Attacks Answers

How do I get my anxiety under control? Will it ever go away?

What Changed? What do you notice is being affected by the pressures at work? Why now, and why are you letting it bother you more now than in the past? The type of work or money you make, has that changed? It isn't always the immediate circumstance that affects us, but what that reminds us of, or what is triggered inside. For example, if you notice that you are feeling pressured to keep this new job because it pays so well, that can add to the pressure of the work and the fear of the manager. Or, let's say you have troubles at home; then yes, there would be more pressure to make a name for yourself at this new, and less established place. Ask yourself, what is work triggering in me that may have already been there? Or what else is going on putting more pressure on work?  Inadequacy, in general, is a topic worth addressing when it comes to workplace anxiety. If we have an inadequacy, then there can be more pressure to perform at our jobs as a way to overcompensate. With our work quality, recognition leads to promotion, which to an inadequate person will validate us and make us finally feel safe. However, the mind tries to tell you; you are OK, but it will not be OK unless you make peace with all parts of yourself.  Now, I am basing this next topic on an assumption of inadequacy; however, in my clinical experience, this is a common theme among people who struggle at work. When the pressure is so significant that we have physical ailments, then we know something deep inside is being triggered; we are being threatened at a vulnerable state. Your job could be what you attach to in providing your identity and your reassurance. So then, the job isn't what matters, but what it does to bolster the self-conscious. Remember, your job hat is just one hat you wear, not your entirety. Being defined by any one thing is setting you up for failure, especially on a bad day at work, or feeling new and inadequate at your qualify of work.  Work on noticing thoughts that get you anxious. Notice that you have thoughts and that these are provoked at times in life or at work. Now, as I stated before, the context makes incidents more significant. So then, it is important to note not just the immediate situation, but what else is going on in life. What else are you experiencing that is causing you to feel such pressure? Then, notice your thoughts and how they are getting your attention. Often I hear people say things like, "I can't leave this job."  This is usually followed by "I need the money" or "this is temporary on the road to something greater." Yet, we are willing to put our body in a health detriment in service to a career? That shows too much identity, attachment, and reliance on a job and money to make our life happy. That thought/belief is cancer, and it is what you can address by distancing from thoughts while in the moment at work.  First step: Notice your thoughts, and what they reveal about you. If you decide to work with a therapist, make sure the topic stays on what you notice, and what you are experiencing, and articulate the abstract in your mind. Do not do or fix anything; notice thoughts and allow them to exist. This will remind you that you have thoughts and that you don't have to act on these thoughts. You have emotions, but you don't need to fix them or get away from them either. Let it all be without fixing or attending to all things.  Anxiety is a part of life; it doesn't go away. Accept it, work with it, and the pressure to rid yourself of it will dissipate.
Answered on 01/22/2023

Why I’m having panic attacks at night?

Our bodies are built with the capacity to function by automatically managing itself.  For example, you breathe faster when your body demands more oxygen in response to physical acceleration (heart beating faster) or chemical changes. You do not have to actively tell your body to do these things, thus they are automatic.  Many of the chemicals in your body are in place to help you be safe (for example, if you were in a dangerous situation, your body would release chemicals that help you to escape from that dangerous situation). Some chemical changes in your body may influence your heart rate.  These chemical changes may be a part of what is occurring as you prepare to rest.  Many times, the concerns that we have as we prepare to rest elevate these chemicals and our alertness is impacted.   Many people who have experienced panic attacks express that they become anxious or worried when they consider the potential of having another panic event. It is normal for these feelings to arrive from time to time.  Thinking about the example above, your body sometimes may 'feel unsafe' and produce chemicals to help you get to safety even when there is nothing actually threatening you. The majority of our human behaviors are developed over time and become habits.  I like to think about it like sports professionals who have worked really hard to perform well.  They developed habits over time and created "muscle memory" to respond to the challenges of the game.  We have to actively (instead of automatically) develop new "muscle memory" create new habits.  What would creating new habits in "muscle memory" have to do with having panic attacks (at night)? The truth is that behavior starts with thinking.  By that I mean that before we behave in any way, we think about it first and that thought leads to a behavior.  For example, I was walking into a building today that was new for me and felt some anxiety about being in a new location. In order to keep myself from feeling out of place, I avoided eye contact with people I was encountering.  I asked myself why I did that after the fact and found that I was likely feeling uncertain about this new setting and keeping my sense of self by not making much eye contact until I felt more comfortable.  What I learned from that is that I thought about feeling uncertain first and then acted accordingly.  I now have to choose to be more aware of my thoughts and actively choose different behaviors. Some things I would recommend in order to prepare yourself for rest is to practice good sleep hygiene by turning off electronics early, reducing the need to respond to emails or texts, reducing food, drink, and caffeine consumption to an earlier time in the day to prevent these from influencing your ability to rest, and practicing Passive Progressive Muscle Relaxation (link to a script on our partner site TherapistAid  As you actively do these things, you create "muscle memory" for feeling at ease automatically and experiencing a feeling of being in control and safe.  Remind yourself that you are safe and practice experiencing the things around you that are real to bring yourself to the present. 
Answered on 01/18/2023

