to lead me out. I seem to be in a loop, even when things are good – I function well, have plenty of things going on in my life and go out freely, although do dread holidays and social occasions. After reading the book I found certain ‘penny’s dropping’ out of the blue and this was very reassuring even though it almost meant going backwards to release the mechanisms I had found to ‘get through’. However, I am scared I am stuck in this cycle, I seem to lurch from one set of syptoms to another – all anxiety. The problem is I seem to be able to comprehend all this and I also have experience of once ‘true acceptance ‘ comes in, how a particular set of symptoms goes but it’s very soon the next set arrive and although I know what they are I get caught in the loop again – I wondered if any of you that are recovered felt that you would never get through to ‘thinking right’ again – of course once all this comes in the inevitable self pity starts too. Thanks for all the tips.

  330. LORRYT Says:

    hi

    cant seem to get away today from the feelings of going backwards, despite offering advice to others I feel a bit low. Hubby had a ‘bad day’ yesterday and when it happens to him we all pay. i am coping better with it , but still find it hard to deal with his emotions and overall anger about things. it puts me into a panic situation and all i can do is cry? sounds daft but i hate it and am finding it hard today to leave my thoughts alone and accept, sort of understanding that i am gonna have bad days , but cant seem to accept when anyone else does. i guess he has to realise he has an anger issue before he can address it. trouble is i thne worry about the children and how it will affect them and it just snowballs and i get myself in a state.
    i seem to dwell on things, and cant let them go, trying but very hard.
    have a great day xx

  331. Emily Says:

    Louise,
    I’ve personally found that there really were deep-seated beliefs I’ve been carrying around that HAD to be uprooted before any growth could happen. Now that they’re exposed, Paul’s advice works well because I can see the lies as they are and now know they don’t deserve the attention. It’s a process for sure.
    So, I support counseling/therapy/CBT type stuff so long as it doesn’t become something we grab and try to make fix us. I would think Paul’s information could work nicely with any counseling you receive. Sometimes it’s needed to have another set of ears and eyes to help you along in recovery for a bit. It’s not for everyone, but can certainly be helpful for some.
    Hope that helps. It doesn’t necessarily have to be one or the other, in my opinion.

  332. Dean Says:

    hi ALL

    Wow its been a wile since ive posted anything on here.im doing much better i must say then i was a few months ago,just living life again to the best that i can with anxiety.just one little hurdle has been worrying me is the weight issue.i went to the doc recently to get blood tests done to see if it was my thyroid that was causing me to loose the weight,but evrything came back normal.so im glad that is sorted,so know i need to know why it is that ive lost all the weight.is it because my body is just highly stressed and over sesitised to evrything and that why im also reacting to certain foods.is it possible by me reacting to the foods cause me to not put on weight?how do i like force my body to put on body mass again,because evryone around me has commented on how thin ive got and it hurts my self confidence so what can i do to resolve this one?

    Dean

  333. Fiona Says:

    Hi Lorryt, i wish i could offer some words of wisdom but i find myself in the same situation and feel worse than i have done for ages so your not alone :-) Will just have to do the same as before and get through it with as much acceptance and as little fear and worry as possible. To be honest i could feel the setback building for a week or so and it has just peaked so feeling pretty rubbish, i.e tired, anxious and unreal but bring it on. Its only silly thoughts and feelings and cant do you any harm. You know that feeling builds then subsides the trick is not to be to impressed with at the time when the adrenaline is flowing and the symptoms feel strongest.
    Have a great day, Fiona xx

  334. Kashawn Says:

    Hi everyone

    I have been posting alot but I think my learning of this condition can benefit everyone in some shape, way or form:)

    The most important concept to understand with regards to Anxiety is to LIVE as normal as possible AND ALSO to face the feelings of anxiety. I found myself avoiding the feelings for soo long (this fed Anxiety) despite doing normal things. we have to LIVE AS NORMAL AS POSSIBLE AND FEEL ANXIETY NEVER AVOID. I think this is the main behaviour to learn. Paul can you please confirm this, Thank you so much.

    Kashawn.

