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Therapy for Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety disorders are a group of mental health conditions defined in the DSM or Diagnostic and Statistical Manual that describe excessive anxiety or worry about everyday life situations, such as school, work, and relationships, they are not the cause of this. These disorders can be treated with psychotherapy (talking therapy) a psychological treatment to help you learn how to cope better with your symptoms. While that is the clinical and most well-known way to describe them, here at Evolve we take a holistic approach, without the need for labelling. You can recover, fully and live a normal life.

What Causes Anxiety?

It’s thought that anxiety develops when the brain perceives something in the environment as threatening, i.e. all anxiety is created by thought that is entirely born within our mind. The brain then sends out signals to the body to prepare it for action. This causes feelings of fear, tension, negative thoughts, and other unpleasant emotions. It calls forth our fight, freeze or flight instinct. A panic attack is an episode of extreme anxiety that has physical symptoms, that can feel very scary.

Treating Anxiety Disorders with Therapy

Therapy helps you with anxiety to identify your fears and understand them more, as a result of this skills to manage the fears and worries become obvious, seeing that you are not your thoughts is a huge starting point. Thoughts come and go as a transient experience. Therapists may also teach relaxation techniques to reduce stress and improve sleep patterns. They may also provide support groups where people share experiences and ideas.

When is time to Seek Treatment?

If you have been experiencing anxiety, regardless of the frequency or length of the episodes, you will benefit from treatment. If you notice signs of behavioural changes, such as feeling sad most days, sleeping too much, or not eating well, feel free to reach out. You may need therapy or counselling to treat these problems.

Signs you need help

Types of Therapy for Anxiety

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Cognitive behavioural therapy is a type of anxiety therapy that focuses on changing how we think and behave by identifying patterns in our behaviour and correcting them through exposure to small amounts of anxiety-inducing stimuli. It’s based on the idea that our thoughts affect our emotions, so if we can change our thoughts, we can change our emotions. And that can help us manage anxiety symptoms like panic attacks or phobias more effectively.

This psychodynamic therapy type involves learning coping strategies through exposure therapy to treat anxiety disorders—like gradually increasing exposure time with certain situations or objects until they no longer trigger an overreactive response from your body’s fight-or-flight system (that’s what causes panic attacks).

Dialectical Behavioural Therapy

Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT) is an anxiety therapy that has been shown to be effective to treat any anxiety disorder. This therapy is a form of cognitive behavioural therapy, which focuses on helping you identify your negative thought patterns and replace them with more positive ones. This can help you manage your anxiety symptoms by teaching you how to cope with them in healthier ways. DBT also teaches you how to change your behaviour in order to make your life better. It focuses on teaching skills that help you manage situations that may cause anxiety.

The therapist will help you learn coping strategies, such as mindfulness in coping with stressful life events, which teaches you to focus on the present moment without judging it, thus curing your anxiety disorders. They will also teach you how to accept yourself and others without judgment or criticism, as well as how to set limits and boundaries in relationships without being aggressive or passive-aggressive hence curing your panic disorder and major depression

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy

Acceptance and commitment therapy is a form of interpersonal therapy that focuses on the present and how you can accept your feelings, thoughts, and behaviours to treat anxiety. It doesn’t focus on changing them but instead focuses on helping you understand them.

A therapist trained in this type of therapy will help you identify your values and goals, which may be different from what you’ve been taught. They’ll also help you identify situations that cause you to feel anxious or stressed out so that you can work towards improving those situations or stopping them altogether if possible.

This type of therapy is helpful for people who have difficulty managing their emotions because it helps them learn how to cope with stressors before they become overwhelming problems.

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Other Treatments for Anxiety

Art Therapy

Art therapy is a type of psychodynamic therapy that focuses on the creative process as a way to treat anxiety disorder. It can be used for many different types of mental health conditions, including anxiety disorders

Art therapy involves the use of therapeutic techniques that can help you explore your thoughts and feelings in a non-judgmental environment. It encourages self-reflection and expression through mediums like drawing, painting, collage, or crafts. It can help you cure mental disorders like generalised anxiety disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, as well as social anxiety disorder

While it’s not a substitute for other forms of therapy, art therapy can help people with anxiety learn to manage their symptoms more effectively by helping them to understand what triggers them and how they make themselves feel better and cure their anxiety disorder


If you’ve tried the other treatments for anxiety and they haven’t worked, it might be time to consider reaching out to a physician about anxiety medication. There are many different kinds of medicines including selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI) used to treat anxiety disorders, and there is no one-size-fits-all solution. It’s important that you work with your doctor or a mental health professional to find the right medication for you depending on your symptoms of anxiety.

