Updated: May 25
We've all been there to some degree at one point or another. The heart begins to race. Jaw clenches. Muscles tighten. Fearful thoughts run wild and nothing we do seems to be able stop them.
Anxiety is no fun. Whether you experience the occasional discomfort of irrational worry or full blown panic attacks, chronic stress and anxiety can severely affect your quality of life. Not only can it take away your enjoyment of the little things, it can prevent you from living up to your full potential.
What causes anxiety?
Anxiety is actually rooted in a natural and normal survival response. When we experience something dangerous, threatening, or even just unfamiliar our brain's limbic system kicks in. The amygdala and hypothalamus begin to pump out neurotransmitters that tell the body to go on high alert. Without even thinking about it we automatically go into fight, flight, or freeze mode.
An anxiety disorder occurs when this normal response extends for a longer period of time than is necessary or useful. In other words, the fear response of fight, flight, or freeze gets "stuck" in gear, causing more harm than good.
Fortunately, there are many ways to work with this.
Here are a few hypnosis and NLP (neuro-linguistic programming) tips you can begin to use right away to soothe those feelings of anxiety and begin to take back control of your life.
Pattern interruption Whenever you notice feelings of anxiety or panic, interrupt the pattern by lightly tapping your fingers on your opposite wrist. Acknowledge the anxious feelings while saying to yourself something like, "I am feeling anxious and that's OK. I am safe and everything is going to be alright."
What's the worst that could happen? Ask yourself that question and really imagine what your life would be like if the worst happened. How would you handle bombing that job interview or getting fired or laid off? Oftentimes, the worst is not nearly as bad as we think and we actually have many tools and resources to deal with whatever comes up.
Muscle relaxation Anxiety is often accompanied by muscle tension and stress. Take a few deep breaths and begin to progressively relax each group of muscles in your body. Begin by tightening the muscles even more, then letting go of the tension while exhaling slowly. Work all the way from the top of your head to the tips of your toes.
These are just a few of the hypnosis and NLP techniques I teach my clients to deal with their stress and anxiety. In private sessions, we also address the sometimes deep subconscious causes for anxiety. In the hypnotic trance state-a state of enhanced relaxation, healing, and learning-it becomes possible to release and let go of the old emotional wounds that have been holding us back.
Whether you experience mild, moderate, or severe anxiety, I want to help. Check out my website at www.truenaturehypnotherapy.com for more information about all of the services I provide as well as how to schedule a free consultation.