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  #31  
Old 14th May 2021, 10:13
Tonkin Tonkin is offline
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Default Re: Freedom from anxiety, after 10 years searching. My story and offer of support..

What you describe there sounds very like the Eckart Tolle stuff or Buddhism in general.

Something along the lines of all suffering comes from resisting what is.

Pain is inevitable, but suffering is optional etc.

It does sound interesting, but I'll be impressed if you can teach enlightenment to people!

And if you can, that it is enough to overcome mental illness. Or do you not consider social anxiety to be a mental illness? Or is your "approach" not aimed at people with serious anxiety?
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  #32  
Old 14th May 2021, 10:31
Nanuq Nanuq is offline
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Default Re: Freedom from anxiety, after 10 years searching. My story and offer of support..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Nobody
^

yes,. that's probably too,.
it is a cliché, but nonetheless, it is often true.

we had mental health week announced in our work,. by our boss,

the very next day, when he came out to make his daily routine announcement, he looked at me and sarcastically remarked, "oh, it's great to see all the happy smiling faces"
yeah,. thanks boss,. great attitude to take in mental health week...

Have you heard of "modern toss"? It's a cartoon. I have a friend that is always sharing them on facebook, mostly they're about work, they're so funny. It's like the voice you have in your head whenever your boss speaks
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  #33  
Old 14th May 2021, 12:41
Mr. Nobody Mr. Nobody is offline
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Default Re: Freedom from anxiety, after 10 years searching. My story and offer of support..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Garlleg8
I’ve never really considered my experience as a ‘breakdown’, but your comments made me reflect on it.
no worries,..
I was just surmising, it kind of appeared to be some form of mental 'collapse' from your initial explanation, which appeared somewhat similar to a breakdown,
although I appreciate that the aftermath of your 'collapse' seems to have been entirely benign.

now, it would appear to be more of a spiritual insight almost, of sorts.

I do appreciate a lot of what you are saying, and it's certainly quite a different way of looking at certain aspects of social anxiety and general anxiety.
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  #34  
Old 14th May 2021, 17:33
Aelwyn Aelwyn is offline
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Default Re: Freedom from anxiety, after 10 years searching. My story and offer of support..

I agree with Garlleg that worrying about the anxiety makes it worse, it feeds off itself. But a lot of what we’re worrying about is other people’s impressions of us, and telling ourselves that that isn’t a real problem would be pointless - it is a problem.

If people simply noticed me shaking with anxiety and thought no more about it, I think I would quite quickly get over the SA. But it has been noticed, and especially in a work setting this can cause difficulties. Perhaps stronger minded people than me could keep on putting themselves into these situations and ignore the impression they’re giving, but I’ve not been able to do that.
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  #35  
Old 15th May 2021, 13:36
Tonkin Tonkin is offline
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Default Re: Freedom from anxiety, after 10 years searching. My story and offer of support..

Often I forget how anxious I get in group situations and go into them not realising I'm going to get anxoius, my mind will go blank, I will not say what I'm trying to say, etc.

That part of my brain that makes me anxious is on auto pilot. It's not making me anxious because I'm worried about being anxious and if I was to just stop worrying, I'd be ok.

That's what it feels like to me, any way?
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  #36  
Old 17th May 2021, 21:44
Garlleg8 Garlleg8 is offline
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Default Re: Freedom from anxiety, after 10 years searching. My story and offer of support..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tonkin
What you describe there sounds very like the Eckart Tolle stuff or Buddhism in general.

Something along the lines of all suffering comes from resisting what is.

Pain is inevitable, but suffering is optional etc.

It does sound interesting, but I'll be impressed if you can teach enlightenment to people!

And if you can, that it is enough to overcome mental illness. Or do you not consider social anxiety to be a mental illness? Or is your "approach" not aimed at people with serious anxiety?
It is my experience that all spiritual texts point ultimately to the same thing, the same unchanging universal truth, that countless civilisations have pointed to, through the ages.
Fortunately, enlightenment isn’t necessary in overcoming anxiety

Just the seeing or realisation of what is true in relation to the experience of anxiety, is all that is needed. And that is very achievable. It is not some grand experience saved only for certain people, but available and accessible to every single one of us. But that is not something I can teach, only wake someone to what they already know, but seemed to have been forgotten. That is why this is so powerful, I can only point someone to look for themselves, and when they do, they begin to discover what is true, in their direct experience. Not because it is a good idea, or because someone else said so, but because they know it for themselves.

