Anxiety - The Solution
Anxiety, Depression, Fear, Happiness, Health & Diet, Health Anxiety, Panic Attacks, Social Anxiety, Stress

Anxiety: The Solution | What To Do When Everything Else Fails

Anxiety is subjective. At least, it’s meant to be. It’s too big of a subject not to be.

The way you’re affected by anxiety will be very different to someone else. That means that a one-size-fits-all approach to overcoming anxiety is flawed. And yet, when anxiety gets out of control and we need help, we have very few options available to us.

We tend to turn to the same things.

What do you do when you need help for anxiety?

There are the two steps most of us take:

  1. Go to your doctor
  2. Go to Dr Google

These were my usual stomping grounds. If I weren’t in and out of the doctor’s surgery, I was on Google looking for the next quick fix and cure. 

‘Maybe the next thing I try will be the thing that works?’

Go to your doctor, and the NHS will dictate what course of action you take. That’s usually in the form of medication or a long waiting list for counselling, involving CBT and/or hypnotherapy treatment.

Google, or Dr Google, is sold to the highest bidder. That means the medicines, programmes, methods, and any other product offering a cure for anxiety, dominate the market – if they have the largest budget to do so. A large budget doesn’t make the product good or effective. It could be as insidious as meaning they are skilled at taking money from vulnerable, highly anxious people.

If these few options are so effective, why is anxiety still rampant in our society in epidemic proportions?

It’s because these options – the ones given to us in a controlled way – might not be that good. If they were, we wouldn’t have the big problem we’ve got with anxiety in our society today. We would all be ‘cured’. You only need to have a conversation with a friend or look at social media to see and hear how far from reality that is.

The definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

Anxiety Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again.

If you’re trapped in a cycle of anxiety, one you’re finding hard to break free from, it might be time to look outside the box – outside of these usual options.

What’s in the box isn’t helping you.

Those solutions we tend to jump to first might be the very things keeping you trapped and disallouisoned.

Stopping the search for your next quick fix or cure could be the thing that liberates you and ends the continuous struggle.

Overcoming anxiety is a journey

The anxiety solution is a journey that requires a series of answers that fit you at the right time in your life. In other words, what worked for you and your anxiety when you were twelve year’s old is very different to what will comfort you and work for you today.

We get trapped in the notion that there should be one solution for anxiety because it makes it simpler. We pin all our hopes on that thing (the thing we’re trying at that time), only to get disillusioned and disappointed when we fail – or when the effects wear off.

Overcoming anxiety should be simple, and if you’re familiar with my bestselling book Anxiety Rebalance, you’ll know that simplicity is very much my preference. But getting trapped in this notion of ‘one solution for anxiety’ will keep you in a neverending cycle of despair. It will keep you jumping from one thing to the next, never satisfied or at peace with yourself.

The healthy approach to overcoming anxiety is to appreciate that anxiety is a normal part of life, and always will be. Appreciate that anxiety isn’t something you can switch off or cure. When you keep looking for that illusive cure, you’ll continue looking for answers that don’t exist.

When anxiety is getting out of control over a sustained period of time, don’t let that panic continue taking you down a route of despair and disappointment.

Anxiety not having a cure shouldn’t concern you – let it take you in a new direction. A direction that doesn’t see you get trapped in the box. If you keep turning to the same things that never worked or made a difference for you, you’ll keep getting the same result. As Albert suggests, that is the definition of insanity. You’ll stay trapped in a cycle created by the very same institutes that promised to help.

You’re not a failure if you’ve tried all the ‘usual’ stuff and it hasn’t worked. That mainstream stuff offered to the masses (the society still deeply affected by anxiety) might not be right for you.

What is right for you?

It would be controlling and cult-like of me to suggest that I know the precise answer to that. It would also be unrealistic for me to suggest one solution because, as I’ve suggested, there isn’t just one answer. The anxiety solution comes back to the fact that overcoming anxiety is a journey. It’s not about one specific answer.

That journey – your journey – is based on the anxieties (fears) you experience at different times in your life. The answer that works as a solution for you today could be very different to the answer that creates action and change for you tomorrow.

The balanced approach

I like to adopt a holistic, balanced approach to overcoming anxiety.

That involves shifts and changes in both my mindset and lifestyle to adapt to what is right for me at any given time.

When I feel highly anxious, or like I have no energy (depressed), my automatic reaction isn’t to call the doctor or jump on Dr Google, like it used to be. When I did that, I stayed trapped in an endless cycle that got me nowhere.

