• jennagosta m.d.

Anxiety ... ?

Anxiety ... ?

Worry - Stress- Fear - Tension - Anxiety - Panic —

Some of these responses are normal, when they last for only a short while — certainly true for worry, tension, stress. We all experience these at times.

But when these reactions go on too long, or expand into fear, anxiety, panic — that can be too much.

Sometimes these emotional states color-wash and spill into our lives much of the time, so we are living from within ongoing anxiety, or tension, panic, or worry.

Sometimes those reactions get triggered easily, and we lose balance quickly. Before we know it, and maybe we’re not even sure why, we are experiencing panic, or fear.

People around us tell us we are “over-reacting,” but somehow the reaction is beyond our control….We may have been told we have “panic attacks,” or an “anxiety disorder.”

Anxiety: there is general anxiety, social anxiety, phobias, and as above, panic disorder. Chronic stress, tension, and fear can be part of the same family.

Much of the time, the reaction includes physical symptoms, such as feeling like we are short of breath, like our heart is beating too fast. We may have trouble with appetite and digestion.

Family background can contribute to ongoing anxiety. Stress and trauma are also common causes.

VoiceGuided VisionWork sees anxiety as the result of experience, rather than a “disorder” that just happens. And this goes for all the other “members” of the “anxiety family.”

In other words, the anxiety actually makes sense on some level.

The brain and the nervous system have every reason to “over-react,” or to have ongoing fear or stress — given what they have experienced before.

VoiceGuided VisionWork offers two treatment approaches for anxiety.

One of those approaches is sort of like a Level 1 — we use the VoiceGuided VisionWork sessions to give the brain and the nervous system (and the heart and the mind!) a chance to experience calm and well-being.

This may sound simple - and the idea is simple - but if you’ve spent a lifetime being nervous, or stressed (or worried, or panicked, or anxious), you know how hard it can be to convince the nervous system and the brain to let go. They’ve been protecting you after all!

So getting them to move into something different can require some steps, and can take some practice.

These VoiceGuided sessions give you the chance to experience, and practice, turning the anxiety down to lower and lower levels, as low as you want to go. You ultimately come out being able to handle the anxiety when it pokes its head in - rather than the anxiety overwhelming you.

For anybody that’s curious - yes, these sessions strengthen and enhance self-regulation skills. They do this by giving the brain and the nervous system new options, more bandwidth, so to speak. The brain and the nervous system become familiar with additional places on the dial, additional settings — in this case the new setting is that of being calm and anxiety-free.

And the more often the brain and the nervous system experience that setting of calm and anxiety-free, the easier it is for them to get there from then on, and the easier it is for them to stay there.

But can I dump the anxiety altogether?

Well, there’s a good chance you can dump a lot of it. And that’s the Level 2 approach. (Yes, you can do both - in either order.)

The VoiceGuided sessions that focus on lifting, eliminating, or reducing anxiety use guided imagery brain exercises that allow the emotional brain to complete and close the experience(s) that gave rise to the on-going anxiety in the first place.

For anybody’s that’s curious here - for this work, we use a combination of memory reconsolidation and Emotional Trigger Treatment techniques. Sometimes we use regression work to get to the kernel of something, or to a key core belief.

Through guided imagery exercises, the emotional brain gets to experience old material in a new way, and this way brings closure to the experience for the first time.

The experience is then no longer an open file, but closed, and stored differently form then on.

This means that the old experience no longer causes the same old reaction it was causing, and you walk forward freed of much of the old emotional residue from the past.

I want to let you know here that you do not have to re-live, or even describe, any difficult events in detail for this to work.

It is enough to simply recall or refer to some of the root experiences that are associated with the feelings for the emotional brain to open enough to make some changes.

The guided imagery brain exercises are effective with just a simple reference, or “headline,” that indicates the starting point of the experience that caused the ongoing issue.

You also do not need to have a single event, or even a series of events, as a “cause” for these Level 2 sessions to work.

Often, people have ongoing anxiety that is due to a general atmosphere they experienced. There may have been unrealistic (or impossible) expectations that were never verbalized, for example. When that happens, we come away with a “core belief,” or “early conclusion,” that reflects that environment and leaves us in an impossible situation. - No wonder we become anxious….

Feeling guilty, by the way, often comes about this way too….

For more on this, see the blog on Core Beliefs and Fight-or-Flight.

Back to the sessions - for a few last words.

As above, these Level 2 sessions give the brain and nervous system a way to close and refile events, or replace a core belief.

The brain begins to update and refresh during the VoiceGuided session, and these changes are more and more fully integrated over the 4-6 weeks following the session.

It is often friends and family who notice the changes before we do - since it can be easier for them to spot something that is not happening than it is for us to notice what we are no longer doing.

We may simply notice that we feel more calm, we over-react less, we feel clear, things seem simpler, and we are moving through life with more ease.

Welcome to VoiceGuided VisionWork.

I invite you to contact with me with questions, or to set up a time to talk.

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