Dread, fear and apprehension. If you suffer from anxiety, you know these feelings all too well. And with more than 40 million people suffering from diagnosed anxiety in the US, chances are, you’re affected by it, too. Anxiety is what your mind does when it’s trying to protect you from a real or perceived threat. Real threats are physically present. It makes sense to feel anxious about how to protect yourself. Managing anxiety in this case equates to doing something logical to protect your safety.
Perceived threats are something else altogether. If you simply perceive something as a threat, it could be all in your mind. Those mentally perceived threats could be anything from facing having to do public presentations, interacting stressful family members, what to do when approached by a police officer, or even activities like flying or driving. It is by managing anxiety about perceived threats using useful coping mechanism that you can move forward in life.
What’s worse, when you overthink and repeat negative thoughts, you feel like there’s no escaping anxiety. It can be overwhelming. However, managing anxiety with hypnosis is a simple and effective way to release your mind from this vicious cycle.
Your Brain and Managing Anxiety
If you ignore or suppress your anxious thoughts and feelings, you know it doesn’t work very well for managing anxiety. Your anxiety doesn’t go away, does it? Instead, it just comes back; and sometimes it returns with greater intensity. That’s because it’s not just a matter of will power. Your anxiety is more complicated than that.
There are two parts of the brain that play big roles in anxiety: the amygdala and the hippocampus. The amygdala is like a sentinel in a watchtower. It processes and interprets sensory signals and alerts the brain of any perceived threats. The amygdala also stores emotional memories that can influence anxiety disorders.
Your hippocampus codes past threatening events into your memory. As you can see, your amygdala can misinterpret incoming data as threatening and dangerous. Your hippocampus can then store negative events as memories that continue to influence your amygdala’s interpretations.
It can all be a bit mental – no pun intended!
Your brain is powerful and complex, and this can make anxiety a cruel cycle that’s hard to break. That’s why will power isn’t enough for managing anxiety.
Managing Anxiety with Hypnosis
Your mind is a powerful thing, but that doesn’t mean it has to overpower, overwhelm and overtake you. Your feelings of anxiety can be strong. They can be justified during real cases of physical danger. However, when it comes to socially learned anxiety, these conditioned response ways of thinking can be managed, released or transformed with the right approach. One such very effective approach to getting relief from learned anxiety mental states is hypnosis.
Before you enter into a deep state of relaxation, or hypnosis, take time to understand your anxiety. Is it real or perceived? Get to know it very well.
How can you do this? Notice what triggers your feelings and thoughts of perceived anxiety. Do you feel anxious talking to people you don’t know? Do you believe you need to feel anxious when meeting with your boss? Maybe it happened when you take your next business trip? Or do you feel anxious about seeing your in-laws?
Whatever it is, see if you can identify and acknowledge what’s triggering perceived anxiety for you. Just notice it rather than judge or criticize it. Simply allow yourself to be aware of it. Judging or criticizing yourself as bad or flawed only makes creating positive change more difficult. That’s because being judgmental and critical of yourself perpetuates negativity. Plus, it makes it harder to break free from anxiety, and it also drains you of your much-needed mental energy.
Knowing Why You’re Anxious is Key to Managing Anxiety
Once you identify what you’re anxious about, ask yourself the reason you feel anxious toward it. What are you afraid of in the anxiety-producing event? Knowing the “why” behind your anxiety can make hypnosis a very effective approach to managing anxiety. Here’s why:
When you can identify the root cause of your anxiousness, hypnosis can gently and powerfully fix the problem at the source, instead of just covering it up temporarily.
Imagine a big, unruly tree that’s overtaking your carefully curated garden. Sure, you can trim the branches, or chop away bits and pieces. But as long as the roots are deeply entrenched, the tree continues to grow and overtake your garden.
But if you can uproot the tree, you can remove it entirely, right? Going to the root of the problem sounds like a lot of work, especially when we’re talking about a tree! But hypnosis is a simple, safe and effective way to uproot the cause of your anxiety. Your trained professional hypnotherapist will take a baby step approach to guide you through releasing your perceived anxieties. Knowing your “why” makes it possible.
You don’t have to do this work alone!
Your hypnotist can help you identify the reasons behind your anxiety, and help you understand it better. This will help your hypnosis session be more effective and reduce your anxiety.