Anxiety Doesn't Help You In That Way

above the clouds, the sky always seems clear, have you noticed?

above the clouds, the sky always seems clear, have you noticed?

But It Can Help You In Others

[Note: I’m guessing that the idea I’m asserting will be pretty foreign, or even disagreeable, to some of you. In fact, former me disagreed with this idea for years. It took time and persuasive writing from others for me to evolve my thinking on this topic. I used to think that I was learning and getting better from taskmaster anxiety’s punishing qualities. Understanding the more nuanced information that anxiety’s waves hold within it is something I explore in-depth throughout The Beautiful Voyager.]

Something I hear frequently from friends: "Anxiety helps me. It helps me get things done on time. It helps me get the house clean. It helps me be good at my job."

This is hard for me to say to you: fear of fear and excess cortisol, adrenaline surging through your body does not help you be better at your job or family life. The campaigns you've mounted to avoid hormonal physical punishment may lead you to believe that you are better and stronger as a result of your struggles. That's just YOUR STRENGTH shining out despite an impediment. That's not anxiety's good work. You can be just as good and strong without the ongoing obstacle of the hormone surge. You can be even stronger. Happier.

a lighthouse with a fresnel lens allows more light to be captured from oblique sources and therefore seen from greater distances 

a lighthouse with a fresnel lens allows more light to be captured from oblique sources and therefore seen from greater distances 

It's important to believe this is that this is true because it's the first step toward superpower activation. In order for things to change, you have to accept that your relationship with anxiety needs to change. It's not serving you as it stands. At a deeper level, it's admitting that you, too, need to change. But it's a not a bad change! It's a change that makes you more open to the world and the good things in it.

If anxiety isn't helping you in the way you thought it was, in what way can it help you? Think of it this way: instead of having to fight the cortisol and adrenaline surges, listen to them and allow them to come and go. The hormone surges can be an incredible insightful tool. Once you learn to tune in to them, boundless wisdom awaits you. "Don't take that job!" "Don't date that person!" Or the absence of the surge: "You are happy in this place." "You can see how others are reacting based on their own fears." "You can approach things differently."

To get to the place of tuning in, you have to give up your old co-dependent relationship with your buddy anxiety. If you’re keeping it in this tightly wedged fixed place where it’s an obstacle to overcome, you might be keeping it from claiming the insight you deserve (you’ve worked hard for it, after all).

serena