If you’re someone who worries, well – don’t worry about it: all of us do, at one time or another.
Sometimes we worry about something particular: money, the economy, our children, our parents, our health, whether we locked the door – you know. And then some of us get caught up in the sum total of our worries without any particular one being identifiable; we generalize our worry, and that’s what is known as anxiety.
Our parents teach us to worry, often by catastrophizing. "Don't stick your hand out the car window - you might lose it!" "Wear your jacket, or you might get pneumonia!." "Picking at moles can give you cancer!" Fables, such as "The Grasshopper and the Ant" offer stories with disastrous consequences for wrong behavior.
A lot of our worrying is a futile attempt at control. There are lots of potential disasters out there: financial collapse, nuclear war, natural disasters, terrorists, dirty hands. Somehow it seems better to worry about what might happen, playing out different scenarios in our minds, than not thinking about it at all. You start worrying about bills, then about running out of money, and pretty soon you’re thinking about how you’re going to cope with being in a homeless shelter.
I teach all my clients self-hypnosis, and we work with both the thinking behind worry and the feelings that both drive the worry and result from it, using especially Core Transformation and Wholeness, getting you to a place where you can be much calmer. Plan for what you can and for the rest - trust!
If you have ever experienced a panic attack, you know how terrifying it can be; you will probably go to great lengths to avoid having another one.
The anticipation of panic attacks is often the basis of common phobias, such as fear of driving, fear of bridges, fear of flying, and agoraphobia – fear of “unsafe” places (which may be any place outside your house). The individual fears and tries to avoid any place or situation in which they might have a panic attack. It is this “anxiety about the anxiety” that actually constrains and limits the person’s life, not the panic attack itself.
I have worked successfully with a number of individuals for whom panic was a major obstacle to leading a comfortable life. They have ranged from agoraphobics to people with fear of flying or driving. NLP (Neuro-linguistic Programming) offers several ways of removing the emotion from the memory of a traumatic event, or substituting a positive image for a negative one that used to trigger distress and anxiety (for example, the image of disaster: crashing, bodies, blood, and fire that triggered a client’s phobia of flying, whenever he was about to get on a plane).
When people regularly practice “Finding the Zone”, the combination of self-hypnosis and meditation that I teach most of my clients, they notice positive changes in their ability to handle stress, often a general “mellowing-out”. Core Transformation and Wholeness are other powerful tools that help heal the neurology that is driving the panic and anxiety.
At the core of Post-Traumatic Stress (I don't like the term "disorder") is a phobia response - sometimes flashbacks - often intertwined with complex combinations of grief, guilt, shame, regret, and/or troublesome internal voices. Resolution involves teasing these strands apart and working with each in turn.
We address the phobic response with any of several NLP techniques, and the interconnected feelings and emotions using hypnosis, Wholeness, and Core Transformation.
To fully resolve Post-Traumatic Stress may take longer-term work, more than the 3-5 sessions required in with other, lesser issues. The good news is that, working together over time, we can get resolution, allowing the suffering to end and the individual to get his or her life back.
Donald Pelles, PhD
Hypnosis Silver Spring
10410 Kensington Parkway
Kensington, MD 20895