There is a question that, sooner or later, everyone who suffer from some form of anxiety arises: “Why am I so anxious?”. The question is not trivial, considering that the suffering of an anxiety disorder is not only due to the problem in itself, but also from the overwhelming and overwhelming sensation that something of itself does not go. That is, being somehow “wrong” or “badly done”.
Often, this and other similar questions arise when inevitably confronted with others (which show no fear in the face of anxiety situations) or when confrontation is between a past in which anxiety does not exist, was (or was not so disabling) and a present of fears, limitations and unexplained events.
Events and Trauma
Genetic predisposition or “ansiogenic” family environment can play a key role in the genesis of anxiety, but it is often possible to identify a particular episode (single or multiple) that appears to be directly responsible for triggering anxiety disorder is exactly.
But the opposite is true. A decisively threatening event for the survival of many individuals (think, for example, of an earthquake) does not automatically “generate” anxiety disorder in everyone who has experienced it. So, once again, it is not possible to identify a single cause for the origin of anxiety (predisposition, learning, or occurrence), although it is obvious that some events may be a triggering factor.
When it comes to “traumas”, one has imagined unusual and catastrophic events that inevitably mark the lives of those who suffer. At times, however, these are not specific or well-defined events, but also experiences that can simply threaten their sense of stability or significant changes with which it is difficult to come to terms.
Small big traumas
In this sense, even apparently positive situations may favor the development of anxiety disorder. Take, for example, a career progression: new responsibilities, new commitments and new challenges can exacerbate old worries, old fears, and old beliefs.
In short, whatever may push us out of our comfort zone or somehow threaten a well- balanced balance , it can potentially expose us to develop (or fully express) anxiety disorder.
The list, potentially, is infinite: the end of a relationship, a temporary illness, a transfer, the birth of a child, being trapped in traffic during a strong shower. In practice, any event can confront us with our fears and our fragility. Any situation can be a danger for us : such as being abandoned, feeling weaker and fragile, being in a situation where we feel helpless.
Back to the origins
To solve your anxiety you do not need to find out the exact origin. Also because it’s not that easy: even just thinking about the experiences experienced during childhood, can we say with certainty that the memories we belong to are real? And if somehow they were mixed up with other memories, other reconstructions, other narratives, and other interpretations?
Although it is not always essential to understand the origin of your anxiety, getting traces of this can be useful for two important reasons …
- By reviewing some of the episodes of the past, as well as those occurring in the present, it is possible to identify some elements that can contradict themselves to make sense of the emotions that they experience, the thoughts behind and the resulting behaviors. Not so much to shed light on the past (now it’s gone), rather to figure out what’s wrong now and how to deal with the anxiety of now.
- Anxiety is not something that we voluntarily deal with: anxiety can develop for many reasons, but it is certainly not the fault of those who suffer. To make sense of anxiety, to understand why it is so present in our lives, helps to counteract the tendency to inculpate, to feel “different”, “bad” or “inferior” to non-anxious.
Guilt and self-criticism, seriously damaging companions, and who often go hand in hand with anxiety, in this sense, have no reason to be there. No one decides to want to “be anxious”, nor is he happy to be able to deal with certain situations. Anxiety arises for some reasons, but none of them depends on the will of the person who suffers.
Anxiety that proves in certain situations that so many limitations involve in our lives is not something falling from the sky: anxiety is something you learn. This is beyond possible predispositions, which are not condemnations, but, precisely, only “predispositions.”
If anxiety is something we have learned then why concentrate our energies on guilt, feel “different”, “stupid”, “inferior”? Why consider anxiety as inevitable, as something that is part of us and from which we could never release it?
Beyond how we have learned to experience some anxiety, it is always possible to learn a new way of dealing with those same situations. So why invest your energies by focusing on what you are wrong, different, and powerless? Would not it be better to invest in understanding how and why we are anxious to learn a different way of managing it?
So stop thinking about why you suffer from anxiety: it only brings you further suffering. As has been learned, anxiety can be a shame. If you want, we can do it together.
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