By Guest Author Meigan Fernandez
What does anxiety look like for you? Are you overcome with a sense of worry or fear? Do you feel nauseous? Is a part of your body feeling tense, itchy or becoming blotchy? Maybe you overthink your actions in social situations, in turn becoming paranoid about what others are thinking of you and how you view yourself? Perhaps you feel a disconnection between your body and mind? There is no one way to experience anxiety, and however it manifests for you is most likely very uncomfortable or scary.
Some Anxiety is OK
On the other hand, anxiety in small doses can be good for us. It helps us to stay grounded in reality and prepare us for times when things may have not gone as we had hoped they would. Though when it starts to impact the way we live life, it’s time to take a deeper look. It’s important for us to learn to maintain a healthy amount of anxiety and find ways to cope during times of extreme stress or even panic, and working with a therapist is a great way that we can do this.
How does therapy help with anxiety?
Through work in therapy, we learn skills to calm our minds during times of high stress, or when we are experiencing racing and uncomfortable thoughts. Practicing mindfulness techniques can help shift our thinking back to the present moment and deter us from worrying too much about what is potentially to come. Mindfulness and grounding techniques can also help in times that we feel disconnected from our body. By slowly bringing our attention back to the feelings in our body, such as rubbing our fingertips together or gently tapping our feet, we are able to strengthen the connection between what we are thinking and how we are physically feeling, ultimately helping us to focus on our present moment.
Reframe your anxious thoughts
Therapy can teach us how to positively reframe our thoughts, in an effort to get ourselves away from a pattern of negative thinking. By breaking the cycle of letting our thoughts drift into the negative, in turn causing us to worry, feel stress, and become anxious, we can create a more positive outlook on stressful or scary situations.
Unlearn old, anxious habits
Therapy can also help us unlearn habits of shutting out unsavory emotions or thoughts, as this can often lead to problems and worries seeming bigger and scarier. Exploring your triggers and feelings while meeting them with curiosity and a willingness to understand them can help anxiety feel smaller and more manageable.
Are you ready to find freedom from your anxiety & worry?
What would it feel like to live with less anxiety? What would it feel like to live authentically and free of crippling worry? Sitting and speaking with a therapist may seem overwhelming, intimidating or scary, but it is important to focus on the long-term positive effects that will come from it.
A good therapist will meet you where you are, work at a speed that fits your needs, and provide a non-judgemental and supportive space to explore ways to cope with and decrease symptoms of anxiety. Finding new and more effective ways to cope with anxiety can not only decrease stress, fear and other uncomfortable symptoms, but can help you to live your best life.
About the Guest Author
Meigan Fernandez is a therapist in St. Petersburg, FL at Me-Therapy. Their practice offers therapy for women, men and couples including counseling for anxiety, trauma and a wide range of other mental health concerns!