Imaginary Anxiety – Real Symptoms

brain01.jpgHave you ever considered that anxiety isn’t actually real?  I know, I know, it seems real.  It can even feel real. And its effects (anxiety symptoms) can certainly be real. But the anxiety itself is entirely imaginary — it is created in the mind and has no life outside of your imagination.

Perhaps more than any other “condition” that affects our physical and mental well-being, anxiety is a fictional projection of the mind.  We create worst-case scenarios and imagine a bleak future whenever our minds are consumed with anxiety.  It is a very creative act. Perhaps that’s why many anxiety sufferers also tend to be highly creative people — their minds are used to imagining situations and perspectives that don’t actually exist in the “real world.”

The only way you can experience anxiety is if you yourself create it.  In fact, I would dare to speculate that the less creative a person is, the less likely it is they would experience anxiety and/or panic attacks.  I don’t believe it is a coincidence that over 50% of my coaching clients with anxiety tend to be in creative fields such as design, music, art and writing.

But here’s the good news: because anxiety is a product of the imagination, we can learn to imagine something different, to create new scenarios in our mind that have nothing to do with anxiety or panic attacks.  And the more creative in individual is, the more potential power they have to do this.

I’ve heard it said that we all create our own little universe as we go along — that life is a creative act, and most of what we refer to as “reality” is the product of our own mind.  It is very easy to see the truth of this in anxiety sufferers.  They are clearly creating little “loops” of anxious and unproductive thought that spiral into full-blown anxiety attacks, or at the very least, a low level generalized anxiety that keeps them stressed out and not performing to the best of their ability.

But just as easily as we can create these “loops” of anxiety and panic.  We can also create loops of well-being, peace and optimism.  How do you do that?  The same way you develop any creative skill: practice.  Like any other learned behavior, optimism and a calm state of mind are developed through repetition.

For this reason, the EasyCalm series (www.easycalm.com) lays out a series of simple day-to-day exercises to begin developing this new pattern of thought. It’s not difficult — it only requires consistency.  Repetition is the mother of all skill, and learning to create a better state of mind is a simple as practicing these techniques on a daily basis until they begin to take hold in your unconscious mind.  Once that begins to happen, a calm demeanor becomes your normal operating system, and the imaginary anxiety you use to create, withers away from disuse and neglect.

To start this process is very helpful to realize right now: anxiety is imaginary.  There is NO question about it.  The effects of it can be very real, but the anxiety itself is anything but. You cannot touch it, smell it, see it or hear it.  It exists only within the confines of your creative imagination.  When you realize the truth of this, you will also realize the key to overcoming anxiety — begin using your creative imagination in a new way, and create patterns of thought that are more helpful to you.

Without sounding too much like an infomercial (I hope!), training you to develop these new, more useful patterns of thought is exactly what the EasyCalm series is designed to do.  Check it out!

Jon

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