Anxiety - it's not because you're living in the future

People suffering from anxiety are often told they experience it because they are living in the future, ie. future-oriented. It certainly may seem that way. But we project fear and danger onto the future only because of unresolved stress or distress experienced in the past. We may not even be conscious of what the distress or accumulated stressors were that caused the anxiety symptoms, but that unresolved stress becomes a part of our unconscious programming. It can only be resolved in the unconscious mind.

When anxiety sufferers are often told they simply need to stop existing in the future and be present, it can feel like an accusation. (And for most people, an impossible directive when their internal alarm bells are yelling, “I’m not safe!”!) It can feel like the anxiety is their fault, or they're not trying hard enough, or they're not using their tools enough etc. This attitude can then deplete a person's self-confidence and self-belief and contribute to an accumulation of additional stress. Certainly, tools can help, but they are a band-aid, not a lasting solution or resolution.

We can be consciously aware that we are fearful, anxious, worrying and living in fear. We can be highly intelligent and motivated. And yet, we can't resolve these symptoms through willpower or acts of our conscious mind. Effort and motivation simply don't cut it. We can't think our way out of true anxiety.

Who watched Insight on SBS this week? I'm referring to episode 13, 2024, entitled ‘To The Rescue’. During this episode, we heard stories illustrating instinctive drives we all have. One, to survive, another, to protect. When rescuers were asked whether they considered their actions and potential danger to themselves as they ran to the rescue, none of them had. On the other hand, we also met a man who now lives in fear and anxiety, with his mental health in tatters, because of his experiences. Of course, he knows he's not in a war zone now. Consciously, he’s aware he’s not in danger now. But his unconscious mind does not know that. That's why he lives in anxiety and has PTSD. It's not because he's living in the future, rather, it's because his system is stuck in the past, reliving unresolved distress and trauma.

 If you or someone you know is suffering from anxiety or PTSD, please understand that it's not your fault. It’s not because you’re not 'present’ enough, using your tools enough or trying hard enough! The cause is unresolved distress from the past, dictating your experience of the present and projecting danger onto the future. If you have been told you simply need to use your tools more to manage symptoms, please know that this simply isn't the case. PTSD and anxiety can be resolved, not just managed. As a Richards Trauma Process(TM) practitioner, I see this healing occur every week.


If you need help, please get in touch. You can book a complimentary strategy session via the homepage.



About Sally

As a former international opera singer, Sally Wilson knows a thing or two about being at the top of your field. And she’s discovered first-hand what it feels like to step away from the spotlight and lose your identity.

Through coaching, Sally helps her clients let go of their self-sabotaging beliefs and discover freedom, joy and fulfillment. As an accredited TRTP™ practitioner, Sally uses evidence-based practices to create changes that are quick, safe and lasting.

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