How to control your anxiety thoughts

Fear and Panic Your fear makes sense because what you are fearing is the loss of something really important to you. Fear itself isn't bad; it's a reminder to appreciate the finiteness of a relationship or being at peace and therefore being present in situations you want to be present at. Fear is a natural part of life and, quite honestly, may be one of the most significant feelings we have because it has kept us alive throughout human existence. It is peace we have had to learn because if we are at peace when things aren't peaceful, we make decisions and put ourselves at risk for harm. Your fears come from somewhere. A caring place, but also a place that says you won't be able to handle it if people aren't there anymore and you are left to cope. Fear says you can't handle it, so we must prepare ourselves and anticipate people's loss. Panic then is right behind the fear because the panic is the fear expanded on. Panic is now reacting to fear, whether or not we know what that fear is. You acknowledge that you fear things, and I acknowledged earlier it's not necessarily the loss of the people, but you fear the pain associated with the loss as though you couldn't handle it. Therefore, panic is a reaction to fear and being in such a helpless state that you don't know what to do.  The subconscious part of our brain, for the sake of this conversation, the amygdala, picks up information from the environment. Our subconscious then determines our fight or flight response and communicates with the limbic system. So, your body, subconsciously, can be in fight or flight mode while your head, your prefrontal cortex, the part of you that is rational and contains your personality, says everything is OK. You have the body noticing something worth getting excited about and your conscious mind not noticing it. These two battling then can cause something like a panic attack. Then we add the fear in our conscious mind that we will experience a panic attack again, and then any warning sign sets us off or worries us that we will be debilitated again.  All of this is to say that what you fear and why you experience panic is because you don't believe you can tolerate the intense emotions associated with something like the loss of a loved one or life in general. Often, when we experience something in life, it's not as intense or "bad" as we thought it might be. Instead, when we are in a moment of loss, though it still hurts, often it doesn't hurt as intensely or in the way we assumed. This is why we have to recognize that we have thoughts, yes, loved ones will die and could die sooner than later. But it is recognizing these thoughts and separating from them that will allow us to find peace.  When you wake up, you have a thought, a judgment, a predictive assessment about the day possibly. You have something going on in your head that I want you to be aware of and start to acknowledge as though you would a person. Your anxiety or fear, or panic can be identified as a suggestion. like a friend with bad advice. Though emotions exist in the abstract, our job is to personify them and talk to them like you would a friend. Anxiety shows up and tells you to be ready for this or that because it's going to be bad. You then can say, "thank you, anxiety for that message, I will consider it." The same goes for anger, sadness, or worry. You can stop from engaging the thoughts as though they are the law of your being and start to sit with them long enough to respect where they are coming from.  The more we learn how to sit with our thoughts and fear, the more we separate from them. Yes, thoughts will always exist. Yes, once you have a panic attack, you are then vulnerable for more. Yes, our memory will be triggered from events in the environment that we don't have control over, yet we can control our reaction to the environment. Sit with what your mind says you fear and realize it is coming from a place that is trying to prepare you for pain. Acknowledge the thoughts, don't remedy or deny, or indulge the belief that your life will be better without the thoughts.  Acknowledge the thoughts. Don't change, judge or alter. Just allow yourself the space to sit with them. A therapist can offer feedback based on what they notice, and you then can hear this feedback and either choose to indulge the fear as though you believe you have to, or you can separate from them, all the while noticing they exist. It's your choice. 
Answered on 01/16/2023

How can I manage my anxiety?

Panic Something caused you to respond this way, most likely triggered by something in your environment. What are you noticing concerning stress? Are there any recent stressors you can think of, loss of job, a relationship ending, death, or disease? What are you noticing about what you have experienced stress and anxiety for? You said you had counseling three years ago; I can assume for the same thing. Either way, what did you learn then about anxiety, stress, and how to cope?  Your thoughts are what tend to lead you into and out of anxiety. Unfortunately, our awareness of what is happening is not always spot on. Our subconscious brain always picks up information from the environment, and it is from there that you might be experiencing triggers to an anxiety attack. Is the weather different, a different living situation, a different smell, a person at work, or anything? Remember when you started the panic attack and what you were scared of? Your body is in overdrive, a fight or flight when you experience panic. Panic is an intense situation where all our mental and physical energy are prepared for battle, running, or freezing so we don't get caught. Your digestion loses functioning when you are in a state of panic. Your mind takes a while to get back centered afterward. You were triggered by something and now acknowledge that you do not have control, which could be very scary to admit.  When it comes to counseling sessions, make sure you talk about what you notice and hear your thoughts and beliefs. The clinician should be good about noticing patterns and identifying underlying beliefs made relevant because of your life choices. You are always working in service to the beliefs you hold about yourself and others, but that is usually in the subconscious and something that would be hard for you to notice. It's why you involve someone else in your life to give you that feedback. Panic is an extreme form of acknowledgment that things are not going well and that you have no control, and now your body fears the inevitable, so it shuts down. The body does not choose to shut down necessarily but is like a computer whose CPU is full; it will just crash.  Coping skills, breathing, staying mindful about where your mind is at and what you are thinking about. Stay aware of early warning signs of an attack so you can avoid or apply coping skills. You can call to attention what lies in the past, being brought forth today. When the subconscious notices something that triggers the panic, your body acts as though it is in a familiar situation where you feel out of control or not having control. You see, if there are any instances of trauma in life, how prevalent panic attacks are because it is tough to pull your body away from something we weren't even aware of. Noticing the early warning signs can help pinpoint what you noticed and then understand that panic or lashing out was to try and keep you safe.  The mind is a funny thing, but it should be respected. You form beliefs and perform actions every day that are subconscious. Stress, anxiety, and panic tell you you are not safe and that you must react. This might not be true, so that belief doesn't work for you anymore. However, you need to practice distress tolerance skills, mindfulness, and body scan exercises and talk about it to understand that what is happening has a purpose; you are just trying to figure out why. To hope that this goes away or doesn't interfere anymore is a waste. Instead, get to know yourself, your mind, what scares you, and what is happening; therefore, you can better handle yourself when feeling a certain way. 
Answered on 01/16/2023

How do you overcome feelings of insecurity and the constant worrying?

You Sit With It Karen, you learn to sit with what is the most painful because it is a part of you and something that doesn't disappear because we want it to. When we learn to sit with pain and discomfort, we learn a lot about ourselves and what affects us. When we avoid pain and indulge in a remedy or way of thinking, that teaches us that there are alternative ways to help, and this is a cancerous belief because these thoughts, the way you think, they don't go away. So holding out for hope that they will dissolve causes you to experience defeat constantly. The reality of thoughts and emotions triggered by thoughts and then the belief that we can remedy this is that it is inevitable.  Here's a way to dismantle troubling thoughts. Notice them. Look right at the next scary thought you have and ask it something. Treat your thought like you would facing a scary monster who has come to take your life. Stand up, look right at it and ask, "what do you want?" When you face the thoughts that tell you to look away and ask what they want, you are acknowledging their existence and no longer allowing them to pressure you by threatening you. Ask them what do you want. Treat the thoughts and, therefore, your mind that feeds you the thought, as a person. Treat the thought as a friend with bad advice because that is exactly what your most troubling thoughts intend.  Your thoughts are what happened in life through some experience. Something created what could not have been created had you not had the material to create the thought. You can only create new thoughts and ideas with pieces of old ones, such as a purple frog (you may have never seen one but can imagine one). So, these thoughts are troubling and usually tell us stuff about ourselves that we think we need to remedy. We then waste our life trying to do exactly that, remedy our troubling thoughts and ruin our entire life doing it.  No, notice you have thoughts. You are not your thoughts. Notice the thoughts come from somewhere and that they have a purpose. Get accustomed to the thoughts and ask them what they expect you to do. Do self-defeating thoughts tell you not to try, that you will fail? If so, then that is the mind telling you to stay safe and avoid pain. You have to accept these thoughts exist and that they are inevitable to have some peace with them. Once you notice a thought, you can choose to indulge it, or you can choose to not. Either way, once you notice something and practice noticing it, and realize that your mind is trying to convince you to act from that thought, you are back in control and can experience peace without all the hope of the thoughts going away.  A therapist is someone who can walk through this with you, but it is your journey as to how you make sense of thoughts and what you do when they talk to you like they have.  An example below: 
Answered on 01/15/2023

Am I having anxiety attacks? What do I do if I am?

