Counselling for Anxiety & Depth Psychotherapy, 2: Flow
Counselling for anxiety shows us that anxiety pulls us out of the flow of life, and /a-midlife-transition can show us how and why this occurs. How can we avoid this hijack, and push through our anxiousness to live life in our natural rhythm?
Anxiety Rips Us Out of the Present
Our own experience of anxiety shows that we’re not really in the present when gripped by an anxious state. Psychologically, that state pulls us into the past or the future — and possibly both. Counselling for anxiety shows that our struggle with anxiousness will either maroon us in the past, in past failures struggles or conflicts, or in the future, paralyzed by fear around future outcomes.
It All Relates to the Self
Anxious states pose big questions for us about either our own security or capability — or both. The questions most often associated with anxiety refer to oneself, such as, “Am I going to be alright?” or “Am I going to be able to do or accomplish XYZ?” In one way or another, our anxious unease poses questions to us about the well-being and preservation of the self, and/or about personal identity.
Anxious States are Rooted in Our Complexes
From a Jungian perspective, anxious states are rooted in persistent mental objects called complexes. These are knots or clusters of emotional energy that gather around a certain stimulus. When a complex is activated, we are drawn back into old emotions and feelings, which keep us disconnected from the present situation. Often, because of the way that the brain works, when we are caught up in the intense emotion produced by a complex, we do not think clearly, and we do not have a good sense of ourselves, and of our boundaries. We get tangled up, and are unable to move through the challenge of the situation with any sort of natural flow.
Acting From Ourselves in the Now
In the process of counselling for anxiety, the primary question faced is a question that is also found in /a-midlife-transition. Put basically, that question might be stated as “How can I truly be myself in this situation, with confidence in who I am?” A creative answer to that question can only be found when we understand in ourselves the emotional obstacles that stop us from “flowing” in the present – the complexes. Untangling these knots, and getting to their sources, is a key goal in /a-midlife-transition work.
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