Living with anxiety? You’re not alone
Anxiety can feel like you are being smothered under a blanket of constant worry, stress, and panic. It can seem like your mind magically developed an uncanny ability to imagine everything that could possibly go wrong in life. Individuals living with anxiety disorders can experience symptoms such as debilitating distress, tense muscles, restlessness, dread for the future, and intrusive thoughts. If you have anxiety and are curious about treatment options, this message is for you.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) focuses on identifying and altering unhealthy thought processes. Though we do not always realize it, we have the ability to trigger certain emotions and responses as a result of the thoughts we have. When our thought life is maladaptive, our behavior is likely to follow. Even more importantly, individuals who suffer from anxiety are believed to have an overwhelming amount of maladaptive thought processes known as cognitive distortions. These cognitive distortions wreak havoc on your thought life and create an intensified cycle of doom pertaining to the world around you. It is also common to have specific triggers that send you into a whirlwind of anxiety and panic. CBT helps to identify these triggers so that they can be reframed into a healthier perspective.
Exposure therapy helps clients confront their fears directly through the support and instruction of a trained therapist. The goal is to identify thoughts or situations that induce extreme anxiety and slowly increase exposure. Therapists will then introduce relaxing exercises that can regulate the nervous system and encourage healthier responses. Direct exposure is physically facing a situation or stimuli that causes anxiety. Imagined exposure involves letting your brain access the dreaded fears that are constantly paralyzing you mentally. I know from personal experience that I can be my own worst enemy in regard to my thought life. It is scary to think of facing the thoughts and situations that hold you hostage, but it is possible with the help of a trained therapist.
Mindfulness helps you to be present and aware of your surroundings. The goal is for you to reach a nonjudgmental state of being that accepts each moment as it comes. Anxiety is often focused on future events and exaggerated fears that may never come true. When we stop to think about it, does worrying protect us from these scary things? Not at all! Mindfulness helps to reduce ruminating thoughts filled with regrets from the past and fears for the future. By openly accepting and processing our emotions, we are able to discern them in an objective manner. Think of mindfulness as increasing your ability to respond to your environment rather than react.
I know from experience how taxing anxiety can be. At New Vision Counseling and Consulting, we have an understanding team of therapists waiting to connect with you. Your anxiety is as unique as you are and it is important that your treatment is as well. We have helped individuals from all walks of life and desire to meet you where you are. It is time to break free from your anxiety. Whether you are interested in the above therapies, or simply want to speak with a professional, we are here for you can be reached at (405) 921-7776. We look forward to helping you design a life that you are excited to be a part of! A life not ruled by anxiety.