Everyone experiences anxiety at some point in their life. Anxiety is not always negative- it’s there for a reason and in some cases it can be helpful. I always use the example of standing a few feet from the edge of a high cliff- it’s normal to feel nervous to some degree as this prevents you from going any closer and putting yourself in danger.
However, if you’re feeling anxious the majority of the time, this is a sign that something needs to change. Sometimes it can be difficult to know where to start when you’re constantly carrying the weight of anxiety and fear around on your shoulders.
Many of my clients wake up with a feeling of dread and are constantly fearing the worst case scenario throughout the day. Day after day this can be overwhelming and exhausting.
The great news is that no matter how severe your anxiety is and no matter how long you’ve been experiencing it, you can overcome it. Here are 5 important steps to take to put yourself on the path to improvement.
1. Believe that you can overcome anxiety- and refuse to listen to anyone who tells you that you can’t
It is completely possible for you to overcome anxiety. Some therapists and professionals may tell you that you will have it for the rest of your life and the best case scenario is simply ‘managing’ the issue.
You must refuse to listen to them. Even if that person is a medical doctor. Although I would never discourage speaking to a doctor about anxiety (it can be an important first step), be selective in the advice that you take on board. There are countless examples of people who have overcome anxiety, even severe cases. It is totally possible for you too.
2. Empower yourself by learning new skills and coping strategies
Although this alone is not the long term solution, it is a good place to start. There are a number of simple but incredibly effective techniques that you can use that can help you to feel better instantly. One of these is tapping- whether that is the more widely known version, EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique), or the original precursor to EFT- TFT (Thought Field Therapy).
These are meridian tapping techniques which involve tapping with the fingertips on various meridian points on the face and the upper body. By tapping in certain sequences and in some cases while saying affirmations, you can feel instant relief from anxiety.
There are also many different breathing techniques you can use to instantly reduce anxiety. Contact me if you would like more information on these strategies and more. You can also check out the videos on my Facebook page Liam Hand Hypnotherapy or even perform a simple search on YouTube for ‘EFT’- there are hundreds of videos out there for you to try.
3. Seek professional help from a hypnotherapist or coach trained in hypnosis and other related techniques
I always recommend that people who are suffering from anxiety see a hypnotherapist/hypnotist, preferably one who specialises in treating anxiety. Many hypnotherapists are also trained in other techniques such as tapping (I personally use TFT tapping extensively with my clients), NLP and Havening, which can be incredibly effective when used alongside one another.
The reason I prefer hypnosis over more mainstream methods such as CBT or counselling is that it enables faster change at a deeper level- at the subconscious level. This saves you time and ultimately money in the long run.
Many of my clients who come to see me for hypnotherapy in Manchester or Skype have had months and sometimes years of CBT or counselling and are still anxious- often one session of hypnosis with a skilled hypnotist/hypnotherapist has more of an impact than months of the therapies that are offered on the NHS.
4. Release emotional trauma, past emotional pain and stress, limiting beliefs and empower yourself with a new mindset
This is what a skilled hypnotherapist or coach will enable you to do. In many cases, anxiety can be fuelled by past emotional trauma and this must be released to enable you to move forward. If a therapy is not allowing you to release past trauma, its impact will be limited. By releasing trauma and past pain and stress, you will no longer be constantly in fight/flight/freeze mode and you will instantly feel calmer.
It’s also important to release limiting beliefs that are preventing you from moving forward and to empower yourself with a new positive and nurturing mindset. It’s also vital to build a strong sense of self esteem/self-love. A huge shift can be achieved even in one life-changing session of hypnotherapy in Manchester with me or on Skype worldwide.
5. Change your lifestyle and routines to become more present in the moment
In most cases, people who have been experiencing anxiety are rarely fully present in the moment- they tend to be constantly thinking and worrying about the future. This can become a habit over time and it may be that your lifestyle has been supporting it. If you want different results in your life, you have to start to do things differently.
This can mean things like changing your morning routine to include meditation (even 10 minutes every morning can be hugely beneficial), taking up yoga, writing daily in a journal, practising gratitude and reducing screen time. Anything that allows you to fully appreciate being here right now. After all, we are meant to live in the present moment.
As you feel more presence in your life you will start to realise more and more how constant thought and having a busy mind drives anxiety- and on the flip side, how a calmer, quieter mind promotes a sense of peace in your life.