Being anxious is like “a private prison we carry with us,” writes Alicia H. Clark, Psy.D, a licensed psychologist and anxiety expert in Washington, D.C., in her eye-opening book, Hack Your Anxiety: How to Make Your Anxiety Work for You in Life, Love and Work (co-written with Jon Sternfeld).
Over time, we try to avoid our anxiety and pretend this prison doesn’t exist. Nope. No anxiety here. Nothing to see here.
“This is completely understandable,” Clark told me. “[A]nxiety is uncomfortable, unsettling, can be confusing, and the vast majority of messages we hear about anxiety warn of its dangers and advise us to calm down at all costs.”
But the discomfort of anxiety is actually a good thing. Anxiety is supposed to be uncomfortable.
Clark further explained: “Like a baby’s cry, anxiety is designed to focus our attention and fuel action to solve the issue. It’s not designed to be ignored.” Which means that we can use anxiety to help us accomplish our goals…
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