  335. lorryt Says:

    thanks fiona

    its really hard, feel like crying my heart out, i hate confrontation and conflict, i know no partnerships can avoid it but im just too soft !! i need to toughen up, and the anxiety website is helping a lot especailly with my confidence levels and my coping levels. we will all get there im sure just feels quite isolating at times but thansk it means a lot

    lets have a better day tomorrowxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  336. Fiona Says:

    Yeah i think it can be isolating also, no-one knows i suffer from anxietyas i guess i dont want to seem weak. But also i think its not a problem that you can understand unless it is effecting you so what is the point of telling people and also you get rid of it yourself. Yeah a good day tomorrow, arguing with your partner is going to make you feel low whether your anxious or not. Have a nice relaxing rest of the day. Why dont you write him a letter and sneak it in his pocket so that he finds it. If there is some issues you want to discuss with him maybe that is the best way to approach it. xxx

  337. Paul David Says:

    Yes Kaswan you are right, the thing with anxiety is it invents fears that are not real, the way to realise this is to go towards it and feel it all. You are like others who are moving forward and having many eureka moments where something else falls into place. You have not only listened to the advice but took it on board and followed it through and for that you deserve a pat on the back. I always say I and others can advise, what we cant do is make people follow it through.

    Also a note to everyone that I have finally finished updating the book and will be putting a new post up as promised sometime this week.

    Hope everyone is well

    Paul

  338. Kashawn Says:

    Thanks for the confirmation Paul, things are truly coming together and your responses makes it soo much easier thank you:)

    My knowledge on this condition has led me to plans to go into Mental Health Nursing once a graduate and help others with the self help information you have taught me.

    Congrats on your updated book too!! Words can’t describe how much you’ve helped me and others.

    Kashawn.

  339. Tracey Says:

    I have a question, I’ve been doing pretty well lately with not having anxious reactions to my thoughts but my question is sometimes I catch myself “what if-ing” and I still don’t get anxious towards it like I used to. I guess my question is when you get the what if’s do you do like with the other thoughts and just no hold any reaction to them or when you feel yourself starting to ask what if you stop it before it happens?

  340. Tracey Says:

    also do you think maybe the what if’s are just out of habit? because I feel like they’re just automatic that I don’t necessarily mean to do it.

  341. Kashawn Says:

    Hey Tracey,

    Let the what ifs come, its a habit from thinking about anxiety. The key is to let the whatifs come, just dont add thoughts to them; give them their space and in time they fade:)

    Kashawn

  342. teresa Says:

    Have ended the day feeling more positive about it all, thanks to Kashawn and his words of advice. Thanks all, it can be a lonely business and litening to words of advice from people who have got to grips with it does help – the thing is that it is so easy to lose the thread and the immediate reaction is to look for waht made you feel ‘right’ before – unfortunately this is a bad habit because it adds to the observation and watching of yourself and trying to find an answer. I know I am not there yet, but have experienced one or two ‘eureka’moments since reading Paul’s book. I shall keep trying to not try. LOL.

  343. Tracey Says:

    Thank you Kashawn I appreciate your advice!

  344. Christina Says:

    I’m having a hard time believing that you really can lose the fear completely. This is my third time going through all of this, and right now, I do not fear the symptoms themselves..they are familiar to me, and everything I am experiencing now is the same as I have experienced it in the past. I just feel like even if I lost the fear of the symptoms themselves, the fear of these “dark periods” of my life as a whole will always remain. Does anyone else feel that way? I just feel like even if I get through this on my own, I will always fear it all coming back because it lasts so long and destroys who I am. I guess I’m just scared.

  345. teresa Says:

    Hi I’ve been Kashwan’s and Paul’s posts from yesterday again – it seems the thing to ‘happen/do’ is not avoid your fears – I find practically I do do that but yet I seem to carry the feeling of a symptom (whichever one is bothering me at that particular time) with me. I find it difficult to accept the symptom – I seem to get it all logically but it’s as if the bits don’t link up.
    I have found what you said yesterday of great help and I’m telling myself to make no room for anxiety in my life, just live as normal and accept whatever my head tells me as anxiety and if I carry on doing that eventually the ‘eurika’ will happen.

    I don’t really fear it coming back once it’s gone because I believe once I sorted this in my mind I can do that again and if i know there is a way out, which I have experienced well there’ll be nothing to fear anyway.

