Anxiety and Depression

WHAT IS ANXIETY?

Anxiety can range from milder and transient mindsets through to more long-lasting and unbearable states of panic. At the milder end of this spectrum, anxiety can be seen as a frame of mind that prepares us for action. At the severe end, anxiety is very debilitating, stopping us from relating to others, working, and doing the activities we enjoy.

Anxiety seems to be on the increase because of the way our lives are now lived at such speed, in an increasingly competitive environment dominated by technology, and riven with fears about increases in violence and terrorism. However, being anxious is an inherent part of the human condition.  Nevertheless, it can be exacerbated by the increasing pressures in our society – demands that can create a discord between what we believe the world is telling us we should be doing, and what we really want to be doing with our lives. If we are experiencing severe anxiety, it can be a sign that we are being troubled by an inner conflict that we need to express.

I think that there is some truth in the old adage “a worry shared is a worry halved” because the act of talking with another person about our anxieties, especially if they are knowledgeable and trained to do this kind of work, we are often able to see aspects of it that otherwise remain hidden from view. Anxiety can be painful and have a debilitating effect leading to us developing unhealthy coping mechanisms like avoidance, emotional eating or obsessions and/or compulsive behaviours for example.

WHAT IS DEPRESSION LIKE?

Depression is often described as a condition that comes in and settles over your mind like a cloud. These dark days can be lonely and debilitating, turning your world upside down. You might find yourself withdrawing from friendships and social life, even finding it hard sometimes to leave your home, or your bed.

On the outside, you might be putting all your effort into holding things together, because you feel scared that others will judge or not believe you, or perhaps because you’re striving to meet the high expectations that you hold yourself to.

Depression can make you feel low, numb, isolated and ashamed. Depression can also trigger  all kinds of coping mechanisms such as emotional eating and binge drinking as a way of drowning out your experience.

COUNSELLING AND PSYCHOTHERAPY

I will support you in gaining a deeper understanding of your anxiety and/or depression, and how this affects your behaviour, relationships and the way you manage emotions. Therapy may include:

  • Understanding core issues that contributed to the development of your anxiety and/or depression
  • Identifying what triggers your anxiety and/or depression
  • Challenging unhelpful behaviours and replacing them with more effective behaviours
  • Teaching you new skills to improve how you communicate in relationships
  • Increasing self-confidence and trust