Anxiety is a natural response to situations where we feel unsafe, uncertain or not in control. Anxiety is our mind’s primal mechanism to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe from harm. Our subconscious scans our environment to be aware of potential dangers and can trigger the ‘fight or flight’ response. Adrenalin rushes through our body helping us to prepare to fight away the danger or run away (causing physical symptoms). Fear is about survival so it will take over our minds and body in order to protect. This is great when it is actually helpful and responding to an actual danger, however, modern day anxieties and worries do not require the same physical and emotional response. The mind can easily go into overdrive and respond as if there is a danger, causing reactions that can seem out of perspective and take over our thoughts and actions.
The experience of anxiety can be highly uncomfortable and can negatively affect daily life. Anxiety is generally perceived as a negative symptom and can be so distressing and disabling that it can be classed as a mental illness.
The anxiety spectrum is wide varying between mild and severe. However, any level of anxiety is often viewed as negative and a feeling we need to get rid of. This can set up a mental battle and a response to use any means to get rid of anxiety, usually at the expense of our health and well-being. The battle with anxiety usually provides only short term relief, using strategies such as avoidance, escapism and seeking control.
If you are struggling with anxiety you may be experiencing:
– A sense of dread
– Feeling constantly on edge
– Difficulty concentrating
You may then try and avoid people and places seeking safety in your ‘comfort zone’. This can be affecting work, relationships and other daily activities.
Anxiety can bring about physical symptoms also including:
– Fast or irregular heartbeat (palpitations)
– Muscle aches and tension
– Trembling or shaking
– Dry mouth
– Excessive sweating
– Shortness of breath
– Feeling sick
– Stomach aches
– Difficulty falling or staying asleep (Insomnia)
– Pins and needles
The impact of these symptoms can affect other aspects of our mental wellbeing, including low mood, depression and low self-esteem. This is why it is so important to get support. Although it can feel as though you are stuck, there are many helpful ways to get ‘unstuck’.
The Anxiety and Massage Therapy Programme offers help to those who are struggling to manage anxious thoughts, feelings and behaviours. It offers a range of tools and techniques including options of relaxation skills, mindfulness and massage.
If you’d like to find out about more of any of our therapies and how they can benefit you, please send us a message, email or phone us.