The #1 Reason You Have Anxiety


Your anxiety is not a result of weakness and it is not your fault. The problem is your thoughts. And those anxiety producing thoughts flow out patterns of disempowering beliefs that reside deep within your subconscious mind. Today I am going to help you identify some of the negative, disempowering beliefs that are driving your anxiety and keeping it alive. 

 I am sure that you have already realized that as an anxious person, you think differently than people who are not anxious. 

When people who do not struggle with anxiety think about the things that you are afraid of, they don’t get afraid – because they think about those things differently. And there’s one core belief that non-anxious people have that anxious people don’t have… And that’s what I’d like to talk to you about today. 

People who do not have anxiety believe that they can handle situations and circumstances that scare you.

So I’m gonna tell you a brief story just to illustrate this point. As a young mother, I was haunted with anxiety that one of my children would die. Now, I had a very good reason for this anxiety. When I was only 22, my first born child actually did die at only 15 days old of multiple birth defects. After I had more children, I found myself living in terror that something was going to happen to one of my other children – and I would have to face that kind of pain again. 

So every illness… Every little bump and bruise that my child would get felt like a major emergency to me. I felt certain that something terrible was about to happen. And even when my kids were healthy, I never could relax because I was just waiting for the shoe to drop… Just waiting for something to come and steal them from me. 

Now I understood where this fear came from, but there was one thing that really puzzled me…you see after my daughter died,  I joined a grief recovery group and I noticed that not every mother in that group experienced long-term anxiety after the death of their children. Years later I was still struggling with terrible fear. Why didn’t these other women develop an anxiety disorder after the death of their children? 

I didn’t choose to still struggle..and I know you don’t either. 

I’ll tell you what that kind of made me feel crappy about myself. I feel like something was wrong with me because I developed anxiety. But that wasn’t the case. The truth is that I had a deep belief about myself and my ability to handle situations. It was this belief that was driving my thought processes.

My belief was that if something happened to one of my children I simply would not have been able to handle it. I would not have been able to take it. I wouldn’t be able to stand it… I might even die. 

Let me tell you… Whenever you tell yourself that you can’t handle something or stand something… Whenever you tell yourself you’re not gonna be able to take it or you might die if something happens… That is a signal to your mind! 

Your mind’s job is to keep you alive both physically and psychologically. When you tell yourself that you can’t handle, stand, or deal with something… Your mind is going to make absolutely sure that you don’t encounter that situation…Or it’s going to try at least… by keeping you on guard 24 seven… trying to get you to prevent whatever you won’t be able to handle from taking place. Your mind is going to send you looping thoughts to try to get you to take every precaution so that this terrible thing that will kill you doesn’t happen to you.

I want you to take a look at these three sentences:

I can’t stand it if _________

I won’t be able to handle it if _________

I will just die if __________

Whatever You insert at the end of these sentences… That’s what’s gonna haunt you. So those women in my support group who did NOT face ongoing fear of losing another child, they thought very differently than I did about that situation.

For some of them, they didn’t even think about it. They reasoned that the likelihood of it happening to them again was not likely. If they did have a thought that it might happen again, they believed they would figure out how to navigate another terrible tragedy. They believed they were strong enough to take the pain and get through the situation. They believed they had the resources they needed to survive, or they believed they could find them.

In other words, words they told themselves…

I can stand it if _______

I will be able to handle it if __________

I will survive if_______

So What is the core belief behind your anxiety and the belief that you can’t handle or deal with something…It is because you believe that you are not ENOUGH to handle life.

If you have health anxiety You believe that you are not enough to keep yourself in good health and handle health related issues. You fear disease and illness because you don’t believe that you have what it takes to deal with it.

If you have relationship anxiety, you believe that you’re not going to be able to survive if something happens to your relationship, or you won’t be able to take the pain of a break up. Or you’re not gonna be able to handle living without your partner.

If you’re too afraid to leave your career and start your own business, you believe that you might not be able to handle not having a steady income. You believe you might not be able to survive without your job. You believe you might not be able to handle the challenges of being a business owner.

These examples are a perfect illustration of how a deep sense of insecurity lies at the root of anxiety. This is why if you lack confidence, you inevitably suffer from anxiety. And if you have anxiety, you’re not gonna have the confidence you need to move forward. Lack of confidence and anxiety problems go hand in hand.

You can’t solve one without the other. Well that’s good news because when you overcome your anxiety, your confidence increases. And when you increase your confidence, your anxiety dissipates.

So here’s a helpful exercise for you to begin moving in the right direction to defeat anxiety in your life.

I want you to take a moment and just write down the issues that you have been struggling with anxiety over. Notice the different ways in which you’ve been telling yourself that you don’t have what it takes to handle that situation. Now it’s easy to see when you take a look at what you’ve written down why your mind keeps looping anxious thoughts about how terrible it would be if this situation happened to you. because… You don’t believe you can handle it. You don’t believe you can stand it. You think you’re not gonna be able to take it.

But I can tell you my friend, that is not true. The truth is that when you learn to think differently, you can handle any situation that life throws at you. When you have the confidence you need, you can rise to any challenge. You’re not gonna die when you believe you’re a strong, capable, competent person. 

The truth is that you do have what it takes to get through any situation… When you believe IN YOU… You see it’s all about shifting those subconscious beliefs.

So whatever you wrote down… Now I would like you to write down those three empowering sentences we talked about earlier.

I can stand it if _______

I will be able to handle it if __________

I will survive if_______

And then when nagging anxious and fearful thoughts come to haunt you again. You’re going to talk back! You’re gonna tell a different story.

And the good news is that NOW… I don’t worry about one of my children dying. Does that mean it won’t happen? No it doesn’t. It might be unlikely, but I know it can still happen. So if I didn’t believe I could handle it, my mind would still be trying to get me to do something to prevent it by continuing to bring fear. Of course this is impossible. But the mind is not always rational and its decisions as to how it protects us.

I no longer have anxiety over losing my children because I’m telling myself a different story.

I can stand it if I lose a child.

I will be able to handle it if one of my children gets sick.

I will survive if something happens to one of my children.

And now it’s your turn. Write down those three sentences and fill them in yourself. And the next time that fear comes along you’re going to speak to it differently. Send your mind a clear message that you do not need to keep looping that thought… Because even if it happens, you’re going to be just fine.

If you have to… Write those three sentences on a 3 x 5 card and carry it around with you. Whenever you are being tormented with an anxiety, take out that card and just speak those truths to yourself…talking back to your anxiety. 

Because… THE TRUTH IS …YOU CAN stand it. YOU CAN handle it and you ARE going to survive no matter what happens. 

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