In the clinical world, anxiety is a broad term that features in many disorders: OCD, phobias, social anxiety, panic attacks, perfectionism, PTSD, insomnia, skin-picking, hair-pulling, among others.
Clients report a broad range of symptoms associated with anxiety:
- Heart palpitations
- Difficulty breathing/shortness of breath
- “Butterflies in my stomach”
- Feeling detached, floaty
- “Nervous energy”
- Chills or hot flashes
- Difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep
- “Feeling like I can’t turn my brain off”
- Choking sensations
- A rush of adrenaline
- “Feeling like there’s a weight on my chest”
When I first meet with clients, I aim to get a clear sense of how, specifically, they experience their anxiety – no two cases are the same. I then develop an individualized treatment plan that focuses, first and foremost, on reducing distressing symptoms with an ultimate, long-term goal of promoting flexibility, hopefulness, and self-efficacy.