Anxiety is as common as it is diverse a type of discomfort. In fact, it is such a complex phenomenon that it mixes both disturbing sensations and thoughts, the content depends both on the characteristics of the person who experiences it in their own skin, and on the context in which it is located. find.
like that, in anxiety there is always a series of mixed negative feelings which is complicated to separate and analyze separately, objectively. Fortunately, that doesn’t mean that it’s impossible to learn to deal with this kind of discomfort and prevent it from locking us in or putting us into a vicious cycle of anxiety and stress.
How does anxiety arise?
Anxiety is a psychological state and also a psychological state, because it is embodied both in feelings and thoughts in general, on the one hand, and in the state of activation of our body, The other.
In general, this predisposes us to interpret many of the queues that occur around us as danger signs or warnings that we need to be alert to what may happen. In fact, sometimes this happens even without knowing exactly what to prepare for play a tale before: it just floods us with a sense of unease and things will go wrong if we don’t try to avoid it.
like that, Typical symptoms of anxiety are tremors, sweating, sensitivity to light, dizziness, digestive problemsAnd, in general, phenomena associated with the need to stay alert and very active in order to react quickly and avoid damage even greater than the discomfort we are feeling at the moment: there is a subjective experience of overload, in which our nervous system is at the limit.
But while this is happening in our body in general … what is going on, specifically, in our thought flow?
The vicious cycle of anxiety and negative feelings
Feelings are how we interpret emotions, that is, how we interpret the fact that we are experiencing them. In the case of anxiety, this is combined with a number of negative feelings, and the two elements reinforce each other in a vicious circle.
This mutual feedback between negative feelings and anxiety results in two main phenomena.
When we are anxious, there is a tendency in us to generate pessimistic predictions about what is going to happen, and this set of beliefs supports this need to stay alert, to have all our senses oriented towards the possible opportunities to avoid what would harm us not to suffer from all the evil that seems to be happening to us.
Ruminating is the tendency to unwittingly bring back to our consciousness over and over again a series of disturbing thoughts or mental images, which make us feel bad and cause us to think about things that concern us, whether that is what could happen in the future or what has happened to us in the past (many times the two times overlap and become indistinguishable to us).
As we see that no matter how hard we try, we are not able to get rid of these thoughts, it predisposes us more to be vigilant to try not to come back, Or to block as long as they stick their heads out of our consciousness, which in turn makes us more vulnerable to their influence, as we are on alert and heighten our anxiety.
Tips to keep in mind
Here are some key ideas on what to do
1. Take care of your health
We are much more vulnerable to anxiety when we are not physically fit. Therefore, the first step is to check that we are getting enough sleep, eating well, staying active, etc.
2. Don’t block thinking, manage your attention
Much more effective than trying to block out negative feelings related to anxiety is learn to accept that they are there and limit yourself to directing your attention to other aspects of your gift. In this, mindfulness exercises often help and are easy to learn and practice.
3. Practice moderate exercise
It has been shown that regular, moderate aerobic exercise it makes us more resilient to anxiety and allows us to reorganize our thoughts, providing us with a series of well-defined goals linked to sensations that stimulate us at all times through the movement of our body.
4. Come therapy
If you think nothing is working for you and you still feel bad, go to psychotherapy.
Are you interested in undergoing psychotherapy for anxiety?
If you notice that you need help dealing with anxiety because it is too much of a problem for you and you can’t control the situation, don’t blame yourself: it happens to a lot of people, and sometimes it does. this type of disorder is too difficult to overcome without external support. Fortunately, anxiety can be treated through a process of psychotherapy.
Therefore, in case you find yourself in such a situation, I suggest you contact me; I am a psychologist with over 15 years of professional patient management experience, and helping people cope with anxiety is a very common part of my job.
My work is primarily based on a combination of cognitive-behavioral therapy tools and methodologies and third-generation therapies, models of psychological intervention that have been shown to be effective in treating many emotional and behavioral issues. You can count on my help both in face to face therapy sessions at my center in Madrid and through online video call therapy. You will find my contact details on this page.
- American Psychiatric Association -APA- (2014). DSM-5. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Madrid: Panamericana.
- Kasper, S., Boer, JA d., Et Sitsen, JMA (2003). Handbook of Depression and Anxiety. New York: M. Dekker.
- Phillips, AC; Carroll, D .; Der, G. (2015). Negative life events and symptoms of depression and anxiety: causing stress and / or generating stress. Anxiety, stress and adaptation. 28 (4): pages 357 to 371.
- Stephan WG, Stephan CW (1985). Anxiety between groups. Journal of Social Affairs.
- Sylvers, P .; Lilienfeld, SO; LaPrairie, JL (2011). Differences between fear and anxiety about traits: implications for psychopathology. Journal of clinical psychology. 31 (1): pages 122 to 137.