The most widely used anxiety medication for clinical anxiety disorders is an antidepressant. However contrary to common misunderstanding, these drugs have never been proven to help restore the balance between serotonin and norepinephrine in your brain. Antidepressants can take up to six weeks before they start working, but once they do, they can make a big difference in how you feel. Other types of medications may also be used in conjunction with antidepressants to help manage symptoms like:

  • Sleep problems
  • Mood swings
  • Lack of motivation

Exposure Therapy

Exposure therapy is a type of cognitive behavioural therapy used by mental health professionals that can help you manage your anxiety and reduce symptoms, ultimately treating anxiety disorders

It’s a psychological therapy based on the idea that if you’re exposed to a situation that might make you anxious, but you don’t actually panic or experience any negative consequences, your brain will learn to associate the situation with an outcome that’s better than expected—and thus won’t be as likely to trigger an anxiety response in the future.

You can use exposure therapy to tackle any anxiety-inducing situation that comes up in your life thus ,you learn fighting any kinds of symptoms of anxiety . For example, if you have a phobia of spiders, you could start by looking at pictures of spiders for short periods of time (say, 10 seconds) every day until your fear starts to go away. Then gradually increase the amount of time you look at the picture until eventually—poof!—you’re just looking at it like any other picture.

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)

The goal of EMDR is to help you overcome your anxiety disorders by processing them in a different way than you might have processed them before. During EMDR sessions, you’ll be asked to recall memories from your past that relate to your current situation. You may also be asked to focus on the present-moment experience of the emotion you’re feeling or thinking about during those memories thus reducing anxiety symptoms. Your therapist will then ask you to perform certain eye movements while talking about these memories—the idea being that this will help you reprocess these memories and allow them to become less upsetting for you and will reduce anxiety

While EMDR has been shown effective in many cases of PTSD (Post-traumatic Stress Disorder ), OCD(Obsessive Compulsive Disorder), separation anxiety disorder as well as to treat borderline personality disorder, it should not be tried without consulting a licensed mental health professional first

How is Therapy Performed?

Online vs. in-person therapy

An anxiety disorder can often feel like a prison. It’s hard to explain, but it’s like having a thousand fingers on your back, clawing you, and pulling you in every direction.

You might be able to get some relief by taking deep breaths and practicing self-care, but sometimes that isn’t enough. If your anxiety is so bad that it’s keeping you from living the life you want to live, there are two types of therapy that can help: in-person therapy and online therapy.

In-person therapy involves meeting with a therapist in person, usually once per week or less often. You’ll talk about your problems and what’s going on in your life, and the therapist will help guide you through it all by identifying your anxiety symptoms and then treating them.

Online therapy is a bit different—you still work with a mental health specialist, but instead of meeting them face-to-face, you communicate with them over Skype or another video chat service like Zoom. Because there aren’t any physical barriers between the two of you, online therapy is often less restrictive and simpler than in-person therapy (though this varies wildly depending on where you live)

In-person therapy is usually done with a therapist who has a degree in psychology or counselling. Online psychological therapies are done by professionals who have taken special training in the field and are certified to do so. Either way, the process remains the same: the client and therapist develop a relationship based on trust, where they work together to discover what causes anxiety and how to manage it in the long term.

Looking After your Mental Health

Stress Management Techniques

Stress is a part of life, but when it gets to be too much, it can affect our mental health and make us feel anxious or depressed. Stress management is an important part of managing your stress levels. It’s not easy to manage stress on your own, however, many relaxing techniques are there, here are some tips to help you :

1. Breathe

Take slow deep breaths in through your nose and out through your mouth. You can also use a breathing app like Calm or Headspace to help you calm down.

2. Exercise

Exercise is great for releasing endorphins which will help you feel better and more relaxed. It also boosts your immune system and reduces fatigue which would otherwise cause you to feel more stressed out by everyday tasks.

3. Eat healthy meals throughout the day

Maintaining a balanced diet will ensure that your body has enough nutrients to function properly under stressful situations which could otherwise lead to feelings of anxiety or depression due to deficiencies in specific nutrients such as magnesium found in leafy greens like spinach or bananas which are high in potassium; both of these substances have been shown to reduce anxiety levels while helping regulate blood pressure levels during stressful situations such as panic disorder, mental disorders or in case of severe anxiety

Stay active and eat healthily

t’s no secret that staying active and eating well are two of the best ways to maintain your mental health. But it can be hard to make these things a priority when you’re busy, especially when they’re not necessarily fun or convenient.

