Let’s talk about the three-letter word that you can use to hack your anxiety. Now, does anybody here have any guesses? Let’s see if you guys have any guesses. My husband was like, is it poo? I’m like, “No, it is not.” I do imagine, actually, if you said poo, poo, poo, poo, poo, that would make you feel less anxious. That being said, that is not the clinical suggestion that I have for you today. The clinical suggestion that I have for you today, the one word that you can say to really decrease your anxiety in the moment that you’re feeling anxious, drum roll, yes, Y-E-S.
Now, I know that’s probably counterintuitive to most of you because you spent time in therapy offices, learning how to control your anxiety, or how to turn off your anxiety. Right? That’s what medication is often geared to do, and so when we’re trained around trying to constantly be positive and trying to constantly trying to focus on, all good, all good, it’s all good, it’s all good, I’m positive, I’m positive, don’t let me think about the fear, don’t let me think about the negativity, don’t let me … That’s the culture that we live in, and so that we try to say no to our anxiety, basically. Whenever we’re feeling anxious, we try to say no.
Now, I’ll tell you why that doesn’t work and why saying yes does. There’s a rule, an energetic rule which is this, whatever you resist, persists. Here’s what I mean by that. When you resist, when you push something away, you are communicating to your body and to your mind that you can’t handle that, right, that you’re not strong enough to be able to handle that, and so it registers in your brain as something that you need to be fearful of, something you need to worry about because, clearly, you can’t handle it. That’s why you’re resisting it in the first place. You can’t handle it, and therefore, resist, resist, resist, but that gets lodged in your brain as something you should be fearful of.
Guess what? If something is lodged in your brain as something that you need to fear, that will be a cause of more anxiety in the future. Got it so far? That’s why saying no to an experience or to the feeling of anxiety or to something or someone who triggers your anxiety can actually exacerbate your anxiety. Similarly, trying to numb yourself consistently through drugs or drinking or just staying so busy that you never had time to even process the anxiety is a form of resisting it. It’s a form of saying no to it, and it just compels it even more inside of you.
The opposite of that is to say yes. Now, think about the energy behind the word yes. When you say yes to something like, “Yes, I want that,” or “Yes, I’d like to go there,” or “Yes, I’d like to do that.” Just say that word out right now. Say the word yes. It’s a very opening energy. It’s a expansive energy, right, because what that communicates to us is I like this. I got this. I can handle this. Okay, bring it on. Right? That’s what the word yes communicates.
The reason that neuro-linguistic programming is such a massive part of all personal development right now is because the words that you choose to use deeply, deeply, deeply inform the way that you’re feeling inside. When you can choose to use the word yes in a situation where you’re feeling anxious or overwhelmed, you will actually be communicating to yourself that you’re calm and relaxed in that situation, that you either like or can totally handle or don’t mind whatever situation is coming up. Therefore, your body is going to be relaxed in that situation.
For example, when I had chronic anxiety, I used to get such bad anxiety whenever I would take tests in high school and college, and I would had to have a separate room for my test because I would literally bite my nails off, bite off all the pencil, bite of all the eraser, like chronic, terrible, shaking, couldn’t finish a test, had to throw up every second anxiety. Okay? It was terrible. What I was trained to do was to try to resist that, to try to say, “Hey, I’m going to do great on this test,” or “Hey, anxiety, go away, you’re not going to help me in this situation,” or “Oh, I wish I didn’t have to take this test right now.” Right?
That’s all forms of saying no. That’s all resistance. By the time I actually sat down to that test, I hated my anxiety, I hated the test, I hated the way that I was used to responding in there, so it’s all of this even more negative energy, even more anxious energy, even more contracted energy around that test. When I learned to start saying yes, yes to the test, yes to the anxiety I’m feeling about the test, yes to the contraction in my body, yes, yes, yes to all of it, what happened was I started to soften, I started to relax, and almost be able to laugh about what was going on.
