This is an old saying and has been repeated over time by many. Before any of your excoriate me for “blaming the sufferer,” when it comes to anxiety issues, we must all understand, although we may be fragile, we are not helpless.
We are not weak, and we certainly are not lazy. Ever have a real thumper of a panic attack? Had your heart headed up toward 180 beats a minute? That’s 60 beats more than an Olympic Sprinter’s heart beats a minute.
The difference is of course that the sprinter is conditioned for that level of exertion. For those of us who struggle with stress and panic problems, our hearts and bodies never entirely adapt to the on-again/off-again nature of panic.
But you’re strong. Never doubt it. If there’s something preventing you from becoming less stressed, less anxious, I’m afraid it’s going to the person in the mirror. If you think I’m to preach the sermon about attitude and fortitude, I am—partially.
We decide how things affect us, once we know how those effects take place. Cognitive retraining is a profoundly useful tool to learn what your triggers are, but you can begin that process all on your own.
You don’t need tons of fancy books. You just need to be mindful. You must pay attention. Remember, as I’ve said over and over, mindful awareness and meditation are not excuses to turn your brain off and coast in a nullity.
Those are powerful techniques for noticing what’s going on about you. The real trick is to allow the revelations, the thoughts that will show up like spotlights, to emerge, to develop and then fade without your trying to follow them down a rabbit hole.
You are not going to forget them. You’re also not going to be able to capture these insights and interrogate the juice out of them and remain in a mindful state.
We decide to stress out. Yes, indeed we do, as there are ways to unlearn those cues that provoke and promote stress and panic. If we prefer to stress rather than choose to do things a different way, that is entirely up to us.
Once however you do choose to do things differently, to live a different way, there’s no longer any limits on what you will become or how far you can go. I think you might find a personal adventure without the limits of stress and worry quite liberating. Don’t you?