What are you not willing to do, change, start or stop to transform your anxiety? That should be the first question a person figures out when they’re wanting to overcome their anxiety. Not in a judgmental way. Just in a be-honest-with-yourself way.
I recently came upon this realization after reading a ton of “healthy blogs” to help me be, well, healthier. Despite all the good information I was reading, there were suggestions that I simply just wasn’t. willing. to try.
The biggest example of this was the idea of giving up my morning cup of coffee. It was weird. I was reading a ton of compelling information on the benefits of giving up coffee and caffeine. And although I found myself nodding throughout,
I got to the end and thought…hmmm, no I’m not going to do that.
The evidence was clear. The arguments were objective. The intention was pure. Yet, the part of me that wanted to be super healthy totally overrode that piece of advice and wasn’t going to even give it a try.
On the anxiety front, you’ve probably read a lot of information online, listened to suggestions from your friends, family and maybe you’ve even seen a therapist or two. All offering solid advice and persuasive testimonials of ways to overcome your anxiety.
But in order to figure out what really is going to work for you, you need to get clear on what aren’t you willing to do in order to change your anxiety.
Why? Being honest with ourselves is the only way to destroy barriers to growth and be empowered to change. It allows us to be real with ourselves. We can move from sweeping generalizations of how we want things to be to the more nuanced and specific reality of how we’re choosing things to be.
In the case of coffee, my choices right now don’t mean that I’m never going to give up coffee or caffeine. And they don’t mean that I don’t think giving up coffee is a bad idea. It just means that right now, I’m at the point with my health that I’m not willing to do everything I know to do to be super healthy. Or to put it another way, my health isn’t bad enough to make me want to try everything. Good enough is ok.
Anxiety is the same way. We can tolerate a high level of daily anxiety. This high tolerance often leads us to not doing everything we know to try in order to relieve it. Good enough is ok.
If this is your situation, there’s no need to beat yourself up over it. You just need to be honest about your current choices and remember that when/if things change, there are more strategies for you to try.
Green tea anyone?