It was such a good space to get things off my chest and discus my problems. It felt so good to be able to tell someone about what has been happening for me. I remember I just wanted to talk and talk… I wanted to tell everything and I felt safe to do so without censorship. I felt safe, trusted and understood. It was very comforting to be listened to and to know that I was not alone.
It taught me a different way of thinking about anxiety and I found it extremely useful.
I thought that my work was a major cause of my anxiety … and then I realised that my thinking about work was a major cause of my anxiety. And that’s a big difference!
I started to notice that my anxious feeling fluctuates and it reflects fluctuations in my thinking … and I didn’t have to do anything about it! I also noticed that my anxious feeling always eventually passes and a calmer mental state always returns. This was such an important breakthrough for me. It helped me not to be scared by my anxiety … because I realised that it was just like a wave washing through me … and I started to notice more and more moments when I felt calm and relaxed.
The key thing was learning that I didn’t have to give in to this anxious feeling. It was just a feeling! It didn’t have to stop me. I started to become more confident and taking more risks. I started to speak out in meetings… at the beginning I still felt anxious but somehow, I still did it.
I also started to open up to people and most of my colleagues shared with me that they also feel anxious when speaking in meetings.