Anxiety is part of being human. Being worried, uneasy, scared or stressed are normal reactions to events that occur in our everyday lives. These emotions help us perform (like getting butterflies before an interview), get things done on time (like working longer hours to reach a deadline) or take extra care when we need to (like driving slowly in fog).
Anxiety becomes a mental health issue when you become aware that you are feeling worried, uneasy, stressed or scared all or most of the time, and you are unable to do the things you usually, or would like, to do. You might find it difficult to relax, sleep or eat. You might avoid social situations, work, or unfamiliar experiences. The physical effects of anxiety include: aches and pains, hair loss, and feeling sick or dizzy.
Anxiety is often accompanied by panic attacks. These are when you become overwhelmed by intense feelings of anxiety. This overwhelm results in physical sensations like shallow rapid breathing, sweating, increased heartbeat, or blurry vision. Sometimes even thinking about panic attacks can bring one on.
Your brain responds to threat of danger by releasing stress hormones like adrenaline and cortisol. Even if you imagine the danger, these hormones cause these physical symptoms. If you suffer from anxiety, your body does not return to normality after the threat has gone and you live in a constant state of stress and fear.
As a consequence, your mind is constantly alert with racing thoughts and overthinking, feelings of impending doom, problems with sleep, changes in appetite and dissociation, where you feel like you are not connected with anything or anyone, including with your own body.
Talking about your anxiety can be difficult. Sometimes friends and family don't understand why you are so worried, and tell you that you are "too sensitive". Sometimes they might think you are being weak or being dramatic. Not getting the support you need may make you try to hide your feelings, which makes your symptoms worse.
Finding someone to share your feeling with who you can trust can be hard. That is where I come in.
With me you will be able to work out what might be the reasons for your anxiety, and begin to address them so you can feel more in control of your life. Maybe it's to do with e.g.: your early childhood, traumatic experiences, genetics, or the circumstances of your life. It may also be, that in order for you to feel able to address what you need to, that we consider techniques which may support you, like relaxation and guided imagery exercises, focussed work on the links between your thoughts, feelings and behaviour, or prescribed medication.
My relational developmental Integrative approach (link to Humanistic Integrative Psychotherapy), with its focus on looking at how and why your relationships work, can help change the way you relate to others, and yourself. This in turn can lead to you becoming less anxious and happier as you gain control over your life,
Please contact me to make an appointment for a free consultation when we can discuss your specific experience of anxiety. (link to contact)