The Off Switch

Anxiety is everywhere at the moment. It’s the most common mental illness. The question is why?

What are we so anxious about? What’s causing it? Why can’t we stop it? Why is it so hard to prevent?

The best way to find out the root of the problem is to look at the treatments and work back from there. So what works? Well for a start, medication works. Which means that whatever the medication is doing, we’re lacking. Most medications for anxiety calm your mind, others balance out your Monoamines. What it boils down to is slowing a fast paced mind.

But why are our minds going at such a fast pace?

Overstimulation.

We barrage ourselves everyday with TV, movies, videogames, social media, podcasts, eBooks, articles, and the rest of life’s wonderful creations and responsibilities. We overload ourselves. All day. Everyday.

Constant wants become constant demands and it becomes and endless cycle of feeding our brains. The problem is we get dissatisfied and need more, then more. Our brains end up not being able to handle the information we pump into it. So much so it triggers our sense of danger and its related bodily responses. We begin to shake, get hot flashes, sweat, everything in us tells us to run; but how do you run from a smartphone? How do you escape from a television screen? How do you escape from the barrage of bad news being dripfed into our social media timelines?

Switch off.

We need to switch off.

It sounds cliche, but the best offense against anxiety is cutting out the source. You need to be mindful. Not in the meditative sense, you need to be scientific with your approach. What is triggering your anxiety? What activities do it the most? What is it about the activity that feels daunting? It can be as simple as too much information, or as complicated as past trauma. You need to investigate it for yourself because you are the one who knows you best.

Be kind to yourself.

Switch off.

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