I Need To Be Rid Of Anxiety: How This Belief Is Keeping You stuckFeb 03, 2021
I hear it from clients almost every day that they worry they will be “stuck like this forever”. Most anxiety sufferers are concerned that they will never be free from their anxiety again. “I need to be rid of anxiety” is what they all tell me. The problem is that this belief is keeping you stuck and here is why.
Feeling Stuck and Feeling Worried
After a serious anxiety or panic attack, most sufferers begin to fear the anxiety itself. (We have discussed this previously and you can read more on the trickery of anxiety here). Once the experience of anxiety becomes stuck, many people start to worry that they will never get back to their former selves again. They worry that they will always feel anxious and that this experience has become their new normal.
And even on good days, when the anxiety is less, or even moments of no anxiety, there is this worry that it is going to come back. What if the anxiety comes back? What if I have another panic attack?
And the self-checking begins. Checking to see whether there are the familiar tendrils of anxiety – a sore chest, shallow breathing, a nervous tummy?
Because it is really damn scary to think that you will be stuck with this anxiety forever. And the only way of feeling relief and calm about it would be to know that you are finally rid of this thing forever, right?
We Can’t Get Rid Of Anxiety
It just isn’t possible.
The truth is that anxiety is a very real, very normal and very natural human emotion that actually serves a very important purpose.
A healthy dose of anxiety is absolutely required to get us up and going. It also keeps us safe, as we have discussed before.
Think back to simpler times, for example. When we might have felt slightly anxious that our survival was at threat and would motivate hunters and gatherers to go out there and get food.
Anxiety is the emotion that tells you that you need to pay attention. Under normal circumstances, when things aren’t all stuck, we begin to feel uneasy and a little anxious. Something feels out of place. The anxiety we feel is the brain telling us that we need to look closely and pay attention.
Anxiety is very necessary.
So it would be foolish to believe that we would be able to live without it. Anxiety has as much a place in our lives as anger, sadness, and excitement do.
But not when it is stuck. When it becomes stuck, it becomes debilitating. The video below explains it more clearly.
How The Belief is Keeping You Stuck
The belief that we need to be completely rid of anxiety is often what keeps it stuck. We need to stop believing that we will only be well, and be able to live fully again, when anxiety is completely gone.
How does it keep you stuck? Well firstly; what we resist persists. But when you do manage to have some anxiety free days and things feel a little lighter, then likely one of two things can happen: 1. You either create more anxiety by worrying whether this is too good to be true and feeling anxious about possibly getting anxious again (which is that vicious cycle again), or 2. You enjoy having an anxiety free moment and celebrate… But when it comes up again (as it inevitably will because you are human) then you get completely derailed because you fear the worst is happening and freak out that you are “relapsing”.
If you have been following the blog or the Facebook Live videos thus far, you will be familiar with the concept of anxiety ABOUT anxiety… And this is exactly what will have been re-created in either of these scenarios.
It is still stuck, you see?
The key to becoming unstuck is to stop believing that you need to be completely rid of your anxiety in order to be well or to live a happy and fulfilling life. You don’t need to. And you cant be rid of it ,anyway.
But… and this is where you need to listen up… it is totally possible to live a happy, fun, easy-going life alongside your experiences of anxiety.
Don’t believe me? You already have been able to do this. Think back to a simpler time for yourself – a time where things didn’t feel as stuck as they do now. Where you didn’t feel your anxiety as intensely.
Remember who you were then? Remember what you were doing?
And can you remember that you still had times when you were anxious, even back then?
Anxiety was a normal response. And you didn’t feel stuck.
Surely it cannot be that hard to believe that you could get back to a place where you lived fully despite experiencing anxiety? Or, better yet – is it possible that you could become better friends with your anxiety, have a better relationship with it, and thrive more than you ever did before?
Acceptance is Key
Countless people have felt stuck in anxiety and have moved through it.
You can certainly thrive and succeed alongside an experience of anxiety.
Did you know that Adele, for example, has reported that she has a panic attack almost every time before a show? And look at the woman! She is amazing and she is so successful! But she is not stuck.
Leonardo Di Caprio has lived and succeeded alongside his Obsessive Compulsive disorder (which is an anxiety based disorder). Oprah Winfrey has admitted to experiencing anxiety too… And these are just a few of the famous and very successful people we know that live and, let’s face it, thrive alongside their experiences of anxiety.
It is when anxiety becomes stuck that it becomes debilitating and problematic.
And it becomes stuck when we resist it, fight it, wish to exorcise it.
Then we get into an endless tussle with this human emotion and perpetuate it by layering more of it on top of what we already feel.
Moving into a space of acceptance, and fully realising that anxiety is here to stay, is the key to living the life you were destined to despite experiencing anxiety.
Learning to live alongside that feeling, and not to let it overwhelm you, is the answer to your freedom.
Finding ways to notice when anxiety is hanging around, accepting its presence, and then continuing to place your focus on your inevitable success is the key to becoming unstuck.
We have been working eagerly in the background to create a platform to support you in gaining a new understanding of your anxiety and welcome you to The Unstuck Inner Circle. If you are interested in learning more – simply click here – and you can register your interest to find out when enrolment opens in March 2021.