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
Is There a Cure For Anxiety?
Anxiety, Depression, Fear, Happiness, Health & Diet, Health Anxiety, Panic Attacks, Social Anxiety, Stress

Is There a Cure For Anxiety?

No.

Was this blog helpful?

No?

OK. Fair enough.

I know it’s probably the last thing you want to hear, but let me instantly reassure you – anxiety not having a cure isn’t a bad thing.

When I was desperately looking for a cure for my anxiety, I’d have done anything to get it. If you’d told me putting my head in a vice for two weeks would cure my anxiety, I’d have done it.

It took me many years of despair, frustration and kissing of frogs before I discovered a cure for anxiety doesn’t exist. I’m hoping I can save you anymore heartache. I know the pain of looking and hoping and not finding.

But as I just mentioned, anxiety not having a cure isn’t a bad thing. It just means we have to look at it in a slightly different way. Before we do that, here’s some random comedy to lighten the mood.

Is there a cure for anxiety?

(‘Cause that’s the thing about anxiety. It has a habit of making things way too serious – hence us looking for cures for it every five minutes.)

Here’s what I mean about looking at anxiety differently.

If we had a life-threatening disease or condition, like cancer, we’d want a cure. We’d want rid of it. We’d want to say goodbye to it and hope that it never returns. Anxiety is different – however you look at it.

Anxiety is, and will continue to be, a fixed part of our lives. We don’t need a cure for something we depend on – something we need for our very survival.

Quick example: You’re crossing the road and a car is coming at you pretty quickly. What is it that tells you to run across the road rather than get hit? Your fight or flight, right? In other words, your anxiety (fear).

How does the prospect of getting rid of that sound now?

We don’t need a cure.

Anxiety might come with unwanted feelings, but it’s part of the life experience. It’s like when we get angry, sad, or just generally feel shitty about ourselves. It’s not nice, but it’s part of the overall emotional experience we go through as humans. We wouldn’t know what it was like to be happy if we didn’t know what it was like to feel shitty.

We accept that getting angry and sad is part of life, but we’re still hung up on getting anxious. We see anxiety as a weakness and something we need to get rid of.

If we’re going to change how we feel about anxiety, including our relationship with it, that has to change.

One of the things that confuse us the most is Dr Google.

Dr Google

If you pop in ‘cure for anxiety’ into Dr Google (and I don’t recommend you do), there won’t be a shortage of companies and people offering you one. They’re normally in the shape of medicines, programmes and methods.

With so much on offer, we can be forgiven for thinking we’re the issue. We’ll think, ‘Maybe I just haven’t tried the right thing yet?’. Add a money back guarantee, and you think you’ve got nothing to lose. Nothing could be further from the truth.

We end up jumping from one ‘cure’ to the next.

Some will help for a while, and you’ll think you’ve finally cracked it. That is until you face a challenge, and that familiar feeling starts coming back to haunt you.

All of this is because dealing with anxiety is a life’s journey.

As you grow, so do the challenges you face. In other words, the way you faced anxiety when you were fifteen years of age will be different to how you face it when you’re fifty.

Anxiety isn’t a one-size-fits-all.

It’s unhealthy and damn frustrating to keep jumping from one ‘cure’ to the next. You’ll never get anywhere. But when you change how you view anxiety, including your relationship with it, you’ll start changing how you feel towards it.

It’s all in the management and balance

The quickest way to change your relationship with your anxiety is to stop thinking and believing you need a cure and, instead, know that dealing with anxiety comes with managing it better. And that’s where balance comes into play.

When you’re dealing with anxiety (or high anxiety as I call it), you’re dealing with higher than normal levels of anxiety.

The key to overcoming that period of high anxiety is to aim to get back to a better place of balance.

Notice my terminology here: ‘period of high anxiety.’

All high anxiety is temporary. To some, this period of time might seem like a lifetime. And I hear you because I felt the same. But high anxiety is always temporary. There was a time in your life when it didn’t affect you as badly as you feel it is now. That means you know what it feels like, no matter how badly high anxiety is clouding your mind right now.

You have to know that, with the right answers and a bit of action, you can manage your anxiety better. You can change your relationship with it. You can spend a lot more of your time in a better place of balance. You can make your journey better.

Do yourself a favour and stop looking for that elusive cure. Stop going around in circles, trapped in a cycle that pulls you from pillar to post.

Start taking control and find those answers that will make the difference for you.

