Winston led a very successful life. He had a great family, a great job and plenty of friends. In spite of all this, Winston felt his life had been full of anxiety.
He regularly found himself worrying about anything and everything: stressors from work, from relationships, from financial concerns, and from almost any area of life dominated his thoughts. He focused on one stressful thing after another.
He was a worrier. He could not get his mind to let things go. It was incredibly frustrating.
He tried many of the techniques he read about in popular media or found with a typical Google search: he sought ways to practice relaxation and meditation, hoping this would quiet his mind. He tried to investigate his past, thinking that perhaps identifying and resolving a key issue might be the answer to his struggles.
As he continued to try to understand the cause of his worrying, he also had to deal with the worries themselves. It felt like no matter what enjoyable activity he was engaged in; part of his mind was always consumed with worry. This prevented him from fully enjoying his life and he began to feel hopeless that this would ever get better.
Winston decided to look for an anxiety specialist and was connected with us at Anxiety Solutions.
We explained to Winston the concept of Exposure Therapy and its applicability in Winston’s situation. We taught Winston that the trigger for his anxiety is uncertainty. We overthink and overanalyze situations when we feel uncertain. We also taught Winston that overthinking (aka worry behavior) is actually something we can control.
Sometimes our fear of a negative outcome can be so strong, we try to make ourselves feel better by attempting to resolve the uncertainty in our heads through worrying, hoping this will lead to feelings of reassurance. However, the opposite usually occurs: feelings of stress and anxiety intensify.
We showed Winston how to identify this pattern in himself, cut off the worry process, and change his response so that his mind would be free to focus on the good things in his life.
Winston applied these principles and learned to let go of worry. He began to feel much less anxiety.
When faced with stressors, he was able to move forward without his mind becoming overloaded or bogged down. He stopped thinking constantly about worst-case scenarios. He found himself able to more fully enjoy his hobbies, his work, and his relationships.
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