We hear the word “anxiety” thrown around in our communities today as if it is just another thing we as humans deal with on a daily basis. As if your allergies are bothering you with the watery eyes and sneezes, we often put the same value to anxiety. Therapists will say a certain amount of anxiety is good because it is an indicator that something is not right. Ok valid point.
But what if anxiety even on medication is not just an indicator for you. It is a glaring red beam of toxic energy pulsating on your chest. Your breath shortens and your understanding of right here and right now goes out the window. You can be walking down the street on a sunny day waving to people you know in the neighborhood then BAM! This weight on your chest and this feeling of not in control kicks in so much so that the walk is no longer a casual walk. It is a walk in fear. But what am I fearing?
Sometimes our conscious minds do not register what is already processed in the subconscious mind. There may have been childhood trauma or an experience from your distant or not so distant past. It is the mapping of our emotional life that we find the locations of great anxiety and usually out of survival we avoid these places. We avoid people. We may even avoid stepping outside of our homes on days of terrible anxiety. Like a bird with its wing broken we guard what we have and know. Do you guard your fears through anxiety?
Anxiety forces us to make immediate adjustments. We can go to the gym and really pump some crazy amounts of iron. We can go buy some wine and dark chocolate while telling ourselves this is ok because “I have anxiety!” Anxiety can be the fuel for binge watching endless shows on Netflix leaving the remains of the day in that now empty bottle of wine.
Do you lean in towards the truth of your own anxiety? Or do you like most people avoid or band aid the symptoms accepting that this is just how life is for you? No matter what, anxiety starts with what we believe about ourselves and our connection to the outside world. Anxiety is based in fear. Ask the tough questions. Try not to accept the easy answers. Peal off the layers of fear and enter the unknown. We might not know why anxiety exists within ourselves on a debilitating level. The real question is do I accept this physical and mental condition as my truth? If you are unwilling to accept this fate for yourself, ask yourself in the anxious moments, “What am I truly afraid will happen to me? Will more fear be created if I focus on my current fears?”
Medication can be a great solution to finding anxiety relief. For me personally, even with medication, there are days of great anxiety. This has shown me how incredibly intelligent our souls are to find complete healing. We were meant to truly heal. So whatever your current line of attack is for anxiety, start going deeper today and be honest with yourself.
Often times we can feel like we might not add up; that our job is on the line. Does vulnerability mean rejection? Am I am an unlovable human? Fear is an illusion but it is so real sometimes we change our current reality to mimic the fear.
Yoga brings us to this fear. We present our entire beings on the mat as we engage in each posture. We die to ourselves in savasana. We let go. To let in. Savasana allows the sub conscious mind to reveal the true fears. To go to the very core of your soul and expose the actual infection. The infection that might be your current belief system about yourself. For instance if your desire is to be loved but your belief is “I am unlovable.” Breathe in these discoveries then allow the loving energy from the universe to expand your thinking. Draw into the infectious places. “Why do I believe I am unlovable?” You will know. It is only then can we begin the transformation by asking “How do I become lovable towards myself?”
Our process to heal begins with you and ends with you through breath. I breathe in the new thought “I am lovable.” Maybe I find examples of people who are lovable. What makes them so? It is because they truly love themselves? We begin new perspectives when we are willing to accept ourselves as we are today. Right here right now. Accept all feelings, obligations, circumstances, and beliefs. Sit with them. The longer you avoid going within and finding space within yourself to grow the harder that anxiety will fall.
Yoga is the community to safely address these fears so that eventually walking down the street on a sunny day waving to the neighbors becomes just that. And isn’t it the simple life we long for?
By Anna Koehler