"Too many of us are not living our dreams, because we are too busy living our fears." Les Brown
Recently, I started blogging about my social anxiety disorder. I also started posting some original songs online.
My original thought - YIKES!
As someone who has suffered from severe social anxiety disorder since the age of 10, the idea of blogging about it seemed like an interesting dillemma. Yes - I would love to get my story out there, if only because I myself would have gained a lot from reading it when I was younger. But No - I can't put myself out there, everyone will judge me, and who am I to think that anyone will care, people will just think I'm full of it and be annoyed.
At the end of the day, probably very few people will even know that it's out there. Yes, a lot of my friends have been suddenly enlightened to the fact that this disorder even exists, but on the upside, they now understand why I usually have an excuse not to go to their parties, and maybe, just maybe one or two of them have recognised the same traits in themselves and may look at others in a new light.
I am a singer, and I love to sing and write music, but until this past month, I have NEVER let anyone hear what I write, let alone put it online for all to access. I guess though, that I've come to a point where I've managed to conquer the worst of the social part of my anxiety (through years of intensive CBT sessions), and am now using blogging as a tool to keep myself moving forward, to chase my dreams and to actually do things that make me happy, and (try) not to care what anyone else thinks. After all, we all have hobbies and weird things that make us happy, so why should I have to keep mine hidden when everyone else is out there doing what they do?
I'm certainly not saying that I intend to be famous - I actually dread that - I think I dread success from my music (and now the little voice in my head is saying - "you narcissistic arrogant girl to even be contemplating such an outcome).
So my blogs on this fabulous site, will be about how I'm coping on my journey to finally achieve my dreams in spite of anxiety and panic.
Would love to have feedback on wether anyone else out there is getting anything postive from what I write, but at the same time, that's not the reason I'm doing this.
I think it is important to provide data illuminating the connection between ending anxiety and music (since that is what I am all about)for you to peruse, every so often.
Several concluded that listening to music could decrease heart rate, blood pressure, and anxiety in heart patients — individuals who were physiologically effected by the stress and anxiety associated with their conditions. Out of 23 studies that included a total of 1,461 patients, listening to music provided relief of anxiety and stress by lowering blood pressure and heart rate.
Although a significant mood change wasn’t seen in those with depression, a positive mood change was seen in some. Only 2 of the 23 studies used actual music therapists for music listening and treatment.
David Bradshaw, Ph.D., of the Pain Research Center at the University of Utah helped explain, "Engaging your mind with music can help alter your sense of time so you worry less about what's happening in the moment.”
One hundred forty-three subjects were evaluated for yet another study. They were instructed to listen to music tracks, follow the melodies, and identify deviant tones. During the music tasks, they were given safe, experimental pain shocks with fingertip electrodes. The findings showed that central arousal from the pain stimuli reliably decreased with the increasing music-task demand.
Music helps reduce pain by activating sensory pathways that compete with pain pathways, stimulating emotional responses, and engaging cognitive attention. Music, therefore, provided meaningful intellectual and emotional engagement to help reduce pain. Among the study subjects, those with high levels of anxiety about pain had the greatest net engagement, which contradicted the authors' initial hypothesis that anxiety would interfere with a subject's ability to become absorbed in the music listening task. They noted that low anxiety actually may have diminished the ability to engage in the task. The findings suggest that engaging activities like music listening can be effective for reducing pain in high anxiety persons who can easily become absorbed in activities. They noted that interaction of anxiety and absorption is a new finding and implies that these personality characteristics should be considered when recommending engagement strategies for pain relief. Holmes said the findings are valuable because they pinpoint exactly where alcohol causes damage that leads to problems overcoming fear.
"We're not only seeing that alcohol has detrimental effects on a clinically important emotional process, but we're able to offer some insight into how alcohol might do so by disrupting the functioning of some very specific brain circuits," said Holmes. And for those who are using drink to combat anxiety take heed: Understanding the relationship between alcohol and anxiety at the molecular level could offer new possibilities for developing drugs to help patients with anxiety disorders who also have a history of heavy alcohol use. "This study is exciting because it gives us a specific molecule to look at in a specific brain region, thus opening the door to discovering new methods to treat these disorders," said Kash.