Author Archive

Lise Kryger

Owner and founder of Voiceofanxiety.com and Slipangsten.dk.

How to make stress your friend!

Written by Lise Kryger. Posted in Blog, Stress

It is not only entirely bad to be stressed! But it requires that you change your attitude to the concept to be stressed!

Kelly McGonial is a psychologist at Stanford University. Through books, articles, courses and workshops, she works to help us to understand and implement the latest scientific evidence in psychology, neuroscience and medicine.

She is researching a new book “The upside of stress”, which looks at both why stress is good for us and what makes us good at stress. In her words: “The old understanding of stress as a unhelpful relic of our animal instincts is being replaced by the understanding that stress actually makes us socially smart – it’s what allows us to be fully human”.

In her talk she speaks about stress and the way we choose to deal with stress. When you choose to look at long-term stress as being something your body makes against you will side effects and damage to the body only worsen.

She says that the stress hormone oxicytin – also called “the cuddle hormone” does something to you under stress such as developing your empathy, and your desire to surround yourself with people who will support you. The oxicytin also makes that you pay attention to when someone you care about need your help and support. In other words, when you get stressed, you will simultaneously also more gets social.

Her message is that when you know this and choose to recognize it when you’re stressed, you’ll send yourself a signal that you can have confidence in yourself and know that you are well able to cope life when it’s tough and you are challenged – not to mention that you no longer need to do it alone.

Have you noticed your “cuddle hormone”?

 

Kelly McGonigal: How to make stress your friend (14:29 min.)

Is anxiety and sexuality still a taboo?

Written by Lise Kryger. Posted in Anxiety, Blog

anxiety_sexuality
There is a tiger after you, you hear its breath behind you, catching up with you at full speed! Its eyes burns in your neck and you are 100% sure that in a second it will set its enormous teeth into your throat and you will die immediately! Without a thought your brain puts you on high alert.

It is now you must survive!

What do you do? 1) Do you turn around and fight against the tiger? 2. Do you run? 3. Do you play dead? 4. Or is it now you need to ensure your species survival and throw yourself over the first person you see to bring children into the world?

What do you think your brain is programmed for ensuring your life? The first three proposals or the last?

Your brain was programmed in perilous situations to fight, flee or play dead. Not to make children play and enjoy. Not to express yourself sexually. Surviving is what you should and it’s exactly what your body do when you feel anxiety – also in your everyday life. You are not on the savannah, there is no tiger trying to hunt you down, but your brain think there is!

Do you still wonder why you find it difficult to feel sexual pleasure, while you are feeling anxious? It is quite natural that sexuality becomes inhibited when you feel anxious. You are made to create children in a safe environment, in security and peace and quiet places (stress can cause inhibiting contractions during childbirth because stress produces adrenaline and adrenaline affects oxytocin which stimulating contractions).

Your brain plays tricks on you! It causes your body to react to a situation which is not necessarily dangerous for you. It tells you that you are at risk even if you are safe.

Accept yourself here and now

Maybe there are lots of periods in between your anxious periods where you can enjoy and express your sexuality – maybe it’s not even a problem for you. It may also be that you are just one of those who blame yourself for not feeling desire, and your partner asks why you do not want sex anymore and you can not answer exactly why. Maybe you think there is something wrong with your sexual performance? You might blame yourself for not being more ready and willing – when the rest of the world is showing lust and sexuality in all media and magazines!

Have you had anxiety throughout your life, there has probably been a space enough for sexual adaptation along the way, but what if you suddenly have been struck from anxiety and suddenly melts down sexually? Do you know that it is natural and that it comes back when you cope with the anxiety and the reason for it?

Many experience side effects from the anxiety-medicine they get from the doctor. One of the major side effects is reduction of sexual desire. Can you accept that the sexual reduction while taking medications and does your partner? What do you do when you experience potency problems for a period in your life? Do you get even more anxiety and do you push yourself even harder?

No matter what the cause is and for how long you have had low sexual desire it is important to accept that it is your situation right here and now. Your thoughts and your assessment of your abilities can only be negatively reinforcing and push yourself more. This does not mean you think it’s nice or easy while you are in it, but by letting go of self-criticism and questions like “why me?” you can use your good thoughts to work with the issues that need your focus.

