Archive for March, 2014

Trying to Escape Anxiety

Tuesday, March 25th, 2014
How much of your day is taken up by the subject of anxiety?In my book I said that someone once said to me ‘Paul you will never get better until you stop trying to be better’. It is something I tell others and they ask me exactly what I mean by this.Well maybe your reading this page in the hope you will feel better. You may pop down your bookstore for the latest self help book, maybe this is the one, maybe this will make me feel better. What about reading a few of those internet affirmations, they seem to work for a few minutes, maybe I will take up exercise, go for a walk in the park, that may make me feel better or a new pill or vitamin, the new counsellor that may be the key. Maybe Google away today, find that page that makes me feel better. People can also turn to drugs, alcohol or food and again to make them feel different, never facing how they feel.

People also do this is real life, the new relationship then I’ll be happy, the new house, the new car, gadget, then things will be different, better.

People are always trying to be somewhere else, to feel different, but the anxiety sufferer takes it to a different level, their whole day and life seems to be trying to get somewhere else, to feel different, to think differently.

One day after years of doing this myself I realised where I was going wrong, it hit me like a brick, I had spent years trying to feel better and it did not work, those feelings kept coming back and there I was back on the same old hamster wheel.

So what am I trying to say here?

Well the way to over come anxiety is to stop trying to feel different, stop trying to get somewhere else. When you stop trying to control yourself, then you’re in control.

Whatever you try to get rid of always comes back and by constantly trying to rid yourself of a feeling you are feeding your respect for it, it becomes more of an enemy. My biggest mistake was that I was always trying to escape how I felt.

When you feel overwhelmed, anxious or any kind of negative emotion then for once experience it without trying to escape, fix or control it. Don’t label a feeling as good or bad, look at it with compassion, as something that is just part of you and your make up. Again don’t do this to try and make yourself feel better, as you are back in fix mode.

Some people say when they have a migraine the pain only lessons when they give into it, when they let it pound without stressing about it or trying to try and control or force the pain away. Well it is the same thing. The reason we find this so hard is because every instinct tells us to do the opposite, to make this better, to feel different, when the answer is to allow.

So do I say don’t take up exercise, read a book, take the odd vitamin, see a counsellor? No – as all these things helped me once I stopped using them as a tool to feel better.

So when you exercise or take a walk do it without an agenda, no doing it with the intent to make you feel better. Read a book to build up your knowledge, but don’t see it as the miracle cure that must work this time. See a counsellor to offload as it is great to find an ear, maybe she can make you see anxiety in a different light which will help.

The same goes with changing your diet, do it without an agenda. I have people ask me all the time questions like ‘Will herbal tea help with anxiety?’ what they mean is will it get rid of it. Whilst we stay on the ‘Get rid, feel different’ route we will always be stuck.

Go into anything with an open mind, if things improve then great, if not then fine. People though go to different counsellors, then the hypnotherapist, the CBT specialist, the lady who does acupuncture. They constantly swap and change because they are looking for someone to make it go away. I know as I was that person, I wasted thousands on so called cures, the people that promised to eliminate it, that’s what I wanted, not for one minute would I accept this as part of me. This is why people often Google, they are looking for something to make it go away, they are looking to feel different.

The day I stopped trying to figure it all out, stopped trying to fix or feel different was truly the day that things got better. I could finally accept there was nothing to escape, nothing to fix. By no longer trying to feel different I actually did. Oh I still felt crap at times, detached on occasions, but I just saw it as nonsense, part of my conditioned mind and let it be there.

I hope people can understand what I am trying to say here and that it helps in some way.


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