In this episode I’m joined by licensed therapist and certified sex therapist Leslie Gustafson to discussion how anxiety disorders can impact sex, intimacy and relationships in general. Leslie and I talk about the general approach to this problem, some of the nuances, and – surprise – we talk about how action oriented behavioral therapies are so effective in addressing not only the sex problem, but the anxiety disorders themselves. Thanks to Leslie for taking the time to help out!
A little story about having a panic attack while out on a bike ride and how each of us faces a moment of decision when that happens. What will you do? How will you handle it? What is your plan? The decision we make at that moment is impactful in so many ways both short and long term so I took 15 minutes to talk about it. I hope it’s helpful in some way.
This is a topic I get asked about all the time, so lets talk about what to do when your anxiety has a negative impact on your relationships. How can you approach family members and friends to get them on board with what you’re up against?
This probably isn’t the way you would expect me to address this topic, but I believe strongly that the approach I’m talking about is the correct approach. Coddling, enabling and accommodating are not helpful to us in the long run so we really should not want our friends and family to relate to us that way. By explaining your fear but also taking responsibility for your actions, and committing to do the work required to improve things, we can often gain the support of the people most important to us.
Holly and I discuss chapter 8 of the Claire Weekes book “Hope and Help For Your Nerves”. Dr. Weekes explains agoraphobia and walks us through how to approach it for best result. Holly and I spend a while talking about how we overcame agoraphobia and what difference its made in our lives.
Find the entire Hope and Help For Your Nerves video series here.
Holly and I discuss chapter 7 of Hope and Help For Your Nerves by Dr. Claire Weekes. This chapter really focuses on understanding that you are afraid of how you feel, and that focusing on sensations and symptoms is counter productive. Rather, focus on how you react to those sensations and symptoms. Don’t add what she calls “second fear” to that initial flash of “first fear”.
Social media and the Internet have had a major impact on those of us with anxiety disorders. In this episode Billy and I discuss different ways the Internet has influenced anxiety issues. We look at positive impacts, negative impacts, and pitfalls that should be avoided.
Holly and I return for the next chapter of our series discussing “Hope and Help For Your Nerves” by Dr. Claire Weekes. In this episode we discuss chapter 6, which is probably the lynchpin around which Dr. Weekes built her work. Learning to TRULY accept your anxiety symptoms and to TRULY believe that they are not dangerous will allow you to relax into your symptoms rather than fighting against them. Learning to relax, float, and soften in the face of the onslaught is the path to long term improvement. When you no longer fear your anxiety symptoms, they will begin to fade and you will begin to get your life back.
Lets take on our first 30 day exposure challenge. For the next 30 days, start by making a short list of activities you find challenging from an anxiety standpoint. Then, start working on those items. Feel free to talk about your progress or post pics/videos in the Facebook group. We’re all there to encourage each other and cheer each other on!
Billy and I talk about the nuts and bolts of breaking down your challenge tasks into very small bits and working on each bit one by one.
At some point in the journey to overcome anxiety issues, concepts and techniques and tips and tricks fall by the wayside and it becomes a matter of desire and drive and courage and just wanting to improve your life. You can read and listen and learn and discuss, but at some point you have to find that spark deep in your gut and get moving. In this episode Billy and I talk about finding your spark and using it to launch you forward.
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