Get help! Reach out! Talk about it! Be open towards your partner! Ask your friends how they experience it when their sexuality is reduced when they are anxious or stressed. Find those of your friends that gives you a feeling of acceptance and recognition that you are where you are right now and think it’s okay though hard to be in. Break the taboo! There is usually a reason behind that you have to work with, if necessary with the help of a psychologist / therapist.

When you are turning around and look for the tiger – it is not there! So, you don´t have to fight, flee or play dead or feel anxiety. Accept and cope!

Are you anxious – or do you feel anxious? About “defusion”

Written by Lise Kryger. Posted in Anxiety, Blog

There is a difference in whether you are anxious or if you feel anxiety. Defusion can help you in your process of getting better.

There may be a big difference in your perception of being anxious depending on whether you have had a short period of anxiety as an adult or if you have struggled with it for many years. Maybe you’ve even never experienced anything but a life with anxiety.

Feeling united with anxiety

If you have experienced anxiety over long periods of time, the consequence might be that you almost forget how it feels to be you without anxiety, nervousness and a pounding heart. Since you, for a long time have been accustomed to consult yourself with the anxiety as a supervisor, it may be almost impossible to find your own inner voice. The voice that like a breath tells you who you are, what you like, what your values are, what makes you happy and where your natural limits are. Anxiety has been your companion for so long that you have added its whims and given the anxiety nourishment chunk for chunk from your body, soul and inner core. Because of that, it grew big inside of you, took space from you, until you backed into a corner and no longer were present.

Your expression has eventually changed you. Instead of getting a rush, palpitations, tensioned muscles and fingers that shakes you starts referring it as anxiety. Your anxiety. Anxiety that tells you what to do, when listening to it. Just as if it had fur, were able to speak and scares you the wits out. It has become a monster. Inherented in you. Anxiety is no longer a memory you have from a certain and specific situation, it is everywhere, in the past, and in all the performances you can show yourself about future situations.

You are not anxiety

The anxiety is not a monster. It is a feeling. A feeling which is specifically associated with certain situations, or related to stress or as a result of depression or other mental disorders. Anxiety is a basic condition, we as humans have to live with. A feeling and a danger-alarm that in its natural function is to provide us with knowledge and options for survival. Our reptilian brain has just not kept up with the evolution and we’ve got a danger alarm which is out of function and calling “danger” again and again.

You feel anxiety. You experience anxiety. You remember anxiety. You think of anxiety. But you are you. Anxiety is just a terrible state, a feeling that hits you and a feeling you relate to all the time.

And I know it from myself.

Since I have never experienced an adult life without anxiety I had almost grown together with it in my mind. I was the anxiety itself. Until it occurred to me one day when I sat as a trainee in the school of anxiety disorders. I was among those who saw themselves as united with anxiety the most. I discovered that many of the others from my team saw their anxiety as temporary and as something indescribably uncomfortable but that it was not them. I have since then worked extensively with it. To separate “me” from the anxiety. Discovering myself, finding out that I am more than anxiety.

I’m Lise. I am a woman, married to Peter, mother to my son. Daughter and sister. I am independent, wise, warm, outgoing, sometimes distant in my thoughts, slightly absent-minded (or much, some say), efficient, strong-willed, temperamental, annoying, and much, much more. All kind of things – a human. But most importantly in this context – even without anxiety.

Anxiety is not my core. Anxiety has taken a lot of space. Yes! But, it has not deprived myself from living a life. A life where I, in spite of the anxiety, have managed to create myself a life that enriches me and touches me deeply. I’ve managed to find my values​​, my desires, my needs and my limits, because I, in my search through the, sometimes all-consuming anxiety has demanded that I had to find my own way and separate myself from the anxiety. Separate myself from it.

How do you separate yourself from the anxiety?

  • Search information that explains you about anxiety and learn about how it develops
  • Describe who you are when you do not feel anxiety
  • Describe your values, your needs and your limits
  • Describe all the things you have achieved even if you have felt anxiety
  • Imagine the anxiety is just a highly uncomfortable feeling which slides of you when you show who you are and what you want
  • Write a letter to the anxiety

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