  346. Dean Says:

    hi all

    sorry to be a nag,but just wanted to get some feedback from my msg above,just finding it difficult because i dont know what to do to help myself

    dean

  347. Christina Says:

    HI Dean, I have the same problem with weight. I have always been thin, but everytime I go through these periods of anxiety, I start losing weight really fast and it’s noticeable. I wish I had the answer for you, but I’m trying to figure it out myself. I’m just trying to eat as much as I can whenever I feel good enough to. It’s very hard, I know.

  348. John S Says:

    Hi Dean, im exactly the same aswell. I still dont really have a great appetite but im managing to gradually put on weight. Iv put on a stone since xmas. I go to the gym and do weights no matter how i feel and then try and load up on protein. Try protein shakes, fruit, salad. Also eat lots of nuts and seeds constantly during the day. I know sometimes big meals dont look particulary appetising like they should but just force it down you for now mate

  349. lorryt Says:

    hi Fiona

    that is a very good idea, i might try that. its very difficult trying to approach a subject that hes sensitive about. I am having a lot better days thouhg recently and am getting on with life as i should have done in the beginning. it has taken me a long time to get to this stage but if it takes as long agin to fully recover then so be it. it takes the pressure off, and my confidence is coming back too!. thanks for the advice , and dont ever feel because you have anxiety it makes you weak, getting through it makes you stronger! BELEIVE ME!.
    wow have a great evening allxx

  350. Sam Says:

    Hey everyone,

    Its has been a while, decided to take a break from anxiety and the internet. i had 1 month and a half of good days. actually thought that i was recovering well until last week i got hit with a major setback..Dont know what brought it up but i am feeling like crap. Feel like gagging all the time, more in the morning though. Feel down and lack of appetiate…feel like i am at square one again..i know we must have these downs in order to get back up there but i find them hard…It takes away the joy in my life. I still try to do normal things in my life but i do them with no emotion. Spoke to my wife and she tells me to stay positive and take it day by day and it will pass..

    I need some reassurance anybody, been with anxiety since July 2008 and this is by far the hardest thing i ever went through..

    Hello to Candie, Scarlet, James + Paul and everyone stay positive…

    PS: almost finished reading Paul’s book its amazing..

    Sam

  351. louise Says:

    Thankyou emily.annie for answering my question i sure got myself in a cafuffle over it,but i have come to a decision,maybe i can do cbt and take on board pauls advice.I have honestly never felt better since reading pauls book,the whole concept of accepting just feels right,i dont want to fight anymore,but at the same time i do believe i hold alot of very negative core beliefs about myself that maybe have to be exposed,i dont want to analyse everything that goes through my mind id rather accept and float with most of it,but ive spent along time believing that im a weiro and not right etc etc and my self esteem is rock bottom that maybe some cbt would not be so bad.Paul could you please tell me what you think regards to this i trust your advice and i dont want to partake in anything that could b detramentil to my recovery.Ive waited so long for this therapy appointement to come up that i really dont want to sack it before its even began!!Hope everyone is ok xxxx

  352. Kashawn Says:

    Taresa,

    Im happy that I can be of help. I know sometimes its hard to face your fears but its truly the key to getting out of this anxiety condition. Try to remember that Anxiety lives on avoidance and fear (constant thinking) of it. So by facing your fears, FEELING EVERY SYMPTOM and LIVING YOUR LIFE regardless of the situation your in changes your views about anxiety and builds your innate confidence. As Paul said, anxiety is not the enemy, its not out to make your life miserable, its something your body has to go through to repair itself; its natural. Look at anxiety as a resource for living, something you gota work with in order to get out of the condition. It truly is natural and I assure you as time passes and you understanding grows, things fall in place, its all about patience:)

    All the best
    Kashawn.

  353. Paul David Says:

    Can I just say welcome to all the new people, sorry I have not been around to do this personally as I have been so busy with the update of the book.

    I can only come on when time permits as the blog has grown so big but I will expand on anything I think will help the majority.

    The new post will hopefully be up tomorrow.

    Paul

  354. sasha Says:

    Hi Paul

    just a general enquiry. i have gone through this site a lot of times and it has made me reach this stage of improvement..i have improved a lot and thanks to you Paul. Let me ask you something…I have come across a lot of books and articles written by known authors on self improvement, more positivity, change your life in seven days and a lot more which will really help in boosting a person’s self esteem and confidence. I have heard if you read or exposed to positive things deep down you are changing to a positive person.

