Are you calm on the outside yet anxious and filled with self-doubt on the inside?
Do you prefer to stay under the radar to avoid being judged?
Does anxiety affect your work, self-esteem or your relationship?
If you relate to any of the above, you may be anxious or have an anxiety disorder.
An anxiety disorder is a medical condition characterised by persistent, excessive worry.
Anxiety disorders can take several forms. Common to all of these is anxiety so distressing it can interfere with a person’s ability to carry out or take pleasure in day-to-day life.
Some people may also experience depression with the anxiety or have problems with alcohol or drug abuse.
What causes anxiety?
Anxiety disorders are thought to be caused by a combination of factors.
Most anxious people are probably born with a genetic vulnerability to develop an anxiety disorder.
Personality traits and responses to stressful life events may trigger the condition or make it worse.
Some of the things that make you anxious:
Uncertainty about the future therefore worrying about the future
Believing that people will find out that you don’t have your life together as you present on social media.
Worrying about what people think about you
Having unrealistic expectations that you should be perfect in every area of your life.
Being afraid to speak up in case you rock the boat and people won’t like your
Having to say no to your colleagues or loved ones in case you upset them.
Not having all the answers.
Physical signs of anxiety:
Shortness of breath
Loss of appetite
Increase in appetite
Mental signs of anxiety:
You have intrusive thoughts about worst case scenarios and repeatedly think “what if”:
What if I lose my job?
What if something bad happens to my loved ones?
What if my partner dumps me?
What if I’m overlooked for a promotion?
What if nobody likes me?
There is a solution!
You may be relieved to know that you’re not alone and that anxiety is the most common psychiatric condition in Australia today. And the good news is there are a number of ways to treat anxiety.
Effective treatment helps you learn how to control your anxiety so it doesn’t control you. The type of treatment will depend on the type of anxiety you’re experiencing.
For mild symptoms, lifestyle changes such as regular physical exercise and reducing your stress levels. You might also like to try online e-therapies, many of which are free, anonymous and easily accessible for anyone with internet access. Where symptoms of anxiety are moderate to severe, psychological and/or medical treatments are likely to be required.
The important thing is finding the right treatment and the right health professional for your needs.
What you can do to reduce anxiety:
Pay attention to what’s happening around you and how you are feeling
Breath- this may sound obvious, however most people experiencing anxiety often have irregular breathing so by just noticing your breath and slowing it down, will instantly make you feel calmer
If you’re going through the “what ifs?” ask yourself how likely is that scenario to happen?
If you’re worried about a situation - don’t avoid it! The best way to reduce anxious feeling is to face your fears!
How counselling can help you reduce or eliminate anxiety :
Psychological treatments such as counselling, also known as talking therapy can help you change your thinking patterns so you’re able to keep your anxiety under control and reduce irrational worries.
This is where I come in. My name is Faith Agugu and I am a registered counsellor with the ACA (Australian Counselling Association), an IYS (ignite your spirit) therapist and a mindfulness coach.
I am also a senior meditation teacher with the Meditation Association of Australia since 2017.
I work with women from the wider Australian community and those from diverse cultural backgrounds. I'm described by my clients' as practical, naturally intuitive and a grounded healer and counsellor.
I am passionate about helping you find your inner peace and to integrate this peace into your work, relationships and passions.
What to expect from counselling?
If you have decided to try counselling, you might be feeling anxious about your first session. Making the decision to get help and address the issues you are facing is an important first step and are not taken lightly. Knowing what to expect from a counselling session should help you feel more prepared and less nervous about your first appointment.
In your first session, it's likely that your counsellor will ask you some questions in order to gain an understanding of what's worrying you and the way your thought processes work.
Some questions your counsellor may ask include:
Why are you seeking counselling?
What is your current situation and personal history?
What symptoms are you experiencing?
These questions are not meant to be intrusive but to help your counsellor get an understanding of why you’re seeking help and how to best help you.
In person one-on-one counselling sessions:
You can see Faith in person on Fridays and Saturdays at Loft & Earth, 70 Bronte Rd Bondi Junction, 2022:
Each 50-minute session investment is $165.
It is recommended that you complete a minimum of 10 sessions for a more sustainable long-term result.
Book and pay for 10 sessions in advance and receive 20% discount!
Telephone/video Counselling sessions:
For some, telephone/video counselling offers a helpful alternative to in-person counselling. This form of counselling can be particularly useful for those too busy to attend face-to-face sessions, live a long distance away from where the counsellor is located and can be carried out in the comfort of your own home. This format also tends to be more flexible and can potentially reduce waiting list times.
If you want to try telephone counselling, Faith is offering a discounted price of $120 instead of $165 for bookings made on Thursdays and payment is made for 10 sessions.
What to expect after 10 sessions of counselling:
You will feel calmer and more in control of your emotions
You will learn effective tools that you can use anywhere such as mindfulness, meditation, breathing exercises and more
Things that used to worry you will now be under your control
You will stop worrying about the “what ifs” and start to look forward to the possibilities that life has to offer
You will learn to set boundaries that keeps the right people in your life
You will begin to take small actions towards changing your life instead of just worrying about it
Your self-esteem and confidence will increase
You will be able to face situations and people that used to frighten or intimidate you
You will begin to sleep more peacefully
The feeling of hope will be a natural part of your life
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