Healing My Anxiety Through Hypnosis
Suffocating. Debilitating. All-encompassing. My anxiety was a burden I carried with me my entire life. Ironically, I was also very disconnected and unable to see that it was the anxiety that was causing me so much harm. Anxiety was a soul crushing and energy draining force that walked with me on my life path until I was able to learn how to set it free.
Growing up, I was the oldest child and learned from a young age to be responsible for my siblings. I also took on the role of peace maker, perfect child and never needing anything. The result was years of my childhood spent worrying and fixing and creating stability for everyone I loved. Were you free as a child, or did you have to grow up quickly like I did?
The result of the beliefs and behaviors I learned in childhood was an adulthood spent never feeling like my needs were more important than others. I both accepted this and resented it. I longed for someone to take my hand and tell me that I was important while continually convincing others that I was ok. I was the rock, the best friend, the helpful daughter and sister always there to lend a hand.
I felt victimized, taken advantage of and used so often but didn’t have knowledge or the words to change this. I would tell people yes when I meant no and it’s okay when it wasn’t. I felt powerless and hopeless. Powerlessness and hopelessness are the basis for anxiety.
My mind felt like a playground for dangerous, upsetting and repetitive thoughts. The thoughts were frantic and quick to appear. They dominated my personality and my ability to make decisions in my own best interest.
What if I upset him? What if I let her down? What if I make a mistake? What if they found out who I truly am? Would they still want to be with me?
What if they get hurt? What if I get hurt? What if I lose my job? What if I fall? What if can’t get back up again? What if this was all for nothing?
Do you live with these thoughts?
After a while the anxiety and pain that I kept inside started to destroy my physical being. I developed ulcers, eye conditions, plantar fasciitis, migraines, neck pain, teeth clenching. I was in so much pain and I didn’t realize that the pain was, in truth, emotional pain. My body was crying out for help.
This all sounds terrible, doesn’t it? It sounds like my life must have been a horrible mess given what was going on in my mind and body. The thing is, it wasn’t! The flip side of growing up too quickly is learning to be strong and knowing that I am capable of solving problems.
I have accomplished much in my life. I have lived alone in another country. I earned a master’s degree that I paid for through teaching a foreign language on the college level. I found the love of my life and got married. I am raising two amazing children who I adore. I started my own business where I get to do what I love every single day and get paid for it.
Imagine how things might have been if my inside matched my outside. If I was free to move around and make decisions without constantly second guessing myself. Imagine the abundance I would have created if I knew deep down that I was enough.
As a therapist, I take as many opportunities as I can to further my experience and skill level. I saw in my clients who were anxious that they were getting better, but not totally better. Good work was being done in therapy on both sides, but they weren’t reaching their highest potential. I wanted to change this.
I signed up to learn hypnotherapy so that I could incorporate more mind/body techniques and subconscious work into my sessions. The course was 6 days and required me to undergo extensive hypnotherapy treatment for my own issues. Day in and day out I participated in sessions, exercises and classes that forced me to really get in touch who I had become.
Under hypnosis, I screamed and cried. I let my anger out for the first time in 40 years. I released so much anger it was scary.
I healed my inner child, that young part of me that never believed that she was enough. I held her in my arms and told her that I loved her, that she was important and that I would do anything I could to make her feel safe.
I learned to let go and develop new beliefs about myself and the world. I couldn’t be the best possible mother and wife if I didn’t believe that I mattered. I accepted that my life has value to others, and most of all to myself.
That training was life changing in so many ways and has set me on a life path of self-acceptance, contentment and continued self-improvement with love. It gave me a foundation to believe that I was worth investing in and that I had power and hope for my future.
I finally had power and hope. Two ways of being that support physical and mental health, healthy relationships and a balanced center of gravity.
My relationship with hypnosis has only grown since then. I continue to learn how I can use hypnosis to help anyone who walks into my practice. I continue my own hypnotherapy so that I can be in touch with the subconscious forces that are affecting me.
The anxiety is no longer a burden that I carry with me. It’s become an old friend that comes to visit every now and again to remind that I need to prioritize my needs. It shows up when I am too focused outwards and ignoring what is on the inside.
When anxiety comes to visit, I sometimes invite it inside, sit with it and allow it run around the playground in the backyard where its thoughts used to live. This never ends well. Often, when anxiety knocks on the door I peek through the peephole and tell it that I am not available to hang out.
Hypnosis changed my life in a most profound way. It has given me the gift of myself and in turn I pass that gift on to the people I work with in my practice. I watch how it transforms them and sets them on their life path.
And I know that this will create a chain reaction that just might change the world.