If you suffer from social anxiety, Christmas parties and gatherings can be something of a nightmare…here’s what you need to know and do…
Have you noticed most people use the words anxiety and fear to mean the same thing? This is because there are overlaps in the physical sensations that people experience with fear and anxiety — but does that mean they are the same?
Mainstream medicine, psychiatry and psychology often acknowledge a minor difference. They suggest that anxiety is a set of responses to an unknown or ill-defined threat, whereas fear is a set of responses to a precise, well-defined treat. In terms of brain activity, anxiety and fear are reported to be in different parts of the brain but largely end up in the same place. Both involve the amygdala, the hypothalamus and the brain stem. Continue reading
Do you find that you get caught up in your head — thinking, churning and ruminating? If the answer is yes and you were to proceed along the generally accepted route for dealing with your negative thinking, you would find yourself challenging and battling your thinking, getting stuck in to change your negative thoughts to positive thoughts. Does this work? In my experience this is a fairly low quality option. Why? Because, it involves more thinking and that generally leaves us feeling worse, and requires a significant amount of energy and practice. So what’s the answer? Continue reading
I was asked the other day what I do to de-stress. On the face of it this seems a perfectly reasonable question. Everyone gets stressed…and therefore everyone needs to do something to de-stress, don’t they?
When I was asked this I was slightly stumped because I don’t do anything to de-stress. Sure, I train at the gym, I play guitar in a rock band, I hang out with friends, and I have a ton of fun with my wife and daughters. But I don’t do these things to de-stress. Why is it that I don’t need to de-stress, when from what I can tell everyone else does? Continue reading
One of the most common assumptions I encounter is the idea that feeling follows thinking, and that in order to alleviate uncomfortable or stressful feelings you need to change your thinking. In fact, there is an entire industry based on this idea. The strategies and techniques that fall out of this theory operate on the notion that all emotions follow thought, so if you change your thinking you will change your emotions. The implication being that changing your thinking and adopting a positive mental attitude will help alleviate stress, discomfort, and emotional turmoil, and enable you to experience a happy life. Continue reading
As we witnessed incredible examples of dedication and performance at this year’s Winter Olympics, we were reminded that one thing these athletes did not suffer from that many of the rest of us do, is a fear of failure. In order to attain and achieve such high levels of sports performance, fear of failure — if it was ever present — for them was conquered. Continue reading
According to popular wisdom, exercise is supposed to be a panacea for depression and stress, right? Then how do we explain recent news reports about various elite athletes at the top of their games, winning championships, medals and the adulation of their fans, yet struggling with debilitating depression? In some extreme cases, this has even led tragically to suicide. Continue reading
One thing that we all have is memories, both good and bad. There is an argument to suggest that everything that ever happens to us is ‘mapped’ onto the cells of our bodies energetically and this serves the purpose of enabling us to learn from things that have happened to us. This seems fairly logical; from an evolutionary perspective we wouldn’t have memories unless they served some useful purpose. Continue reading