According to the National Institute of Anxiety and Stress, anxiety disorders affect about 40 million people a year. The numbers are staggering especially for women who suffer from anxiety and stress almost twice as much as men. More and more children and seniors are also struggling with anxiety.
The symptoms of anxiety vary and can mimic illness, so you should always be checked out by a medical professional. Anxiety can mimic heart problems with symptoms such as a racing heart, fatigue, shortness of breath, muscle tension, trembling, fidgeting and light headedness. Mentally it can mimic psychological disorders with symptoms such as brain fog, ruminating thoughts, obsessive ‘worst scenario’ thinking, sleep issues and difficulty concentrating. It can play havoc on your emotions with moodiness, overwhelm, fear, panic and anger. Generally you feel out of control.
When experiencing these symptoms the tendency is to think something is physically wrong with you and when you seek medical confirmation you are disappointed when told that "nothing is wrong with you". Some people start to hide out so people won’t notice. They put a huge effort into hiding the symptoms and avoiding anxiety triggers, resulting in the burden of keeping secrets and avoiding the pleasures of life. Then some will self-medicate by using prescription or illegal drugs, alcohol, nicotine, caffeine or sugar. In other words, anxiety has a life of its own and it can trap you and take over your life.
When you understand that the mind controls the body, what you feel and what you think, it makes sense to work with the mind to alleviate anxiety. Some people try medications first to alleviate symptoms and sometimes they work. However, hypnotherapy is the perfect adjunct tool to medical treatment, or the stand alone method of choice because you can go directly to the source of the problem, explore it, understand it and eliminate it. It is effective and delivers fast results.
After a while the repetitive symptoms of anxiety become expected and when you expect to experience anxiety most likely you will. Once anxiety reaches its claws of control into you and you have been dealing with it for some time, the approach to manage anxiety and eliminate it has to be two-fold.
First the stress must be addressed and that is where hypnotherapy comes in. Through relaxation techniques, you learn to unwind on all levels, physically, mentally and emotionally. The result is a better handle and control over your symptoms and your thoughts, with relief being the major benefit.
The next part of the healing approach is to look at the cause. Of course, if you knew the cause you could fix it yourself. Right? Wrong! What we think is the cause may be so on the surface level, but deep down in the subconscious level of the mind it can be something entirely different. When you understand the motivation for a behavior (or symptom), you gain an upper hand and the ability to alleviate it.
It is called reframing, a technique that allows your mind to ‘see’ things differently, resulting in the alleviation of anxiety symptoms.
Relief is what you want and managing anxiety is the goal. Anxiety does not have to have a life of its own. With the appropriate help and support you will take back your power and your life!
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By Laurie Miller, CCH
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