WHAT’S HAPPENING TO ME?
Your palms are sweating, your heart is racing, your trembling…Its happening again, and you don’t know why… where is this coming from? Overwhelm, stress, chaos…. I was fine a minute ago….. I can’t catch my breathe…. the tears are coming…. Anxiety can be scary and threatening as it feels like this craziness has taken over and you have no control. Sometimes, even trying to do gentle breathing exercises is impossible or even in themselves, overwhelming.
WHERE ANXIETY REALLY COMES FROM
Before I head into some in the moment rescue strategies, it is important to understand the power of emotions. We have all had the experience of someone who was angry or in a bad mood and they walk in the room. Without saying a word, we KNOW something is off, the hair goes up on our neck, our muscles tense we may get that gripping sensation in our stomachs. The power and energy of that persons emotions affected us without a word or touch. Now, let’s look at our own emotional landscape. When we experience overwhelming events ( and this doesn’t even have to be big trauma, it can be small interactions or happenings over time) that we can’t or choose not to emotionally process, that same energy and intensity does not go away simply because we ignore it, distract from it or push it down. That emotional energy remains trapped inside us. So those emotions are in a holding pattern. As time goes on, we build walls around those feelings and as decades go by that power and intensity eventually eats away at our life force and physicality, leaving us with illness. It can manifest differently for everyone, but its also where our anxiety comes from. “I got this panic attack out of nowhere!” is actually your own self trying to get you to recognize your own emotional content. Feel into that for a moment. One part of you is calling out to be acknowledged by another part of you. Separation of self creates discomfort. Unification of the self ( feeling those negative feelings) creates equanimity.
Taming the Chaos of Anxiety
In taming the chaos of anxiety, creating a toolbox that works for you is important. Having in the moment strategies to get through may include some of these
Two sharp, short in breathes through the nose, long exhale through the mouth
Cold water on face
Longer on the exhales than your inhales
Specific muscle relaxation techniques
Knowing is going to pass in 10 minutes
Focus your attention on something you love, or photo.
Essential oils of your choice ( lavender), smell that calming for you
Slow large movements — this is good for jittery tics
Herbals - Please do extensive research and consult experts in the field—the anxiety relief formula on the facebook ad may not be right for you no matter what they claim
FORMING A NEW RELATIONSHIP WITH YOUR EMOTIONS.
Healing anxiety and depression begins with forming a new relationship with what you feel. Relationship begins with…relating. Many of us have in our minds that grief, anger, sadness, embarrassment and shame are negative and bad, but they are a part of our human experience and no one gets through life without experiencing them at some point. It is our resistance to feeling them fully that castrates us from ourselves. I like for people to begin that relationship by simply checking in with themselves multiple times a day. What are you feeling? When you awake, on your way to your job, when you answer the phone at work, driving home. Just check in and become aware. It can be as simple as, “ Am I feeling pleasant, unpleasant or neutral?” Becoming adept at this practice ques you into yourself and what you are feeling at a surface level so you begin to develop a capacity for deeper emotions.
STEPS ON YOUR JOURNEY TO HEAL FROM ANXIETY
If you are beginning your healing journey having an intellectual understanding of what your going through by reading and psychotherapy can be helpful as well as support groups so you know your not the only one experiencing life this way. Of course, I recommend regular sessions with myself to continually deepen your relationship with yourself and build emotional capacity and resilience. Anxiety won’t go away on its own and needs time, attention and multiple resources to heal. Healing is a lifelong journey of falling in deep relationship with you. From that depth of embodiment you can truly live. Need assistance with your anxiety? Eileen is an alternative healer who has completed 15 vision quests enabling her to be a clear and effective conduit for your personal growth. She has worked with somatic breathwork practices for the last 9 years and is a certified Unified Mindfulness Coach Contact Eileen@relaxandexpand.com
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