Anxiety Rebalance
Making a mistake
Anxiety, Depression, Fear, Happiness, Health & Diet, Health Anxiety, Panic Attacks, Social Anxiety, Stress, Success & Wellbeing

The 5 Biggest Mistakes I Made When Suffering From Anxiety

I made some big mistakes when I was suffering from anxiety. Are you making the same mistakes, and can you dodge them to save yourself bags of time and frustration?

We have to go through our own experiences and mistakes to really appreciate them as a learning curve, but if I can save you some time and frustration, then there’s no harm in that.

I made some BIG mistakes when I was suffering from anxiety.

It was rectifying these mistakes that made all the difference for me.

Here are the top five mistakes I made when suffering from anxiety. See if you can relate.

Mistake #1: I thought I needed a cure

The biggest mistake of them all.

I spent years looking for a cure and wondered why I couldn’t find one.

I couldn’t find one because a cure for anxiety doesn’t exist!

Looking for a cure for anxiety was as useless as looking for a cure for getting upset or angry. These emotions might come with unwanted feelings, but they are part of life – just like getting anxious is.

The answer to overcoming high anxiety is appreciating that there is no cure needed.

The answer to overcoming high anxiety is to manage it better – to get it back to a better level of balance.

Mistake #2: I didn’t talk about my anxiety

Bottling things inside gets you nowhere. In fact, it makes things seem 100 times bigger than they are – anxiety included.

I used to think I was weak if I said what was on my mind, so I kept it all in.

With time, I learnt that true strength comes from the ability to talk.

You’ve got to talk about what’s on your mind.

It’s not always possible with the people closest to you, and someone impartial like a counsellor can be a good option.

The most important thing is you get talking, and don’t stop talking about how you feel.

Mistake #3: I thought I was abnormal

That first trip to Dr Google was a shocker.

All those years believing I was the only person on the planet suffering from high anxiety gone in a second of googling ‘anxiety’.

It’s a nice relief to know you’re not alone – mostly because the thought of being ‘abnormal’ just increases the anxiety levels.

About 1 in 4 of us will deal with higher than normal levels of anxiety at any one time.

You’re definitely not alone.

Mistake #4: I didn’t give myself enough ‘me’ time

Sixteen-hour work days took their toll.

To cope, I’d drink copious amounts of coffee throughout the day, only give myself time to eat junk food, drink a bottle of wine a night, and be lucky if I got a few hours sleep at night.

Ummmm.

No wonder I suffered from high anxiety and uncontrollable stress! My lifestyle was shocking.

Anxiety and stress are controlling you or you're managing them - Carl Vernon

At the time, when I was in the thick of it, it seemed normal. I just got on with it – that was until the anxiety and stress got so bad I couldn’t get out of bed in the morning.

Looking back, it is clear I needed more balance in my life.

We can’t keep running at 100mph and expect not to hit a slump.

There is a better balance to be had, and that includes more time for the stuff that puts a smile on your face.

Mistake #5: I didn’t take the small steps needed to change

Along with mistake #1, this was the biggest mistake I made.

I thought if I just got on with it, things would fix themselves and get better with time.

They didn’t.

In other words, I wasn’t doing any of the steps that would have put me on a different course. I just expected things to change without changing them.

It’s the old classic (the old ones are always the best): If you want something different, you’ve got to do something different.

I always had an excuse to be anxious or stressed, which is why I could have also called this Mistake #5: I always had an excuse for being anxious and stressed.

It’s time to ditch the excuses and take the small steps needed to create the change you want.

What small step can you take to put yourself on a different course?

What something different are you going to do?

Because ultimately, that’s all it takes.

Anxiety Rebalance
Will I ever overcome anxiety
Anxiety, Depression, Fear, Happiness, Health Anxiety, Panic Attacks, Social Anxiety, Stress, Success & Wellbeing

Will I Ever Overcome Anxiety?

Anxiety has a great way of making us feel stuck. It manipulates us into believing all sorts – mostly the negative stuff that keeps us trapped. How do we get out of this trap so we can stop asking questions like will I ever overcome anxiety?

Belief is a powerful thing. Very powerful.

Your life is shaped by what you believe.

How you feel tomorrow will be dictated by what it is you believe right now.

Your belief system is based on what has happened to you in the past. For example, if you’ve experienced panic attacks in a supermarket, it’s likely you won’t like supermarkets and you’ll avoid them.

