Often when suffering from anxiety or depression we feel that these distressing difficulties have control over us and we are powerless to fight against them. We often feel weighed down by these struggles which often makes it that much more difficult to overcome. However, the good news is that by changing the way we view anxiety and depression we can start the process of overcoming them.
Often I hear people say “My anxiety” or “My depression”. These statements make it more difficult to overcome and fight against anxiety and depression. When we say that it is “My anxiety” or ‘I am an anxious person” we own that. We make it part of us, when in reality anxiety and depression are not a part of who we are. We are not Anxiety nor are we Depression. Anxiety and Depression are separate entities. I capitalize Anxiety and Depression to show that they are their own entity: they are not part of who we are.
When we no longer own Anxiety and Depression and externalize it as a separate entity, which helps us overcome it. We now see it as something separate from ourselves, something outside of ourselves. When we see something as outside of ourselves it gives it less power. When we see Anxiety and Depression as an entity with less power, it begins to decrease. We no longer own it or give it power. We are showing Anxiety and Depression that it actually has less power over us and that the lie that it tells us, that we are anxiety or depression, is false.
Not only that, but it also gives us freedom from blame and shame. Often we blame ourselves for feeling anxious or depressed. When we feel anxiety or depression is a part of us we begin to feel shame about who we are. But when we realize that we are not Anxiety or Depression we have freedom from blame and shame. It also allows us to give freedom to others and no longer blame them for the anxiety and depression that we are experiencing. Anxiety and depression just happen. It is no one’s fault. We just need to learn how to fight against Anxiety and Depression when they start to creep up.
Now that we have pushed Anxiety and Depression outside of who we are and have made it a separate entity other than us, what do we do?
- Now we can better figure out how and when anxiety or depression entered our lives. Since it is no longer a part of who we are, we can find an origin of when it started
- What are the triggers?
- Look at how it has weaved its way into the storyline of our lives.
- Work with someone to begin to create a new storyline of our lives without Anxiety and Depression.
This appears to be just a simple shift we can use in our thoughts and our language. When we come to realize that Anxiety and Depression are no longer apart of us, it is one of the first steps we can take towards freedom. It lifts the heavy burden of shame and blame and the weight that we feel from carrying around something that wasn’t even ours to carry in the first place. This is where we begin the journey towards freedom from Anxiety and Depression.