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Getting Ahead of Anxiety

Have you ever felt that dreaded feeling? Weak knees… sweating…heart palpitations….these are only some the most common symptoms of anxiety. Anxiety is a state of uneasiness that involves intricate human emotions such as fear, worry, and apprehension. Consequently, anxiety will produce human sensations like nausea, chest pains, difficulty in breathing, severe headaches, and heart palpitations.

People naturally work to get rid of this distressing human sensation, which also happens to be natural. Getting rid of this dilemma called anxiety goes beyond the mere pop of a pill or the use of Eastern meditation techniques. Managing anxiety is best done by getting to the root of the problem.

But how do we actually get to the root of the problem? The first step is to take stock of one’s deepest fears. Solving any problem must always start somewhere, preferably from where the problem actually comes from.

Most if not all of us have fear death. Why? It is because most people are clueless about the afterlife. Not knowing what lies beyond this present life actually terrifies a lot of people. This is what Freud and Tillich refer to as existential anxiety. This anxiety is also called the “trauma of non-being.” It is a kind of fear that still refuses to be overcome and requires “chronic care.”

Aside from death, a lot of people have developed other fears and phobias that literally disrupts the lives of people. Irrational fears or phobias can come from bizarre sources such as the inexplicable fear of cats, needles, blood, and even food!

Some psychologists claim that addressing the issue of existential anxiety is, in fact, one of the best ways to understand the meaning of life. Many turn to religion to understand metaphysical concepts such as the immortality of the soul and the idea of heaven and hell. For centuries, man has turned to the constellations, to divination, and to other forms of mystical knowledge to get a grip on his fear of death and the unknown. To his consternation, most of these attempts have only led to more confusion and more questions. As human beings, we somehow fail to grasp or understand concept of the afterlife since this is actually outside the realm of life as we know it here in earth. Still, most if not all of us try to grasp what is “out there” in order to comprehend, and hopefully overcome existential anxiety. Each one of us must somehow unravel the mysteries of the universe and catch a glimpse of the afterlife.