Reducing Anxiety with The Inner Coach

Find out how you can reduce your anxiety and other negative patterns of thinking with The Inner Coach in this May edition of Mind Gym.

I was lying in the bath last night. I felt a pain inside my chest. It’s something that happens to me from time to time. For most of my life, it has been something that would annoy me, a pain that I would rather not have.

Now I identify it as being something useful. I have learnt to listen to it and be curious and enquire about what its purpose is. As I do this, I find a response – anxiety.

So what is the anxiety trying to tell me? It says: “I want you to stop and listen and try and find out what you can do to bring a little peace and reassurance to me.”

At this point, I can then ask another part of myself (my wise inner coach); how can I best comfort myself to bring this calm about? I can then step back or out of the situation and view it from several different perspectives. For instance, what might I say to someone else as a friend or coach to respond to this or I can picture a friend or coach that I know and try and recall what they might say to me.

Source: Unsplash

The response of my inner coach went something like this:

“Slow down, rest, stop your mind, ground yourself and enjoy the temperature of the water. Relax, let go, breathe into all this and feel it in your body”. I’ll pause for a while and allow myself to do these things.

Then I heard something encouraging: “You’ve had a good day. The sun was beautiful and the morning fresh. What a rich conversation that was today with Pete. I learnt some interesting things there. It’s also been a busy day, lots of listening, missed out on lunch and did some driving and you woke up a bit earlier than normal this morning. You’ve done well and this is your reward – enjoy relaxing and resting. Time to slow down”.

Once I’ve given this anxious part of myself some comfort and encouragement, I might then want to consider what other wisdom my inner coach may have about how I can do things more calmly in the future. This encouraging conversation can go on for another 20 or 30 minutes…although I have to get out of the bath at some point!

It’s good to tap into our inner-coach, to stand back, to listen to their perspective and wisdom on things. I’m often surprised at how wise they really are. It certainly beats my ruminating or worrying about the immediate situation or pain, making it worse.

Our body, mind and emotions are all very well connected. Whenever we feel pain in some part of our body, it usually has something it’s trying to communicate to us. From an obvious, move your hand off the hotplate because you’re going to burn and damage it if you don’t – to a subtler tightening in your chest as I mentioned above.

Source: Timm Skene

See what comes up for you and be encouraged at how rich the inherent wisdom of your inner coach really is!

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