Hello, First, that's painful to be experiencing- both the physical and mental aspects of it and it makes sense that you would be considering therapy now. I'll do my best to setup a guide for you on how to start to work on it and hopefully help you on the path to reducing or eliminating these sadness and anxious symptoms that seem quite powerful. One thing that I like to start with is giving you a tool that helps with reducing the onset of the symptoms through reducing the vulnerability to the physical symptoms. One way to do this is Tip Your Temperature. It's a skill where you can use a bowl of cold water or ice pack and can "dip" your head into the water to kick in your parasympathetic nervous system or the system that calms your body. If you're using an ice pack you would hold it up to your forehead and lean you head forward like you're diving into water or bobbing for an apple in water while holding your breath for up to 30 seconds. The reason why it's important to do something like this is that you're calming your body instantly so your mind can catch up. It would be like we need to treat a cut with a band aid, rather than ignore it and continue to do whatever it is that you were doing. Other ways you can do this is put your head in snow, drink ice water, put a cold ice pack on your neck, put an ice cube up on your neck, etc.- you can be savvy about this part. The next area would be starting to notice when sadness hits for you- it does sound very intense and what we can do is often take the "shock" out of it. If I notice it comes from feeling sadness or when you think about something, do something, then it can be helpful to notice that and that you'll likely experience these intense symptoms. I will say something like, "don't be surprised when an emotion hits, if you notice a pattern or know the feeling here." This can be helpful with noticing what the other experience looks like without the added element of surprise- which often makes things 10x's worse. One more idea I have that is usually very helpful when anxiety and depressed or sad feelings hit quick is to use a technique called square breathing. Square breathing is keeping in mind the look of a box and counting to 4 with each step. The steps are 1) breath in for 4 seconds (with your nose/ this is optional). 2) Hold your breath for 4 seconds. 3) breath out of your mouth for 4 seconds (make a whoosh, if needed) 4. Let your breath sit for 4 seconds. Now repeat this for a few minutes and continue to do as needed. This is often very helpful for panic and anxiety attacks and usually a primary treatment method for those areas as an important skill. I hope these 3 ideas give you a start and I can understand how debilitating things can feel and if you need help, feel free to reach out here or through BetterHelp. I hope you get on the path to the healing you're looking for and I think it's courageous for you to reach out as well. Take Care, Mitchell Daas, MA, LPCC
Answered on 01/09/2023

Do you have any advice for overcoming panic attacks?

Helpless but not hopeless I am going to attach a link to the bottom of this response that I will encompass a concept that you might find beneficial. What you are going through is a disconnect. Your body is experiencing something different than reality. Your body is saying something is wrong, but your mind knows it isn't. By your mind, I mean your conscious awareness of what is happening. Your subconscious, your body, is picking up information from your environment and telling you that something is dangerous. What is your environment telling you?  What is outside that you are fearing will happen? Ask your mind this and see what you come up with. Panic at the level you are referring to is often left ominous, and when we try to quantify exactly what is going on, we find that it breaks some of the facades of the fear. Panic is your response to something that you aren't even sure what it is, which is why it makes no sense to our logical mind. Panic attacks are often expressed to be feeling like dying or that you are having a heart attack. Often the way we try to beat this is to breathe and hope it passes.  In the link below, Dr. Stephen Hayes, the psychology professor who started a therapy model called ACT, talks about his own panic attacks. You'll notice towards the end of the TedTalk that he admits that panic still isn't explicitly defined, but he was triggered by a childhood memory and was now in charge of his life and that kid version of himself.  Again, what is going on when the panic attack comes on? Has there been any trauma or chaos in your life that this season, weather, or smell, can send you into this state of chaos itself, a fight or flight response that your conscious mind says doesn't understand. Your conscious mind is saying; we are safe; we are here, while the body says no, we are not. So then the conscious mind, which depends on signals from the subconscious body, tells you it is dangerous out there. You are in charge of how you approach this, but once you look panic in the eye, you realize it isn't real; it's lying to you.  Your panic is lying about the current moment, but it comes from a place that reminds you of something. Again, do the work in asking what is going on and what comes to my mind, and make panic tangible and measurable to disassemble his scary demeanor. Otherwise, you are left with "coping skills, " medications, and long periods of talk therapy sessions. Admit you have panic, do not fear or wish it away, and look at panic as it was meant to be, a warning system that has gone haywire but can be dealt with when you are willing to look at it.  
Answered on 01/01/2023

What should I do when anxiety attacks?

