Most of us know how it feels to be stressed, worried or nervous about something. Usually, these feelings are fleeting and they disappear as quickly as they appear. For those with anxiety, however, these feelings last longer and can be much more intense.
If you have an anxiety disorder, you may find that you avoid certain situations because you’re worried it will trigger these feelings for you. This can make everyday tasks difficult and hold you back from doing the things you want.
There are several different techniques and tools that can help with anxiety, one of which is hypnotherapy. Hypnotherapy for anxiety aims to seek the root cause of the problem and change your relationship with anxiety. Here we’ll explore how hypnotherapy works for anxiety.
Us humans have evolved to protect ourselves. One of the ways we do that is through the ‘fight, flight or freeze’ reaction. If our brains perceive a threat or danger, it releases hormones to prepare us to run away, fight, or freeze. These hormones include adrenaline and cortisol, and they make us feel more vigilant of what’s happening. They also make our hearts beat faster, so blood is sent where it’s needed the most when we’re under attack.
It’s a great system, but as society has developed, we generally have less need for it. For many of us, the system gets activated when there is no physical danger present. For example, our fight, flight or freeze response may be triggered by our manager asking us to add another task to our to-do list.
We then end up internalising the feelings and find ourselves sitting at our desks, with our hearts pounding, with no idea how to make it stop. Anxiety becomes a mental health problem when it starts affecting daily life. You may be very easily triggered, or find you have a level of anxiety constantly throughout the day.
Anxiety will feel different to everyone, however, there are certain symptoms here you may relate to if you have anxiety:
Hypnotherapy for anxiety can help boost feelings of confidence and self-belief while reducing feelings of fear and intense worry. It can help you develop the ability to access the relaxed state of mind needed to overcome the often-overwhelming emotions that come with anxiety.
Using the power of suggestion, hypnosis aims to access your subconscious mind and promote positive change. The suggestions themselves can be tailored to help you learn what triggers your anxiety and why, as well as changing the way you react towards them.
Because anxiety is a normal part of life, it can be difficult to recognise when it is becoming a problem. However, if you are experiencing strong feelings of anxiety, or they are lasting for a long time, it can become exhausting and overwhelming.
The symptoms and problems associated with anxiety will differ between each individual but, depending on the kind of problems you experience, you may be diagnosed with a more specific anxiety disorder, such as generalised anxiety disorder, panic disorder or social phobia.
Those with generalised anxiety disorder (GAD) will feel anxious often and may not know why. The anxiety can interfere with daily life as sufferers may seriously worry about family, money and health. The condition is often diagnosed when an individual spends at least six months worrying excessively about everyday problems. It can be a difficult disorder to live with as it can feel as if there’s no respite from anxiety.
Panic disorder is characterised by intense feelings of terror, which can strike suddenly and without warning. A common symptom is panic attacks, though not everyone who experiences a panic attack will have panic disorder. Those who are diagnosed with panic disorder can often feel constantly afraid of having a panic attack. It’s this fear that can then often lead to panic attacks, where it becomes a vicious cycle.
Social anxiety disorder (also known as social phobia) involves extreme feelings of anxiety and discomfort in social situations. Some of the common signs of social anxiety include fear of being around and interacting with people and being judged negatively by others.
More commonly associated with OCD, health anxiety is a specific type of phobia or anxiety, that can make day-to-day life extremely difficult.
Someone with health anxiety will find themselves worrying a great deal about their health and may think they’re unwell when they’re not. They might check their body regularly for signs of illness, including unusual lumps, pains or other physical sensations. They may also be perpetually frightened of dying.
Read ‘Hypnotherapy for health anxiety’ for more help and advice about overcoming health anxiety.
Other forms of anxiety disorders include: