Self Help for Anxiety
That Works and Lasts for Good
As a Clinical Psychologist why would I be promoting self help for anxiety rather than professional treatment? The answer to that is simple - it's the only solution that works in the long-term.
How Do I Know That My Self Help
Approach to Anxiety Works?
- I specialised in treating anxiety-related disorders for over 40 years. For the first 15 or so of those years, plus another 15 when growing up, I battled with anxiety issues and panics myself.
- In the early 1970's I was well aware that none of the approaches being used to treat anxiety would work for me to overcome my own and I came up with several tricks that got me by, but which didn't cure me.
- Finally one day, finding myself trapped in the house with my fears, I used my professional knowledge to work out what was happening. Then I came up with a plan that made sense according to psychological theory. It worked.
- I haven't had an anxiety attack for over 30 years. I have been to places and done things that even many of those without anxiety issues would never consider doing.
- I know what makes anxiety happen and what to do to finally get it under control for good.
But you're an expert so how can you claim that you used self help for anxiety yourself?
Ok, so it was my professional understanding that helped me work out what was going on in the first place and to come up with a solution. But then putting it into practice was down to 'me-the-sufferer', not 'me-the-psychologist'. Nobody could do it for me, I just had to help myself.
Self Help for Anxiety Is Like Learning to Fish
The Spanish philosopher, Maimonides, in the 12th century noted the value of teaching people skills rather than simply providing them with solutions.
If your brother always does your homework for you, you may get good marks but you won't pass any exams in it when your brother isn't there.
Anxiety sufferers need to understand it so they can deal with it quickly when it happens the next time.
Since then I have taught patients to understand the mechanism behind their anxieties so that the solution, which only they can carry out, makes sense to them. Understanding it motivates them to do what's needed.
If someone expects me to make them better it gets in the way. Instead of doing what they need to do, the sufferer will just wait for me to create magic that suddenly makes them better. They will wait for ever.
The most important part of overcoming any anxiety problem is in first understanding how it comes about.
Anxiety isn't a virus or something that comes over you by chance!
- Anxiety is a normal human response that has been allowed to grow inappropriately.
- In order to stop it spreading and cut it back, you need to understand what it's feeding on and cut the supply.
- Unless you can do this, even when you are trying to overcome it, you may be increasing it without meaning to.
- Many so-called treatments (medication, breathing exercises, talking about problems, etc)
are only temporary solutions. This is because none of them addresses the true cause.
- I cheated this way myself for many years using coping techniques that got me out of the situation at the time, but didn't stop it happening again the next time.
Nobody knowingly develops an anxiety habit
But a habit is what it is and, like any other habit you might want to get rid of, it has to be done by you.
That's why an expert can only teach you about it and show you the path to take to overcome it. The doing has to be done by you, yourself.
That's why to overcome anxiety, self help is the only way whatever form the anxiety takes.
But all anxiety isn't the same!
Basically it is. As you come to understand how anxiety habits develop, you will realise that although people vary as to what makes them anxious and which symptoms they have, the basic mechanism is the same.
How To Use This Website
All you need to know to use self help for your anxiety is here on this site. At the foot of each page is a link to the page containing the next logical step.
But maybe you don't want to trawl through the pages to put it together for yourself?
In that case you may be interested in an online course which I have written which contains everything you need to know and gives you the information step by step so you can keep progressing in the right direction at your own pace.
There is a full account of my story on this site. If you would prefer to read this offline, I offer a pdf download in return for your email address so I can keep you informed about updates to this site and new books, courses etc.
Your email will never be shared and will only be used to update you about new developments related to this site. You can unsubscribe at any time.
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