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Anxiety

Therapy

Anxiety does not empty tomorrow of its sorrows, but only empties today of its strength.

Charles Spurgeon

​Is Anxiety Dictating The Way You Live?

Are you on an emotional rollercoaster of fear, worry, and panic that you can’t control? Do you spend every moment feeling on edge or unsafe in your relationships because you’re certain something is about to go wrong? Do you wake up each morning with your mind already in motion—your body buzzing in anticipation of the challenges you might encounter?

Perhaps you’re experiencing hot flashes, shallow breathing, stomach aches, a racing heart, exhaustion, or a general tightness in your body from stress and tension. Or maybe physically, the stress and anxiety are creating nervous habits, such as unconscious fidgeting, shaking, skin/hair-pulling, or nail-biting.   

Anxiety can have a profound impact on your physical, mental, emotional, relational, and spiritual well-being. For instance, perhaps you’re easily agitated, quick to anger, or even depressed and you don’t know why. Maybe you’re so overwhelmed with fighting the symptoms of anxiety that you either sleep constantly out of sheer exhaustion or you can’t rest at all. You might be withdrawing from loved ones or avoiding activities you once enjoyed, like simply going out for a drink with friends. Or you may be consumed by such a pervading sense of fear and doubt that you never feel comfortable being yourself—as if you’re a stranger in your own skin.  

Despite the weight that seems to hang overhead, there is a way to find peace. With my help, you can learn how to believe in yourself, rely on yourself, and manage anxiety on your own—even if it’s the result of trauma or some deeper wounding. Rather than being guided by fear, you can learn to make informed choices and pursue the life you want with confidence.  You really can learn to pay attention to your intuition leading you instead of your trauma misguiding you. 

​Anxiety Is An Unfortunate But Manageable Part Of Life

A vast majority of people experience at least some form of anxiety in their lives. Unfortunately, most haven’t yet learned, or been taught, how to support our own nervous systems in a way that honors what we’re really going through. Too often we’re taught to just “bury it…get over it… hide it." 

Making matters more difficult, mixed societal messages often tell us to feel ashamed of anxiety while simultaneously seeking to normalize it as something to be expected, overlooked, or even embraced. This is especially true in the professional setting in which stress is often regarded as a measure of how engaged you are or how much you care. But anxiety can be the result of more than just stress and worry.

Oftentimes, adverse childhood experiences or unresolved traumas create a hyperaroused sense of fear and danger that can follow you into adulthood. Exposure to toxic relationships and abuse can put the nervous system into overdrive so that you’re constantly scanning people and your environment for threats. And our culture’s over-emphasis on individualism feeds an unhealthy competition for success, happiness, and perfection that can drive anxiety, isolation, and create feelings of low self-worth. 

Moreover, our society all too often regards mental health as a personal problem, something that you should be able to take care of yourself. As a result, many people ignore their pain because they cannot or merely do not know how to ask for help, further pushing us into patterns of isolation and shame.

But anxiety is detrimental to our careers, relationships, bodies, values, and spirituality. When we become disconnected from those things, we can feel like our lives are out of control. Fortunately, working with a caring and compassionate anxiety counselor can provide you with the resources, support, and skills needed to reclaim your life.

​Anxiety Treatment Offers A Comprehensive Path To Wellness

When people can’t show up in life or their relationships as the person they truly are, they end up spending a ton of energy on holding things back. Whether it’s the conscious or unconscious fear of the future, rejection, or being hurt again, it all keeps the nervous system locked in overdrive—constantly expecting something bad to happen.

However, working with me offers you a safe, therapeutic relationship in which we can engage each other authentically to create real change. Anxiety counseling can help you re-engage your body and mind in a way that discharges stored energies from past wounds to make room for new ways of experiencing the world.  You can be safe and empowered in your body as you move through the world and your relationships. 

The therapeutic relationship between client and therapist is perhaps the single greatest factor in the healing process. Therefore, our first few sessions will be aimed at building a foundation of safety and trust that will allow you to talk about and feel into your experiences without becoming overwhelmed or shutting down. We’ll also work on helping you develop skills for calming powerful emotions using breath-work, somatic awareness skills, nervous system grounding skills, and strategies for being with and processing any pain you may be holding onto. Once you feel secure and have the necessary tools, we can start naming some of the challenges you have faced. Simultaneously, we’ll explore any thoughts, feelings, physical sensations, or memories that come up in the process.

One of the tools I use is Sensorimotor/Somatic Therapy, a body-centered approach to cultivating self-awareness and resolving old trauma entrenched within the physical self. Sensorimotor/Somatic Therapy acknowledges the intrinsic link between thoughts, emotions, and the body. In doing so, it enables you to slow things down and develop an awareness of how your body reacts to stimuli and how you experience the world. EMDR, another intervention I use, is a highly effective method of quickly and effectively resolving symptoms of anxiety stemming from a significant traumatic experience or events.  

Internal Family Systems (IFS) therapy recognizes that every person is comprised of a multitude of different parts—some light, some dark, some strong, some scared. By acknowledging those different elements of our being we can bring harmony to aspects of ourselves that are in conflict. And because a person’s spirituality can be a significant element of their overall well-being, I also use Transpersonal Counseling for a more holistic, dynamic approach to healing. 

Anxiety doesn’t have to limit the way you live, the way you love, or the way you engage this world. With my help, you can build a relationship with your body, mind, and emotions so that you no longer have to fear the stories of the past or the possibilities of the future. In time, you can realize your inherent resilience and replace unhelpful energies from old wounds with healthy, constructive perspectives.

Perhaps you are considering anxiety treatment but still have some concerns…

Talk therapy doesn’t really work for me.

My aim isn’t to simply talk about your past; I want to offer you concrete skills for managing anxiety and help you get in touch with your body in the here and now. Oftentimes, when we are in distress or unhealthy situations, we can adopt strategies to protect ourselves that end up holding us back as time goes on.  These strategies one served us, but have lost their effectiveness over time.  My hope is to show you how some of your experiences may have shaped your relationship with your body and your body's relationship with the world. Once you recognize and release old patterns of safety-seeking behaviors, we can replace those mechanisms with more effective ways of meeting your needs. 

 

​​I’ve been through so much. I’m worried that counseling will make my anxiety worse…

Treatment for anxiety is most successful when it is grounded in  a safe and trusting relationship with a therapist. With that in mind, I will always support and guide you from within your window of tolerance. And because I focus first on skills-building, you’ll be equipped to ground your body’s energy, regulate your nervous system, and tell your story without becoming overwhelmed by the past.

 

I’m worried that I’ll be pushed into making changes in my life before I am ready...

Part of effective anxiety therapy is about learning how to break down seemingly unsurpassable obstacles into small, manageable pieces. So you don’t have to worry about being pushed to make changes that are beyond your level of comfort. Rather, my goal is to help you tap into your internal resources for self-support and gently broaden your window of tolerance over time. Then, when you are ready, we can work on making more significant changes at a pace that feels safe for you.

You Can Find Safety And Comfort In Your Relationship With The World

If you are looking for a comprehensive approach to overcoming anxiety and achieving emotional, mental, physical, and spiritual well-being, please call (615) 243 0874 to set up your first appointment. Due to COVID-19, all anxiety therapy sessions will be conducted online for the foreseeable future. 

Contact me

today to set up a risk free 50 minute

in-person consult.

Hudson Wilkins, MA, LPC, EMDR, IFS, SPT

He/Him/His

Fort Collins, CO

(615) 243-0874

© 2020 by Gray Area Counseling, LLC