It's a Normal Part of Life to Experience Occasional Anxiety.
Anxiety is so common and pervasive that you may dismiss it as normal. Yet, anxiety is also so unsettling that you can’t ignore it. Sometimes anxiety is persistent, uncontrollable and overwhelming. You may also experience other symptoms of anxiety such as excessive or irrational dread for everyday situations. When your anxiety gets to this point and begins interfering with your daily activities, then you may be dealing with an anxiety disorder.
Symptoms of Anxiety
Everyone experiences anxiety differently. However, some of the common symptoms of anxiety you may experience can include racing thoughts, difficulty breathing, heart palpitations, dizziness, muscle tension, trembling, chronic pain, digestive problems, restlessness, difficulty focusing, irritability, hypervigilance, irrational fear, excessive worry, avoiding social situations, shaky hands, dry mouth, sweaty palms, fatigue, insomnia and/or panic attacks.
Symptoms of anxiety can cause minor stress or can leave you almost unable to function. Maybe you live in fear of panic attacks or find yourself avoiding people, places & things that have triggered your anxiety in the past.
What to Expect in Anxiety Counseling
You are tired of living with constant anxiety. Symptoms of anxiety are exhausting. Day in and day out you find yourself avoiding things that make you feel anxious. Basically, you are worn out from living this way. At this point, you know you need help for your anxiety. However, you aren't sure exactly what to expect if you come in for therapy. You're afraid you'll just be told to "take deep breaths" but nothing will really change.
Therapy for anxiety is more than just a therapist telling you to use a few coping skills. Our counselors take an integrative approach to treating your anxiety. In counseling sessions for anxiety, your therapist will use proven counseling interventions to help you find relief from your anxiety. For example, your therapist may combine mindfulness-based cognitive behavioral therapy, acceptance and commitment therapy, exposure therapy, grief work, and EMDR. In anxiety counseling, you will work with your therapist to not only reduce symptoms of anxiety but get to the root of what’s causing those symptoms in the first place.
While there are similarities in the symptoms of anxiety, the roots of anxiety are vast and diverse.
Roots of anxiety include:
- past trauma,
- chaotic environments,
- current major life transitions,
- loss that hasn’t been fully grieved,
- ignored emotions,
- sensitive or type A personalities, and
- compassion fatigue, to name a few.
Therapy for anxiety begins with skill-building to prepare us for digging deeper into the root causes.
Skill-building for anxiety includes:
- identifying and shifting distorted and unhelpful thoughts,
- increasing emotions awareness and your ability to feel and healthily manage all of your emotions,
- identifying your values and what gives you a sense of purpose, and
- practicing several healthy behaviors that will create a “toolbox” of activities to help you relax and feel calm, release anxious tension in your body, and make you feel fully alive.
The roots of your anxiety often reveal themselves through the skill-building phase so the transition to the deeper anxiety work is seamless. This deeper work can look different for different people. However, this type of anxiety counseling can include exposure therapy, grief work, or EMDR therapy as we work hard to shift and heal the pain points underneath your anxiety.
Anxiety therapy typically ends with a re-evaluation of values and transferring our focus, thoughts and actions from anxiety and worry to a life that looks toward the future with freedom and purpose.
Get help for anxiety in the Nashville area
Willow Counseling offers both individual and group therapy for anxiety. Individual therapy sessions for anxiety are held weekly or biweekly and last 45 or 60 minutes. Group therapy is offered seasonally at a local park hiking trail and runs for six weeks. If you live in the Nashville area and are ready to get help for your anxiety, we are here to help. To begin individual counseling for anxiety or to be considered for our anxiety support group, follow these three steps:
Schedule a free 30-minute consultation to see if anxiety therapy is right for you.
Begin individual therapy for anxiety at Willow Counseling. Schedule an appointment to meet with one of our compassionate counselors.
Ready to stop walking this road alone? Sign up for an Outdoor Support Group for Anxiety.
Tips to Manage Anxiety At Home
Not ready to begin counseling for anxiety? Then try these eleven tips to manage anxiety on your own.
Drink less than 200mg of caffeine in a day.
Eat nutritious meals.
Get enough sleep. As much as possible, try to maintain a consistent bedtime and wake-up time.
Move your body regularly. Even just 30 minutes a day of walking can boost your mood.
Practice diaphragmatic breathing. Breathe deeply through your stomach and then exhale slowly. Repeat.
Take a time out to do an activity you enjoy. Find your flow and go all in.
Have face-to-face conversations (safely).
Fast from social media and the news.
Remove the words “should,” “always,” and “never” from your vocabulary.
Laugh. A real, unrestrained, full body laugh.
Help someone else. See the needs around you and find a way to give back to others.
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Other therapeutic services offered at Willow Counseling
Anxiety is complex, and so is the treatment for anxiety. Often, someone with anxiety is also struggling with related concerns such as depression, trauma symptoms, burnout or grief. Willow Counseling offers a variety of therapeutic services to help you on your road to healing & better mental health. Some of our other counseling services include counseling for trauma and EMDR therapy, therapy for compassion fatigue, and group counseling services for anxiety and compassion fatigue. If you are ready to find healing and live in the Nashville area, our therapists are here to help!