- Geri Robertson, RC
Anxiety Roads Less Travelled
Updated: Feb 3
Rewiring The Bain.......
Starts with being mindful of your brain and it's ability to change, not just your opinion, or your likes and dislikes but your actual brain function, called the synapse.
The synapse is the mapping of your brain. Thousands maybe millions of threads that look much like a highway structure. If you visualize your anxiety as being on a fast moving highway, speeding along at break neck speed the highway your anxiety turns onto and travels the minute you wake up; first thing your heart starts to pound, and your breathing comes on faster, there is tightness in your chest, your whole body is tense. All of these physical reactions are created by the thoughts travelling on a highway that has, over time, become like an autobahn, sleek, unfettered with stop signs or signals. It's the endless highway that goes on forever. The highway your anxiety has created and likes because there is nothing to stop it. Your anxiety has literally wired itself into your brain.
There is, however, the other highway, or more like a path, this is the path of reason, the road less traveled. It looks like a road, over grown with brambles growing onto the pavement, heavy underbrush that has grown up and over. This is the highway grown narrow and bumpy with lack of use, where the sun tries to shine thru the tall trees, shedding little but very bright light. This is were our minds use to go when dealing with stress or threat, or fear. We somehow along the way, however, got off this path of reason and now live on the autobahn created by over use, the place anxiety loves to travel at a fast and furious pace .
It is however, very possible within a split second we can imagine these two highways, and chose to go slightly left onto the rational path, this road less traveled. It's not as fast moving, it's a bit awkward and unfamiliar. However, Over time, carrying a big machete, in the form of persistent use, we can re-acquaint ourselves with this path, clearing the brambles and underbrush. It's the act of visualizing, clearing this rational path, that gives us a moment of distraction leaving our nervous system a moment to reset, creating just enough calm to think more clearly without the fear or thoughts of perceived threat. If this is done enough, this new highway we carve out will become the clear, smooth highway, the default highway and the autobahn of anxiety will fade. This new highway will bring us more calm, less fear, more quiet in our bodies and best of all the feeling of control where we thought there was none. This new highway gives a new perspective.
With practiced use we can learn to quieten our minds and take a more calm approach to the things we perceive as frightening or threatening, we can trim the trees and let the light shine on our faces soothing our bodies and our mind, by learning how to clear a path of rational thought, we have learned to rewire our brain.