Some people spend a lot of time worrying about things that they fear may happen. They go around prepared and ready - as if it could happen at any minute. When this state of fearful readiness becomes a regular occurrence, these people are described as being in an anxious state.
It is very tiring always being prepared for an something which may not happen and most people notice that there are physical as well as psychological symptoms when they are anxious: sweating hands; tense or churning stomach; light-headedness; increased heart rate and difficulty breathing are just some of them. Some powerful events in our lives can bring on this state of anxiety, such as being in a car crash or performing in front of a large audience. Once the anxiety has begun, it's difficult to switch it off again.
In counselling, I begin by encouraging you to do some practical things to reduce the anxiety. This may include relaxation and visualisation to calm and restore a feeling of safety and peace. At the same time we explore together the relationship between your thoughts, feelings, behaviours and body to understand what happens when anxiety is triggered and to see how you might decrease the feeling of danger and threat. Gradually, deeper fears can be looked at in therapy. They can be examined, challenged and tested out before alternative explanations are introduced to disempower the fears.
Many anxious clients cope by avoiding situations that promote anxiety, and in counselling we look to see if this is happening to you. Together we devise a series of graduated steps which confront situations you may be avoiding. I've made a relaxation audio which you can download here. It is suitable for an mp3 player or iPod. If you have found the description on this page fits you and you would like some online counselling, please email.
I have produced an e-book for people who suffer from Panic Attacks which you can download here I present the strategies that have worked for people with panic attacks based on my experience of working with this client group. Here are just a few of the sections in the e-book:
What Happens during a Panic Attack?
What are the Symptoms of Panic Attack?
Emergency Measures to control a Panic Attack
What You can do to Help Yourself?
There are also sections on relaxation and breathing, monitoring and controlling panic thinking and keeping a Panic Notebook.