THERAPY FOR ANXIETY IN West LONDON
Anxiety can feel insurmountable, leading us to feel as though there is no way out of its paralysing grip. It stops us dead in our tracks, makes us sit up and take notice of those things in our lives that have fallen out of harmony with who we are and what we want. Paying attention to this process in therapy can offer us the greatest opportunity for self discovery and deep transformation.
Stress and anxiety manifest in the body as physical symptoms, ranging from feeling tense and on edge, to feeling afraid, having difficulty breathing to having full-blown panic attacks.
The mind can also become preoccupied with obsessive ruminations, worries and excessive self-doubt, which only serve to exacerbate these feelings of stress within the body. The impacts of stress and anxiety are more often than not, hugely underestimated. In our modern society, the pressures women face are varied and also relentless - from an obsessive fixation on looks, weight and sexuality, the expectation of traditional roles within the family, having to be the perfect daughter, wife and mother, having to be successful and independent, as well as the pressures facing women as we age - over time, the accumulation of external stressors, as well as our own internal ones, are unsustainable, unless we are able to find some way of processing and releasing them. We can also become more sensitive to stress at different times in our lives, as change and life transitions can prompt us to ask questions about our situation and ourselves – sometimes for the first time - that can leave us feeling as though we’re standing on shaky, unfamiliar ground.
Because the symptoms that accompany stress and anxiety are not always visible to the outsider, it can often feel incredibly isolating to the individual, who in addition to feeling so low, may also be punishing herself with a whole host of judgements about being weak and not good enough. Women often find themselves withdrawing more and more from situations that may trigger such stress responses, which in turn, exacerbate feelings of isolation and disconnection - often leading to increased feelings of hopelessness and shame.
This can be a very frightening and confusing time, as it often feels as though these symptoms have appeared out of nowhere, and once you’re in the thick of a stress and anxiety attack, it is almost impossible to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
How can therapy help?
For many years, I have worked with women suffering from extreme levels of debilitating stress and anxiety. I often liken the experience to that of a pressure cooker; slowly but surely, over time, as we continue to keep a lid on our feelings and emotions, feeling unable to honour and express them for one reason or another, the energy that builds up has to find some way of releasing itself. Eventually, our body erupts and this pent up emotion and energy – now taking the form of stress and anxiety - comes spilling over. Having a trusted person to talk to in a safe space, free of judgement and expectation, can, in and of itself, be incredibly healing and validating.
My approach to working with anxiety is to gently uncover the origin of a person’s distress, whilst supporting you to develop the tools to manage the symptoms of anxiety on a day-to-day basis. This is often transformational work as together, we explore the ways in which you put yourself under pressure; the internal dialogue and destructive thoughts that accompany this process; as well as other underlying emotional dis-ease that gets expressed through your body, interrupting your aliveness and vitality. It is my intention throughout this work, to support you in bringing your mind, body and spirit back into harmony and re-alignment so that you may become the fullest expression of yourself.