Dear Hoang, I am so glad that you are asking for help with this emotional distress in your life.  It has to be so frustrating and it takes over your life when you are feeling this depth of emotion in your life.  It makes sense that you want to move away from these intense emotions.  And it is so good to reach out and ask questions and seek out the help and support that you need to move towards more emotional health and wellness.   I am going to provide a few things today in this answer.  I hope that this information is helpful and gives you a few steps to take forward towards health and healing in this season and leading into the next season of your life. First of all, I want to validate that anxiety is a very physical feeling.  Anxiety is most often described as a physical feeling that is shown and felt in the body.  So when you describe your anxiety in the struggle physically, it makes sense that that is your experience.  And because of that, we are going to talk, a bit later in this answer, that we need to address the physical healing and moving forward for you to move forward.  I want you to know that anxiety is very physical and you will need to learn and utilize some physical calming actions to help with the emotions connected to anxiety.   Secondly, our anxiety comes from somewhere.  I wonder if you have any idea why you have a strong reaction when bad things happen.  When we have bad things happen in our lives and they are still wounds that we carry, our body will often then have deep emotional reactions to other bad things that happen in life.  I wonder what bad things have happened in your life that still bring about emotions when you think about them?  What experiences still bring up emotions, pain, struggle, and challenge in your mind and body?  As you think about those things, it is going to be very important that you honestly talk about these parts of your story that bring about struggle.  This is a very important part of the healing and forward movement.  Who in your life can you talk with honestly about the hard experiences from the past?  Some people don't feel safe or that they want to talk with their friends or family about their past wounds, so they find great solace in turning to a therapist to help them navigate the realities of their past wounds and present emotional struggles.  I encourage you to seek out and open up honestly about what things in the past are still emotional reactions in the present day.  Seek to talk about your story and be honest about the experience and emotions then and now.  Seek to be heard and seen amid your story.   Third, one part of dealing well with anxiety is knowing that it will happen again.  Sometimes we try to avoid anxiety by mentally tricking ourselves into believing that it won't happen or just avoiding the reality that we will have to deal with it again.  So I want to encourage you to be honest with yourself that you will have this anxiety again.  Be honest with those around you that you will get hit with this emotion again.  And because of that, you need to talk about and build coping and calming skills that will help you to move through the emotions for the next time and the next time and the next time ...  And that leads to building coping and calming skills.  I wonder, what do you do now when you get hit with these emotions and body sensations when something bad happen?  What do you say?  What do you do?  And do these things help you move through these times?  Do these things make it harder for you to move forward?  I want you to think about this and see what you come up with.  It is important to see what you are doing now and then seek to move towards building skills that work well for your emotions and thoughts.  So take some time to write about and talk about what you are doing right now when you get hit with this emotion.  Do you say anything to yourself?  Do you say anything to others?  What do you do in action?  What do you not do in action?  And what of those things are helpful or not? Next we are going to talk about what you can do to help yourself.  As I referred at the beginning of this answer, we need to talk about and build coping skills that are going to target calming the body.  Anxiety is felt in the body and so calming skills have to be based on calming the body.   Have you ever heard about or preacticed deep breathing?  Deep breathing is something that is taught for anxiety because it tells our body to calm itself down.  I encourage you to catch when you are moving into this anxiety, then seek to take deep breaths.  Make sure that you breathe in a way that moves your belly outwards.  When your belly is moving outwards, then it is also moving inwards and hitting the nerve on the inside of your spinal column and that sends a signal to your brain to calm down.  That is very important part of deep breathing.  You had written that you feel you are unable to breathe.  I would encourage you to notice what it is that is happening in your body that makes it feel like you can't breathe.  What is happening in your breath, in your lungs, in your body that makes it feel like you can't breathe?  Notice that and seek to give yourself as much breathe as you can in that moment.  I also would encourage you to seek to spend time crying when you are not anxious.  Many folks that I work with that struggle with anxiety, do not allow themselves to cry on a regular basis, and then when they are anxious, then their bodies are very quick to cry.  I wonder if it would be wise to make space to cry about things that are emotional in your life in the past or present.   Another skill that you can apply in the moment is pressure points.  Here is an article that talks about pressure points that are connected to anxiety.  See which ones feel like they work the best for you. Another skill that I want you to try is to leave the situation and allow yourself to cry and express whatever it is that is going on for you.  Seek to allow yourself to feel what is going on for you in that moment.  Communicate this with someone safe and be really honest about what is going on for you.   Another skill that can be helpful for anxiety is moving our bodies.  This can look like taking a brisk walk, stretching our bodies, seek to move in a way that is connected to the energy in your body.  This can be in the moment but it is also been found that people who have anxiety, seeking to be consistent with movement is helpful for anxiety overall.  Lastly, I want to say one more thing.  It is important to know that those reactions in your body are because your body is trying to tell you something.  And many times we have to dig into the past in order to move through the present.  So know that you can build many good skills and feel very good about moving through these anxious times and it may be very important to go to what bad thing(s) that have happened for you that has brought about these feelings too.  Know that you can build very helpful and calming actions for yourself and that it is also important to get to the root of what is going on too.   I wish you the best of luck!Paula
Answered on 12/28/2022

How do I get over crippling anxiety?

Free Your Mind Anxiety is something we all have. Anxiety disorder is when we notice how anxiety interrupts our social, work, or romantic lives. When we notice how anxiety affects us, we can start to do the work where it needs to be done. For example, if I have anxiety that prevents me from going out with friends, I can do the work in what I notice that doesn't allow me to do what I want/need to do.  Your situation seems to be as such because your anxiety has gotten the best of you and boiled over. How do we get our life back from the anxiety monster? We notice the monster and what it tells us about ourselves. Anxiety is the biological response to something your mind notices is worrisome. The subconscious part of your brain (which is most of your brain) is constantly picking up information. The information your brain is picking up is telling your limbic system to overreact. It benefits you not to try to stop anxiety but to learn how to live with it.  So, your subconscious mind overreacts to something, leaving you with the uncomfortable fight or flight response known as anxiety. Now anxiety communicates with your brain to produce thoughts and beliefs to get you to react. Your reaction to what fear tells you is intended to keep you safe, but now it is keeping you from living your life. So then, what do you want to do, and how is anxiety stopping you from doing it? What I mean is explicit, what thought gets the attention that prevents you from doing what you want?  Our beliefs are formed from early childhood. Our beliefs create our thoughts and emotions and then our reactions. It is often our earliest beliefs about ourselves and the world around us that we need to learn about ourselves because they often go unnoticed. To figure these things out about yourself doesn't cost anything, and it's worth your time to ask, "what do I believe here that is contributing to my problems?" Do not overlook beliefs such as the belief that you won't be happy until you rid yourself of anxiety. It is that belief that may prevent you from being happy ever. It is called a happiness trap to believe you will be happy when... So, what can you do? Identify what matters to you, identify what interferes with what matters, and do the work to challenge the thoughts anxiety produces, keeping you from the life you want. Ask yourself "why"  five times for any decision to see why it matters to you. You want to go out with friends- why Being with friends matters to you- why It's good to have relationships- why You don't like being lonely- why You want what's good-why Good people want good things.  In my example, I ultimately discovered that I want to be a good person. I want to be a good person who makes good decisions and benefits people. So then, I can find identity in my choices that I want to make the decision that would define me as "good." Nobody wants to be a "bad" person, unless of course, they see, "bad" as something their social circles promote- which to them, actually makes them "good."  Anxiety ramped up and didn't allow me to do the necessary work to identify what matters. So, it is my responsibility to work on not letting my thoughts consume me because I have things I care about. I still have the thoughts, but I do what I care about. Again, even with anxiety, you can do what you want and still experience anxiety. Do not get trapped into thinking ridding anxiety will make you happy. You can be just as "happy" now with anxiety the way it is.  Let the thoughts produced by anxiety pass. You do not have to change your life according to your thoughts. 
Answered on 12/27/2022

I have a hard time controlling my anxiety and its hard for me to love. What do I do?

Hello Teddy, My name is James. I am licensed as a Mental Health Counselor in the State of Florida. Please feel free to review my profile for additional details about me. Let me begin by saying that you are very brave to start this process of seeking therapeutic feedback. I have looked over your question and while many specific details are mentioned just as many are not. In the field of therapy the whole person needs to be considered. There are so many things that we gather from visual cues and mannerisms that this online question and answer format places me at a disadvantage. That having been said please take from the following comments anything that you find helpful and disregard that which doesn't come close to being relevant to your life. Anxiety can be minor or major. Severe anxiety in my thinking is similar to a panic attack. Leaving one unable to function. Mild anxiety can be motivational, such as the thing that makes a person rehearse or practice what they want to say at a planned event. Assuming you are not in a constant state of panic I am going to suggest journaling as a way to better identify the sources of your anxiety attacks. What works best to help you cope with your anxiety? Who do you have in your life that you trust to open up about your concerns? These are some of the things that journaling can help with. Teddy, I have a tendency to break things down as simply as I can do here is my emotions breakdown. We only have 4... 😡 Mad, 😢 Sad, 😃 Happy and 😱 Scared. What do you think your anxiety most closely resembles? I am guessing scared/fear. Seek to understand what it is that is generating your fear response and find a way to deal with it. If there's no actual threat of physical harm tell yourself that. If there is a threat of physical harm this takes priority! Parental relationships.  There are many psychological theories about childhood experiences, stages of development, parenting style, order of birth, etc etc. Again with the information given my response is going to be generalized. Your parents did the best that they knew how at that time. You adapted to the environment that you found yourself in as a matter of survival. You survived!! Good job!! Much of our current disposition is tied to what we think and believe. If you can convince yourself that today is another opportunity for you to move towards outcomes that you desire then you can free yourself from the burden of mom and dad's limitations. Dad wasn't around; mom wasn't attentive; ok I get it. You can decide to be "better" and practice being the way that you would like to be as a parent. Forgive them for their imperfections and take responsibility for you. All families have some level of dysfunction Teddy, and each individual in any given situation will interpret that event differently based on a multitude of factors. If you can focus on facts, eliminating blame, you can grow. Therapy can help with this. You have gathered at this point that your daily routine is something that you can choose to address in such a way as to attract the sort of social interest that you desire. Physical strengthening exercises help on multiple levels. Journaling helps to identify progress. Lessening frequency and severity of anxiety builds self confidence. If your biological family are unable to support you in developing yourself you can select to associate yourself with people who are supportive and constructive. Becoming independent doesn't mean that you have to go through things alone. So far as love goes, love yourself first! When you are in that zone others will notice and be attracted then you might find that special person. If you simply want to date, hang out, have fun or whatever be honest about that with yourself and others. Doing things daily that lift you up in spirit will show externally.  OK Teddy, there are no instant remedies to lifelong situations. The transition that I feel you are seeking will take time, will be difficult at times but is worth the effort. Love yourself and tell yourself that you love yourself. Build supportive friendships by being a supportive friend. Forgive, this frees you! Your true friends will give you honest feedback about "I don't think I look good" which is why friends are important. If needed engage in therapy, which may include medications. Engage means give formidable effort. Medications can be a part of therapy but are not always required, get a qualified  psychological evaluation. I have made several blind suggestions and if any of the help then continue using them. I wish you the best and would be happy to be a part of your journey to becoming the best version of Teddy. Respectfully, James Pelzer
Answered on 12/27/2022

What is the best way to cope with anxiety?

Hello, thanks for reaching out. As you may be aware, anxiety comes in many forms from social anxiety to separation anxiety to everyday general anxiety to more. Fortunately the form your anxiety takes matters less than your triggers for your anxiety, which from what you're saying, large crowds could certainly be a trigger as could public speaking.  Once you have identified your triggers it then becomes a process of management, how can you personally best manage your anxiety, because what works for one person will be different for you personally as no two people experience anxiety in the same way due to the sheer amount of symptoms that come along with anxiety. (Over 100 listed symptoms).  The reason I say management over avoidance is simply because if we avoid we are really just kicking the can down the road for later which is of course beneficial in the moment but later it's still anxiety or it's a panic attack. Management leads to still being able to live the lifestyle you want while maybe adjusting things you do or how you do them. Without knowing more context it would not be ethical of me to highlight what to do, nor would it be ethical of me to say ok do this or that, that would be best explored in the therapy space between yourself and your chosen therapist. However there are tools that can be effective for anxiety. Some involve distraction which works like a magician pulling a rabbit out of a hat in terms of a hey look over here while the thing that is triggering the anxiety is over there type of scenario. Such tools of course involve breath work, breathing in for so many seconds holding it and then breathing out, in through nose out through mouth, that one helps to get us breathing and breathing correctly because when we are anxious we tend to hold our breath which can cause an anxiety response in of itself. Some such tools involve thinking distractions, because when we are anxious we tend to start over-thinking about many subjects and we start to clutch at straws but not really get anywhere except for more anxiety. These involve things such as counting or listing and can be cars, countries, movies, objects or things from your favorite hobby and more. They work by focusing the brain on logical thought and grounding us in that one thought allowing anxiety to pass. There are also tools that engage all of your senses, seeing, hearing, smell, touch, taste, called the 5 senses technique but is essentially another way of grounding ourselves in the moment. There are also Mindfulness tools, one being a book called "I am here now" by the mindfulness project, which has a variety of activities in that if we can do either during panic attacks or anxiety or before can have a calming effect. That is a few possible options for you for dealing with it in the moment, however it cannot be underestimated of the benefit of the therapy space on getting to the bottom of why you might have anxiety and how to deal with it going forward etc. Warmest regards, Kai
(BA, (Hons), Integrative, Counsellor)
Answered on 12/07/2022

How do i help my going out anxiety?

Why Now?  I appreciate this question, and here's why: You are aware that something is irregular and that it started at some point to be different than it was.  Often people struggle with things, and they think that it has affected them longer than it really has, or they will apply the problem retroactively, saying it has always been there. You acknowledge that this response is to something that has been there for about a year and a half. Why now? What has changed in your life causing this reaction? Please explore this with a therapist, as they can help you see things you can't see yourself.  One question I like to ask is, what are you noticing about your world and yourself in this world? Are you vulnerable? Are you only loved when you perform, and you've had some setbacks recently? What have you become aware of that you weren't before, or what has actually changed?  What Do We Do About It?  When It comes to what we do about anything, the first step is to accept that we have this thing. Acceptance is not agreeing with having it, and it's not giving up, it's acknowledging what is already there. You are admitting that, leading to the question. What we do next is to really accept that we have this thing. By that, I mean we make space for its possible certainty in our life. When we get stomach aches or a nervous response, our denial or wish that it wasn't there or some comparison to some ideal leads us to hate this symptom so much. So, again, make space for that part of you that gets nervous, and maybe the stomach ache or anxiety of a stomach ache will subside. Own anxiety as a part of your life and understand that it is your body's way of telling you it is noticing something.  The subconscious part of our brain is unbeknownst to humanity because it is, after all, the subconscious. We've learned a lot about the amygdala, the limbic system, and the autonomic nervous system and how these systems respond without conscious awareness but as a body that says, fight, fight, or freeze. Do you know what happens when we experience this reaction to subconscious stimuli unbeknownst to us? Our digestive tract shuts down. Do you know what can also happen? A discharge of bowels. So, what do we do? 1. we accept that we have anxiety in social situations and allow ourselves to feel this anxiety and not let it distract us or cause us to run. We allow ourselves to get anxious because it is a natural part of life (did you know animals get anxious- they aren't aware of it like humans are). 2. Do the work in therapy or journaling to better understand what threat we are experiencing and how we can do the work on understanding this threat and why it triggers us so much.  These steps sound like a cop-out, but if you don't do the work on identifying what is really going on and how things relate to you and your belief about yourself, then you are merely putting a bandaid on it. Instead, you look at anxiety and ask, "what are you telling me? Why now? What do you want me to do?" Start to view the anxiety as a friend with bad advice. You don't hate the friend. The friend is just telling you that all people are bad/out to get you and that you should run away. Running keeps you safe, and the subconscious is just trying to get you to remove yourself. We can appreciate that friend, even if it does give us bad, overly cautious advice.  Distance from your thoughts and remember that your body's interpretation of situations may not always be accurate, especially if there have been any changes lately.  Thank You,  Luke
Answered on 11/26/2022

How can I better control my anxiety and panic attacks?

