How does acceptance help anxiety?

Have you ever felt overwhelmed by anxiety? Me too! But what role does acceptance play in anxiety management? The answer – a big one! So, I wanted to share this with you.

Anxiety and acceptance – how are they linked?

  • Do you experience anxiety and wish that you didn’t?
  • Do you make room for the feeling or get into a battle with it?

These are the questions to ask yourself when you have anxiety, because there is one big secret people do not know about anxiety that makes the difference when overcoming it. Let me explain…

What happens when we fight with anxiety?

Emotions are designed to come and go, and just like so many other things in life, they come in waves. No one is ever calm all of the time and no one is ever anxious all the time, even though it may feel like it!

In fact, anxiety is needed in life in small doses. The problem is when we get stuck in the anxiety look and it hangs around at an intense level.

An interesting fact is that when we do not accept anxiety and get into hating it and not wanting it, we try  all kinds of unhelpful things to avoid feeling it.  This could be using alcohol, drugs, impulsively shopping, avoiding situations, trying to think our way out of it or binging on box sets.  

Sound familiar? 

These strategies can temporarily relieve our anxiety, although it does not go away permanently, it comes back with vengeance. Sometimes even worse because we have made choices which do not move us forward or we feel guilty about doing!  This is the cycle that people end up in – The avoidance cycle. 

How does acceptance help?

It is when we accept anxiety, it is free to move on just as it is designed to do. The old saying, ‘The things we resist, persist’ applies in this situation. 

Acceptance is different from liking or wanting anxiety. It is simply the choice to make room for it, to loosen around it, to drop the battle with it.  This is the first step to living beyond it. 

Your scales

Imagine there are two scales, the first is the intensity scale – this is the scale you rate your anxiety intensity on from 0-10.   However, there is one more scale which not many people know about, this is called the willingness scale.  

This scale is from 0-10 and it is how willing you are to have your anxiety. 0 is not willing at all and 10 completely willing to have it. 

It is counter-intuitive but read on…

This may sound counter-intuitive.  However, having helped hundreds of people to overcome anxiety for the last 15 years and having experienced it myself, I can tell you that acceptance is important in treating anxiety.  Of course, there is more to anxiety management than acceptance, but this is a vital step which people do not normally know about. 

Moving forward

When you are going about your day and you feel some anxiety take a moment and breathe into and around the feeling, notice its qualities and place a hand over the feeling and imagine that the hand belongs to a kind and loving person.

Are you ready to beat anxiety?

To find out how I can help you and get more info on my Beyond Anxiety Method, I’ve put together a free 90 minute masterclass for you – Click here to register for your masterclass.

Wishing you a calm mind from the Beyond Anxiety Method. 

Your Calm Coach
David Williams

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