25 thoughts on “10 Things That Make Anxiety Worse You Can’t Ignore!

  • September 13, 2015 at 9:28 pm

    Good article on anxiety. It effects so many people in so many ways. As you explain, the more it’s ignored and avoided, the worse it gets. There’s a happy medium between ignoring/avoiding anxiety, and focusing on it too much. It’s important to acknowledge the problem without letting it define you. Anyway, sounds like you’re doing great work in Chicago!

    Catherine

    Reply
    • September 13, 2015 at 11:43 pm

      Hi, Catherine!

      Thanks so much and know that I appreciate. πŸ™‚

      John

      Reply
  • September 13, 2015 at 11:46 pm

    Hi, Catherine!

    Thanks so much and know that I appreciate! πŸ™‚

    John

    Reply
  • September 14, 2015 at 12:25 am

    Hello Dr. Moore,
    Have you experienced an anxiety disorder or panic attacks? I have seen numerous doctors and therapists who had no direct experience with the impact and debilitating effect these disorders may have. Unless, you have had a gun pointed at your head, it is very unlikely your most prodigious imagination will prepare you for the terror that race through your body.

    I appreciate the article, and no disrespect is intended, but it all feels a bit too theoretical.

    Reply
    • September 14, 2015 at 12:34 am

      Hi, Steve!

      Thanks for stopping by. Yep – I sure have experienced panic attacks. Intrusive thoughts too. I have OCD (mentioned in post). And I hear you on it sounding theoretical but all I can do is share what I’ve observed (and lived). No offense taken by the way. I’m glad you commented!

      Best,

      John

      Reply
    • September 16, 2015 at 3:18 pm

      Steve,
      Wow! You took the words right out of my mouth, and probably said it even better than I could. While I agree there shouldn’t be one tool the anxious person relies on to feel better, for God’s sake let us use whatever comes to mind!
      Sincerely,
      Chris Stachura
      Nearly lifelong anxiety sufferer

      Reply
      • September 16, 2015 at 6:23 pm

        Hi, Chris,

        Just wanted to pop in and say thanks for taking the time to comment!

        Reply
  • September 14, 2015 at 12:41 am

    Hi Dr. Moore,

    I really liked this post! Very practical information. I’ve been involved with Acceptance Therapy for a few months now and it changed my life. Just shared this with my anxiety group. Love your blog!

    Reply
  • September 14, 2015 at 2:43 am

    I disagree to some degree about being ‘wired’. Hormones can play a big part in anxiety such as going through the menopause. Panic or anxiety attacks can come out of the blue suddenly; then you can go months not having any. If there was a cause or even susceptibility to anxiety, I doubt they would not be so intermittent; but be more consistent and regular.

    Reply
    • September 14, 2015 at 2:58 am

      Hi, Cappy,
      I hear you. People have anxiety because of hormonal issues no doubt about it. But if someone has an anxiety disorder in the clinical ,sense it is usually part of who they are. There’s nothing to be ashamed of with it. My comment was designed to speak to those who blame themselves for having anxiety. I’m wired for OCD. I accept this. With acceptance comes peace and the chance to not view anxiety as something we caused. Hope that makes sense.

      Thanks for the comment!!

      Reply
  • September 15, 2015 at 5:58 pm

    talking about the panic attacks makes me cry πŸ™ I have been dealing with panic attacks since I was in the 8th grade, I have developed anxiety and social anxiety as well within the last 3 years. Some days are worse that others and some days are better. However I have found a way to cope and control my anxiety and panic attacks at least to a certain extent. And although I am not 100 percent cured It has helped me out tremendously and I am starting to get ahold of myself.

    I hope this helps somebody out there out because it is something I have wished I could change for nearly 10 years.

    Take a look at anxiousreview . com

    It is an excellent read and was very helpful to me πŸ™‚

    Reply
    • September 16, 2015 at 6:39 pm

      Well done Andrew for having the courage to post about your panic attacks. Many hide these away and I am sure it took a lot of guts to do this. It sounds like you are being more positive about managing and controlling them which is a great step forward. I am pleased you have found a way to go upwards now on life’s journey.

      Reply
    • September 16, 2015 at 7:17 pm

      Hi, Andrew,

      Just wanted to say thank you for sharing your own personal story and journey will panic attacks. Sometimes when we are open with things life this in life, it has a way of becoming less powerful. You helped others here for sure by posting!

      Reply
  • September 16, 2015 at 12:38 pm

    Hi Dr. Moore,
    Some people develop anxiety for other reasons. Mine was brought on by Lyme disease which attacks the nervous system. I never had an anxious moment in my life before Lyme Disease, so if you develop Anxiety or Panic attacks, fast heartbeat etc….for what seems to be no reason at all, please have tests done for Lyme and any other co-infection related to Lyme Disease. Anything that attacks the nervous system can cause anxiety, so rule out infectious disease if your symptoms come out of the blue……Thank you

    Reply
    • September 16, 2015 at 2:29 pm

      Hi, Rich,

      Very true. Some people do develop an anxiety disorder because of a medical issue (as in your case). I am glad you shared here so that others can read how Lyme Disease can impact a person – particularly nervous system. Stop by anytime sir!

