What is Anxiety?
We use many different words to describe feelings related to anxiety. These may relate to mood, physical sensations and/or spirituality. Here are just a few examples.
- Idioms such as; butterflies in my tummy, being on edge, spaced out, or, on cloud nine.
- Common descriptors expressing varying degrees of emotional response, such as; concern, worry, angst, stress, and trauma.
- Culturally embedded descriptors, for example: wainuku, nekeneke, whakamomori, and whakamamae, and related whakataukī, as informed through a Te Ao Māori lens, and in particular, respectfully understood in light of matauranga Māori.
The Biology of Safety
The "fight or flight response" is our body's automatic and primitive, inborn response that prepares the body to "fight" or "flee" from perceived attack, harm or threat to our survival (and sometimes fawn, freeze or even faint). However, there are times when we perceive threat or harm when in reality, things are totally fine. Anxiety is the resulting feeling from trying to avoid a situation which could invoke fear and prompt our survival responses. Ironically, sufficient levels of anxiety can trigger this very same response we are attempting to avoid! This video explains how these responses work, what it does to our body and mind, and how to deal with it. - Braive