Anxiety (worrying)

What are they going to think of me?

Do they all see that I’m feeling this way?

Do they all know?

They’re all watching me…they’re judging me.

Anxiety is a form of worrying.

There are several different types of anxiety. The examples above represent what’s called Social Anxiety, or Social Phobia. Regardless of type of anxiety, anxiety can be helped and dealt with.

First, let’s look at what the worry is. Then, let’s identify the specific thoughts (and feelings) that go with it. Now, lets implement some tools to work with the thoughts, see them differently. Here, with anxiety, we’ll start by using Cognitive Behavioral therapeutic techniques, we’ll identify cognitive distortions, we’ll use body and breathing techniques, and we’ll use visualization techniques, all with the aim at using different tools than you’ve used before, to reduce the anxiety, but even more importantly, increase your peace of mind.

Do some of the above techniques seem a bit “far fetched?” or too “simplistic?” Well, think of it this way: Right now your fantasies (What will happen ifWhat if that…Do they know…When this happens then…) are controlling you. I’m a firm believer that I should win in my own fantasies, and the way to do that is to try something different than I’ve done before. Only then will I be able to assess if these have any positive impact or not.

Regarding Anxiety, well in life as well, I often wonder how my “childhood culture” (what I learned about life from my parents, family, neighborhood, community and school friendships) affects my thoughts of “people judging me,” or my thoughts of “what if this,” or “what if that?” Because if as a kid, I “learned” I couldn’t speak my truth, I couldn’t feel my feelings, that the neighbors would make fun of me if they saw me come out of the house wearing that, then, well, I may have found the some of the things contributing to my anxiety.

Here are some symptoms of anxiety (and we’ll have to tease these experiences out from experiences of depression, too):

  • Feelings of panic, fear, and uneasiness
  • Uncontrollable, obsessive thoughts
  • Repeated thoughts or flashbacks of traumatic experiences
  • Nightmares
  • Ritualistic behaviors, such as repeated hand washing
  • Problems sleeping
  • Cold or sweaty hands and/or feet
  • Shortness of breath
  • Palpitations
  • An inability to be still and calm
  • Dry mouth
  • Numbness or tingling in the hands or feet
  • Nausea
  • Muscle tension
  • Dizziness

Another thing that I my clients and I work with is Power and Control. Power and Control can play a big role in anxiety. If I learned that I needed to take control otherwise my parents would “fall apart” (to my 8, or 10, or 15 year old mind), then, is it really any wonder that I’m feeling the need to take control in various aspects of my life today? To me it’s not too far fetched, in fact, I think that it’s right on the money for a lot of people. So when all other techniques don’t work, we’ll try some psychodynamic approaches. What I’ve found in my psychotherapy private practice, is that this is pay-dirt. Yes. It can be painful. Yes. It can take longer than you want it to. But notice all the little steps.

All those little steps, and all those little successes…they build a solid foundation. A foundation so strong that when something happens to knock you off your horse in the future, you’ll have the tools that we implemented, and more importantly, you’ll know that you’ve gotten through it before, and here and now, you’ll be able to get through it again.

If YOU are experiencing anxiety, we can work with it. If you have thought after thought after thought, and have the “what if this,” “what if that?” going on in your head, let’s work on it, move through it, and help you get your life back.

Call me: I’m Jim

My phone is: 424 235 0614

My email is: