Dealing with Anxiety: How EMDR, CBT and Mindfulness Can Make a Difference
Anxiety is a major issue in modern society. We live in, such as a fast-paced world with so many challenges and expectations; it’s no wonder many of us have trouble coping. At the Positive Mind Practice in London, we provide the therapeutic support you need to live a healthier and more optimistic life.
Anxiety can seem like a catch-all term and means different things to different people. It’s not unusual to feel anxious, however outwardly confident you might appear. We’ll worry about an upcoming interview, or maybe we’re having trouble with a relationship.
Anxiety becomes a much more debilitating issue when it begins to affect our daily living. It can colour how we see the world and the way we react to people and the environment around us:
- A generalised anxiety disorder may mean you worry about a lot of different things in your life.
- A social anxiety disorder means you have trouble with being around people, such as in the workplace or social situations like parties.
- A panic disorder could mean your anxiety becomes so physically and mentally overwhelming at times that you are unable to function at all.
- PTSD or post-traumatic stress disorder occurs after you have experienced a threatening event and is characterised by having flashbacks and nightmares or fear of certain situations.
These are just a few ways in which anxiety is likely to affect individuals. People sometimes hide these problems away and avoid confronting the issues, for example, by steering away from social contact or particular situations.
Several therapeutic approaches can help you deal with an anxiety disorder. Our Positive Mind Practice in London specialises in three key areas: CBT, EMDR and mindfulness. These have been proven to help individuals find new and more positive options that open up a whole new future.
Using CBT For Anxiety
According to the World Health Organisation, around 300 million people across the globe suffer from some form of anxiety disorder. That’s an astounding figure. Next to depression, it’s probably one of the most widely recognised mental health conditions we see in modern society today.
People often live with a condition like anxiety without realising that there is a range of different therapies that can help.
One of these is Cognitive Behaviour Therapy or CBT, which has a substantial amount of evidence behind it as a suitable treatment. Also, know as talking therapy, CBT is carried out between a qualified therapist and an individual.
The key here is that the approach addresses harmful thought patterns and how we view both the world around us and our feelings about it. How we think about a particular situation can have a significant impact on our feelings and change or ‘reforming’ these can make a huge difference.
For example, if you believe a social gathering is going to be fun and exciting, you’ll feel energised and enthusiastic. If you think you are going to make a fool of yourself, you’re likely to feel anxious and ill at ease.
CBT involves identifying and challenging negative thoughts and replacing them with more positive and realistic attitudes. The approach will depend on what causes your anxiety, how long it has affected you and to what degree the behaviour is ingrained and what strategies you can put in place to change the way you think and act.
That’s why it’s essential to talk things through with a therapist and find a way forward. At Positive Mind Practice, we’re experienced CBT therapists who work with a wide range of clients, helping them to build a better future.
What is EMDR and How Can It Help Anxiety?
Another therapeutic approach that has gained in popularity over recent years is eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing or EMDR. This uses an external stimulus to reduce the intensity of an anxiety-producing memory or event.
The therapist will ask you to recall when you felt over-anxious and use a simple, physical stimulus such as following a finger moving from side to side. Other approaches use alternate sounds in the ears or tapping on the left and right hand in sequence.
While it sounds simple, what this does is help the brain process traumatic emotions and feelings more effectively. This can significantly reduce the impact of the event, which is causing anxiety and is effective in conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder.
EMDR is very often used in conjunction with other therapeutic practices such as CBT and can undoubtedly help reduce the initial impact of an anxiety disorder. Your therapist will work closely with you to find out if this is a suitable approach.
Mindfulness and Anxiety
Paying attention to the present moment is harder than many of us think. It’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the city, especially in a place such as London. Stress and anxiety quickly get out of control, especially when we can’t find an outlet.
Mindfulness is a proven way to lower stress and anxiety and is something that anyone can learn to do with a little practice.
What is Mindfulness?
Essentially it means being aware of what is happening both inside and outside ourselves in the present moment. It teaches you as an individual to reconnect with yourself. By being more aware and understanding how your body and mind are reacting to certain things, it gives you a greater connection to what is going on and allows you to find practical solutions.
In simple terms, mindfulness lets you sit back a little and view your world from an outsider of sorts. It’s important to do this kind of practice in a non-judgemental way. Instead of brooding over some issue, we can view it a little more dispassionately and ask essential questions.
Is this good for me? Am I getting caught up in my thoughts? How can I change this?
By practising mindfulness regularly, we get into the habit of addressing problems rather than avoiding them and can deal with issues such as anxiety better. Like any new skill, it takes time to understand the potential of mindfulness and implement it in your everyday life. That’s why it’s important to work with a qualified therapist.
Find a Therapist in London
If you are struggling with anxiety and live in the London area, Positive Mind Practice is here to help you find a way forward.
We’re qualified therapists, and we’ll work with you to find practical and effective solutions that work. With expertise in CBT, EMDR and mindfulness, we provide you with a full set of tools for a happier and more productive future.