Category: Anxiety/Stress

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High Ability, High Sensitivity, High Anxiety

High Ability, High Sensitivity, High Anxiety

“All forms of self-expression that tap into curiosities, talents or deeply held interests, when pursued to excellence, are deeply nourishing.” That quote by Kenneth W. Christian, PhD is from his book Your Own Worst Enemy: Breaking the Habit of Adult Underachievement. There are many deeply rewarding aspects of being gifted and talented, creative, with exceptional […]

Gifted, Talented, Creative, Anxious

Gifted, Talented, Creative, Anxious

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 stress is universal and experienced by everyone, and that “Being bright, talented, creative, motivated, smart, ambitious, and even good looking can add to the stress in your life.” […]

Alex Lambert on stage fright

Alex Lambert on stage fright

The fear of failing in front of an audience is familiar to me. Even though I never had a major memory lapse or experienced any ridicule for my work as an actress, I always felt afraid before every performance . Many of us who have performed before an audience can probably relate to American Idol […]

James Ellroy: "Crazy suppressed s--- came out and blew up in my face."

James Ellroy: “Crazy suppressed s— came out and blew up in my face.”

From article “How James Ellroy lost his mind,” The Week, October 8, 2009. In 2001 the best-selling noir novelist had a nervous breakdown while on a book tour. James Ellroy has an intimate knowledge of despair, says Sean Woods in Rolling Stone. In 2001 he was at the top of his professional game, a best-selling […]

Keeping the turmoil in your art - not your spirit

Keeping the turmoil in your art – not your spirit

“One must still have chaos in oneself to be able to give birth to a dancing star.” Friedrich Nietzsche That quote by Nietzsche [from the page: Dysfunction / disorder] is a perspective many artists and other gifted and talented people with intense and “chaotic” inner lives may appreciate. But is turmoil necessary for creative expression? […]

Uncertainty fuels our distress

Uncertainty fuels our distress

“If the imagined future is better, it gives you hope or pleasurable anticipation. If it is worse, it creates anxiety. Both are illusory.” Eckhart Tolle – from his book The Power of Now. What we anticipate and imagine can be so much worse than reality, and make our distress all the more intense. Being uncertain […]

Disarming the brain's fear response

Disarming the brain’s fear response

Fear and anxiety can keep us from pursuing dreams, exploring creative projects and in other ways realizing our talents. Fear can take various forms such as: social anxiety, phobias, performance anxiety or stage fright. Robert Maurer, PhD has studied social and neuropsychological aspects of achievement and creative expression for many years. He notes that even […]

Improve Your Self Esteem and Reduce Your Fears

Improve Your Self Esteem and Reduce Your Fears

By Bertil Hjert. It is important to examine that which you fear… We are so consumed by the physical manifestations of our anxiety or panic attack that we don’t take the time to analyze what this sudden surge is all about. Building up your self esteem is a process, but it is something that can […]

High Sensitivity and Anxiety in Work Situations

High Sensitivity and Anxiety in Work Situations

There are probably millions of highly sensitive people around the world who are working in situations where they are being watched when they work. Some choose to perform in various ways – as actors, musicians, speakers. [Many actors and other performers have been shy, or still are, such as Amy Adams, Rebel Wilson, Gwen Stefani, […]

Reclaiming Creative Courage

Reclaiming Creative Courage

Fear of writing, fear of failing, fear of succeeding – fears of all sorts can keep us from pursuing our entrepreneurial passions and creative dreams. Author Milli Thornton describes a CPA who kept shutting off his dream to write: ‘He’s long wanted to write the story of his life as a fictional novel, but could […]

Don't Worry, Be Happy. Mostly.

Don’t Worry, Be Happy. Mostly.

The lyrics of Bobby McFerrin’s song include: Don’t worry. It will soon pass, whatever it is / In your life expect some trouble  / But when you worry / You make it double / Don’t worry, be happy Being happy and positive in general is a preferable stance toward life, better for our health, creativity […]

Why We Don't Create

Why We Don’t Create

“To begin…To begin…How to start? I’m hungry. I should get coffee. Coffee would help me think…” Screenwriter ‘Charlie Kaufman’ (Nicolas Cage) in the movie “Adaptation” – written by the real Charlie Kaufman about some of his own creative anxieties. Cynthia Morris is a writer, writing coach, teacher, and speaker. She provides a wide range of […]

Paulina Porizkova and her “love affair” with Lexapro

Paulina Porizkova and her “love affair” with Lexapro

Actor, Director, Writer, (and Supermodel) Paulina Porizkova comments on using an antidepressant: “I started taking Lexapro after my anxiety attacks came back and, for all intents and purposes, practically crippled me. “I’ve always had anxiety attacks, or panic attacks as some know them, but after years of learning how to deal with them, I thought […]

Mel Schwartz on perfectionism: Is doing the best you can always a good thing?

Mel Schwartz on perfectionism: Is doing the best you can always a good thing?

Is it always a good idea to do the best you can do? Moreover, can we ever be sure that it’s really our best? These questions came up recently in a therapy session and catalyzed my looking more deeply into the nature and implications of this common expression. The man with whom I was working […]

Anxiety relief - overcoming social phobia

Anxiety relief – overcoming social phobia

If fear of rejection has led you to distance yourself from people, especially groups, there are several specific things you can do. First and foremost, you need to build a sense of your own self-worth. In addition to this, cognitive-behavioral therapy offers three specific types of interventions… From article Do You Want To Overcome Your […]

Self-esteem: what's so good about it?

Self-esteem: what’s so good about it?

Gene Simmons, asked about joining the new Donald Trump program “The Apprentice: Celebrity Edition” (starting this evening), gave one of his typical tongue in cheek responses: “I’m the next apprentice because I’m the best of the best” – adding with a big grin: “Look how sincere I am.” He also commented, “You can’t get really […]

Peak performance requires stress relief

Peak performance requires stress relief

A newspaper story reports: “The brain images of the stressed medical students gave the inside story: During the attention-shifting task, activity in their prefrontal cortices — the seat of such functions as attention, task-planning and judgment — was far lower than that of the non-stressed-out.” From article Peak personal performance requires stress relief. See a […]

How to Take Criticism from Hurtful to Helpful

How to Take Criticism from Hurtful to Helpful

By guest author Amber Hensley Even the best intentioned of people sometimes dole out criticism that can hurt your pride and flat out make you feel bad about yourself, especially if you put a lot of effort into what is being criticized. You don’t have to let criticism get to you, however, especially if you […]

Dealing With Our Fears

Dealing With Our Fears

“Openness doesn’t come from resisting our fears but from coming to know them well.” Pema Chodron – director of Buddhist monastery Gampo Abbey. In the safety of a movie theatre, it can be fun to get scared by a monster like Dr. Hannibal ‘The Cannibal’ Lecter (Anthony Hopkins) in “The Silence of the Lambs.” But […]

Nicole Kidman: "I'm drawn to what I'm scared of."

Nicole Kidman: “I’m drawn to what I’m scared of.”

In a movie, Nicole Kidman portrayed war correspondent Martha Gellhorn, the third wife of novelist Ernest Hemingway. Talking about the project, and her work in general, Kidman said she loved Gellhorn’s persistence, determination and courage, and that she is “drawn to what I’m scared of. “I’m never going to let fear dominate my life. Many […]

27 Tips For Navigating College As a Highly Sensitive Person

27 Tips For Navigating College As a Highly Sensitive Person

In her article, 27 Tips For Navigating College As a Highly Sensitive Person, Andrea Runyan discusses how sensitive students can manage the stresses of housing, emotional life, parties, eating, studying, professors and friends. “College is a crucial time in life and doing well, both in classes and in general life, can have large ramifications for […]

Living and Creating: Fear Is Not A Disease

Living and Creating: Fear Is Not A Disease

What we call fear may really be excitement: emotional and physiological arousal. Creativity coach and author Eric Maisel, PhD notes it can sometimes be hard to distinguish nervous tension from anxiety or fear. “Part of the confusion is that ‘life energy’ in the form of hormones like adrenaline are necessary, so it is easy to […]

Surprised to be gifted: the inner world of unrecognized giftedness

Surprised to be gifted: the inner world of unrecognized giftedness

In her post “to my surprise…” on her site Temporary Reality, “neighbor” wrotes about the experience of growing up gifted that many of us can relate to. [The site is apparently offline or removed.] Here is an excerpt – published here by permission: When I was little I was labelled Gifted.  God, it sounds so […]

Video Gaming for Mental Health

Video Gaming for Mental Health

“When the player becomes stressed or fearful, the game will increase in intensity and difficulty. When the player calms himself, the game returns to its default state.” Game designer Erin Reynolds There are many different sorts of video games, and many studies on their psychological and social impacts – research that is often critical or […]

Any more chocolate than my limit causes anxiety

Any more chocolate than my limit causes anxiety

From article Confession: Anxiety Cause Revealed, by Jen Crippen. Why is it that when we know our limit on something and if we go beyond that, we’ll feel like “junk”? For example, I experience many food sensitivities. I can indulge in a TINY bit of dark chocolate. Key word: TINY (two 1? X 1? squares).  […]

Relaxed about the audition

Relaxed about the audition

Monica Raymund comments about her audition for the tv series Lie to Me: “I just knew I wasn’t going to get it, so I was so relaxed about the audition that I got it. The same thing happened with my audition for Juilliard…” [From post on The Inner Actor] One of the key ideas of […]

Hypnotherapy for anxiety and personal development

Hypnotherapy for anxiety and personal development

Does hypnosis work? There is a wealth of research and clinical experience to confirm it as an effective part of psychotherapy, and as a self-help approach that can relieve many physical and emotional challenges, and enhance personal growth. “Look Into My Eyes: You Are Feeling Sleepy.” There are many myths about hypnosis, promoted in stage […]

What is our rush?

