The Presence Lab: How To “Deal” With Anxiety & Depression
Updated: Jul 26, 2022
The Way Past is Through.
Many people come to me struggling with anxiety and/or depression and ask me how to “deal” with it. They want to get rid of it, stop it, anything to not have to experience the annoying, crippling and impending fear, hoplessness and challenging emotions that are with them daily.
Anxiety and depression impact every part of us. they start small in our thoughts and then we can’t move on from them and they begin to gnaw and chew at us and we can't focus, the small thought grows into a big thought and our entire nervous system is impacted, looking out for danger and trying to to find safety.
Trying to escape anxiety and depression or stop them will not work. The more we try to stop it or escape, it will get stronger and worse. I like the analogy of trying to transport sand from one part of the beach to another with nothing but your hands. If you grab the sand in your two hands and clench it tightly in transport it will all fall through the cracks between your fingers so the solution is to cup the sand gently in your hands. The same goes for our anxiety, our fear, depression and all intense emotions. If we want our anxiety to end we have to learn to stay with it, gently. These emotions will transform and the anxiety will pass. It might take a trained professional to help you with this process but learning methods that allow you to lean into the anxiety while keeping you grounded in the present moment can help: such as meditation, yoga, breathwork, and rigorous exercise.
Often anxiety and depression are coming up for a reason, they are guideposts telling us something about ourselves that needs attention. Trying to stop then will only make them come out in other forms. We may need a psychotherapist and/ or medical help to support us with very difficult symptoms of anxiety and/or depression.
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My work is grounded in compassion, empathy, neuroscience, and ancient wisdom traditions.