It would depend on someone’s definition of mental illness, but I don’t think of social anxiety as a mental illness, such as schizophrenia as an example. What i’m offering is applicable to anyone, whatever their degree of anxiety. That is not to say certain ‘methods’ such as exposure therapy aren’t helpful in this process, I have found they are, but they can only ever treat the symptoms and never address the true root of anxiety, never bring true freedom that we all desire and deserve to experience.
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  #37  
Old 17th May 2021, 21:47
Garlleg8 Garlleg8 is offline
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Default Re: Freedom from anxiety, after 10 years searching. My story and offer of support..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aelwyn
I agree with Garlleg that worrying about the anxiety makes it worse, it feeds off itself. But a lot of what we’re worrying about is other people’s impressions of us, and telling ourselves that that isn’t a real problem would be pointless - it is a problem.

If people simply noticed me shaking with anxiety and thought no more about it, I think I would quite quickly get over the SA. But it has been noticed, and especially in a work setting this can cause difficulties. Perhaps stronger minded people than me could keep on putting themselves into these situations and ignore the impression they’re giving, but I’ve not been able to do that.
Can you ever remember an experience, even once, maybe in a different area of your life, where people had judgements towards you about something, but it didn’t seem to bother you?
It is my experience, that when we reject something deeply in our heart, then our whole experience of it, our whole reality is informed by that rejection, and our ‘outer’ experience reflects that too. But when we have allowed something to be, deeply in our heart, when resistance is no longer present, then even if others dislike something in us, it doesn’t really matter to us. Not because we are ‘strong minded’, but because there is no resistance to its presence from within, and that is the only place that resistance can truly live.
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  #38  
Old 17th May 2021, 21:55
Garlleg8 Garlleg8 is offline
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Default Re: Freedom from anxiety, after 10 years searching. My story and offer of support..

As I mentioned before, I would also like to share some ways in which this understanding can be more directly experienced in relation to anxiety in every day life. I will share these over the next few days. I would love to continue this conversation with you all and explore if and what you see differently, as a result of what I will share.

I would also love to recommend a book that is available which works on this same understanding, from a British psychologist and coach who has over the past few years been getting amazing results with clients with anxiety. Here: https://www.amazon.com/Little-Peace-.../dp/178817304X

She also has a website with many great resources and content too, for those interested.
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  #39  
Old 18th May 2021, 09:26
Tonkin Tonkin is offline
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Default Re: Freedom from anxiety, after 10 years searching. My story and offer of support..

Interesting. I will check out that book.
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  #40  
Old 18th May 2021, 14:47
Aelwyn Aelwyn is offline
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Default Re: Freedom from anxiety, after 10 years searching. My story and offer of support..

Thank you for your reply, Garlleg8, I appreciate all your efforts to support and help us. And yes I can remember occasions when I haven't cared about people's negative opinions of me. However those were people who either I didn't like anyway, or whose opinion of me could have no effect on my personal or work life.

The trouble with being shaky and nervous in social situations is that (in my experience) people think there is something wrong with us. They react with concern or alarm, which makes things worse, and the cycle continues. We are not seen as ideal employees! This is not how it should be, but in my experience it is how society tends to view us. A lot of physical disabilities are viewed in the same way, as I'm sure you will know.

What I feel I am rejecting is not myself and my anxiety, but the social consequences of the anxiety showing.
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  #41  
Old 6th June 2021, 18:30
Garlleg8 Garlleg8 is offline
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Default Re: Freedom from anxiety, after 10 years searching. My story and offer of support..

I wanted to share something here, a post which resonated with me all those years ago, written about 'true acceptance'. It was this post which connected to something within me, that would lead to my own freedom from anxiety. If you read with an open mind, If you are open to seeing something new, you may see something powerful in this. If you only read to confirm what you already believe, or read with an expectation to prove something wrong, you will be blind to what you are reading.



True Acceptance



The core of root dissolving treatment is "Acceptance", but what does Acceptance mean anyway, some people have asked me "I have accepted for years, why I haven't recovered at all", so today I will try to explain "what is the real acceptance".