You can do the same thing too. You can use the word yes to hack the way you feel about a situation. Let’s do this together so you can start to believe me. Okay? I want you to just close your eyes, and I want you to imagine a situation that has traditionally brought up or something upcoming for you that you’re a little bit worried will cause anxiety or that you often get anxiety in. Maybe it’s Mother’s Day and so your mother makes you anxious, or maybe you have another kind of a social gathering this week, and that’s going to make you anxious or just maybe, it’s being alone on a Friday night. That’s what makes you anxious.
Whatever it is, I want you to close your eyes and just see this full situation in front of you, so see the situation or the person or the thing that traditionally makes you feel anxious and experience that anxiety in your body. Imagine this situation or this person or this thing is approaching you and just notice in your body what’s happening. What are you feeling in your chest, in your belly, in your shoulders, in your neck? What’s going on?
Then as you notice that, I want you to start saying no to that situation or that person or that feeling or that thought, no to the anxiety, no to the feelings of contraction, no to the situation, no to the person, no, no, no, resist it, push back. Okay? Keep, literally, in your mind addressing a stream of the word no at your experience, at that thing that makes you anxious.
Now, I want you to notice, how does that make you feel? What is going on in your body as you say no? More contracted, right? It’s like you’re like, “No,” like I got my fist up, like, “No, no, no, no, no.” It’s a contracted, anxious physiology with the word no. Okay? Now, hopefully, you could feel how anxiety actually increased when you resisted it. Now, take one deep nice clearing breath in, exhale, release it.
Now, go back to that same place, that same person that typically brings up some anxiety for you, so whatever that person is, see their face, or the words that you fear someone say or the feelings of loneliness that might trigger that anxiety, go back to it, go into that situation. See all the things that you would see. Feel all the things that you would fee. Allow the anxiety to arise again. Now, start saying yes, yes to my anxiety, just literally address like a stream energetically of the word yes, yes to the anxiety, yes to the fear, yes to this person who triggers the hell out of me, yes to this situation that triggers the hell out of me. Yes to all of it. Keep saying yes, yes, yes.
Now, notice once again what happens to your body when you start saying yes to your anxiety, you allow. Right? You’re communicating to yourself, yes, I can handle this. Yes, this is no big deal. Yes, I’m willing to work with this. Yes. Yes. Yes. That physically opens you up and physically calms down your nervous system, and so it’s the fastest way to hack your anxiety to stop resisting and start allowing by using the word yes and energetically offering that to yourself over and over when the feelings and the thoughts start coming up. You can totally change the way you relate to a situation by changing the way that you talk to yourself, and therefore, the way that you’re feeling inside when that trigger comes up over and over and over.
Remember, here’s your takeaway, whatever you resist, persists, and whatever you allow will calm down. That has been one of the biggest tricks for me when I have a situation or a person or a thing that brings up anxiety. I hope this is of service to you and can lead you into a really calm and beautiful weekend. Like I said before, if you have questions, please put it on the comment box here.
For those of you who are not already in my incredible program Freedom From Anxiety, you need to be in there if you’re somebody who’s struggling with your mental health. It’s an incredible program. It teaches the five natural steps you have to take in order to be able to really gain freedom from anxiety for your life. This isn’t a short-term coping solution. This isn’t about just finding the right supplement and trying to run away as fast as you can and wish it never happened, trying to get back to some old version of you. This is about learning how to honor your mind and your body and your soul in a way that will heal you permanently and make you live a more fulfilling life than you could have ever imagined.
That’s what anxiety did for me. It was always a map that I never knew how to read, but it was a map to how I needed to heal my heart, how I needed to heal my body, and how I needed to heal my soul by living in greater alignment with my true values and my authentic calling, and so I train you on how to use your anxiety as a map to your own best life, and in the meantime, of course, you learn to manage your mental health, you learn to feel amazing and work with your own emotions.
It’s an incredible healing journey, and so I’m going to put the link in the comments. I hope to see you guys there. Of course, you can join anytime, and we have live calls every other week, but don’t miss this course. It will truly change your life as it has for so many others. I can’t wait to see you there.
P.S. Whenever you’re ready… here are 4 ways I can help you embrace self-love and build bulletproof mental health:
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