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Anxiety v 12 steps

Old 06-13-2016, 10:03 AM
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Anxiety v 12 steps

I have been going to meetings regularly and been through the 12 steps. I feel very good for doing it and it has no doubt helped and is helping me stay sober for many years.
The problem is I suffer anxiety, I have since I can remember, always had sweaty palms and always very shy. Obviously drink and drugs were a great solution to my problems.
My anxiety has been that bad at points that I couldn't speak , totally lost my voice while trying to speak to people. When I stand in queue sometimes I a wanna jump out my skin, also in meetings I can get hot flashes and feel really uneasy. I like the sanctuary of my own company and home were I feel safe.

My sort of question or if anyone could give me feedback is, has anxiety disappeared from you as you have done the 12 steps and are working them in your life? Do any of you have the same struggles? Also is anxiety a real condition or is it just mean you are scared? I'm going to see another therapist soon, the last one fobbed me off but really my sobriety counts on me getting over it and maybe some therapists don't know the lengths I've came and the darkness I've left to get this far.

I do yoga n meditate n do a lot of exercise too so just hoping for some feedback , thanks.

Peace
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Old 06-13-2016, 10:15 AM
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After 11 or so years sober, my sobriety mentor (kind of a quasi-sponsor, who happened to also be a physician) pointed me in the direction of help for my anxiety and depression, and I haven't looked back.

Problems fixed, with the exception of a few, fairly rare, flare-ups.

My sobriety is no longer threatened by anxiety issues.
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Old 06-13-2016, 10:25 AM
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i was anxious as a child. I blamed the crummy conditions and constant fear of the next beating. as i got old i just drank and drugged it away. Once i quit that anxiety came back with a vengence not that it ever really went away.

I think i have 2 types of anxiety. 1 type is like anxious about situations and such. IE social anxiety or worry about possible outcomes or anxious about upcoming things and so on. But the other type is like this anxiety that basicly comes out of nowhere for no rhyme or reason and blindsides me.

I refuse to do meds for fear of another addiction and or something else i'll just have to battle to get off of one day.

Meditation and buddhaism type stuff has really helped me out as well at least with the anxieyt about various life situations.

Also excercise has helped tremendously. But as of lately i'm having probelms in that department battling injuries and nothing seems to be satisfying that void and this scares me becuase excercise is a very useful tool in my toolbox. So if i loose this I'm in trouble!

so in short simply sobering up and repairing my life didnt suddenly fix my anxiety. sure the panic eased up some but that is about it.

and i'm finding there is no cure. for me its just every single day i gotta be on top of it is all. It does stink but it is what it is.
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Old 06-13-2016, 10:39 AM
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I deal with anxiety too, and i've had to acknowledge that for me it is a distinct problem separate from my addiction. I certainly used/abused alcohol in an attempt to self medicate, but it obviously did not work. I've been doing some therapy sessions and trying to learn personal mindfulness/meditation skills and it's definitely been helping.
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Old 06-13-2016, 10:45 AM
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Booze def. Made my anxiety worse in the end.

When we drink, it goes away. When we stop it comes back like a freightliner.

Now clean over 1 year, it is nice o see the world as it really is.

Before I quit I was always...drunk, hung over, or detoxing.

My anxiety has went away for the most part since I quit.

Now I make other people anxious w my sober shinanigans.

Heheh.
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Old 06-13-2016, 11:59 AM
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I dont think any of our defects of character completeky disappear do they, so fear isn't going to be any different. We always have to be watchful for them, and ask our HP to remove them when we notice them surfacing. Mine certainly hasn't disappeared, but when it emerges I'm able to pause and not just go with it. I don't think of it as part of me any more, rather just a feeling that will pass if I practice some simple meditation.

My fave on spot one is to breathe in slowly thinking, God In, then out slowly, thinking Fear Out. Repeat 4 times. If it's slightly worse then I might need to escape somewhere to close my eyes and go through each sence (hear, smell, feel, taste, etc) to get nyself back in the moment and kind of reset myself.
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Old 06-13-2016, 12:24 PM
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Originally Posted by SoberCAH View Post
After 11 or so years sober, my sobriety mentor (kind of a quasi-sponsor, who happened to also be a physician) pointed me in the direction of help for my anxiety and depression, and I haven't looked back.

Problems fixed, with the exception of a few, fairly rare, flare-ups.

My sobriety is no longer threatened by anxiety issues.
Could you explain how you done this please?
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Old 06-13-2016, 12:47 PM
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Thanks for your help on this.
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Old 06-13-2016, 05:15 PM
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Originally Posted by SoberCAH View Post
After 11 or so years sober, my sobriety mentor (kind of a quasi-sponsor, who happened to also be a physician) pointed me in the direction of help for my anxiety and depression, and I haven't looked back.

Problems fixed, with the exception of a few, fairly rare, flare-ups.

