Anxiety is something many people struggle with. Stephen Fillmore, who provides drop-in counselling at the Streetlight Centre, has written a reflection on combating anxiety.
As an additional service of the Christian Counselling Centre to the Streetlight community, Pastor Aasman and I have begun conducting question and answer sessions on relevant counselling-related topics. Our fourth session covered anxiety. The session consisted of six parts: a video clip, defining anxiety, what brings episodes of anxiety on, how we try to make it go away, coping skills, and the biblical response.
To manage anxiety, I would suggest these three concepts:
- Stop stress-speak
- Renew the mind
- Perspective change
In other words, talk differently, think differently, and adjust our focus from our circumstances to our God.
If we continually verbalize our anxieties, we give them power, and can forget that God is all power!
This said, it must also be acknowledged that not all anxiety is necessarily a bad thing. The fight-flight response is a normal reaction to anticipated danger. Can it be said that anxiety is in the eye of the beholder? We each have different stressors and triggers which may increase our levels of anxiety for a time, until we return to homeostasis.
But what about those with debilitating anxiety? Prescribed medications and various naturopathic approaches may help, but compassion is always needed.
M.Div./Counselling, Christian Counselling Centre