Cognitive Therapy For Anxiety
Anxiety and fear live in the future. Peace of mind lives in the present moment. Let's work together to find some peace.
Do you have trouble falling asleep or wake in panic?
Are you worrying about things you really feel aren't that important?
Having trouble following through with tasks like work, travel or social experiences?
Preoccupied by what others think of you?
If your days are filled with the following:
Worry that something bad is going to happen
Fear of losing control
Constant worry about what others might think of you
Difficulty making decisions
Feeling intimidated by your boss or colleagues
What about physical symptoms like:
Feeling faint or lightheaded
Anxiety takes many forms. It can range from difficulty making decisions or managing life's challenges to physical symptoms like rapid heart beat and excessive sweating. In some cases, it might have even landed you in the emergency room thinking there was something medically wrong. Regardless of how your anxiety experience, I understand it being uncomfortable. I understand it can at times make life seem unmanageable. Every day I hear stories of men and women struggling to find calm from lingering feelings of panic and worry. Sometimes they understand fully where these feelings stem from. Others have no idea why they find themselves caught in a loop of constant worry. The good news is, you don't have to know the reason to start finding some relief.
Often clients tell me they have dealt with anxiety for "as long as they can remember." Others say they have "just come to terms" with it being a part of their personality. If you are tired of shaping your life around your anxiety through behaviors like avoiding social situations, using alcohol or drugs to "take the edge off" or convincing yourself that "some things are just not for me", then by reading this page, you are taking steps to move past those patterns of thinking.
Possibly people have suggested you "just relax" or that you should consider going on medication? Those are great suggestions. We can all benefit from stress management and sometimes medication is a great temporary option. But we all know that getting to the root cause of anxiety can be tremendously helpful for our long term mental wellbeing.
Maybe you've gotten so good at hiding your anxiety, that no one would ever know how uncomfortable you are. It's ok to let someone you trust know how much you've been suffering. It's important to find someone that understands just how difficult living with anxiety can be. Getting the support of someone who validates how crippling anxiety actually is can be a game changer.
Life doesn't have to be this hard.
If you are interested in exploring proven ways to eliminate your anxiety for good, you've come to the right place.
Anxiety is a Common Human Experience
Did you know that according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States? According to ADAA, over 40 million Americans suffer from some form of anxiety disorder. But just because a lot of people experience it doesn't make it "normal". In fact, those 40 million reported have what we call "disordered" anxiety.
So how do we determine what is "normal" versus a seriously disruptive experience such as social anxiety or obsessive-compulsive disorder? Normal anxiety can be beneficial for motivating us to change our life circumstances or alert us that we are challenging ourselves outside our comfort zones. Athletes and other successful people in their field describe healthy anxiety as the "nerves" before a game or the feeling of adrenaline before a speech to a large audience. People who have mastered the "short term" anxiety experience find it useful to motivate and achieve. On the other hand, disordered anxiety causes a disruption in our lives and relationships.
There are many types including:
Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)
Social anxiety disorder
Major depressive disorder
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Separation anxiety disorder
The good news is, however, we have so many effective treatment approaches to address anxiety disorders.
There are Effective Treatments for Anxiety and Panic
Now that you've determined you are no longer interested in living a life made small by anxiety, worry and panic, it's important to start taking a look at supportive treatment options. One of the most effective ways of relieving anxiety in a relatively short amount of time is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). This combined with a self care plan and ongoing stress management can have you well on your way to finding relief.
Our sessions begin with a thorough assessment which can take between 30-45 minutes. Here I will review your history. We may use some of the information in upcoming sessions otherwise, it's just for reference and we acknowledge it as part of your history. Together we focus on the aspects of your past, present and future that you determine relevant to your healing. From there, some clients like to set goals. We can do this in a number of ways. Some people like anxiety measurement tools such as the Generalized Anxiety Disorder Scale GAD7. Others prefer to set goals like "I'd like to eliminate panic attacks" or "I want to be less anxious at work." These goals are yours. I am here to help you set reasonable goals in a timeframe and to work toward those using the tools and training I bring to the sessions. This can include modalities like CBT, trauma focused therapy, hypnotherapy, or mindfulness based stress reduction.
After assessment you will get a chance to experience 1-2 modalities of treatment. There we can start to determine a way of working together that might be a good fit. After we determine the best way of working, we agree on a treatment schedule. Generally clients begin therapy at least once per week, sometimes more depending on their needs. One time weekly sessions are a minimum for beginning treatment in order to see results and get the most from your sessions.
Ongoing therapy sessions can include a range of techniques from many different types of treatment. I utilize evidence-based practices including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) as a basis for anxiety treatment. CBT is a simple exploration of your thoughts, feelings and actions. In these sessions, you will begin to understand the principles of CBT, learn skills to overcome thinking patterns, practice these skills at home and discuss progress or challenges during sessions. Once you have learned the skills, you have them for life and can use them whenever you need.
Sessions can also include or focus around other modalities including hypnotherapy and creative visualization. This process, unlike cognitive therapy, relies on your ability to practice deep relaxation along with, safe, personalized visualization and subtle suggestion. I am trained in Eriksonian hypnosis from the NLP Center of NY. We follow a philosophy that "all hypnosis is self hypnosis". Hypnotherapy is the perfect, gentle, big breath-taking, deep relaxation feeling, kind of session we could all use once in a while.
Let's face it, sometimes our bodies need a gentle reminder that we are safe from all the craziness of the city.
Sometimes anxiety can stem from a history of trauma. In cases where trauma has been identified, we work together to develop a trauma-focused treatment plan. This can also include cognitive therapy, hypnotherapy, relational therapy and Internal Family Systems Therapy.
You Can Live Anxiety Free
If you are ready to find relief from anxiety and panic, or if you have additional questions about anxiety treatment, please call me at 347.994.9301.
We are Out of Network with all insurances, however we are happy to review your benefits. In some circumstances I can file your insurance for you.
Some common insurances we work with include UnitedHealthcare, Aetna and Cigna. Contact us today to see if we can work together!