My sobriety is no longer threatened by anxiety issues.
I agree with SC, my doctor was able to help me as well.. I'd go speak to a professional.. I feel your pain, horrible feeling.. Wishing you the best!
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Old 06-13-2016, 05:29 PM
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the program even says its not a cure all for everything and encourages us to seek outside help.

the steps helped me,too, with anxiety(fear), but i still had problems with it, so i talked to my doctor about it. it wasn't easy accepting i have some sort of imbalance happening in my brain, but accepting that and getting properly medicated has helped tremendously.
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Old 06-13-2016, 05:44 PM
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I think in addition to my ongoing sobriety, participating in therapy, and medication have worked. I'm, however, really trying to wrap my mind around meditation as I know this is what I need. I've also been trying to tap in to my spirituality...I know it's in there somewhere-
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Old 06-14-2016, 06:30 AM
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I have a lot of anxiety, especially social anxiety and I have found that going to 12 steps meetings has been helping me. I see it as a 'relatively' safe place to push myself. I started out just by forcing myself to walk up to someone and say hi, which was almost impossible for me to do for the longest time, and now that I have been doing it more regularly it has started to get a bit easier. Next was asking for phone numbers, then calling those numbers, then asking someone to go for coffee, sharing at a meeting, etc. All of these things still cause me a lot of anxiety, especially sharing, where my heart is racing and my hands and even legs are noticeably shaking, but I have noticed improvements over time and the progress is encouraging!
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Old 06-14-2016, 07:38 AM
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Thanks for the responses, it's good to know I'm not alone.
I am going to see another professional counsellor in few weeks , so will see how that goes. I've started taking valerian root too and trying to eat n Exersice more. Just at a couple of years sober and thought I'd be super sober and made of steel. !
But it's definitely improved over the years , I just gotta keep on trudging :-)
God Bless yeez.
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Old 06-14-2016, 07:45 AM
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I took that valerian extract in early sobriety. It seemed to help some. anxiety is the pitts i tell ya.

it gets more manageable. I spoke to a friend once who was having an anxious time in his life. He had never really dealt with anxiety before. I was baffled explained that its a regular all day thing for me he was liek OMG if i had to deal with this all day long i'd go ntus i'm liek YEP.
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Old 06-14-2016, 10:06 AM
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Miko -

I went to a physician who is well-versed in addiction and 12 step recovery, and he gave me meds which make my (previously constant) anxiety go away.

The meds he gave me are indicated for a person in recovery. They are the same ones routinely dispensed in treatment centers.

They aren't benzos or any similar type of drug.

My depression was periodic, but anxiety was my default state of awareness for many years.

Not fun.

My problem has been largely fixed since 1999.

I get a little break-through depression or anxiety from time to time and adjust my meds accordingly to alleviate the problem.

I wouldn't trade exercise and prayer for anything, or working the 12 steps of AA, but I am comfortable taking meds prescribed by a physician who spends his time trying to get people into 12 programs and treatment centers.

They have certainly worked for me.

I view my mental health as a 3 legged stool consisting of AA, a pursuit of God personally and through my faith, and taking my meds.

For someone who struggled as badly as I did for many years, I feel like I'm doing very well.
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Old 06-14-2016, 01:53 PM
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Originally Posted by miko67 View Post
I have been going to meetings regularly and been through the 12 steps. I feel very good for doing it and it has no doubt helped and is helping me stay sober for many years.
The problem is I suffer anxiety, I have since I can remember, always had sweaty palms and always very shy. Obviously drink and drugs were a great solution to my problems.
My anxiety has been that bad at points that I couldn't speak , totally lost my voice while trying to speak to people. When I stand in queue sometimes I a wanna jump out my skin, also in meetings I can get hot flashes and feel really uneasy. I like the sanctuary of my own company and home were I feel safe.

My sort of question or if anyone could give me feedback is, has anxiety disappeared from you as you have done the 12 steps and are working them in your life? Do any of you have the same struggles? Also is anxiety a real condition or is it just mean you are scared? I'm going to see another therapist soon, the last one fobbed me off but really my sobriety counts on me getting over it and maybe some therapists don't know the lengths I've came and the darkness I've left to get this far.

I do yoga n meditate n do a lot of exercise too so just hoping for some feedback , thanks.

Peace
The only real solution to my anxiety is *internal*.

That means I live in Steps 10, 11, and 12 as best as I can, in order to *change my thinking*. I'm on meds too but it's a very low dose and hope to one day be off of them. I also see a therapist. Saying the fear prayer/God affirmations helps tremendously. My anxiety is from old tapes that I keep replaying and feeding into. It's ego/mind and not from God/spirit.

External things like yoga, meditation, exercise, eating right help, too, but IMHO they're not the be all end all.
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Old 06-14-2016, 03:09 PM
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Originally Posted by SoberCAH View Post
Miko -

I went to a physician who is well-versed in addiction and 12 step recovery, and he gave me meds which make my (previously constant) anxiety go away.

The meds he gave me are indicated for a person in recovery. They are the same ones routinely dispensed in treatment centers.

They aren't benzos or any similar type of drug.

My depression was periodic, but anxiety was my default state of awareness for many years.

Not fun.

My problem has been largely fixed since 1999.

I get a little break-through depression or anxiety from time to time and adjust my meds accordingly to alleviate the problem.

I wouldn't trade exercise and prayer for anything, or working the 12 steps of AA, but I am comfortable taking meds prescribed by a physician who spends his time trying to get people into 12 programs and treatment centers.

They have certainly worked for me.

I view my mental health as a 3 legged stool consisting of AA, a pursuit of God personally and through my faith, and taking my meds.

For someone who struggled as badly as I did for many years, I feel like I'm doing very well.

Thanks for your reply S C , could I ask what they were called as I've been on different meds too and they never helped.
Thanks
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