Anxiety is a conspiracy theory about yourself
Daily Dose of Integrity
I heard a fucking good quote the other day:
“Anxiety is like having conspiracy theories about yourself”
One of the biggest changes I’ve noticed in my life since working on Nice Guy recovery and building my confidence is that my anxiety has basically gone away.
I used to be anxious all the time, and I do mean all the fucking time, to the point where I didn’t even know I was anxious because it was so constant. It was only when it went away that I realized it was even there in the first place – this sort of sick buzzing feeling in my stomach was all I knew.
What I’ve since realized from working with coaching clients is that chronic anxiety is based on the belief that you will not be able to handle whatever happens in the future.
Anxiety is a sign that you hold a pessimistic theory about your own inability to manage things. You think of yourself as incapable, so of course as soon as you start imagining future issues, you also imagine that you’ll get them “wrong”.
You worry about your future self in the same way you might worry about a 5 year old getting behind the wheel of a car. You think, “This cannot end well!”
This creates a feedback loop from Hell. Your anxiety makes you believe that you can’t be trusted to solve problems, so you avoid problems, which leads to not solving them, which confirms your theory that you can’t be trusted, which increases your anxiety.
The cure to this kind of long-term self-loathing anxiety is to get managing things.
It’s about breaking the cycle by taking on “impossible” problems, actively and physically. It’s about taking risks, making bold decisions, and getting shit done, in order to prove to your brain you will be able to handle things, even if they go wrong.
You don’t need to be perfect and get everything right. You just need to prove to yourself that you will survive whatever you attempt. Then your anxiety has no need to come up.
The simple fact is, you’re too hard on yourself. You’re much more capable than you believe, as evidenced by your ongoing survival. Your mind is lying to you.
To blast through your anxiety, check out my Shamelessness course