TALENT DEVELOPMENT RESOURCES : articles

Managing anxiety



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    One of the reasons mainstream anxiety therapy has been so unsuccessful for many is because anxiety manifests itself so differently in different people. One person may experience a mild tightening of the chest, increased heart and breathing rate and a slight flush just before stepping onto a stage to make a public speech. Another may experience the sudden onset of a full-blown panic attack that includes profuse sweating, shortness of breath and an intense headache at the thought of speaking to a single person they don't know at a small party.

    Are there regular times in the week when you feel distressed and preoccupied by anxious feelings about work, school or other significant responsibilities? One client describes difficulty falling asleep on Sunday night, another woke every morning filled with a feeling of dread and anxiety. His mind spun with relentless fantasies about making poor decisions at work or about being fired from his job. Another woman found herself feeling exhausted every morning, even though she had had a good night’s sleep... Underneath their anxiety and fear there was a great deal of powerful rage.

    Michele Kane, Ed.D., gave a presentation on Stress and Anxiety: Helping Gifted Kids Cope – which also has helpful perspectives for us adults. She points out that “Being bright, talented, creative, motivated, smart, ambitious, and even good looking can add to the stress in your life” but adds, “You can learn to understand why your life gets oppressive, depressive, stressed or otherwise unhealthy. You can learn to live in a new and better way.”

    Most everything that holds you back in life and in business are your fears. Well guess what?!! Over 90% of these fears are emotional fears. To deal with them, just ‘be with’ the feeling without trying to analyze it or get rid of it. Simply be with it. Not only do I take coaches through this process to get them un-stuck and keep them in action, but I also use it myself whenever I’m feeling stuck or afraid of something.

    Many types of over the counter, and all-natural herbal supplements are available in the market to help treat the symptoms of anxiety. Alpha Calm is a 100% natural, safe, herbal supplement that will help achieve a natural state of relaxation without drowsiness. Herbal remedies rely on natural herbs and plant materials to help the body and the mind remain healthy. Many Americans are finding relief from their mild anxiety symptoms with the use of natural herbal remedies.

    By Jon Hershfield, OCD Center of Los Angeles.  Social Anxiety or Social Phobia is more than just shyness. When I first began treating people...it seemed to me this condition was a problem of interesting people not realizing they are interesting.  While this is a significant element, there is more going on... Someone may have no qualms about performing on stage, but may dread the interactions inherent in dating.  This may explain why some entertainers who have spent their careers on stage or on camera (Barbra Streisand, Carly Simon, Donny Osmond, Kim Basinger), have reported having Social Anxiety...

    Abstract: Pressure-filled exam situations undermine some students’ performance.  We tested whether having students write down their thoughts about an upcoming test could improve test performance. The intervention, a brief expressive writing assignment that occurred immediately before taking an important test, significantly improved students’ exam scores

    A few years ago I met someone who said he had a fear of public speaking and after a speech class in college he "overcame" it. I asked, "So your fear was totally gone?" "No. That's not really possible. There will always be some fear."  And this is exactly what most people mean when they say they "overcame" their fear of public speaking. They mean that they don't let it stop them or that it's reduced in intensity. But is it really true that like the man above said, "There will always be some fear"? In my experience it's not.

    By Jeff Wise, Psychology Today.  A top practitioner's insights into a common, and debilitating, phobia - Have you ever sat on an airplane and felt such a terrifying rush of anxiety and fear that you wondered how you'd make it through the flight? If so, then you should probably know the name of Rich Presta, a psychologist who specializes in phobias, anxiety, and fear, especially as they relate to transportation.

    By Ann Lakner, M.D., Ph.D., HFL Solutions.  Valerian is a perennial plant native to North America and Europe. The extracted root is the portion of the plant used for medicinal effects. Historically, valerian’s primary use was as a sedative for the relief of insomnia, anxiety, mental stress, depression and conditions associated with pain. Several recent clinical studies have substantiated this historical use.

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