anxiety, panic & worry

 

 

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You’re on the train on your way to work one day when you suddenly wonder, did I switch the iron off? You begin to trace your steps mentally from earlier, desperately trying to remember to gain some relief from the already building anxiety. You probably did but what if you didn’t? Your concern is making as you imagine the iron face down on the ironing board slowly burning through the cover of the ironing board and starting to smoulder and catch fire.  Just then your train suddenly halts to a stop forcefully jerking your whole body forward; you automatically put your hands out in front of you, palms facing outwards to break the force of being jolted forward, palms impacting the back of the seat in front. Your body starts to deactivate back to normality.

Anxiety is all around us. The above illustrates two very different ways that anxiety begins; Thought and the other to reactions to the environment.  The reason for this is that fear comes from two distinct places of our brain: the cortex and the amygdala. The knowledge we have today is thanks to the advances in neuroscience the science of the mind.

In the example above, anxiety was aroused in the cortex pathway by thoughts and images of the risk of leaving the iron on.  And information from another anxiety producing pathway, traveling more directly through the amygdala, ensured a quick reaction to avoid your body impacting the back of the seat in front by putting your hands out to minimise impact when the train came to a sudden halt.

In the latter example, we have no control; the amygdala will override the cortex to protect us from imminent danger. No time for what is best, primitive survival instinct. However, we do not always need the amygdala to intervene and in a lot of daily situations we have time to think through what the best solution may be by focusing on the facts and what is real about the situation and not focusing on the what if’s and possible adverse outcomes.

I have years of experience working with anxiety, panic, worry and compulsive disorder and can show you how you can change the pathways in your brain so that they’re less likely to create high levels or neurotic anxiety.

I can be contacted through on 07788595902 or e. maltancounselling@gmail.com.

website: www.londonandclaphamcounselling.co.uk

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