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You've been told anxiety is a function of the body and the brain. That its due to sensitivity and your nervous system or your limbic system. You might find yourself relating to being a "highly sensitive person".
These things are true, for sure. But you'd be wrong if you believe they're the cause.
Before you write me off as a bit crazy or outlandish, hear me out.
I grew up with anxiety. I was diagnosed with an anxiety disorder when I was eight.
I was told I'd have to live with it and get used to it or I could take some pills to "regulate" my brain.
Therapists worked with me to try to help me "re-associate" my experiences with calmer states of being. I developed full on panic attacks (sometimes having them several times a day) in my late teens. Those lasted through my late 20's. I wanted to just die rather than live in that hell..
I started seeking relief outside the "normal" lines of therapy. Shamanic healing. Metaphysical work.
Meditation came into play in my early 30's. I started to see some progress with it. I could see that my body would calm when I observed my thoughts rather than treating them as fact.
But...the anxiety lingered.
And I wanted it GONE. Desperately.
Yet, I had been told and experienced, over and over, that I'd have to live with it. Work around it. Handle it. "Be strong" with it. Be "courageous" with it. Noble.
I didn't want that. I wanted peace of mind. Relief. Confidence. Like my friends and my peers and heroes. I know they experienced situational anxiety - moments of it - but otherwise they were calm and rested.
They were not bothered by the same things I was. They had confidence in their worth. They knew they were worth it. They handled rejection with resilience. I wanted that.
As I meditated, I started to feel that centered calmness about myself. I wanted more.
I started to find that when I didn't care about the outcome of my actions, I had no anxiety. In fact, I found myself having a very different response: Curiosity and Enjoyment.
I thought at first the secret was not caring about the outcome. I ran with this for several years. I taught it to my clients. I found tools and created approaches to help create that detachment to the outcome. They worked sometimes. Sometimes they backfired.
Then a moment of accidental insight came upon me. I was pondering (meditating really) on the sensation of fear that anxiety is, and I heard myself complaining about the rules. A flash of anger swelled up in my belly. I leaned into it.
I started to feel intensely how angry I felt about being punished for breaking "rules". Even more, being punished for failing and for mistakes. My imagination took shape around a memory where I was standing frozen in front of my mother as she lost total control of her emotions.
She was irate about something. Screaming, yelling, swearing. My mind was paralyzed with fear. And that's when I saw the truth about my anxiety: It wasn't the consequence. It was being threatened with my safety and well-being for making a natural, normal mistake in life. I thought mistakes were a threat to my life.
No wonder I had anxiety! I thought I was in danger of dying - constantly!
Now I wondered...what would happen if I eliminated that emotional association of feeling threatened with my life with making a mistake.
I applied the process that would become The Restoration Approach to it immediately.
What was once terrifying became irrelevant to me. Mistakes are curiosities to me nowadays. Taking responsibility is filled with confidence and empathy rather than fear and shame.
I find myself taking risks and making choices based on what works for me rather than what feelings others may have about it. Disappointing others feels natural and normal rather than threatening and isolating.
Conflict in my relationships isn't gut-wrenching and avoided. Instead, I listen, I calculate and I am willing to take time to address myself and my needs first, then address them.
Most importantly, after tackling with memory with my mother and several other intense events in my past, my anxiety disorder is gone. Rarely do I feel anxiety as intensely, and when I do, I breathe and move onward.
The solution to your anxiety is to resolve the pain from your past traumas. Start doing that now by getting "The Closure Technique" now, for free!
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