Do You Feel Like You’re Caught In A Vicious Cycle of Anxiety?
Are you plagued by constant worry? Does the fear of others noticing your anxious behavior cause you to isolate? Do you wish you could stop negative thoughts from racing through your mind and finally find some peace?
When you are suffering from anxiety, it can feel like there is no escape from the thoughts and feelings that keep you trapped in an endless loop of worry. It can easily feel like you are going down the perpetual rabbit hole. Anxiety may also cause physical discomfort such as shortness of breath, a racing heart, or sweaty palms. And in some cases, anxiety can escalate into full blown panic attacks, which often mimic the symptoms of a heart attack and can land you in the ER. You may also suffer from other physical symptoms like insomnia, loss of appetite, or conversely, binge eating to help calm yourself.
Perhaps you have certain triggers—like driving somewhere new or going on an interview—that have developed into “Anticipatory Anxiety.” This is the fear or dread of the triggering event long before the event is experienced, which can be just as debilitating as the event itself.
You might feel embarrassed about your anxiety and try to hide it from others. If you are trying to mask your symptoms, you may avoid social situations such as parties, gatherings with friends and family, or even being out in public at all.
Your world may have become a small and lonely place, made all the lonelier if those closest to you don’t understand how anxiety affects you each day. If you feel misunderstood by your partner or family members, it may cause you to isolate and further withdraw from your relationships, which only aggravates your anxiety symptoms.
Fortunately, anxiety therapy is an effective way to alleviate the symptoms that keep you isolated and uncomfortable. You can learn ways to effectively manage your anxiety so that you can enjoy your daily life without the chronic worry.
Anxiety Is The Natural Result of An Increasingly Complex World
Anxiety disorders are the most common mental health condition in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults or 18.1 percent of the population every year. Anxiety exists on a spectrum—while some live with Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), a chronic, low-grade anxiety, others may experience full-blown panic attacks or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
Those of us who suffer from anxiety are often predisposed to it—it’s in our DNA. We may, in fact, just be wired that way. However, life experiences and circumstances can intensify our anxiety, especially when we experience traumatic life events or face challenging circumstances in our daily lives. Regardless of your specific life circumstances, we each must navigate through a world that has become increasingly complex. Anxiety doesn’t discriminate. Whether you are a teen or a young adult in college or married with kids, anxiety can be equally debilitating across age groups, gender, and race.
Despite the anxiety that permeates our lives, many of us put off getting help because we fear that doing so will make us dwell on our anxiety more or we fear that we will be opening up Pandora’s box. Moreover, there is still a stigma attached to having mental health issues. While going to therapy has become more commonly accepted, people still feel embarrassed asking for help, especially those of us who come from families that still hold onto the view that mental health is a private matter.
However, the good news is that once you take the first step to getting treatment, you can address the ways that anxiety affects your daily life and find ways to cope with its effects. Beyond the stigma, there is hope.
Anxiety Treatment Can Help You Feel More Comfortable In Your Own Skin
When you are trapped in the cycle of anxiety, it’s common to have blind spots about the obstacles that are keeping you stuck. Therapy creates a safe and trusting environment where you can let your guard down and explore these obstacles. Having a well-trained and objective therapist who can observe your situation with a fresh pair of eyes can be immensely helpful. And as someone who has experienced anxiety in my life, I possess the first hand insights to best help you.
My broad-based approach to working with clients draws from a variety of modalities. I don’t have a one-size-fits-all approach—I will be adaptive to your needs. While I aim to help you recognize how your current symptoms may be connected to past experiences or traumas, we don’t necessarily need to keep rehashing the past to resolve your issues. If your concerns don’t require an in-depth exploration, then brief, solution-focused resolutions will be more appropriate for your treatment.
Anxiety can sometimes stem from distorted thoughts that you believe about yourself based on your life experiences. In our ongoing sessions, I will teach you how to identify harmful ways of thinking, as well as help you to recognize and uncover old wounds that may have never healed. I will help you rewrite the pessimistic and distorted narrative about yourself that plays in your head, replacing it with a story of your life that more accurately reflects who you are, with hopefulness and positivity. And as a firm believer in the mind-body connection, I will teach you breathing and relaxation techniques and encourage you to develop a daily ritual of meditation, since it has been proven effective in relieving stress and anxiety.
Pulling from different modalities, such as Gestalt Therapy and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), my approach is eclectic in nature. Gestalt Therapy is an effective method for helping you get in touch with your deeper feelings. For example, I might have you direct your thoughts and feelings to an empty chair placed across from you—the chair representing an actual person or an aspect of yourself—to help you crystalize your thoughts.
If you’ve experienced trauma or require treatment for panic attacks, I may use EMDR to help you neutralize the issue. Often when you experience trauma, it gets stored within your body. If you have never processed this trauma, it can remain stuck in your body and interfere with your ability to function in a healthy manner. Through the use of bilateral stimulation—a left-to-right rhythm which may be visual, auditory, or kinesthetic—the EMDR process will help you dislodge and neutralize painful memories.
I have seen those suffering from anxiety make huge strides by redefining their beliefs about themselves and learning new relaxation skills. I want the same for you. Together, we can identify the root of your anxiety and find effective coping strategies to help you live a more fulfilling life.
But you may still be wondering whether anxiety treatment is right for you…
Unfortunately, insurance companies will not reimburse you for treatment unless your therapist gives you a diagnosis. This requires that you be labeled with a pathology that becomes a part of your permanent medical record. In addition, insurance companies can also request access to your records to justify continued treatment, a practice I’m not comfortable with. Furthermore, some therapists who take insurance may have to maintain larger caseloads to support themselves and that can affect the quality of care. Taking private-pay clients only, allows me to maintain a smaller caseload so that I can ensure both quality and availability.
As someone who has suffered from anxiety, I am confident that I can help you. I realize that reaching out to someone you have never met can be difficult, especially if you’re skeptical that therapy will be effective. I am here to help gently guide you through the process of self-examination and to teach you new tools to help mitigate your anxiety. And as a result, you will have the opportunity to experience a more joyful and fulfilling life!
Although you may receive temporary relief from anxiety by turning to substances, eventually you may be battling two issues—anxiety as well as addiction. If you feel that you need to take something to help with your anxiety, I can refer you to a trained professional who can address your issue with prescribed medication. I can also provide you with tools and strategies to help alleviate your symptoms without the need for medication. If you have a substance abuse issue, as a result of your anxiety, we will have to address this first, before we can begin working on managing your anxiety.
Let Me Help You Break Out Of The Cycle Of Anxiety
Regardless of its origin, anxiety is treatable. When you reexamine your self-beliefs and discover a more positive narrative for yourself, you can begin to loosen the hold that anxiety has on your life. For a free, 15-minute consultation, please contact me.