Now, I search within, and the answer that comes back is always the same: take action.

This approach keeps me away from the mainstream trap.

It helps me appreciate, as I grow and evolve, the answers I need, change.

It stops me from beating myself when I experience a challenging time – because I know that everyone goes through challenging times. That doesn’t make me a failure – it makes me human.

This approach reinforces the habit of taking action – the only thing needed to make significant change.

Taking action could mean something as small as getting up off my seat and changing my environment, rather than sitting and staying rooted to the same spot allowing all the worrying thoughts to take over.

Small steps are all it takes.

Whatever approach you decide is right for you, try not to get stuck in the mainstream cycle. Try not to pin all your hopes on one solution. Try to keep taking action and making small steps towards where it is you want to be.

If you’re fed up with the same results, ditch the insanity, and do something different.

Anxiety Rebalance
Why do I have OCD?
Anxiety, Fear, Happiness, Health Anxiety, Panic Attacks, Social Anxiety, Stress

Why do I have OCD?

Routines and rituals are commonplace with OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder). But why does OCD have this power over us, and what can we do about it?

What is it for you?

Cleaning rituals? Scanning your body for abnormalities (health anxiety)? Checking doors and locks? Counting routines?

Just a few of the common routines and rituals OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) will have us do.

To the balanced mind, these things might seem crazy.

But to someone who suffers from OCD (like I used to), these routines and rituals are very real.

So, the question is:

Why does OCD have this power over us?

It comes down to one thing: control.

OCD and control

An OCD-related routine or ritual is a way for us to try and take back control.

When we have OCD, we feel out of control in an area of our life, and OCD gives us a way to try and take back control.

OCD Washing hands

OCD is a dysfunctional way of trying to deal with our anxiety, stress and problems. It’s not pleasant, and it’s not something we want to be stuck with for the rest of our lives.

This is the exact reason why we need to manage our intrusive thoughts in a different, more functional and constructive way.

Knowing that we use OCD to try to take back control doesn’t make OCD acceptable.

I mention it here because it’s a nice thing to know.

Like all anxiety-related conditions, there is a complexity that surrounds them, giving us the belief that overcoming them is impossible.

It’s not.

The same goes for OCD.

When we’re armed with answers, we can overcome anything – OCD included.

You now know what it takes to overcome OCD: A new way of taking control of the areas of our lives that make us feel out of control.

The first step to making this happen is to drop the false belief of negative consequences.


Negative consequences OCD has us believing

The real power behind OCD is consequence.

If we don’t do a routine or ritual, OCD will have us believe a negative consequence is in store for us.

That consequence could be any number of things.

Those intrusive thoughts will have you believing all sorts – and it’s usually the worse case scenario.

When we put our rational thinking cap on, THIS IS COMPLETE RUBBISH.

How would not cleaning our hands five times in a row mean we’re going to die?

I’m not watering down the power of OCD here. I know first-hand how insidious OCD is.

If you’ve suffered from OCD for some time, it’s a very hard habit to break.

But it can be broken.

The way to start breaking the habit is identifying the areas of your life you feel are out of your control.


Getting the control back

The most common areas of our lives that cause us stress and anxiety can be split into three.

They all intertwine with each other, but these are the three categories most likely to be affecting your anxiety and stress levels – and therefore your OCD.

> Money

> Relationships (family & friends)

> Work

Most of us aren’t great at dealing with our stress and anxiety, so we tend to try and sweep it under the carpet.

Sweeping issues under the carpet

That’s when issues arise.

When we don’t face our anxiety (fear), it continues to grow. This growth usually comes with more anxiety-related issues, like OCD.

It starts with a bit of stress, and that quickly grows into something bigger, until we find ourselves dealing with intrusive thoughts that make us do these OCD-related routines and rituals.

What area of your life do you feel is out of control?

When you can bring your anxiety (fear) to the surface, you can start dealing with it.

Allowing your anxiety to get bottled inside, or trying to sweep your fear under the carpet, will only mean more issues (including OCD) that continue to get bigger.

Some fears (anxieties) are a little trickier to bring to the surface so you might need professional help, like counselling, to help you deal with them.

When you’re prepared to face your issues, you’ll begin to take back control.

This control will help you deal with your OCD, and with time and practice, you’ll find those intrusive thoughts, routines and rituals, will naturally fall away.

Anxiety Rebalance