The Invisible Cage
Writing from a beach view, the dog is sniffing around and wagging her tail off, she is so utterly happy. To think that the walk this morning nearly didn't go ahead due to anxiety and fear. That sucks. My dog suffers as a result of the invisible prison I have been living in. The invisible cage that stops me meeting others, going out, being "normal". The barriers prevent me from walking my dog, trying on clothes in a shop, having a coffee with my husband.
I use my experiences around living with anxiety disorder to help others cope with their invisible cells. We talk about our terrors and how sometimes it sounds comical when you hear yourself retelling stories of when the cage drops around you.
Anxiety isn't the only invisible cage, so many people struggle with stepping outside of their comfort zones.
All the platitudes around things happening outside of the comfort zone ARE true. However the invisible cage will stop you in your tracks.
Often frozen in our tracks as we are confused with the messages out there. The media are ruining our judgement and we are following flocks in fashion, fitness and living life. Stress of life is affecting our reasoning, our health and sanity.
But most importantly our own self limiting beliefs stop us, the brain is so God-damn bossy, it stops the heart following our desires and pushing us out of the comfort zone.
What is more important Mrs Brain? Taking the dog for a walk and seeing her wag her tail off or stay at home just in case you may or may not bump into someone, that may or may not have an opinion of you?
Ask the question to the Mrs Heart and there is only one answer:- go walk, run and lose time with your pet who unconditionally adores you.
I'm too old, too fat, too stupid, am un-coordinated, too young, not clever enough, too broken to ever make a change.
Change is fabulous, it is exhilarating, it is terrifying and wonderful in the same breath. Yes you could be losing something good but could always be gaining something fabulous. But it is better than regret.
Just wanting to stop that feeling of being locked in, can help drive change. Writing down your fears, then with baby steps, time and determination, you can begin to expand your boundaries.
For some, the need to address their own sanity may involve traditional approaches such as using medication and therapy. There are many practises including CBT and mindfulness that can assist with focus, and keep you in the present, opposed to catastrophising situations. Such as, "What if I fail?" "What if I make a fool of myself?" I'll never be able to...... add a splash of self talk to the journey outside the cage and then make the leap of faith!
Nope. As a coach I have seen so many barriers, mostly intrinsic (internal) barriers which can be the cause of why we resist change. Sometimes our lives need to be completely shaken up, mixed around and rearranged in order to realise that where we are, is not where we should be.
When you are fighting a war inside your head, it becomes exhausting. Change is constant in life, we age, we evolve, we die. Resilience becomes the lesson of being trapped in the cage? What have we learnt?
Sometimes we are most afraid of the very thing that will set you free.