You’re following habits that you’ve developed over years, sometimes decades.

Some of these habits will be serving you well. Some not so well – particularly the ones that keep you stuck and trapped – like the beliefs built around anxiety.

But that’s not to say you can’t change your habits, and therefore change how you think about anxiety – including the belief that you’ll never overcome anxiety.


The power of belief

What is a belief, and why is it so important when it comes to anxiety?

A belief is something you’re certain about.

When you think about it (whatever ‘it’ is), you come to a quick conclusion about what it means to you.

You can believe anything you like.

‘I’m the most beautiful person on the planet’, for example.

You’ve probably got a friend who believes this to be true? Maybe it’s far from reality. But to the person who believes it to be true, other people’s opinions rarely matter.

That is the power of belief.

And the good news is you have this power. You can believe what you want.

That includes your belief about anxiety, and whether or not you’ll overcome it.

4 minute mile belief

Beliefs are funny old things. They tend to catch on.

Most people won’t believe in something until it’s reality.

Like the four-minute mile that Roger Bannister broke in 1954. Before then, it was considered impossible to do. Nobody had done it, and nobody thought it was worthwhile attempting it.

That was until Roger broke it. As soon as he did, lots of others started breaking the four-minute barrier.

Other people started to achieve it because they thought if he can do it, I can too.

And that’s how I want you to think about overcoming anxiety.

There are lots of people who have been in your position (me included) and changed for the better. They’ve overcome all sorts – high anxiety, panic attacks, OCD, agoraphobia, social anxiety, health anxiety, depression – you name it.

This knowledge should give you the belief that you can do the same.


Change the way you think

You can’t change an outcome without first changing the way you think about it.

If you don’t believe you can win the race, you won’t.

Believe you can win the race and you will

If you don’t believe you can overcome anxiety, you can’t.

Fundamentally, whatever it is you’re telling yourself and whatever it is you’re choosing to believe, is true.

That is the power you hold.

Nobody else holds this power – only you.

Let’s simplify this with two possible beliefs.

Belief #1: I will never overcome anxiety.

Belief #2: Anxiety is normal. It will always be part of my life, and that’s not a bad thing. I’ll continue to face the challenges it brings knowing that I can handle anything that comes my way. There is nothing that I can’t deal with.

Two very different belief systems, each as powerful as the other.

Which one will you choose to believe? Because whichever one you choose to believe is true.

Maybe you’ll choose to believe one of your own?

Whatever it is you choose to believe, remember it’s that belief that is defining your future. It’s dictating how you feel now, tomorrow, and next year.

With this in mind, it pays to be selective about what it is you choose to believe.


Anxiety is normal

One of the most powerful beliefs you can possess is that anxiety is normal.

Knowing anxiety is normal is the first step you can take to changing the way you think about it.

Remember that you don’t need a cure for anxiety, and you don’t need to get rid of it.

Anxiety is normal.

When you’re dealing with anxiety, it’s higher than normal levels of anxiety – that’s it.

When you’ve stopped the pointless battle against anxiety, the second step in dealing with negative thoughts connected with anxiety is identifying which ones are no good for.

The typical negative thoughts associated with anxiety look a little like this:

‘I’m going to have a panic attack when I go to the supermarket.’

‘There is no way I can go to that party.’

‘I’m going to feel anxious tomorrow.’

Remember – these thoughts aren’t real.

They’re only real when you want them to be real – when you choose to believe them.

When you become more conscious about these types of negative thoughts that are fuelled by anxiety, you can do something about them. You can stop them before they get out of control and start influencing your belief system.

If you keep going to the supermarket and experiencing panic attacks, for example, you’re approaching the situation with the wrong belief system. You’re being led by thoughts like ‘I’m going to have a panic attack if I go to the supermarket.’ That’s the type of thought keeping you trapped.

You’ve told yourself you’re going to lose before you’ve started.

The steps you take before going to the supermarket are more important than the ones you take when you’re there.

The outcome is done before you’ve left your house.

In other words, if you approach a situation with negative anxiety-related thoughts dictating your actions, it will lead to the outcome you don’t want. In the instance of going to the supermarket, a panic attack.

If you want to overcome panic attacks, high anxiety, or any negative beliefs about your life, you have to consciously change the way you think – change your belief system.

Go back to the two beliefs, and pick a statement similar to #2.

Reinforce that belief in your mind.

