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The Many Faces of Anxiety: accepting the roles of both reality and perception

Faces
Anxiety is a very powerful driving force seeded in your subconscious that helps create the filter that you see the world through.  Everyone has a certain level of anxiety, but it tends to manifest in different ways in relation to different people and different circumstances.  It is the mental construct that tends to guide the rules that you progressively make for yourself throughout life in order to calm your own worries.  Everyone is going to have a different set of worries based partly on their childhood experiences, their genetics, their history of trauma and their current living situation.

Worry can creep into all facets of your life whether you realize it or not.  It is an uncomfortable feeling that you will try to avoid if you can, but that process can very easily become a viscous cycle leading to more stress and discomfort for you and those around you.  I have found that the more anxious a person is, the more rigid their rules become for themselves and by extension, for those around them.  Creating rules, verbalized or not, is a means for a person to control their environment in order to calm their own worry and/or prevent the uncomfortable feeling of anxiety.  Perceived lack of control in any situation is a source of stress for many people and can create both mental and physical tension in a person’s body.

There is a difference between reality and perception, they are both important, but accepting that they are different is both challenging and vital for overly anxious people.  By reality I mean the objective truth in any given situation and by perception I mean one person’s subjective interpretation of that situation.  Everyone develops their own triggers and filters that will impact how they perceive a certain event or discussion; some people just have way more triggers than others which can make their perception of a situation deviate radically from the objective reality and/or the other person’s perception.  Read More

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