Consider a Shift in attitude, maybe it's not about getting rid of anxiety but working with it

Hello Everyone,

While I write this January blog, I would like to send both client's and followers of It's just a feeling my best wishes for the upcoming year.

It seems appropriate that with the change into the new year there could be a new change in perspective and attitude that will allow forward movement from anxiety symptoms and avoidance of 'staying' stuck in the same cycles that are existing for us at the moment and keeping us in a place in which we don't want to be.

Building firmer blocks with a solid foundation for facilitating positive growth and change is my theme for growth this year.

So with this in mind it my first theme will be about shifting attitudes about the anxiety that we are feeling and how we see this at the moment.

It is a very usual reaction to want to find a way of getting rid of anxiety feelings in the sense of banishing them forever from our minds and never remembering them again, but how realistic is that?

If we think of anything negative that may happen to us, yes for a time we take a backward step and deal with difficult feelings, that is part of life, but then we find a way to re group and move forwards changing and evolving as all humans do. Usually the bad times are where we evolve and grow, we maybe don't welcome them but we grow and develop as a result of them. What we cannot do is erase them or erase any life event for that matter that is not possible and both good and bad times make us who we are.

If we think that one of the main symptoms of anxiety is rumination which is the brains way of looking for a solution by going round and round in circles, it really is not a helpful symptom when it focuses on 'trying to get rid of it' as going round and round in cycles certain that the solution going to be found by thinking about it constantly so we can get rid of it is really counter productive as it's only going to stay while it has that kind of focus from you!.

I guess that is logical.

If we think of how we are when we suffer from anxiety, we are stuck in a cycle, doing what we are doing at the moment is not working for us in the sense that we are staying stuck and not recovering so maybe doing something different is the answer? I guess my thinking when I was suffering and hoping each day for recovery was ' whatever it is that I am doing at the moment is not working for me, nothing is changing. So maybe if I do something different then something will happen' I figured that I had nothing to lose and everything to gain so why not give things a try.

Maybe it is not about getting rid of something, rather working with what we have at whatever stage of our own process that we are at.

So that is what I did, I took a different approach, nothing to loose other than staying as I was but with the chance of something different happening.

I stopped trying to wish it away, remove patterns that had come from a deeper level than just the surface anxious feelings that I was experiencing and I trusted in the process and new path I was taking. This was a path that would see me becoming aware that there might be a different way, it was not about getting rid of something that had come from my reactions to the world around me, it was about me working to know myself enough to bring my subconscious patterns into my conscious awareness in order for me to facilitate the change on a deeper level that would remove any anxious feelings that I was feeling on the surface. This may mean that for a time I continue to feel anxious feelings on a conscious level while I worked to identify and worked to change within the subconscious but that was ok, I had lived with anxiety for so long I reckoned a little longer was do-able.

I came to understand that working through anxiety is what grows our resilience and understanding towards it.

So, in my own journey I stopped trying to get rid of it and accepted that it was there, a result of my own life experiences and way of seeing the world. I didn't try to accept the feelings as something I liked, that is different. What I did do was to accept where I was at this moment in my life and reminded myself that I was doing the best I can with what I have.

Management of these feelings for me has been about learning to understand that I must work with it to get rid of it. Trying to get rid of it and resisting it was not the answer, that would just keep me stuck.

Weirdly, it did remove a lot of the pressure I was feeling to stop the feelings, I didn't need to worry about stopping them only how to work with them until they went away having been removed at the root.

I hope this blog provides reflection on a possible different perspective.

Until my March blog.

Michelle x






I understand your message Michelle; instead of pushing away anxiety, work with it, even if you feel unsure it will work. Over time, the present will take over and you will suddenly realise you haven't felt anxious for a while and actually enjoyed what you are doing and then the anxious feelings may recede a little. At least this is what I take from your blog. Let the anxiety come and go and walk beside it for a while.

Posted by Mags Forsyth , on Saturday 22nd February 2020, 1:01 PM

Thank you for your message! It is an interesting approach to not try to rid yourself of the fear. I struggle with the symptoms of my anxiety my racing heart for example has popped up as becoming my anxiety this message gives me encouragement.

Posted by Michele Reese , on Thursday 13th February 2020, 6:11 AM

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