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Our Mental Health Blogs

Overcoming Anxiety: Determination

Overcoming Anxiety: Determination

Determination helps me overcome anxiety. White-knuckled stubbornness. Hours spent thinking to myself, “anxiety cannot win.” Sometimes this is rather like yelling at the sea to stop making so many waves but in spite of that, it works for me. For a trait that’s usually frowned upon stubbornness, determination has its uses when you’re overcoming anxiety.

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Anxiety Denied Is Not Anxiety Extinguished

Anxiety Denied Is Not Anxiety Extinguished

Fear denied, repressed, suppressed, or put out of mind is not fear extinguished.

Treating anxiety: ‘as if’

I’ve been told that acting ‘as if’ I’m not nearly as anxious as I am is a helpful thing. It’s also dangerous. As with almost any technique sometimes is fine but if you’re anything like me and you’ll do whatever you have to do to be able to put your anxiety aside and function, and if what you want is to go on with as much of life as you can, uninterrupted by fear, then it can become destabilizing.

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Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Anxiety: Juggling For Fish 101

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Anxiety: Juggling For Fish 101

On a scale of 1-10 how annoying is it when therapists ask questions which sound more like triage than psychotherapy?

One of my commenters took me to task for not talking much (or indeed at all) about the behavioral side of  cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) in a recent post. I shall now regale you with exciting tales of behavioral psychology in order to rectify the situation. Or not, since I expect your definition of exciting extends a touch beyond this topic.

My somewhat love-hate relationship with the B part of CBT aside, the real question is what works.

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CBT is Like Shopping at 7-11 for Your Mental Health Needs

CBT is Like Shopping at 7-11 for Your Mental Health Needs

One of the things that drives me crazier than usual is this notion that anxiety is in overwhelming proportion amenable to rational thought on the part of the person suffering from the anxiety disorder. It’s a persistent idea. It’s also wrong.

Cognitive behavioral therapy: What they don’t tell you, why you should find out

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Anxiety: Why You Think You’re Crazy but Probably Aren’t

Anxiety: Why You Think You’re Crazy but Probably Aren’t

Feel free to question my emotional competence but I’m not insane. For that matter, most people with mental illness are not insane.

This may be obvious but for many it’s not. Anyway, how many times have you thought, ‘oh goodness, I must be really losing it this time’ during the course of mental health difficulties?
It’s a common concern that can dramatically increase the amount of anxiety a person experiences. It may also inhibit their ability to trust, and to ask for help.

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The Real Health Cost of Anxiety Disorders

The Real Health Cost of Anxiety Disorders

Happy is what brings healthy, and viceversa, so it can’t be that much of a surprise anxiety and depression have had some pretty rough consequences on my health; High blood pressure at 25, on-and-off flings with anemia, near-constant sleep deprivation.

I may as well have an imp bouncing up and down on my kidneys whilst someone tells my nervous system to pump out all the stress hormones its got, so I can feel normal, or at least prepared. Like a Girl Scout on crack. That’s PTSD hypervigilance for you.
It’s also that sometimes our bodies express what we are otherwise unwilling, or unable to say.

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Mental Illness and Other People’s Standards

Mental Illness and Other People’s Standards

On acceptance, anxiety and guilt

Life with mental illness isn’t always fun. Not just because I have a real illness, and that real illness really does affect my life but because some folks have trouble accepting this. I’m not entirely sure why except they don’t like the thought that someone with mental illness can “zomg, look just like them,” and still be quite unwell.

That’s the thing about invisible illness: Once revealed, people around you may feel conned, manipulated, lied to. Even though you’ve done nothing wrong.

Yeah, I’m guilty of being unwell in the general vicinity, of having mental health issues and having a life anyway. Sorry about that. Next time I’ll wear my “mentally interesting” t-shirt so you can detect the crazy, before it gets in your Coke.
*passes the tin-foil hat*

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Helpless, Hopeless? It Doesn’t Have to Always Be That Way

Helpless, Hopeless? It Doesn’t Have to Always Be That Way

I come up against this wall plenty, in treating anxiety: Combating the sense of hopelessness, of powerlessness, that only too often accompanies the worst symptoms of anxiety disorders.

  • How do I not get stuck when simply feeling things seems way above my pay grade?

“If you know neither yourself nor your enemy,
you will always endanger yourself.”

The Art of War

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When Anxiety Spells Doom: How Harold Camping Makes Us Doubt Ourselves

When Anxiety Spells Doom: How Harold Camping Makes Us Doubt Ourselves

Tomorrow is Judgment Day, according to the followers of Harold Camping. Believers say they will be taken up to Heaven, while the rest of us anxiously await the apocalypse, come October 21 2011.

I have to ask:

  • If the end of the world is tomorrow, why don’t more of us believe it?

Anxiety and ego strength

The answer says a lot about the way people deal with self-doubt, anxiety. And this is just one example of catastrophic, prepare-thyselves thinking.

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Is Anxiety Toxic? Mind-Body Solutions to Stress?

Is Anxiety Toxic? Mind-Body Solutions to Stress?

  • Is panic emotional pollution?

Running on adrenaline, cortisol -the fear center of the brain staging neurochemical warfare on your nervous system- is the equivalent of climate change. It’s dangerous. It’s doing your whole system damage you can’t even see: Forests for trees.

Anxiety: I can’t stand it anymore

Anxiety alters the way our minds and bodies respond to stress so that it’s harder, in the long term, to return to a state of calm and restfulness.

I can’t stand it anymore. If you have an anxiety disorder, you know what I mean.

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