THEanxiety it is a very common problem that sooner or later affects us all. Essentially, anxiety is a feeling of strong worry that becomes recurrent and that hides fear for the future deep down, as we think we will encounter great emotional suffering.
To eliminate anxiety, the first step is to understand how it works. The first ingredient is negative thinking, recurring ideas that amplify worries. This internal dialogue can be exhausting as it begins when we wake up in the morning and doesn't end until we go to bed (sometimes it doesn't even allow us to sleep).
This negative thinking tends to solidify into a series of generalized beliefs about the future, ourselves and other people. Thus, we let ourselves be consumed with worries about things that cannot happen to us (or that there is little chance that they will happen). But the most important thing is that this kind of thinking does not help us to face objective reality but on the contrary, it reduces our ability to deal with problems because it keeps us in a state of anguish and confusion.
As you can imagine, the path to eliminating anxiety must include changing these negative thoughts and the beliefs that generate them. However, this is much easier said than done.
Most anxious people know full well that their worries are irrational, but they still can't get rid of them. This is due to the fact that there is another component that is much more important than the content of negative thoughts and beliefs: feeling the emotional energy. This is precisely what gives our thoughts meaning and power. Negative thinking can arise from habit but if it has no emotional impact over time it will disappear without doing harm. If you understand this idea, you will already be well on your way to eliminating anxiety.
This is precisely the central idea of the Terapia Mindfulness; release the emotional energy contained in these thoughts. First we will have to train to learn to identify the negative thoughts and reactions that these awaken in us, then we try to dominate them by diverting our attention from the content that strengthens the anxiety (which is what gives more strength to the idea and creates the vicious circle). This process is referred to as "sitting with emotion". We learn to sit next to our anxiety, without getting trapped in it and without trying to attack negative thoughts. We are learning to direct our attention towards the reaction, this simple detail
It must be remembered that the force that causes the transformation lies precisely in the details, not in abstract ideas or thoughts related to an emotion. When a person says "I am anxious", in reality he is simply experiencing a superficial level of emotion and this is very difficult to change because it is abstract. However, when the person is dedicated to analyzing the details then he will have something to work on. What is abstract becomes concrete and therefore, modifiable.
For example, you can sit relaxed and imagine what color the anxiety is. Only by changing this color will you drastically reduce your anxiety level. This idea applies to all the rest of the perceptions and reactions one has when one is anxious.
Here are some exercises to eliminate anxiety with which you can start practicing:
1. Sit down and make yourself comfortable. Close your eyes. Let go, relax and focus on your breathing to calm your thoughts.
2. Open the field of your consciousness to the point of perceiving an immense space.
3. Introduce the feeling of anxiety into this space and sit beside it, just as you would with a friend: observe and listen very carefully and, above all, with an open mind.
4. Identify the color that best suits the sensation you are experiencing.
5. Experiment with changing the color and fixate on changing the feeling of anxiety.
6. Develop these images, try other changes related to size, position and movement.
7. Keep changing the details. When anxiety has reduced by at least 50%, open your eyes and rest.
Repeat the whole process between 5 and 10 times for 3 or 4 days in a row. Observe how the perception changes more every day.