Dealing With Stress And Anxiety

Stress and anxiety have become a major problem that effects us all. Can the solution actually be simple? It is only recently that we have begun to realize the extent of the threat that stress and anxiety represent to all of us. Ironically, the very powers that make us great, if uncontrolled, can destroy us.

Sometimes understanding the problem reveals a great deal about possible solutions. Whether we believe that stress and anxiety are two different things or two parts of one thing, it appears that the source of both is the same. As difficult as it may be to accept, our own minds are the culprit.

This is both good news and bad news. Good news to the extent that if the problem stems from our own minds, then we should be able to fix it. Bad news because few Humans have the awareness and or the ability to control the thoughts produced by their own mind. The reason is that this is not now, nor has it ever been a high priority item on any educational agenda.

But regardless of why, the fact remains, that our own thoughts are the wellspring from which all that we experience arises. They are the tools that we as the architects of our lives use to create ourselves each moment in time. Tools however can be used to build or destroy depending on the level of knowledge, understanding and awareness of the architect.

We are a society obsessed with symptoms, and one big reason for this of course, is that treating symptoms is big business, whereas solving the underlying causes is like shooting oneself in the foot, at least from a business standpoint. It is in the best interest of business to overcomplicate things and stress and anxiety are good examples of this strategy.

Think about the impact on the medical and pharmaceutical industries if suddenly people got the idea that stress and anxiety could be solved easily. Those industries would waste no time or spare no expense in discrediting the source of such an idea and we all know it, yet we still go about acting as if we don't know it, why?

Although few of us will come right out and admit it, we use our stress and anxiety as our excuses and justifications for avoiding our personal responsibilities. Not the least of which might be the responsibility to achieve and maintain an appropriate level of self awareness and self discipline. Which of course, would preclude the use of stress and anxiety as an avoidance strategy, as well as many other strategies designed to help us avoid facing the truths about ourselves.

Judging and or criticizing ourselves for this is not constructive, especially in view of the fact that so few of us have had any training or education that might help us in matters involving our core beliefs and the scripts and stories that determine much of our behavior, and indeed, sometimes how we live our whole lives.

The fact remains that our thoughts create our conditions. If our dominant thoughts are about meeting standards or deadlines, or they are about expectations, reasonable or not, or they are judgmental or critical thoughts, then our bodies respond in physical ways that set up muscle tensions in certain muscle groups that correspond to the emotional responses to those thoughts.

Many of these thoughts are habitual thought patterns that we have been thinking for so long that we simply are no longer aware of them at all. We are no longer aware of the emotions, or the muscle tension.

Ironically, it is that very muscle tension that provides us with a kind of back door into recovering our awareness of those thoughts and emotions. There is a certain way of meditating that allows us to become aware of the muscle tensions, and once we become aware of them, the thoughts that created them begin to emerge also.

Since we create our stress and anxiety with the thoughts of our undisciplined mind, it stands to reason that we can eliminate them by developing disciplined thinking habits such as those you will find if you look into learning critical thinking skills.

Of course, this is not the easy solution, but it is the best if you want long term results and acquire some useful skills that can be used in other areas of life.

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