What Is Anxiety?
Anxiety is a normal emotional response to certain stressful situations. Everybody feels anxious from time to time and it usually passes once the situation is over. However, anxiety can sometimes overstep its mark and cause unusal discomfort which can affect your daily life. It is very common, with millions of sufferers globally.
Anxiety starts of as a feeling of unease like a worry or a fear. It can make your heart race and you might feel sweaty, shaky or short of breath. The symptoms may vary from person to person. Anxiety can also be mild through to severe although it can evolve into extreme fear and panic attacks.
What typically happens with those who suffer from anxiety is that they avoid situations that trigger their anxiety which can add extra discomfort on top of the anxiety. It can feel very overwhelming and intefere with your daily life and relationships.
The discomfort and emotional pain caused by anxiety is hard to describe and it probably manifests itself differently with every person and every situation. It is highly uncomfortable and most people try to avoid anxious moments as much as possible.
What Causes Anxiety?
The answer to this question is not so simple because there are so many factors involved.
Mild anxiety could be caused by an unhealthy lifestyle such as lack of sleep, smoking, unhealthy diet, drugs and alcohol. More severe anxiety can come from stress, inherited genes or trauma.
On a deeper level anxiety caused by stress and trauma can be understood as follows. Its the emotional response for the inability to reach the goal you’re trying to achieve. Take for example the legitimate anxiety of a mother whose child has not come home on time. The mother will feel anxious because she wants to see her child but she is incapable of making that happen.
Similarly, unhealthy anxieties come from present or historical situations of being unable to move forward in life. Its basically a conflict of interests within your subconscious mind or between your conscious and subconscious mind. A part of you is aware of the necessary action needed and another part of you is unable to act or inhibited by some sort of danger warning. Nevertheless its very hard to pinpoint the source of the anxiety you might feel.
How Do I Know If I My Anxiety Is A Problem?
Most times people turn for help with their anxiety if they are going through a lot of discomfort or it really affects their life in a bad way. They avoid going to certain places, social gatherings or even vacation options.
The litmus test of whether your anxiety is legitimate or not is by looking at it objectively and rationally. Is this a reason for serious concern? What do the professionals say about these situations or the present circumstances? How do most people react?
Tried And Tested Solutions For Anxiety
First and foremost if you are suffering from anxiety the best solution is to go for professional help. Find a good therapist and they will hopefully have their ways of resolving anxiety.
In the interim I would like to share with you a very powerful way of relieving anxiety and warding off panic attacks. I’ll first explain the concept then I’ll demonstrate how to do it.
One common theme running through uncalled for anxieties is the fact that in the present moment there is no need for concern. Its all about the future and in the here and now there is no imminent danger or concern. Take for example somebody who is anxious about his/her financial situation unless the bailiffs are coming there is no imminent concern.
If you could tap into the present moment and fully connect to it all anxiety will disappear and you’ll feel calm and relaxed like you’ve never before.
So, how is this state of calm achieved?
Like this. We interact with our surroundings through our five senses. Touch, sound, sight, taste and smell. What we sense through those senses is the reality around us, the anxiety we feel, however, is what our minds are feeding us. So by being fully in touch with your senses you could take a break from the whirrings of your mind.
This exercise can be done in many settings. We’ll start at home first.
Sit or lie down and make yourself comfortable. Don’t work too hard on the following instructions, it should be done in a curious relaxed manner.
Start with paying attention to the points of contact between you and the seat you are sitting on. It could be your feet on the ground or your shoulders etc. This helps you feel grounded and in touch with reality.
Now turn you attention to the sense of sound. Listen to the various sounds focusing slowly on each individual sound. You may notice new sounds that you never paid attention to. Then focus on all the sounds collectively.
Next, have a look at the room around you and the ordinariness of it. The different shapes and colours. Light and dark. The shadows. Then pick a colour and see how many different shades of it you can see.
Every so often go back to the points of contact.
Finally see what you can smell. In your home it will be a little bit difficult to be aware of the smells because you’re probably use to them by now. It helps to find a stronger and nicer smelling scent to be able to use your sense of smell properly. And then see if you can taste anything lingering in your mouth.
This will relax you immensely and give you immediate relief from your anxiety. Don’t forget, you can’t push this experience, it has to come naturally with simple curiosity. It also takes a bit of practising to master well.
The above exercise might be enough for you but for others anxiety can have very deep roots which may need something more powerful to eliminate them. Check out this wonderful program for ending anxiety, it might be the light at the end of the all too familiar tunnel…