      Reply
      • September 16, 2015 at 2:47 pm

        For some reason John the website won’t let me post a reply via the ‘reply’ button.

        I just wanted to respond to your answer that I totally agree with you about acceptance. So many of us struggle on trying to battle or defeat our problems instead of ‘going with the flow’ and accepting. This isn’t easy for many though as it is instinctive to try and overcome it with our feelings both mental and physical. The calmer state reached by acceptance does speak for itself :-).

        Reply
      • September 16, 2015 at 6:22 pm

        Hi, Cappy,

        Your post took here – not sure why that happened with trying to respond (sorry about that). I like what you shared here a great deal. Acceptance can be a wonderful thing. The key is to not place shame around our issues (aka anxiety) or try to make it something we need to “purge”. I can feel the Zen calmness in your response πŸ™‚

        Reply
  • September 16, 2015 at 2:19 pm

    Hi John, Thanks for another great post. As an advocate for OCD awareness I so appreciate when accurate information is shared. So much of what you write about (as in not avoiding) helps explain why exposure and response prevention (ERP) therapy is the front line treatment for OCD. My son had OCD so severe he couldn’t even eat and today he is a young man living life to the fullest, thanks to ERP. I recount my family’s story in my recently published book, Overcoming OCD: A Journey to Recovery.

    Reply
    • September 16, 2015 at 2:31 pm

      Hi, Janet,

      I appreciate you visiting the blog. I really love hearing from other people with OCD like yourself who are all about spreading awareness. It sounds like your son has learned to channel his OCD into something positive. Glad ERP has helped him! I will be sure to check out your book for sure and I am glad you mentioned here!

      Reply
  • September 17, 2015 at 12:40 am

    Very good article. I’m going to post it on my “Panic and Anxiety” board. How I wish I’d had this information in 1975! There was nothing at that time so I was a regular visitor to the library and bookstores to look for much needed help. Long story story but 40 years later I still struggle a little with panic and depression. Yes, I’m on meds and they’ve helped tremendously, in my case. I’ve also had therapy through the years. To everyone out there struggling so very hard, you are not alone. It may sound corny but I wish I could give every one of you a hug and tell you not to give up. Thank you, Dr. Moore for helping us!

    Reply
    • September 17, 2015 at 12:57 pm

      Hi, Camille,

      Sorry that I am just able to respond to this. SO glad this post can be of help to your group. I also appreciate the personal story you shared here with your own struggle with anxiety. Your words are so helpful to others reading!

      John

      Reply
  • September 17, 2015 at 12:28 pm

    Hi John,

    I don’t entirely agree that thought stopping increases anxiety or that the thoughts don’t go away. My understanding is that thought stopping shouldn’t be used with brute force, in which case it does serve denial and it reinforces the anxious thought. However thought stopping used gently can interrupt rumination and obsessive thoughts. Applied that way it gives people practice in choosing thoughts on which they focus. In that sense can thought stopping be another form of radically accepting that the thought appears but choosing to act according to your values, similar to what’s done in ACT?

    Thanks,
    Gary Seeman, PhD

    Reply
    • September 17, 2015 at 12:55 pm

      Hi, Gary,
      I hear you on thought stopping. I used to be an advocate of this approach myself. After doing some research, I have learned that it really does not help someone in the long term. Here are some anxiety myths you might find interesting that speaks to what we are talking about – published by Anxiety and Depression Association of America. http://www.adaa.org/understanding-anxiety/myth-conceptions

      I do think that focusing our attentions on the here and now and acknowledging anxiety is happening in the moment helpful for sure. And yes – totally with you on how thought stopping in the context of obsessive thoughts (used gently) can help someone. In fact, as an OCDr I have done this. I agree with you too on the similarities with ACT that you mentioned!

      Thanks for the response πŸ™‚

      Reply
      • September 17, 2015 at 1:15 pm

        Hi John,

        Thank you for your response. I believe our brief conversation here is an example of where a tool works for some people in some situations and not others. If one is using thought stopping in a long-term way, then they’re likely using it as resistance instead of a gentle practice in refocusing. There’s a long tradition of learning to manage one’s mind using meditation, where different practices are used at progressive stages. Where a practice is helpful at first, it can become a hindrance. I have come across thought stopping in a traditional meditation manual, where gentle and forceful thought stopping are described and the commentator advises only doing forceful thought-stopping under guidance of a qualified teacher. Similarly, many of the techniques we write about here are useful for self-help, but if a person feels stuck it can help to consult with a qualified psychotherapist.

        Gary

        Reply
      • September 17, 2015 at 1:22 pm

        Hi, Gary,

        Yep – totally with you on this for sure! And you and I have not even started talking about mindful meditation and allowing thoughts to float away in clouds yet πŸ™‚ Glad you stopped by!

        John

        Reply
 

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