Hi, Thanks for getting in touch and putting your question out there- this is a really important query and I'm sure a lot of people could benefit from you asking it. From your question, it sounds as though having anxiety and panic attacks is something you've experienced before, but due to current stress, this is harder to deal with now. This makes perfect sense, what the experience of anxiety is and then the escalation into a panic attack is an exacerbation of our fight or flight system. This system is an archaic way of 'keeping us safe', when we've perceived danger or been under threat then the body will activate this system to help us run away or fight the danger, via the sympathetic nervous system. This system is responsible for those anxiety symptoms, feeling overwhelmed physically, heart racing, shaky, short of breath, needing the toilet etc. These symptoms have a biological rationale to them- they are designed to get us ready to respond to a situation that may harm us. Understanding this is very important in the management of anxiety, as our body is doing what it is designed to do, in effect, if you were a cave person- you'd be very much alive! But, despite this, the feelings are really uncomfortable, and maybe this old response isn't quite appropriate for the modern world, where our bodies' perception of dangers might be: whether or not the bus arrives, our social media interactions, whether we remembered our colleagues name correctly etc. It can be really helpful to do some research about these symptoms and the body’s rationale for why they occur, for example, a racing heart gets blood around the body quicker to provide the oxygen it needs to move fast. This is a normal response to a perceived threat, whether or not it's life endangering or we perceive it to have negative consequences for us.  When we understand this about anxiety we can reframe our thoughts around it, which can be helpful, for example- are there fears or worries about this anxiety, does it have other meanings for you? For some people, when they experience a panic attack, they make sense of it in a catastrophic ways, for example- 'my heart might stop, I might die or pass out, vomit etc'. This is obviously very distressing. Making sense of anxiety in these catastrophic ways only leads to further release of stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline, which perpetuates the cycle further, and can lead to more unexpected panic attacks down the line if we are experiencing chronic stress.  Managing anxiety is quite a holistic approach, maintaining a regular exercise plan gives your body change to 'burn off' those stress hormones- as it would have done as cave people in true danger.  Having a healthy psycho education understanding of what anxiety is and the importance of it 'keeping us safe'- and be able to recognize the symptoms for what they are during those periods. It's best to start doing this outside of intense stress, so you're better resourced in those tough times, and you can develop that healthy inner dialogue. It can be beneficial to have an evidenced based approach when evaluating your experience, the sense you make of anxiety or the belief of what might happen during a panic attack- are they different things and what can that teach you? For example, does it always mean if you feel anxiety symptoms that these beliefs happen? It can be helpful to write down some worries which may contribute to feelings of anxiety, especially if you've been under stress, are they things you can do anything about in the 'now' or can they be written down and returned to in a time limited way at your leisure. Writing down hypothetical worries as they happen, but then coming back to the present. Spending half an hour at a designated time to worry can also be a good way to manage anxiety. Spending a lot of time worrying which can contribute to anxiety because when we worry about 'the worst case scenario' it also activates the fight or flight system. Practicing being more present is a good way to avoid the reflection of the past which may be activating or the worry of the future, practicing mindfulness is a way to do this. It offers space between ourselves and those thoughts, as if we are observers of them, witnessing them being in our consciousness, without judgment.  I hope this answer has been helpful, please do contact me if you'd like some therapy regarding your experience. It can be really beneifical also to talk this through with someone you trust. I wish you the best of luck. Kind regards, Charlotte
Answered on 11/26/2022

How do I get over social anxiety and other issues that have crippled my life?

Hello, So first of all, be proud of yourself for reaching out for help with an issue that you've struggled with for a long time. You probably thought about getting help in the past but for whatever reason (well, probably social anxiety) chose not to follow through. You took the first step, and whether you decide to participate in therapy now or try other strategies for coping with social anxiety, you're addressing the issue.  You're not worthless. Social anxiety is a common problem, and it's not always easily recognizable; many people who appear to lack any social anxiety are overwhelmed with it frequently. Social anxiety is also something that Cognitive Behavioral Therapy can treat quite effectively. It does take some work, and it's not something that's going to be resolved in one or two sessions, but at the same time you may notice some reduction in social anxiety relatively quickly. The basic principle of CBT is that we can change what we tell ourselves (our self-talk), and when we do this we change how we feel (and therefore can approach social situations with less anxiety). The first step is to figure out where the social anxiety comes from. Our beliefs determine our thoughts, and these determine our feelings, such as anxiety. Some people experience social anxiety because of trauma. Others experience social anxiety because of a poor self-esteem. While therapy shouldn't focus largely on your past, addressing where the social anxiety stems from can be an important first step. By the way, if trauma is the reason you are experiencing social anxiety, I highly recommend working with a therapist who is trained in EMDR therapy. Even if you don't immediately "get over" social anxiety, it doesn't have to control your life in the way that it has. Reducing social anxiety can take work, but it's quite doable, and I've seen many clients make remarkable progress. I urge you to seek further help, whether that be here or elsewhere. It could be a life-changing decision for you. If you have any additional questions, just let me know, and do take care of yourself. Thanks, Nicholas DeFazio, MRC, LPCC-S, LICDC
Answered on 11/23/2022

