On this episode of The Reset Room, I’m joined by psychotherapist and founder of Mind-Springs.org Alistair Appleton, to discuss a particular area of his expertise: anxiety.
Listeners may know Alistair as he is also a broadcaster, working on programme’s such as BBC’s Escape to the Country. He shares with Kelly how his own personal experience of anxiety combined with his training has led him to develop very effective methods for addressing these stressful feelings.
“Anxiety has been around for as long as we have been able to think,” Alistair says. “It is the natural states of fear and panic; fear in response to danger, when someone is attacking you and panic in response to abandonment.
“They are part of our natural biochemistry, but because we are clever humans we can imagine abandonment and we can imagine danger when neither are present. So, as soon as we were able to think, we were able to make ourselves anxious.
“Social media has had an amplifying effect on anxiety. That part of the brain that responds to being rejected, being cast out or ostracised - in some sense that’s the motor of social media. We are constantly trying not to be disliked.”
Listen to the episode in full:
In trying to deal with anxiety, Alistair advises that “what’s important is to be able to come into your body and tolerate feeling panic or fear”.
He adds: “We have to come to trust ourselves to use particular methods and tricks to allow the body’s natural tendency to metabolise these feelings. Unless you have some confidence that you can bear these unpleasant feelings and you know what to do with them, you’ll got caught up in a continuous circle of avoidance. Once you do this you can start to tackle the root causes.”
Listeners will get very practical advice on how to deal with feelings of anxiety as Alistair takes me through some practical breathing and relaxation techniques.
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