I want to share with you why no amount of talking has helped you heal from your relationship anxiety.
The reason why you have a gut fear-reaction to your relationship, why when someone says something about a break-up or their relationship or their partner, why you have this dropping feeling in your stomach or tightness in your chest is because there is an unhealed pain-point within you.
There is a programmed nervous system reaction. Somewhere in the past, you were inundated with beliefs or experiences about relationships (whether romantic or otherwise) that programmed this fear around relationships.
Maybe it’s fear of commitment. Maybe it’s fear of making the wrong choice.
It could have been that your parents split up, or you were raised in a regid religious environment that demanded perfection, it could have been that you were bullied, or had a parent that was so unstable that you had to do everything right to keep the peace.
These experiences that happened in relationship caused a survival response in your nervous system. This creates an engrained fear-response around relationships. So every time something pokes at that wound, you experience this intense fear-response and it triggers a series of thoughts.
These thoughts about your partner or your relationship is just your mind trying to make sense of that reaction in your body.
Eckhart Tolle calls this the Pain Body (and if you haven’t read any of his books or watched his videos on YouTube, I HIGHLY recommend you do that as soon as you’re done reading this).
The Pain Body can also be understood as this programmed fear response in your nervous system.
What the Pain Body does is feeds itself, it keeps itself active and alive, through these thoughts about your relationship. The more you stay in the thoughts and go around and around with them, the more you are keeping the Pain Body active and alive.
The Pain Body triggers the thoughts, which feed the Pain Body, which further strengthens the thoughts and the cycle continues.
Every feeling and behavior you have is driven by a nervous system response. So this fear and reactiveness about your relationship are driven by this fight/flight response.
That’s why we can’t talk ourselves out of these fear-patterns. You have to drop down into the fear-response, into the Pain Body, and feel what has been stuck beneath it.
There is a painful wound that is buried beneath the anxiety and fear that lives in your cells, and the only way to heal it is to feel it.
This pain is stuck energy that never had the chance to be processed and released in the way it needed to at the time of the wounding. This wound gets poked at by experiences or what people say.
So what you must do is move it out. You must feel it, experience it, validate it and then, and only then, will the pain release from your nervous system.
Eckhart Tolle call this practice tuning in to the inner energy of the body, rather than staying up in your mind.
Again, these thoughts are feeding the Pain Body and the fear.
You must go into the body. The body doesn’t complicate things and create stories like your mind does.
It’s just about tuning into the feel and sensations that live in the body. And it’s actually very simple once you begin to drop down into the body.
Because the more you talk about and rehearse the fears and the thoughts, the more you are keeping them alive. Yes, it’s important to talk through things and have awareness and insight, but if you’re leaving out and ignoring the work you need to do in your body and nervous system, then it’s going to take a long, long, long time to heal. And by then, you may have already given up because the thoughts and feelings were just too overwhelming for you to handle.
Maybe that’s why you’ve tried talk therapy, and still feel triggered. I did talk therapy for years and there were many, many times that I left feeling more triggered because we would talk about all my thoughts and then my therapist (who was truly wonderful) would say something that would introduce a new angle and thought in my head. So I would leave with a new thought to obsess over and try to “figure out.”
It kept my mental stories alive, which kept feeding the fear in my nervous system.
It wasn’t until I learned to tune in to my body and shift my nervous system from fear to safety, openness, and freedom that I started to feel less anxious about my relationship. That is how everything changed for me and my relationship anxiety. I no longer felt the need to listen to and feed into the thoughts. I realized that there was a wisdom and truth much deeper than what my mind could offer. It was the wisdom of my body.
So no amount of talking is going to actually help you change your reactions to the anxious thoughts (you will gain logical insight, but not lasting emotional changes).
That is why you must go into the nervous system and change your reactions from constant fear and anxiety to feeling safe in your relationship, to feeling safe to commit, to feeling safe to fully express your love to your partner.
So if you find yourself stuck in the cycle of fear and anxiety and you want to be free from relationship anxiety so that you can embrace the love that’s in front of you, then I invite you to book a free and obligation-free 30-minute Relationship Assessment with me.
You’ll learn the exact steps it would take for you to rewire your nervous system from fear to safety, love, and connection.