I don't know what to do about my anxiety/ anxiety attacks

Having occasional feelings of anxiety is a normal part of life, but people with anxiety disorders experience frequent and excessive anxiety, fear, terror and panic in everyday situations. These feelings are unhealthy if they affect your quality of life and prevent you from functioning normally. There are many coping skills and strategies that can be helpful to reduce your level of anxiety and amount of anxiety attacks that are occurring. Physical activity is a great way to assist with coping with anxiety, adding 30 minutes a day of exercise can be helpful routine to develop. Exercise is a powerful stress reducer. It can improve your mood and help you stay healthy. Start out slowly, and gradually increase the amount and intensity of your activities. Stress management is also key, if your anxiety seems to be getting worse it could be due to an overall increase in stress not one particular situation/issue. Lean on stress management and relaxation techniques as often as possible. Some stress management skills include problem solving skills like determining what you are in control of vs. what is out of your control and increasing organization skills. Other helpful stress management skills can be through prioritizing and letting go of tasks that are not a priority. Acceptance can also be a tool for reducing stress. Along with that are relaxation skills like visualization techniques, meditation and yoga can all ease anxiety symptoms. Sleep and diet can also play an important role in reducing our anxiety levels. With sleep it can be helpful to keep a set time to wake up and go to sleep, as well as, trying to achieve at least 6-8 hours of sleep each night. With our diet it is important to eat balanced healthy meals, try to limit caffeine as much as possible. Lifestyle changes can have a significant impact on reducing anxiety but sometimes it can take additional work. Utilize coping skills to challenge anxious thoughts. Question what you’re thinking.  Consider other perspectives. Sometimes you need to ask yourself: how do I know this is true?  Is there evidence against this thought? Is this a fact or opinion?  What would I say to someone else who was thinking this? What is the bigger picture? Challenging your anxious thoughts helps you come to a more balanced way of looking at a situation. Let unhelpful thoughts go.  Unhelpful thoughts are just that, unhelpful.  And many times we let them hang around for far too long.  So if it’s not helping you move forward to a solution, let it go.
Answered on 11/21/2022

Is therapy the best place for me?

Dear Molls, Anxiety and panic attacks can really affect your quality of life. Therapy sessions provide you with a therapeutic space to explore triggers and stressors related to anxiety and panic attacks. Coping skills and techniques that can be utilized to manage anxiety and panic attacks are also often discussed during therapy sessions. Sometimes just talking about things related to anxiety and panic attacks in a supportive way can help you feel a sense of power over figuring out how to manage the symptoms that come with experiencing them. A lack of control is a predominant feeling that contributes to people feeling anxious, to begin with, so taking steps to feel like you are regaining a sense of control is very imperative.  Since anxiety and panic attacks often include both emotional and physical symptoms, it can feel especially daunting to figure out how to manage the range of symptoms that one might experience. There is a wide range of coping skills that research has shown to be effective in the management of these symptoms. These coping skills range from deep breathing to grounding techniques to help one feel more connected with their body as well as their surroundings. There can be a trial and error factor to exploring coping skills, so it can be helpful to have a therapist or mental health professional try to steer you in the right direction by trying out different strategies. Other life stressors like work, school, and relationships can contribute to anxiety or panic attacks feeling more intense. If you already feel anxious because of your state of mind and then your job makes you feel stressed out on top of this, you are not going to have the mental energy to manage the anxiety because now you have the stress and anxiety to deal with at the same time. If you are also dealing with elements of stress at work that are out of your control and do not seem to be things that can be decreased or eliminated in any way, then the only thing you can control essentially is how you manage these work stressors. Being able to cope with anxiety or panic attacks is going to help you feel like you have more mental energy to discover ways to manage how drained you feel because of work. Relationships and interactions with others can also play important roles in managing anxiety and panic attacks. If you have people in your life who understand the type of support or reassurance you need when you feel overwhelmed by your anxiety, then it gives you the time and space to manage your anxiety. If you, however, have people in your life who contribute to you either feeling stressed or anxious, this will exacerbate your anxiety. Not everyone can understand how hard it is to manage anxiety or panic attacks if they themselves do not struggle with these things. People, however, do not need to fully understand how it feels to experience these things in order to provide support. It can be beneficial for the people close to you to receive some basic information about panic attacks and anxiety so they can understand if you need them to talk to you a certain way or need them to actually give you space when you feel anxious. Ultimately, having open conversations about anxiety and panic attacks with people you are close to helps you feel like you have the power to manage the symptoms you are experiencing. I hope you find this information helpful. Best, Jasmine
Answered on 11/17/2022

What is the best thing to do to calm down when having a full blown panic attack?

When a person has a panic attack, their brain functions in the fight or flight responsive part of the nervous system;  this affects their impulse control, executive functioning, reasoning, and other brain activities related to safety. It is possible to recover from the physical symptoms of a panic attack. The first thing the person will want to do is ensure they are in a safe place; that means if they are driving, pulling into a parking lot, or in a meeting excusing themselves, stepping out into the hall, taking a seat so they can focus on Mindfulness and Breathing. Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) is an effective skills-based therapy for treating many mental health ailments, including panic attacks. One of the group categories is called distress tolerance. TIPP is one of the distress tolerance skills that are highly effective.  TIPP stands for temperature, intense exercise, paced breathing, and progressive muscle relaxation.  T - Temperature = changing your core body temperature, drinking ice water, taking a hot or cold shower (not too hot or cold so that you burn yourself), splashing cold water on your face, rubbing ice on the back of your neck.  I- Intense exercise - speed walking, jogging, jumping jacks; the idea is to raise your heart rate and begin to produce endorphins.  P- Paced Breathing. My favorite technique is starfish breathing because it focuses on slow-paced breaths, and you trace your hand, stimulating a tactile response. P- Progressive Muscle Relaxation. There are a lot of techniques for Progressive muscle relaxation, but when at the moment, after your paced breathing, it has helped lots of people to do a small shoulder and/or neck role and shake their hands, shaking off the anxious energy.  Sometimes people will only need to use one of these techniques to control a panic attack other times; they will need to utilize all four techniques to regulate their panic attack. Practice makes perfect. Having a plan helps reduce the fear of an impending panic attack. The more you utilize these skills before a panic attack, the more likely you are to use them during a panic attack.  I hope this helps, and don't hesitate to contact a BetterHelp therapist if you have any questions or would like more support.
Answered on 11/07/2022

What is the best step to deal with continuous anxiety, lack of self-confidence?

