25 Apr How Working with a Psychologist for Anxiety Can Help

Posted at 9:08 am in Individual Therapy by jlbworks

While everyone can experience feelings of anxiousness in their day-to-day life, an anxiety disorder is a recurring, debilitating, and excessive form of worry that interferes with a person’s performance at work or school, his or her personal relationships, and in daily tasks.

Anxiety is very real and incredibly common; in fact, anxiety disorders affect 40 million American adults, or roughly 18% of the population. Even though anxiety is treatable, only 36% of these adults actually pursue and receive help.

Treatments for anxiety include – but are not limited to – medication, stress and relaxation techniques, meditation, psychodynamic psychotherapy, and a combination of these. Studies have shown that all can help individuals recover from crippling anxiety.

If you believe you are suffering from anxiety but are unsure what to do, seeing a psychologist can be your first step toward improving your quality of life.

Even though the thought of seeing a psychologist might seem intimidating at first, there are several ways they can help:

  1. Provide A Judgment-Free Zone
  2. Treat Any Co-Occurring Disorders
  3. Teach You to Practice Mindfulness, Self-Compassion
  4. Improve Your Quality of Life

Learn more about Dr. Phil Chanin, Nashville clinical psychologist, and his services to treat anxiety in your career and daily life.  

Provide A Judgment-Free Zone

Open-ended questions are at the core of psychodynamic therapy, questions like, “What have you been anxious about lately?” This gives you, the client, an opportunity to share whatever is on your mind in both a safe and receptive place.

Having a judgment-free person listening to you may be hard to comprehend, especially if you’ve previously been told by a loved one or friend, “Why do you worry about that?” or, “Just try not to worry about it.”

A psychologist wants to hear what goes on inside your mind and body when your anxiety is triggered – the racing thoughts, feelings of dread, shortness of breath, upset stomach, insomnia, etc. –  so they can forge a plan for treatment.

Trained in active listening, psychologists are able to sift through your thoughts and external processing to identify any unconscious patterns of negative feelings (e.g. constant self-blame) or behaviors that are contributing to your anxiety (e.g. excessive alcohol use). However, a quality psychologist does well to avoid shaming or embarrassing you when pointing out these patterns.

Contact Dr. Phil Chanin, a psychologist for anxiety in Nashville, TN

Treat Any Co-Occurring Disorders

Psychologists are also aware of how anxiety disorders can stem from a co-occurring disorder, and vice versa.

In fact, it is a reality that, if you have anxiety, you might also be suffering from depression; nearly half of individuals diagnosed with depression are also diagnosed with an anxiety disorder. Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are also closely related with anxiety disorders.

Teach You to Practice Mindfulness, Self-Compassion

On that note, a psychiatrist can help you respond to your stress rather than react and be controlled by it. In a few words, instructing you in mindfulness helps you learn to be aware of your emotional and physical states.

By practicing mindfulness, you can accept your emotions in a given situation, notice whether you need to catch your breath or eat a meal, and ultimately push-back against – in a healthy way, rather than ignoring –  any growing feelings of panic. This simultaneously helps you practice compassion and self-care when you are in a fragile, anxious state.

If you think about it, mindfulness returns a sense of control you may feel you lost to your anxiety. While this approach does not grant you control over situations or people, it is intended to remind you of the control you have to take care of your mind and body.

Mindfulness and self-compassion are life-long benefits of psychotherapy – even after your treatment has ended – that can help you be proactive and equipped to navigate symptoms of anxiety throughout your life.

Improve Your Quality of Life

Don’t allow anxiety to continue disrupting your life! Contact Dr. Phil Chanin, Licensed Clinical Psychologist Therapist in Nashville, about his anxiety therapy today.


For more about what to expect on your first visit to a psychologist, check out “Visiting A Psychologist for Anxiety: What to Expect.”