Cognitive Behavior Therapy for anxiety

I worry about…..

I am worried…

Parents always worry about their children no matter age. Like my parents, as I was about 3 years old, my mother is the one who worries me more than the father. (Just the father doesn’t show it). The anxiety even grows more when the children are missing, is sick, injury, etc. As the child grows up, parents worry about something else.

That is the normal mental state with human, and in some animals as well. It builds based on the nervous system. It is the natural instinct.

The most common situation for this natural instinct is when you “see” the danger. At current date today, we have the Hurrican Florence.

Hurricane Florence

It takes place in the USA and then travel to Asia continent-> The tornado plus heavy rain are released in China, Philippines, Macao, Hong Kong, plus some cities as the consequences of all human being doing. When you see the tornado, the heavy rain, the super strong wind can fluid adults, do you worry? do you worry about yourself? about your friends, about your family safety?

And for some people, the anxiety increases so great that it turns into the helpless, hopeless, depression. The anxiety is pure good things, but sometimes in some situations, anxiety might have the negative outcome. And do you know that it doesn’t have to be like that?

The anxiety vs worry?

Anxiety is your body’s natural threat response system. When your brain believes you are in danger, it sends out a series of signals to your body, resulting in the fight-or-flight response.

Worry is a component of anxiety symptoms

Anxiety has three main components:

  • emotional,
  • physiological,
  • and cognitive.

Imagine you have a presentation coming up at work. You might notice feelings of fear and dread, two examples of the emotional component. You may also notice bodily sensations, such as heart palpitations, sweating, or a tightness in your stomach, which represent the physiological component. Finally, you might be thinking, “I can’t do it,” or “I’m going to embarrass myself.” Worries and negative thoughts like these about what might happen in the future are the cognitive component. So, while worry is an important part of anxiety, it is only one of the three main building blocks

from Harvard blog health.

 

What could help you to relieve worry also the anxiety?

Cognitive Behavior Therapy is the most common treatment so far. This CBT can apply to any disorders-> worry and the anxiety are not the exceptions.

CBT is defined as: An amalgam of behavioral and cognitive interventions guided by principles of applied science. The behavioral interventions aim to decrease maladaptive behaviors and increase adaptive ones by modifying their antecedents and consequences and by behavioral practices that result in new learning. The cognitive interventions aim to modify maladaptive cognitions, self-statements or beliefs. The hallmark features of CBT are problem-focused intervention strategies that are derived from learning theory [as well as] cognitive theory principles

 

If you don’t have time for an appointment with CBT therapist, there are some natural remedies:


  • Being physically active. (here is the scientific report about physical activities reduce the anxiety)
  • Having a physical good for calm down
  • or the presence of a person who can calm you down
  • Using the anti-anxiety medications.

It doesn’t need to be fancy with physical activity. When you are nervous or worry, you might do something else that you are familiar with-> therefore, the anxiety or just simple worry will be faded.

swimmers-in pool

For example of being physically active. There is one athlete who is preparing for a competition. He is a swimmer. This competition is important to him because if he was chosen, he could join the national team. Then, have an opportunity to join the worldwide competition. However, he has one bad thing: he usually worries when the competition comes.

Then what do you think how he can overcome that fear, that worry about success?

About 3 months before the D-day, his mentor, his coach forces him to swim 400m freestyle before the real practice. That 400m freestyle becomes the warm up. Since the mentor creates that habit for him, for the important competition, he still follows his routine which his mentor sets up.

That 400m freestyle warm-up keeps his mind to focus. It fades the worry, the anxiety away since he doesn’t need to think much. He just lets his body memory take over his brain. As soon as the starting gun, his body does the action as it programmes.

Of course, the result is good enough for him to take one spot in the national swimming team.

How CBT can help your anxiety?

CBT has three principal components:

  • What we thought
  • What we feel
  • and what are our behaviors
  • Those match with the anxiety’s three components above

According to CBT, those worries and anxiety in this situation are the harmful, so it needs to remove or replace by something more positive.

Let’s continue with the example’s presentation above.

  • “You might notice feelings of fear and dread, two examples of the emotional component” -> CBT therapist might ask you why you feel fear and dread like that? do you prepare the presentation before at home? do you do the homework and research? do you practice the presentation before the mirror?
  • then “You may also notice bodily sensations, such as heart palpitations, sweating, or a tightness in your stomach, which represent the physiological component”-> therapist might ask you to follow his action: taking a deep breath or simple meditation.
  • Such thinking “I can’t do it,” or “I’m going to embarrass myself.” will slowly disappear in your head. If the anxiety process comes back in the future, you should follow the therapist because that’s how CBT works-> Therapist wants to hear what you think, what you feel at the current problem-> he/she might analyze and comfort you-> slowly change your behaviors
  • This treatment almost has the immediate result with simple worry.

And for the anxiety’s sub-types (any-kind anxiety; acute stress anxiety; generalized anxiety; panic anxiety; post-traumatic stress anxiety; obsessive-compulsive; separation anxiety; social anxiety), CBT brings a positive improvement in long-term.

Below is the CBT techniques video:

What do you think after watching the video? Are you still scared for unknown reasons? Are you worry too much about the surroundings? Do you feel anxiety on your daily basic?

Leave a reply below and next post, we will learn more about anxiety sub-types.

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