This spinning world seems to pick up speed every day. If you're finding modern life overwhelming, you're not alone. Anxiety diagnoses are on the rise. This is in part due to the falling stigma against mental disease, but it is also due to a rise in stimuli. As humans continue to live in bustling cities with demanding lives, it can be difficult to control your anxiety. Technology has not made it easier. With constant notifications and excessive screen time, your attention can be pulled in many different directions. These stimuli exacerbate anxiety. If you're dealing with big life changes or inner dilemmas, the background noise just piles on to that. The sense of everything building and pressure rising, can lead to a full blown panic attack if you're not careful. So how do you limit and tame your anxiety? The first step to calming yourself is to recognize when you are anxious. Does your body tense up? Do you get short of breath? Do you feel like any extra pressure added will make you snap? These are signs of stress and anxiety. Being self-aware enough to know when you're anxious is crucial to reducing your anxiety. You will get better at this over time. At first, you may only know you're anxious when you're about to blow your top. Reflect on what caused that feeling and the points that increase your anxiety. Realizing what compounds your anxiety will make you more prepared the next time you are in a similar situation. Once you can identify situations that trigger anxiety, the next step is to observe it. Picture yourself on a runaway train. As you speed along the tracks, you feel scared and helpless. This train is made of everything that triggers your anxiety. Now picture yourself, not riding on the train, but watching it from a safe distance. You watch everything that adds stress to your life, and instead of choosing to ride on the train, you just observe. From this vantage point, you can have a lot of clarity. To choose not to ride the train, to observe, if even for a moment, you buy yourself time to come up with a plan. If a situation in your life is raising your anxiety, after observing it mentally, focus on what you can control. Often, lack of control is a major contributor to anxiety. By focusing on things you can control, you can regain a sense of agency over your anxiety. This focus means blocking out the things you can't control as well. Like everything, this requires practice. The key to this step is realizing that, by allowing yourself to be anxious over what you can't control, you are sapping energy away from what you can control. Any energy you spend on being anxious is energy you are taking away from something else in your life. In specific terms, this means that if you're spending your day fretting about the weather, you're not spending that energy engaged in your work or being present with your friends and family. By focusing, you can channel anxious energy and use it as a motivator towards what you can control. The more work you do while you're relatively calm means, the more you'll be prepared for anxiety. Developing a plan to cope with your anxiety before it hits means that all you have to do is carry out the plan when you're feeling anxious. If it's within your means financially, consider consulting a professional.  Whether it's your family doctor, a licensed therapist, psychiatrist or the help from a life coach they all have tools and resources to help you. The stigma against taking care of your mental health is falling, with more people taking medication and seeking therapy. Do not let this stigma get in the way of improving your health. Not only can anxiety make your life miserable, but the added stress can also cause health problems down the road. As you navigate your anxiety, developing coping methods are essential to handling stress. Learning how to identify anxiety, distancing yourself from it, and channeling it all takes time and practice. With the help of BetterHelp this can all be easier. Taking care of your mental health is essential to improving your overall health. Your quality of life will improve as well. With anxiety in check, you will have more room for actually living.
Answered on 10/30/2022

I wanted to know how I can manage anxiety?

Hi Kelly, I am sorry to hear that you have been affected by anxiety recently, to help you make a balanced decision on how is best for you to manage it, I will give you some general information on what it is and how therapists may work with it. I think the first thing to note about anxiety is that it is a natural process our minds and bodies go through and it is experienced by everyone at some point. With this in mind, it is beneficial to remember that anxiety is only an issue when it becomes life limiting in some way. The function of it is to keep us safe when we perceive a threat or danger. The Amygdala in our brain does this by producing chemicals that tell our heart to divert blood flow to the muscles and lungs so that we are ready to take action. Often, our brain unconsciously perceives a threat and can start the physical process before we are even aware there is a threat in our vicinity. So when we begin to sweat, our breathing becomes faster and our heart rates speed up without us understanding why, it can be quite disconcerting.  This process has been a part of our self-preservation instincts since we were cave people and the fact that you are here means that your ancestors saw the lion in the savannah and ran, rather than stopping to admire the scenery. The issue in our modern world is that the same level of anxiety that would be raised if we were confronted with a lion can also be raised when we are faced with social events or new experiences. Something that is present when anxiety is active no matter the situation that has provoked it, is that we feel out of control about something. Part of our basic needs in order for us to be content and happy as humans is the need to feel in control, as this gives us security and the feeling of being safe. It sounds to me from the information you have provided that this was the case in both experiences you had with anxiety. The pandemic, although implemented to keep our societies safe, has indeed caused issues with mental wellbeing for a lot of people, especially as there was no fixed dates of when lockdowns would lift and life could return to normal. This would most certainly provoke a feeling of being out of control for the majority of the population. We are social animals which means that we thrive on connection and deteriorate when segregated. This combined with personal difficulties or issues within the home, means that we as therapists have seen an unprecedented dip in mental wellbeing as a result. Your father being taken to hospital would be an especially difficult time for you I am sure. The worry of the impact of his illness on not only your father but also wider consequences would certainly provoke a feeling of being out of control. Your feelings of security that are embedded within your relationship with your father, would only serve to maximize the feelings of anxiety the longer he was absent from your life also. I do hope that he is recovering well. Anxiety can be treated in a number of ways, including but not limited to Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and Mindfulness techniques. Through CBT we are able to work with changing how the mind perceives the threat that triggers anxiety, Mindfulness can help to manage symptoms of anxiety through relaxation, breathing and visualization techniques. There are many ways that anxiety can be treated to improve your quality of life, lots of clients choose a multilayered approach to their treatment which can work really well. Not all therapists will have specialisms in every approach so if you are looking to experiment with what works best for you, it may be a good idea to look for a therapist who practices an integrative approach. This is a therapist who has experience in more than one type of therapy and will be able to guide you in your journey.  I hope that my answer has helped you come to an understanding of what anxiety is and has given you reassurance that there are interventions that can help you manage it. I wish you well with your mental wellbeing in the future.  Best Wishes  Claire Howdle
(Psychodynamic, Counsellor)
Answered on 10/28/2022

How to control and live with everyday anxiety and panic attacks?

Thank you very much for sharing asking the question and sharing your current situation. I know it's a difficult position - the one you are living in right now  - and I am very sorry about it. Nevertheless, the good thing is that there are things to change the situation for the better and there are things you can do to improve your current situation.   Panic attacks and anxiety are indeed things that are going to be there in life always, it's not possible to completely remove them from our life, as we are talking about withdrawing the emotion of Fear, which is an important part of life. Anxiety is a way of feeling Fear when we have a challenge to face or there's a situation that worries us and Panic is the emotion of Fear in its highest degree of intensity, which is extremely unpleasant and not very useful.    As we cannot withdraw Fear from our lives, we need to learn how to deal with it and with the rest of our basic emotions (mainly Anger, Joy, and Sadness) as they have an important weight in our day-to-day stuff. It's important to hear our emotions, experience them and see where they come from, as they are there for some reason.    You are struggling now to find the triggers of that anxiety of yours and those panic attacks. I would recommend taking a look at the main areas of your life to see if there are things that you don't like within them. Try to find if there is something to be changed in your social life, your life in a couple, your family life, your life work or study wise and your personal life (the relationship that I have with myself, how much I like myself). I think you will be able to find some situations that you don't like about them. Also, talking to a friend, relative or a professional about it can be very helpful to find the cause. Finally, try to remember if any thoughts around those situations are involved.   I hope things go better for you, I honestly think you will be able to deal with it better after some time working with your emotions and once you have changed what you need to change in your life. Wish you the best. 
(Master's, Degree, in, Third, Generation, Psychological, Therapies, Bsc, in, Psychology, Msc, in, Prevention, of, Addictions)
Answered on 10/27/2022