Is it hard for you to stop worrying?
Do 'what if' scenarios flood your thoughts?
Do you have trouble falling asleep, wake up in the middle of the night, or wake up before your alarm?
Do you feel nervous or on edge a lot of the time?
Are you often looking over your shoulder out of fear?
Do you frequently overthink?
Do you replay past scenarios in your head?
Do you feel like you need to do everything perfectly?
Do you reread texts or emails over and over again before sending them?
Have you been regularly avoiding people, places, or things out of fear that something bad will happen?
Do you experience frequent muscle tension, headaches, or stomach aches?
Do you ever use drugs or alcohol to help calm your nerves?
Are you afraid of what others think of you?
Does your anxiety lead to feelings of panic?
Contact Me For a Free Consultation
Lauren Borkowski, MA, LPC
If one or more of these challenges are keeping you from relaxing or performing at your best, therapy can be a great option. While it's natural to experience some anxiety, too much of it can get in the way of your goals. Anxiety can prevent you from trying new things, performing your best at work or school, and can take away from the joyful parts of life. Anxiety is exhausting and inconvenient, and for some folks, it can even be debilitating.
Anxiety is the result of your brain responding to something it perceives as a threat. While this is helpful for surviving in life threatening scenarios, too much anxiety can get in the way of your everyday responsibilities. Excessive worry and fear can dominate your attention and take away from being in the present moment.
Thankfully, therapy is very effective for treating anxiety. It can help you learn new tools that fit your strengths, values, and life circumstances. It can also help challenge your thoughts and support you in becoming more familiar with your behavior patterns and how they're impacting your mental health. Therapy can also help give you the support and motivation to use different tools for consistently managing anxiety.
Therapy paired with a commitment to practicing new tools in between sessions can be very effective for treating anxiety. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is one of the most common types of therapy for treating anxiety. It involves carefully examining your thought patterns and their influence on your feelings and behaviors. CBT teaches clients new tools for identifying and challenging their anxious thoughts. With practice, anxious thought patterns can be replaced with more realistic thoughts that lead to less fear and worry. And, when you are less fearful and worried, your actions will also reflect this. This helps your brain form new neural networks in order to develop new habits that aren’t based in fear.
EMDR is another tool for treating anxiety. Oftentimes, anxiety results from challenging experiences from the past. For instance, people who have been in car accidents may find themselves fearful of riding in cars or driving in less than optimal conditions. EMDR helps clients reprocess anxious memories from the past to help them feel more neutrally about the negative things they’ve been through. This helps them decrease fear about the future and feel more relaxed in the present. Another benefit of EMDR is that it helps clients learn new tools for calming themselves down when they are feeling anxious.
Whether you’re struggling with generalized anxiety, social anxiety, and/or panic, consistency and persistence are key in treating anxiety. Like any new skill, managing anxiety takes practice. Weekly therapy can help you progress toward feeling more calm and relaxed. Your therapist will teach you tools and techniques to practice in between sessions and can support you in figuring out the best approach for anxiety treatment that’s unique to you.
If you'd like to learn more about how therapy for anxiety might help you, please reach out today.