What is our rush?

“It is also good every so often to go away and relax a little for when you come back to your work your judgment will be better, since to remain constantly at work causes you to deceive yourself.” Leonardo da Vinci In her article What’s the rush?, Jenna Avery describes how constantly striving and being […]

Anxiety and the Amygdala

Anxiety and the Amygdala

A news article reports, “The amygdala is known to be involved in social anxiety, posttraumatic stress, and obsessions and compulsions, and is now being linked with separation anxiety and general anxiety.” // Excerpt from lyrics (based on Emily Dickinson) in video: Fearing – by The Amygdaloids While I was fearing it came But with less […]

Energy vampires can suck our life energy

Energy vampires can suck our life energy

Judith Orloff MD is an assistant clinical professor of Psychiatry at UCLA and synthesizes traditional medicine, intuition, energy work and spirituality in her medical practice and publications. We can all use protection In her article Protect Yourself from Energy Vampires, she explains, “Energy vampires are people who suck our energy dry. Everyone can benefit from […]

Positive Psychology Also Includes Negative Emotions

Positive Psychology Also Includes Negative Emotions

Excerpted from article Positive Psychology Includes Negative Emotions, By Dave Shearon, Positive Psychology News. “Recently, I was teaching ‘Detecting Icebergs’, one of the resilience skills described in The Resilience Factor. “I mentioned the importance of using personal examples whenever possible and gave a quick example of a personal iceberg I had uncovered. “I mentioned that […]

More Calm and Less Stress for A Better Life

More Calm and Less Stress for A Better Life

“Being more intentional, grounded and grateful is not just a good thing to do for the holiday season. It’s a way to live all year long. And not only that, it’s the quickest way to transform your life from ordinary to extraordinary.” Carrie Contey, Ph.D. “If you aren’t intentional about how you want the holidays […]

New Year's resolutions and HSPs: change and intuition

New Year’s resolutions and HSPs: change and intuition

Everyone can experience emotional challenges when it comes to making life changes, but those challenges may be especially intense for highly sensitive people (HSPs). In her post Change and the HSP, from her blog “Inside the Mind of a Highly Sensitive Person,” Helen Akers takes a look at some of the challenges HSPs encounter when […]

Panic Attacks: Nature Out Of Context

Panic Attacks: Nature Out Of Context

Writer  Jen Crippen points out: “Panic attacks were once nature’s way of keeping a person alive in a very dangerous situation. “The surge of adrenaline pumped through the body during an attack allowed early man to outrun deadly predators, or claw themselves out from an avalanche of heavy debris. “Today, there are people who have […]

Performance anxiety: Biofeedback relieves stage fright

Performance anxiety: Biofeedback relieves stage fright

By Cat Robson When I was acting, I had recurring nightmares of being in unknown plays without a clue of my role, and paralyzing real-life panic right before the curtain came up. Many talented musicians, actors, speakers and others experience performance anxiety, often called stage fright. A new study shows that biofeedback can be highly […]

The Monkey Mind Disruption

The Monkey Mind Disruption

Do you ever find yourself waylaid or compromised in your creative work on account of disrupting trains of thought and anxieties? It happens to most of us. In his interview for NPR about his new book “Monkey Mind: A Memoir of Anxiety,” author and journalist Daniel Smith makes an interesting distinction that fear “is an […]

All I Want Is a Good Night’s Sleep

All I Want Is a Good Night’s Sleep

James T. Webb, Ph.D. writes: “It has been my experience that gifted and talented persons are more likely to experience a type of depression referred to as existential depression.  “Although an episode of existential depression may be precipitated in anyone by a major loss or the threat of a loss which highlights the transient nature […]

Terri Levine on how to lessen anxiety

Terri Levine on how to lessen anxiety

By Terri Levine : “The anxiety I am talking about is that suffered by everyday workers, going about their business in a state of stress and discomfort. This work related anxiety is persistent and causes you to worry excessively about events or activities or circumstances at work which may, or may not, even happen… but […]