What Anxiety Isn’t

Shelby John Anxiety, EMDR

With anxiety disorders skyrocketing to become the most prevalent mental health condition in America, it isn’t surprising that people are searching everywhere for solutions and relief.

Managing the fight, flight, panic or just plain doom is exhausting and scary. These symptoms are landing people in the doctors’ office and hospitals more often than their healthier friends which causes unnecessary exposure to more illness, loss of time at work, less time spent with family, and often mounting medical bills… Boo!

Webster defines Anxiety as “An abnormal and overwhelming sense of apprehension and fear often marked by physical signs (such as tension, sweating, and increased pulse rate), by doubt concerning the reality and nature of the threat, and by self-doubt about one’s capacity to cope with it.

Time to Reflect

Maybe you or a loved one has been suffering for a long time. When you think about your life you can look back to the younger you and see where the anxiety was present even then. Maybe as a young school ager you were the quiet one in class, hid from your classmates on the playground, refused to participate in activities, etc.

Perhaps you were a late bloomer and the panic attacks, fear, and/or worry came on later in life. It may have occurred after a certain situation or incident, or an ongoing stressor like financial insecurity, or after being diagnosed with a chronic illness.

Whatever your story is, know that it is yours. Your mental health is personal and private and can’t be dwindled down into an insurance sized check box making you feel like all you are is a diagnosis code.   Our society loves to label people with both good and bad things, but those labels are limiting and can be detrimental to our personal growth and development. 

Anxiety isn’t who you are, it is just one part of you. It is not your identity, just simply something you experience. Learning to separate it from who you are as a person will really jump start your ability to overcome it.

All About Perspective

As humans we all have the same internal organs, but separately we have unique genetic codes as well as varying experiences, upbringing, and opportunity. An important thing to note is our perceptions are our reality. So even though you may have two siblings and you were all raised basically the same, each individual will internalize experiences, consequences and guidance through their own lens.

Maybe you say things like “I don’t know why my sister is so close with our mom, she was so judgmental and mean.” When really your sister may have had a more sensitive reaction. Your sister may be more of a perfectionist in nature which lead her to wanting to please. Instead of taking your mother’s advice and guidance as helpful or productive, you may have internalized it as “mom doesn’t like me” or “mom is always picking on me.” You see where I am going with this. Different people and varied reactions to the same mother.

All of this is all fine and good but what do we do with those feelings of panic, overwhelm and fear when they tighten their grip around our chests and paralyze us? 

Therapy Session

First off, I am a firm believer that we were all created with the natural ability to heal ourselves. Deep down we have the tools we require to meet our needs, but many times we need a guide. Enter, great therapy!

Some of you may have had great therapy in your lives, while others have been resistant. Even better than routine therapy is an EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) therapist https://www.emdria.org/. As a therapist myself, and the participant in amazing therapy, I know the benefits and I honestly cannot think of any cons. 

There are many other coping skills and tools out there to help you deal with your anxiety and most of you are probably aware of them (If I hear someone say deep breaths one more time… No, I’m just kidding! Breathing is very beneficial).

Something you might not know though is the link between nutrition and mental health, specifically mood disorders. Nutritional psychiatry is an emerging field with extensive research on the link between anxiety and depression and our food.

Enter me, sharing with you the merger between my two greatest passions, mood and food! I will be sharing with you my best tips, tricks and information related to healing your anxiety and depression naturally! Be on the lookout for Facebook lives, blog posts and freebies. Be sure to follow me on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest so you can get everything hot off the press!

Hang in there, I can’t say that your life or circumstances will get better, but I know 100% you will get better. You don’t have to live with the crippling effects of mood disorders anymore.

Send me an email if I can be of any service and get you pointed in the right direction. Talk to you all again soon where we discuss the link between anxiety and poor sleep, you’re not going to want to miss that!

Thanks for tuning in!