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Question about anxiety

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Ivanka, Jun 25, 2018.

  1. Ivanka

    Ivanka Peer Supporter

    If I understand correctly pain is a danger signal from the brain.

    What is the purpose of anxiety? Also danger?

    I feel anxiety every day, for many years now. Most of the time for no particular reason. I'm just afraid something bad is going to happen. Anything really, my mind always comes up with something. I try to convince myself everything is ok, I use affirmations like I am safe... but it doesn't work. Some kind of unexpected distraction sometimes works. And someting makes it worse.

    When I feel pain in the usual places I don't get scared anymore. But lately my pain is getting really clever by showing up in new places all the time, which is making me afraid/anxious.

    I am afraid of the pain and the pain makes me even more afraid/anxious.

    I would really appreciate an answer/advice. Thank you!
  2. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Ivanka, and welcome!

    What the neuroscientists have discovered is that our primitive brains are pretty much wired to be negative, and to be scanning the horizon for danger, all the time. So yes - anxiety is just another behavior designed to keep us worried and looking out for danger.

    This was probably quite advantageous in the primitive world, because that world WAS dangerous, and survival depended upon being always on the alert and worrying about where the next meal was coming from. The dangers were real, but there weren't actually that many of them. We also didn't live for very long.

    The modern world, thankfully for most of us, is physically very safe, but our brains don't really know that. And the things we have to worry about have become far too numerous to list. Hell, kids are put under pressure to perform before they reach kindergarten, and they're constantly bombarded with things to worry about - this is only getting worse, as we know. We start worrying about the future before we're out of our teens.

    Not only that, the number of years we have to worry about all this is three times longer than our primitive ancestors experienced.

    Is it any wonder that anxiety is epidemic?

    That's the why of anxiety - now you need to learn how to take control, and fight back against it. First, for anxiety, you MUST read Hope & Help for Your Nerves, by Claire Weekes. The little book that has saved SO many of us from crippling anxiety. Second, I'm copying and pasting this advice I just wrote in another post:

    Two related things that really helped (and continue to help) me are:

    1. Understand that your primitive fearful brain wants to you to be negative and worried, because it believes that you won't be safe if you don't focus on danger all of the time.

    2. Create some constructive and positive messages to fight back against the negativity.

    My favorite message to my fearful brain is: "Hey, this isn't necessary! There's nothing wrong with me, and I'm perfectly safe, so stop doing that!".
    Add some self-love and acknowledgment of your personal power, and repeat as needed. :)

    MWsunin12 and sam908 like this.
  3. Ivanka

    Ivanka Peer Supporter

    Dear Jan,

    thank you so much for your reply. It really helps me understand.

    I will definitely get the book and use your advice.

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