Signs You Are Suffering from Anxiety and How to Stop It with Hypnotherapy
That moment when your heart beats a little faster than normal, your palms start to feel sweaty, and you feel a familiar flutter in your stomach – which you know is not excitement. Sometimes you can ignore it and continue with life. The rest of the time, it makes you say no to things you might enjoy. In mild forms, anxiety is something everyone feels throughout life, every now and again. Occasionally, it even helps with motivation and to get something completed to the best of your ability. When anxiety is stronger than necessary and restricts your life, hypnotherapy will help you manage it, so life is easier and more fun.
What is Anxiety?
You can read a more in-depth explanation here, simply anxiety is your body’s danger response. As an animal, you evolved to respond to danger as a safety mechanism. A necessary function that kept your ancestors alive. Nowadays, the fear response is beneficial in a few situations, but far less than in the days of primitive living.
The amygdala in your brain governs the response. A permanently switched on alert system. When triggered, this alarm sets off a chain of processes in your body designed to get you out of danger quickly. Your body sets the wheels in motion for you to fight, flee or freeze to keep you alive with as little physical and emotional damage as possible. This complex arrangement is an animalistic operation ruled by the unconscious part of your brain. Which makes it difficult to switch off with the human thinking, conscious part of you.
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How do I know if I have anxiety?
As anxiety is a normal, natural part of everyone, we all experience it sometimes. When you cross the road and see a car flying towards you that you missed when you checked, the involuntary response that gets you out of the way quickly is anxiety. Anxiety is a problem when it sticks around. Designed to help you deal with danger quickly, your body expects to function in an anxious state only in short bursts. Long term anxiety is not the natural design and can therefore cause problems. Some people respond to anxiety by staying in their comfort zone. This eases anxiety, but increases the risk of depression, as life feels less worthwhile. Other people plough through, ignore their body’s signals, and get physically ill, if they don’t burn out mentally first.
GAD-7 for Anxiety
The GAD-7 questionnaire will help you determine whether you are suffering from anxiety in a disordered way. Although it is a good start, your own intuition is relevant. So if the answer to the questionnaire does not feel right to you, it is important to still ask for help when you need it. The GAD-7 questionnaire consists of seven questions, with four optional answers based on your feelings over the previous two weeks. The answer options are “not at all”, “several days”, “more than half the days” and “nearly every day”. With scores of 0, 1, 2, and 3 respectively.
The seven questions are
- Feeling nervous, anxious or on edge
- Not being able to stop or control worrying
- Worrying too much about different things
- Trouble relaxing
- Being so restless that it is hard to sit still
- Becoming easily annoyed or irritable
- Feeling afraid, as if something awful might happen
A score of 5 or more represents mild anxiety, 10 represents moderate anxiety, and 15 represents severe anxiety.
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How to stop suffering from anxiety with hypnotherapy
If you feel like you are suffering from anxiety, hypnosis is a wonderful tool to take your body out of the anxious state. Hypnosis, like meditation, is a way to focus and clear your mind. When you use hypnosis, your body returns to the default calm state. There are many guided meditations online, you can sign up to one of mine here. Hypnosis is a learned skill. The more you practise, the better you’ll get. As hypnosis is a normal state of mind that we all slip in and out of throughout the day, some people will find they move into hypnosis without direction from a hypnotist. When you make hypnosis / meditation a daily practice, you’ll give your body a daily period of calm, which will hopefully progressively extend into more of your day.
Private sessions with a hypnotherapist will help you deeply. You’ll have a safe space to talk through any of your worries, and your hypnotherapist will help you organise your thoughts, so things feel easier to manage. Your hypnotherapist will use therapeutic modalities to help you not only manage the anxiety, but also remove unnecessary anxiety in your life. Your hypnotherapist will help you understand anything in your lifestyle that may exacerbate your anxiety, and help you make any recommended lifestyle changes.