    But i feel these things can have an impact only on those who are normal with their emotions and who can practise it .I want to change that view imprinted on my brain. I feel i cannot use those positive statements and bring them into reality as i suffered and still suffer a little bit from this ‘condition’. But i feel if it was before i got into this i could have…these are all problems of limited thinking or negative statements which i constantly tell myself and which is inturn is a hindrance to recovery.

    when they tell about some mental exercise of imgaining a scenario to bring positive change i just go blank or bringing to thoughts some good or bad previous experience to change them for the better to view them differently..they are teaching good things..
    but i feel i am incapable of even thinking..i feel i cannot understand what i am reading and i keep reading the same sometimes.. it frustrates me a lot..

    Please help me Paul.Just give me some reassurances that if i read those articles and books it can help me a lot just like it will do to a normal average person walking on the street..

    Give me Some reassurances as u have helped all of us to reach this stage of improvement and some of them even full recovery..You are a great person as your words have brought people who were living in a trance to normality..as very few people understand what we ‘go through’
    looking forward for your response….

    One more query. Each time i go the blog site my name and email is there on the page.I dont want my name and id on the page as many of them uses the same computer.Please help on this
    Cheers

  355. lorryt Says:

    sam

    i ithnk everyone can relate to your feelings. Your wife is right stay positive, it will pass. Dont go down the ohh no here we go again road. Normal emotions will retunr slowly, as they did for me anyway. im still getting there, btu little things come back in strips , then they go again, its really keeping the faith of knowing one day it will all pass and we will suffer no more. it is certainly the hardest thing i have had to cope with. Just have some self belief, and we can all provide some advice and reassurance. you will get there. i am not great with words but will always try to help, as people on here have helped me a great deal

    try and just be and not stress xxxxxxxxxx

  356. sasha Says:

    hi Paul
    Please do reply on the above post ..

  357. Nikki Says:

    Hi all I’m new to this site but “Thank-you” all. I thought I was going crazy. The emotions i have been feeling have been so overwhelming. I seem to react to everything around me with exagerrated feeling even something as simple as doing the household chores has been an effort.I have a’constant’ feeling of fear/worry in my chest and arms and i can totally relate to the obsessive thoughts my personal favourites being fear of depression/mental illness/suicide. I have got to the point with all of this that i am just so boored with it. I am bored of thinking about it and bored of feeling it. I havent let these feelings interfere with my normal day, i still go shopping visit friends all the usual stuff. I sort of knew if i didnt i would create a bigger problem. My main problem is that I am not working at the moment due to circumstance not anxiety and i feel having less time on my hands would help.I have also realised that I dont want to go back to how I was before because thats what has lead me to this change.I had a very unbalanced life ,all work and taking care of others. I have been through many major stresses over the last 18 months, my marriage brokedown and was then reconciled with huge amounts of stress then my dad, who was my best mate became ill and three weeks ago passed away. It is no wonder I am full of anxiety but I have a very positive outlook I believe all things happen for a reason and coping with everything alongside my anxiety issue has shown me what a really strong person I am. I completely agree with paul, I know i have a tired stressed out body and mind and this is just my bodys way of coping with all thats going on and is somewhat reassuring to know that I dont have to mentally cope with all this our bodies are pre-programmed to deal with stress and look after us when we need it.This was a very ‘me’ post but i felt it may offer a new perspective.

  358. maggie Says:

    My partner is obsessed with his body, expecting the worst every time some sign of illness, pain, discomfort or indeed anything that is slightly different from “the norm.” He has had back problems and neck problems that seem unresolvable. Various osteopaths have given him treatment, most recently cranial osteopathy, which is still ongoing. Because he did not understand exactly what was happening to his body under this treatment he went into a wild panic.. Questioning and imagining all sorts, all day and most of the night, sleepless night wanderings around the house…. making funny jerky movements and odd suffocating sounds, punching the air and banging his hands together loudly. He is not able to relax and is sleeping odd hours…. How can I help, he will not reason about anything, saying I dont understand. This session has been going since last September….. I need advice

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