Crossing Over The Bridge of Anxiety

Image result for crossing a footbridge

Are you standing in front of a bridge that is in need of crossing? Are you feeling trapped in the past and you need to go forward?  What is holding you captive?  Is it fear and anxiety?

Guess what? You are not alone!  I’ve had my own battles and I’ve needed to cross over a bridge and move into a new reality. Is it easy? No. If you think so, then please share.  How is it working out for you?

For most people, anxiety can easily get the best of anyone. How do we overcome such fears and anxiety? How did I do it? For one thing, I have not arrived and I’m far from perfect.  If you’re willing, I’d like to share my own insights for crossing a bridge of anxiety.

A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to move Inspiration Point over to a web hosting company called Blue Host.  As per this writing, Blue Host is offering a special reduce rate for people, who would like to start a blog or website.

If I stayed with WordPress.com then, my bill would be $30 per year and I’d have limited ability to earn passive income. That is how bloggers earn a living.  It’s why we use Google AdSenxe and affiliate programs.  With Blue Host, my bill would be $93 for a three-year contract.  Sounds good.  Why the anxiety, though?

In the past, I have struggled with a fear of failure and a feeling of frustration at my inability to succeed. Surprise? You’d have thought I had confidence; however, my heart was riddled with fears and anxieties over my future.  I was in desperate need of a breakthrough and a sense of real success in my life.  It could not have been that bad. Could it?

How does a seizure sound to you? I had a few seizures in my adult years; however, they were not caused by epilepsy. How can I be certain? In ’95, one such seizure landed me in the hospital in Phoenix, AZ.  The doctors check me and it was not your normal epilepsy.

If I recall, epilepsy is a short circuit of the brain.  I had the blue moon variety and it’s only triggered by intense fear and anxiety.  Thankfully, I had the more manageable one; as I did not need medication.  Yet, I did need a “cure” for it.

What triggered it? Though I had finished my training for a potential job in the computer field; I was plagued with intense fears about getting one.  If you have a severe physical disability then, you will have an extremely tough time in getting employment.

Though it is very difficult; job opportunity is not impossible.  Sometimes, you need to get creative in your hunt for a job.  In those days, I did not have such a positive attitude.  I was certain that I’d not be given a chance.  This logic was pure crap! However, I could not see it.

I have heard of people, who struggle with something called Generalized Anxiety Disorder.  It is a severe ongoing anxiety that can literally interfere with your daily life activities.  According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, GAD goes well beyond the type of worrying that I did.  You can read more about GAD on their website.

Here are some useful tips that helped me, in overcoming the anxieties in my life.  I can’t guarantee a stress-free life; as no one can do such a thing. You won’t even find it, in the Bible.  If anything, you will find some very useful tips for coping with the excessive level of stress or anxiety.

For one, you can only control yourself.  The same thing is true, for me. I can’t control the thoughts and actions of other people. In fact, I can’t even read their minds.  Can you read their minds?  What can I control?

I can control my reactions to any given situation.  In turn, my action can help encourage a good response or a negative reaction. Have you ever heard of the concept of “For whatever a man sows, this he will also reap.”  Galatians 6:7It’s from but you may know it, as karma.  In other words, I made myself miserable by virtue of my own actions; this includes my thought life.

How does this relate to conquering anxiety?  What do you thnk was fueling my anxieties and fears?  It was my own pessimistic view on life. Would an optimistic view have helped?  It would not change the reality of the job market for people with disabilities.  It’s a fact; the disabled are typically on the poverty line or close to it.

How can a positive attitude based on truth do?  It opens the door for creative thinking on my job situation.  Since it is 2017, I’ll keep it relevant to today’s market.  A healthy positive attitude looks for the real door of opportunity. For me, it means blogging on the various topics found on Inspiration Point. It means an opportunity to write books that will hopefully be of help to someone.

Guess what?  I have chosen to not worry about what other people will think.  Yes, I do want to hear feedback and I hope this blog post is helping; however, I am not stressing out over it.  Such worries do not help in my writing endeavors. It can only serve as a roadblock.

Here’s another tip and it’s one that I definitely had to learn.  Stop living in the past and focusing on past regrets!  It is time to cross over that bridge of anxiety and move into the present time.  In the past, I’ve had mental recordings of someone, who insisted on reminding me of my past mistakes. It added to a growing sense of insecurity and a sense of failure.

Such things only served to fuel my anxieties of the future.  Does this sound like you?  Isn’t it time to cross over that bridge and move on?  How did I overcome this barrage of mental recordings? For one, it does help to get rooted in God’s love for you.

Here is a good Audio CD to help you, on that path. It’s called “A Father Who Keeps His Promises: God’s Covenant Love in Scripture” by Scott Hahn.  The link will take you to Amazon, where you can get it for $41.99.  Why audio? I have found such teachings wok best in audio format.  I know from experience that it does help to continually saturate your mind with such teachings.

How does this help with lowering one’s stress level? As I continue to grow in the knowledge of my Father’s love for me; the less inclined I am to sit worry about the things that I can’t control.  It doesn’t mean that I won’t have problems; however, my response will be a lot different.  It will grow less rooted in fear and anxiety and it will be increasingly rooted in God’s love; as expressed through His Son, Jesus.

Here’s is a more practical step and it’s free.  Have you ever kept a journal?  If you are like me, I use Word for my writing pad and a keyboard.  You can use a free writing app on your favorite tablet.  It is that simple.  What do I put in it? How does this help?

With a journal, the goal is to keep a daily account of your day’s activities, thoughts, prayers and a record of any encouraging words.  Did you catch the last part? The goal is to write down an encouraging word about the day’s events.  Why do this? How does this help?

If I am prone to worrying then, I am going to play the “What if?” game and I’m not likely to have a positive outlook.  My thoughts would be more inclined to think negatively, about the situation.  So, I would encourage you to build a habit of writing down something positive, about the day’s event.

At one time, I’d have scratched my head at such a suggestion.  It’s hard to do such a thing when your mind is used to being filled with anxiety and fears. One day, I was given a very useful strategy by Dr. Charles Stanley.  It’s okay if you can only write down one thing.  Don’t be afraid to ask God, for help in seeing the blessings. 

Dr. Charles Stanley also encouraged me, to give thanks for the joy that God instilled in my heart. It was a starting point.  Soon, I would learn to give thanks for the other things and people in my life.  I suspect a journal would be very helpful in this endeavor.  Don’t you think so?

Here is one last tip that has proven helpful, over the years.  It would be shocking if I did not mention this last tip.  I am talking about prayer.  For me, it has proven quite helpful in dealing with my anxieties, fears, and worries.  In Philippians 4:6-7, Paul gives the following advice and it’s a solid one:

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. [New Living Translation]

Isn’t it time that you begin crossing over your bridge of anxiety?

 

Barry Brindisi

Author of “You Are Not A Lesser Human”.

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