What do I do to be free of anxiety? How do I get rid of anxiety? The answer I searched for, for years and never found. Yes, I could find ways/techniques to cover it up temporary, but never find that illusive SECRET to make my anxiety go away. Surely I just had to keep searching, I searched every corner of the internet, nothing there, so I read numerous books, but the secret to making it all go away was not there, I went to numerous counsellors and found no answer, I searched inside my own head for answers and just felt more confused than ever.
One day I just gave up battling with how I was feeling
Then one day I just bottomed out and was crushed by it all, if the answer was not there, then this is me forever, this search had completely exhausted me and I was done with it, I just had to accept there were no answers. Was this searching all a waste of time? Not at all, because if I had not done this search I would not have come to the conclusion that there was nothing to do, that, that was the answer. It was all the doing and the searching, the worrying and the analysing that was keeping me stuck. Bottoming out was the best thing that ever happened to me.
I said in my latest book ‘At last a life and beyond‘ that one day I looked at all my self-help books and just realised that I did not need these, that these may have been the problem all along. Were these books about finding an answer? No, they were all about trying to make myself feel different, that was what the meds, counsellors, books, the searching was all about, to try to not feel something, but hang on, what if I did not try and feel different, what would happen then? Maybe these feeling and thoughts needed to be felt to be released, maybe the real suffering is coming from trying NOT to feel a particular way, maybe the real suffering is coming from all this constant resistance and not the feeling and thoughts themselves.
Understanding is key to overcoming suffering
Realisation after realisation hit me and I could not believe I had not seen this before. It made complete sense to why I had continued to suffer. I remember how I would fight my mind to try and make it quieter, to act and think differently. Then I saw it clearly that I was fighting the problem with the problem, I was trying to fix the tired and weary mind with my tired and weary mind, tiring it out further, I was creating the problem by trying to fix the problem and staying in a constant loop.
I did a lot of research after this on how the mind and body worked, read books on Buddhism and all sorts of different teachings, but this time I did it to educate myself more and not to try and feel any different. In fact, all I learnt along this route is what I saw was completely true, that I had to allow myself to feel the way I did, I had to fall into my suffering and not try to constantly escape it. But I did not see it on an intellectual level, I saw it so deep I knew there was no going back, it just made so much sense.
My words are there to point you to see this for yourselves, to spark your own realisation, that’s all my words are ever for, they are pointers and the reason I keep writing. Because trust me when you see it for yourself, nothing but your attitude towards how you feel changes, a lot of fear drops away, a lot of resistance, you start to leave yourself alone more, you come more and more out of your head, you realise you never had any control in the first place and you leave it to your mind and body to sort itself out.
Recovery from anxiety requires you to go through some discomfort
This journey out of anxiety, out of suffering is one of the toughest you have to go through, it is not about quick fixes, techniques, no one’s words will ever make you feel great overnight, TRUST me on that. It means you have to allow what needs to come up to come up, you have to turn towards it instead of turning away from it, you have to start living your life while harmless thoughts and emotions are running amok.
You may feel peace, you may feel horrible, you have to treat it all the same. You don’t cling to the bliss and you don’t run away or try to suppress the bad, the more allowing you are of it, the better. But at the end of the journey it will be the best thing you ever did, you will realise how harmless thoughts and emotions really are, you will realise how you did so much of this to yourself, you will realise you were never broken in the first place, that you never had to go around trying to fix yourself and that no label given to you was actually true.
I have seen so many people bottom out, totally defeated with nothing else to try and yet this is the best stage to get to, as when you have nothing left to try and you drop all the searching, suppressing, fighting and all the techniques and for the first time you truly start to leave yourself alone and this is where recovery truly lies.
If you would like more information on over coming anxiety, then visit my site anxietynomore. If you would like to know more about my book then visit At Last a Life.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]