Anxiety has become as popular as Prozac was in the 90’s. Now, before I continue I want to make it clear that I am in no way bashing anxiety, as someone who suffered from major anxiety for many years… I know what it’s like. I know how it feels. So no, this is not a bash against those millions of people who have been diagnosed with anxiety, or even chronic anxiety.
What I am hoping to do is show you that anxiety is in fact not what is actually crippling you. It’s not what is holding you back or keeping you from being well.
No. That would be fear.
But fear is not something doctors can diagnose or prescribe medication for.
As humans, we only have TWO real emotions, two emotions that all other emotions stem from – LOVE and FEAR.
Fear is the innate primal response that we have to keep us alive and sense danger (and yes, I mean literally). Anxiety is not fear, it is the distress we create in our mind as a result of being scared, fearful, or in danger. Fear creates anxiety, but it is not the same thing.
When that feeling arises in the pit of your stomach, the clenching in your chest so tight that it takes your breath away – that’s anxiety. That’s the reaction to the fear behind the trigger that you have stored in your subconscious to respond every time you feel threatened or scared or that you’re being pushed beyond your limits of comfort (fight or flight).
When your loved ones are ill and your ‘anxiety’ flares up at the thought of losing someone else you love. That’s actually fear.
When you become so consumed by anxiety at the thought of moving to a new house, job, or any kind of change – that’s actually fear.
When you’re standing in line at the grocer and the person behind you comes a little too close to you and you feel your chest begin to close and the panic step in – that’s actually fear.
Or when your partner hasn’t responded to your text (but has read your text) and you begin to play out a million different scenarios in your mind as to why they haven’t responded – that’s actually fear.
Anxiety also hits us when we feel we are losing control of a situation, our surroundings, or life. But the reality about anxiety is that it isn’t a disease that you need to just accept that you have and to live with it. It can be resolved.
I see so many incredible clients being crippled by their fears and living life just accepting that they can’t do something or achieve what they really want because of their ‘anxiety’. Their anxiety has become their disease, their crutch, their excuse. But their anxiety isn’t actually what’s holding them back – it’s their fear – of change, of failure, of not living up to the standards that they think they need to live up to, of losing someone else, of being alone, of being judged, of the unknown… Anxiety has become an ingrained reaction to something that scares, or scared, the shit out of them, and that fear has now become so natural to them that they believe it’s just a part of how they are, but it’s not and it doesn’t have to be. Fear has been so built up by society as some big, bad, bogeyman that will swallow you whole if you dare get too close. But that’s also complete BS.
Fear is what moves us, pushes us to grow and expand beyond our limits, to continually shift our paradigms, to want more, and to explore new things/places/situations/people. Without fear we would never be able to experience what we don’t like, to know what we do like. And fear doesn’t have to cripple you or hold you back. It too can be healed and released and embraced. Once you understand what the trigger behind the fear (and anxiety) is, it’ll be the best medication you’ve ever taken!
Don’t let anxiety, or fear, be a crutch, a scapegoat, or excuse any longer. Once you’ve made the decision, you won’t believe how liberating your life can become! I promise you. I’ve done it.