How anxiety may show up for you
There are a variety of anxiety disorders. Regardless of what type you have, anxiety disorders impact the mind and body – you may experience it physically as constricted muscles, feeling restless, rapid heartbeat, avoidance of certain situations that evoke fear, trouble breathing, headaches, or insomnia. From a mental standpoint, anxiety disorders may manifest as memory issues, over thinking, difficulty focusing, racing thoughts, lack of patience or procrastination. None of these symptoms are desirable and can cause much misery. But there is hope! You can develop a different relationship with your mind and body. You can learn to manage your anxiety. Developing mindfulness skills through the arts can help your brain to focus on the present moment and to experience relief from the endless borage of thoughts that cripple you and cause you pain. Accepting that anxiety is normal and that you are not to blame fosters self compassion and therefore encourages the weakening of the anxiety. In fact, anxiety can be helpful – it is meant to help us to sense and evaluate our body and how it is being affected by stressful thoughts. Anxiety can become more tolerable if you accept it as a normal part of life and bring greater awareness to your moment-by-moment experience. You can learn to relate to your anxiety in healthier ways.