It may not be the truth right now, but that’s not the point.

What we believe now will manifest as reality in the future – even if it’s not true right now.

Remember to be choosy about what thoughts you believe. They are dictating your life.

Anxiety Rebalance
Anxiety Rebalance stones
Anxiety, Depression, Fear, Happiness, Health & Diet, Health Anxiety, Panic Attacks, Social Anxiety, Stress, Success & Wellbeing

The Truth About Anxiety

Discovering the truth about anxiety helped me completely change the way I deal with it. So, what is the truth about anxiety, and how can it help you?

It was an eye-opening experience when I first looked into anxiety – to say the least!

For many years I thought I was the only person on the planet going through it.

That changed rapidly when I googled ‘Anxiety’ for the first time and read about other people’s anxiety-related symptoms and experiences.

This was some time ago now. Today, life is different.

Back then, anxiety consumed me. I battled with it from the moment I woke up to when I struggled to get to sleep at night.

Every day was a living nightmare.

It’s hard to describe just how bad it was, but if you’re reading this, I’m sure you have a good idea.

Answers were the one big thing I craved when I was suffering from crippling anxiety.

No matter how hard I searched, I couldn’t find them.

Don’t get me wrong – there was always plenty of information and advice available. But most of it was rubbish or a scam to get my money.

After decades of being frustrated and disillusioned, I decided to find the answers myself.

On this journey, there was no greater discovery than what I’m about to share with you.

It saved me years of suffering and pain. It was literally a lifesaver.

I hope it does the same for you.

Truth #1: There is NO cure for anxiety (and there never will be)

No wonder I looked for a ‘cure’ for my anxiety for as long as I did.

It’s because it doesn’t exist!

Stop wasting your precious time and effort.

Stop pulling your hair out and hitting bricks walls.

No cure for anxiety

There is no cure for anxiety.

But don’t worry – anxiety not having a cure isn’t a bad thing.

This key piece of knowledge isn’t designed to reinforce the belief that nothing can be done about high anxiety. In fact, it’s the complete opposite.

It’s great news. 

It just means we have to look at anxiety differently.

It means you can stop chasing a cure you’ll never find and, instead, focus on managing your anxiety better.

Or, as I put it, get more BALANCE in your life.

> Anxiety Rebalance: Where Do You Come on The Rebalance Scale?

So, that’s truth number one to help you on your new journey – there is no cure for anxiety and your search stops here.


Truth #2: It’s IMPOSSIBLE to eliminate anxiety

If you’re looking for a solution or method that will get rid of your anxiety, stop the heartache and frustration right now.

Like a cure, it won’t happen.

It’s impossible to get rid of anxiety.

Anxiety forms part of who we are. It’s here to stay.

At times, it will feel like your enemy – but it’s not. When we learn to work with anxiety, we transform the way we feel about it.

Plus, anxiety isn’t something you want to get rid of.

Look at it like this…

When you get angry or upset, do you want to get rid of the emotions of anger and sadness completely?

Of course not.

We accept these emotions as part of our lives.

They might come with unwanted feelings and mental pain, but that’s part of the balance of living.

If we accept that getting angry and upset is part of life, isn’t it time we started accepting that it’s also normal to get anxious?

It’s easy to forget that anxiety is normal.

When we’re dealing with high anxiety, we’re dealing with higher than normal anxiety – that’s it.

Anxiety only becomes abnormal and something we need to tackle when it stays with us – when it feels like we can’t shake it off.

That’s when we know we have to manage it better – not get rid of it.


Overcoming anxiety is a life’s journey

I’ve mentioned ‘the journey’ a few times.

Overcoming anxiety is a life’s journey – one that doesn’t end.

Life has a habit of throwing all kinds of stuff at us – good and bad.

The trick is making this journey a more pleasurable one.

There are lots of ways we can do it. Things like living in the moment a bit more, and being able to stop our overthinking and worry – these things will do the trick.

Anxiety might feel like it’s winning right now, but if you’re willing to make some small steps, it won’t stay like that.

Let’s not allow anxiety to keep us trapped and stuck in the mud – let’s keep moving forward.

Here’s a couple of suggestions…

Read my bestselling book, Anxiety Rebalance – it has all the answers you need.

Join the Rebalance Club.

Or continue having a read of the blog.

Whatever you choose, I wish you all the best on your new journey.

Carl

Anxiety Rebalance