In the case of treatment of Social Anxiety, some people thinks of "Acceptance" as a sort of method or therapy, they may say to themselves: "I accept myself, I accept my flaw, accept my blushing, accept my nervousness, then I can recover", actually most people can alleviate their symptoms by thinking so, because they have fought for so long, such a way of thinking can give them a sound rest. Then after some months, some of them found such way of thinking will not work when they felt timid, shy or embarrassed, they still blush before people, they still feel they are stupid in people's eyes or in public situation, so they feel that "acceptance" is the wrong way. What a shame, they never realise "Acceptance" is the only way out, the problem is that they have misunderstood it, they have in their minds, consciously or sub-consciously, they want to use this method to cure "Social Phobia", obviously it is a taken "Acceptance" as a sort of method, in self-contradiction, since you accept it, why you want to cure it?





Since you want to cure it, actually you still cannot accept it. Buddhism tells us: "all the troubles come out from desire" In the case of Social Phobia, I dare say, the very reason we get Social Phobia is that we have a desire to cure it or eradicate it, the very reason we have Social Phobia is that we cannot accept Social Phobia. So, how should we comprehend "Acceptance" in the case of Social Phobia? The answer is "surrender", yes, surrender, and surrender to your Social Phobia, saying to yourself, "OK, you win. I lose, I don't want to struggle with you again. Accept it, accept it not for curing it, accept it because you despair of curing it. Even if the Social Phobia will accompany you for the rest of your life, you don't care about it because you have no way to cure it, "no way" is the only way out. Next time when you are attacked by Social Phobia, say to yourself: "yes, it is me, I am a nervous person, I am a timid and shy person, why should I pretend to be brave and taikative; I am so nervous, why should I pretend to be easy: I am so anxious, why should I pretend to be calm." I am myself, not anyone wise, why should I pretend to be someone else, no one in this world can be anyone else, and we can only be ourselves. Some people may blame me for my radical view, it I had heard such perspective, l also would not have believed it, however it is just how I have recovered. Some people may think if they don't have a desire to cure Social Phobia, they will stay in this prison for ever, but I can assure you that such thing will never happen. Take myself as an example, when I truly accept myself, realizing that I can only be myself rather than anyone else in this world, I was suddenly free, I didn't try any means to consciously cure my Social Phobia, I didn't have a desire to eradicate those symptoms such as blushing or shyness. When I talked with people or see them in their eyes, I still felt shyness, I still want to hide away from them, but I had no mental conflict in my mind, I didn't think how to repel or cure such problem, because I thought I was just a such person, so I didn't force myself to do anything, if I wanted to hide away, I just hid away, if I felt I could persevere, I just persevered. Maybe I would still be laughed at, still be ridiculed for my bad performance, but in my mind, I was free, I didn't have a desire to solve my problem, although on the surface, I was still the same, but in my mind, I began to make the first step towards "acceptance". Even if I blushed to some extreme degree, I didn't care, I knew I was just such a person, even if sometimes I felt extremely embarrassed, I didn't care, because it was me, I was just such a person. When I got into this path towards Acceptance, then after some time, gradually, because I am not afraid of blushing, I blushed less and less, and finally, I seldom blushed naturally. Because I was not afraid of feeling embarrassed, I felt that way less and less, and finally I felt quite easy and I was able to control it.





For many years, what people are thinking to control it, we have gone the wrong direction. We have to start with "not controlling", then we can finally get control of it. Actually this simple phenomenon can be found everywhere. Sometimes when we are extremely afraid of writing or typing mistake, we tend to make more mistakes when typing or writing, when we are extremely afraid of slip tongue, we tend to say more wrong words, when we are extremely afraid of not sleeping well, we tend to suffer from insomnia. We are simply working with the natural flow of things, not against them. Applying this fundamental concept to anxiety in all its forms is no different.
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  #42  
Old 7th June 2021, 00:23
Bored Bored is offline
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Default Re: Freedom from anxiety, after 10 years searching. My story and offer of support..

exposure therapy?
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  #43  
Old 7th June 2021, 10:22
Nanuq Nanuq is offline
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Default Re: Freedom from anxiety, after 10 years searching. My story and offer of support..

That's great that you have personal acceptance, Garlleg.

I genuinely see the benefits of acceptance and liking who you are. I personally don't struggle with low self esteem or shame about my difficulties, if anything I'm proud of myself and my resilience for all these years.
However, being happy in your own skin might not be enough for some people to achieve what they want from life. So for me, accepting myself is a pretty useless strategy in situations such as job interviews, where visible anxiety, blushing, mixing up words, going blank, all prevented me from getting jobs that I would have managed and that would have improved my quality of life. Acceptance of your own flaws doesn't mean they're universally accepted and for some of us they have been very debilitating and contributed to much more than negative emotions.

Feeling positive about yourself is important, but it's only one aspect of dealing with mental health issues.

