As long ago as I can remember I have worried about everything. A certain level of fear is completely natural and is designed to keep us safe from danger, but when it means you are too scared to face getting out of bed or leaving the house…is it time to really worry?
When I was young, anxiety was approached with ‘she is just a shy child/nervous child/just being silly’. Luckily I knew (as did my ever supportive family) that what I was experiencing was becoming extreme and inhibiting my daily life, something needed to change. I tried hypnotherapy which worked to a certain degree. I tried various forms of counseling and I also tried telling myself to harden up & get over it (which DID NOT work!).
Finally when I had a terrible time in my twenties I went back to my GP. I was in for a real surprise – as the doctor I was lucky to strike was compassionate, understanding, and correctly diagnosed me with GADs (Generalised Anxiety Disorder). She then told me it was easy to treat and through a series of different methods, a short time later I was a totally different person, ready to face whatever life had to throw at me.
I freely admit that many people still believe anxiety is not an ‘illness’ and therefore should not be treated with medication, and there are still many arguments both ways on that topic.
The way it was described to me was this:
Some peoples’ receptors in their brain aren’t as good at receiving messages – imagine if you will a bad game of Chinese whispers. The approach of some medications as an option simply ensures a message that is not received or ‘bounced back’ is resent a number of times so the odds of it getting through are higher. Other treatment options such as EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) works on ‘resetting’ the circuits in the brain so that the corrected pathways with the right messages can be created. CBT or Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is used to help sufferers understand the combination between thoughts, feelings and actions and is successful with many people also. If you put ‘anxiety treatments’ into a website search, there are literally hundreds of options out there now.
I came out with the idea that my ‘illness’ was merely a short circuit in my brain – and I just needed some re-wiring work.
If you have an experience with anxiety you would be willing to share I would love to hear from you as I believe there are still a lot of people out there still worrying about their worry. What if I am wrong? What if I look silly? What if I cry? What if what if what if?? And to all of those people out there reading this who are thinking this sounds like you – please do believe me when I say there is a treatment option out there for you – just keep trying until you find one that works for you.
I should finish off with a disclaimer however, as I am not a professional by any means on this topic and can only speak from personal experiences. But if you have any concerns and don’t know where to begin – drop me a line or just start with your doctor or local medical centre.