The good news is: it doesn’t have to be! You can find ways to incorporate exercise into your daily routine, whether it’s walking around the block at lunch or going for a jog after dinner. And eating healthy doesn’t mean depriving yourself—it just means focusing on making better choices about what foods you eat and how much.

The best way to look after your mental health is by keeping active. The more you exercise and move around, the better you’ll feel mentally as well as physically. Exercise releases endorphins into your bloodstream which make you feel happier and more relaxed. It can also help reduce stress levels and boost energy levels – so if you’ve ever thought about getting fit but haven’t been able to get started, now’s the time!

Similarly, Eating a balanced diet is essential for maintaining a healthy mind as well as body – but it doesn’t have to mean boring salads! Eating plenty of fruit and vegetables will keep you energized throughout the day

So don’t let those excuses get in the way of taking care of yourself! Even just making small changes can have a big impact on how you feel about yourself, and that’s worth it!

Consider holistic therapies

Holistic therapies are a great way to improve your mental health as well as get rid of your anxiety disorder. They take into account the whole person, rather than just focusing on one aspect of their wellbeing.

You can use holistic therapies to help you deal with specific issues that may be affecting your mental health, such as anxiety or depression. If you’re experiencing these symptoms, it’s important to get help as soon as possible.

Holistic therapies are also good relaxation techniques for preventing problems with your anxiety disorder by helping you build coping mechanisms and learning about how to manage stress in a healthy way.

Holistic therapies look at the whole person, rather than just a part of them. For example, if you have depression and anxiety, holistic therapies would be things like cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and mindfulness meditation. These modalities focus on helping you to understand what’s going on in your head and body and how they affect each other. This helps you to make sense of what’s happening to you and then better manage your symptoms.

Holistic therapies include a variety of treatments that focus on the mind and body as one. They include meditation, yoga, massage therapy, and acupuncture.

These types of therapies can help you manage stress levels and reduce your anxiety by teaching you how to relax your body and quiet your mind. You can also get help with emotions such as anger, sadness, and Generalised anxiety disorder through these techniques.

Join a support group

There are many ways to take care of your mental health, and one of the most important is joining a support group. A support group can help you feel less alone in your experiences, which can be very helpful when you are trying to work through something difficult. Support groups also help you develop a sense of community with other people who are going through similar challenges.

Support groups are great places to get advice from people who have been where you are and know what they’re talking about. They also make it easier to find new ways of coping with stressors in your life—and sharing these tips with others can help them as well!

Practice mindfulness

Practicing mindfulness is the best way to keep your mental health in tip-top shape. It can be done anywhere, at any time, and it only takes a few minutes. All you have to do is focus on the present moment and breathe deeply. This helps you detach from your thoughts and feelings so that you’re able to see them objectively, rather than reacting automatically.

Mindfulness is a state of active, open attention to the present. When you’re mindful, you observe your thoughts and feelings from a distance, without judging them good or bad. Instead of letting your life pass you by, mindfulness means living in the moment and awakening to experience.

Practicing mindfulness helps you develop greater awareness of your thoughts and emotions. It’s also been shown to reduce stress and anxiety, lower blood pressure, and boost immunity. Mindfulness meditation has been used as an effective treatment for people with depression, anxiety disorders, and chronic pain.

Question & Answers


a holistic approach is always best, understanding the role of thought in creation of anxiety, and seeing how we relate to the outside world, circumstances and people is important. There maybe experiences from the past you want to explore and process also, insight is very powerful when seeing anxiety for what it really is.

Yes it's possible to get a different relationship with your anxiety, as well as being free of it, regardless of the nature of the anxiety, because all anxiety is a byproduct of thought, only the label is man made, we look beyond those labels.

Yes online therapy works just as well for anxiety as face to face, the video calls are very sensitive and it feels just as if we are in the same room together. It is important you find a quiet space and good internet connection before your session.

Yes meditation can help you calm your own mind and thoughts, it is not a long term cure, but if it makes sense and helps you feel calmer in the moment, where it's tough to be in the body then go for it.

We take a holistic approach to all people, everyone is unique there is no one size fits all that is linear in progress, but everyone is capable of freeing themselves from anxiety and living a better quality of life.

About The Author

Jason Shiers Dip.Psych MBACP

Jason Shiers Dip.Psych MBACP

Jason Shiers is a Certified Transformative Coach & Certified Psychotherapist. Jason has been working with addictions and people in recovery for over 25 years now and is always looking towards the innate mental health that is inside everyone.

This therapy is a holistic view of the mind body taking approaches from psychological understandings, somatic practices and spiritual explorations such as non duality and advaita vedanta.

Jason has been cited in multiple articles about addiction, therapy, coaching and mental health and is a regular contributor to many different websites.


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