It seems like you are describing a combination of self acceptance and exposure therapy and that it worked well for you, which is great
But some of us have underlying issues such as autism, adhd, cptsd, ocd or schitzoid personality disorder and the therapies commonly used for SA such as cbt and exposure therapy are much less effective if there's an underlying issue.
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  #44  
Old 7th June 2021, 16:41
amara amara is offline
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Default Re: Freedom from anxiety, after 10 years searching. My story and offer of support..

Even with autism I think acceptance goes a long way. It doesn’t make more people like you but it makes you blame yourself less if someone shows dislike to you.
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  #45  
Old 7th June 2021, 17:47
Garlleg8 Garlleg8 is offline
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Default Re: Freedom from anxiety, after 10 years searching. My story and offer of support..

Thank you for sharing what you’re seeing Nanuq, and your thoughtful response. I see your perspective, and i’d like to offer what I see and perhaps more clarification on this understanding. Again, i’m attempting to use words to point to an experience that is beyond the intellect, but hopefully people will sense what I am pointing to.

This understanding is not about acceptance at a surface level, or feelings of confidence even. It is not about even ‘liking’ who you are. It is about something far deeper and more fundamental, something that is before conscious effort or doing.

A person could have the experience of disliking their symptoms and their experience, and yet at the deepest level, can have accepted what is, and feel no resistance towards it in their heart.
A person could also have the experience of feeling confident and practicing positive thoughts towards themselves and their symptoms, but in their heart, they still reject themselves. Without true acceptance, whatever they do is always an expression of this insecurity at the most fundamental level, however ‘accepting’ it is on the surface.

Mixing up words, going blank, blushing, sweating, are all experiences that people without social anxiety experience too during an interview, and in many other parts of life. Is that something you have truly considered? I know for myself, I did not believe it to be true, and was not open to considering, that someone without an anxiety disorder, feels the exact same feelings that I do, too. And yet, it is absolutely true..these experiences don’t disappear without social anxiety, they are in fact absolutely normal and even mundane part of human life. The difference is, those without a disorder don’t see them as special, as something out of the ordinary that they need to remove. But those of us with anxiety disorders, our focus on and resistance to those experiences, only increases their intensity. The vicious circle begins, and the more intense the experience, the more we feel we need to remove it. But we have gone exactly the wrong direction. Only turning towards them, can we begin to experience the freedom we’re looking for, even while the symptoms are present.

True acceptance is about simply acknowledging what is already present, but is being resisted. It cannot exist at a heightened state, as with a disorder, if there is no resistance present to it. It would be experienced and flow through like any other experience, if it were simply allowed to be. It would come, and go, just as many other experiences come and go, throughout our day. In our efforts to control our experience, whether that is perceived outside threat or anything else, we create a problem that never existed, until we attempted to find a solution, for it.

Acceptance isn’t something you apply, or do, it is not a method, it is simply the natural consequence, with the recognition of what is true.
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  #46  
Old 7th June 2021, 18:16
Garlleg8 Garlleg8 is offline
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Default Re: Freedom from anxiety, after 10 years searching. My story and offer of support..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bored
exposure therapy?
I can only share from my own personal experience and understanding of this.

I see exposure therapy as very powerful, but it does not deal with the root issue, and is ultimately only temporary, but itself. I see that in the moment one ‘practices’ true exposure therapy, it is like an act of surrender, one is giving up controlling their experience and doing something anyway. In these moments, a sort of deep acceptance takes place, and a sense of freedom. But, this only for the period of time that the exposure lasts. In my experience, soon after the exposure is over, the desire to resist experience eventually returns, and so does the suffering.

True acceptance addresses the root. It goes to the very heart of the experience, to the resistance and denial of aspects of oneself, perpetuating the entire cycle. Once this misunderstanding is recognised directly, resistance at the deepest level falls away, and in this case exposure therapy becomes simply redundant. There is no resistance present to ‘push through’ or ’ let go of’ anymore, once it has fallen away there is nothing but the simple flow of experience.
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  #47  
Old 8th June 2021, 09:07
Nanuq Nanuq is offline
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Default Re: Freedom from anxiety, after 10 years searching. My story and offer of support..

Quote:
Originally Posted by amara
Even with autism I think acceptance goes a long way. It doesn’t make more people like you but it makes you blame yourself less if someone shows dislike to you.
That's a good point, amara.
I suppose it shows other people as being intolerant and judgmental and ignorant if they can't be nice to someone neurodivergent.
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