Five Stories of Anxiety (Oh, and mine!)

This series, ‘Living with Anxiety’, looks at anxiety through the eyes of authors on behalf of Anglia Counselling – an author a day for five days…


The most common pervasive condition clients call me for help with is anxiety related.


Our minds are so conditioned!

Are you overly anxious as a result of those (re)cognitions which are coloured by all your experiences; what IS the truth of what we see and hear each day that leads to such a sense of emotional turbulence?

All of us are victim to our past. It is so very challenging to experience life in this moment, seeing things for what they truly are – rather than the cruel best guess our minds are apt to provide. When I am anxious, frightened and scared, where can I find the evidence I need to confirm whether I need to feel that way?

Is that truth here, now?

According to our minds, certainly! The mind is alerted (based on our past) and suggests, no… ORDERS, the physical body to prepare for fight or flight (or disables, to ‘play dead’) – and dumps the chemicals in our blood stream required to mobilise for action – whilst disabling that which isn’t required.

Little point then, having an active immune system when running from a threat! The body in order to become the most efficient in managing the threat reduces the immune systems capabilities. And that is fine when a threat really exists. That is really rather clever!

However, when we are subjected to this – and then fail to ‘burn-off’ the chemical dumps because the threat wasn’t ‘real’ and we didn’t need to ‘act’ – then we are heading for problems, both physical and mental.

Bob BrotchieI speak from experience as a former paramedic working under incredible (yet privileged) duress for almost twenty years. During that time I ‘felt’ the physical pains of irritable bowel, chest pains, poor sleep, addictive behaviours, poor diet and relationship challenges – and yet took no meaningful action, believing naively that I am strong enough to keep going, I can and should keep going (or am I a failure) – I will…

I felt all that and more, yet, I failed to act. It would have been anything but failure to have taken better care of ‘me’. It would have been a compassionate act and one that would have provided me with even more resilience to be the best, for me – and those I serve and love.

Aged 47 I finally took notice. I had to! (Why do we have to wait for things to get so disrupted?) And now I see life in the way it is meant to be cherished. I am now much healthier in mind and body. I am more creative and I am so much better to be around! More than anything, I recognise the value of me. I have found peace in the moment by finding trust and greater awareness in what is real – and what are ghosts of the past. This is in some great part what influenced my decision to become a counsellor and I’m so pleased I have!

Anglia Counselling Office

My clients room!

That is a small part of my story. On Monday 23rd June, we will be publishing five daily stories – an author a day for five days – sharing their experiences and inspiring accounts of ‘living with anxiety’:

Day One

Christine O’Hagan introduces this fresh week of authors and their unique stories – with her own experiences of how she lives with generalised anxiety disorder. (See: Living with Anxiety – Day 1)

Day Two

Coach, Tremaine Raisa shares the desperation – and the success she has felt and become, despite living with anxiety. (See: Living with Anxiety – Day 2)

Day Three

Claire Heard brings her experiences of finding peace from anxiety – and how mindfulness and CBT helped. (See: Living with Anxiety – Day 3)

Day Four

Catherine provides a younger voice and a touching account as our wonderful guest author for Day 4 of this week long series. (See: Living with Anxiety – Day 4)

Day Five

Sarah experienced the ups and downs of therapy and ultimately found success via hypnotherapy – for her generalised anxiety disorder. (See: Living with Anxiety – Day 5)

About the author
Managing Director / Counsellor at Anglia Counselling Ltd | 07747042899 | [email protected] | Business Website

Bob Brotchie is a counsellor, mindset consultant and creator of "Conscious Living by Design"™. He writes for Anglia Counselling, is featured on various other websites and introduces us to many guest writers all covering topics related to mental health and wellbeing.

Bob provides bespoke counselling services to individuals and couples in the privacy and comfort of a truly welcoming environment at his Anglia Counselling company office, located near Newmarket in Suffolk, England. Bob also provides professional online counselling, for local, national, and international clients. The therapeutic models offered are bespoke to the client’s needs, especially those in receipt of 'childhood emotional neglect' (CEN), whilst integrating a mindful approach to psychotherapy and cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) principles. For clients experiencing trauma and/or phobia, Bob offers EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing).