• Debbie Forrestt

Do You Have Anxiety, PTSD, or Trauma?

Updated: Apr 22

You may not realize it. But, did you know these issues especially when unresolved, can

manifest as illness in the physical body and create problems in your relationships? If untreated, they can really wreak havoc on your health and in extreme cases, lead to your demise. But take heart. You can reverse illness, many times almost instantaneously when the original insult is dealt with and released. Answer the questions below to find out if you may be suffering unawares.

I’ve gotten some pretty profound insights from Dr. Gabor Mate’s work with PTSD. In his series, “The Wisdom of Trauma”, I learned trauma does not necessarily stem from some big life event. He points out that trauma can manifest merely by how that experience was perceived as a child. For instance, some event made you feel helpless as a child, now this anxiety has played out in adulthood and bled into relationships, jobs, interactions with others, and virtually every experience you are currently having, including your health. Most conflicts in your life can be traced back to reoccurring events which provide clues, but until you trace them back to the original traumatic event, they will continue to reoccur.

Another book I am currently impressed by, (recommended by Opera), is The Way of Integrity, by Martha Beck. Her view is that when we are living our lives in an attempt to please others, not being authentic, not living fully in our truth, that is causing anxiety and suffering of the soul.

Here are some questions these authors ask us to answer which may reveal the source of your suffering:

Do you say what people want to hear, or do you truly speak your truth? Or when you finally speak your truth, does it express in an unhealthy way? (You really need to observe yourself to answer this one. And be honest with yourself).

Do you spend time lamenting over what you should have said or wished you didn’t say? Or, wanted to express but it came out wrong? (Perceived social faux-pas are one of the most common sources of anxiety).

Have trouble just listening? When you try to converse or listen to others, do you blurt out or interrupted instead? Do you feel you must be heard?

Do you find yourself shutting down in a conversation and later wish you could have expressed yourself? Perhaps you’re even angry at yourself or the other person that you didn’t.

Do you mentally grind on should-have-beens over and over?

Whether looking for sympathy or simply venting, do you feel tired of listening to yourself? Like a stuck record, you repeat the same phrases over and over. “I am so ____ “ (fill in the blank, ie; sick, stressed, bored, busy, tired, and so on)?

Are you still punchy about going out without a mask, touching unclean surfaces, or being in crowds? Do you crave connection and touch but are afraid to get close?

Are you at odds with someone, family member, friend, or work associate with whom you may have formerly been close? Now you feel you have nothing in common, or worse yet, believe you don’t like them anymore because of their beliefs?

Has the luster of holiday cheer and festivities escaped you? In other words, you are just going through the motions?

Do you feel like all your energy is devoted to just getting through the day’s tasks and obligations and at the end of the day there is not nearly enough coming in to refuel you?

Do you dread the notion of getting old?

Do you feel purposeless? A sense that there is little reason to get out of bed in the morning or energy wanes in the afternoon and you feel listless?

Do you have emotional misery, even on occasion?

Are you feeling physical deterioration? A sense that you are getting weaker and attribute it to age or perhaps a physical condition you have?

Do you feel emotionally responsible for others?

Do you assume that everything is your fault?

Are you terrified of disappointing others?

Do you repress your healthy anger because you don’t know how to express it, so others are always crossing your boundaries?

Do you think about others’ feelings before your own?

Any "yes" answers can be taxing on your health and outlook on life. If you are experiencing any of these issues, you might be suffering from trauma, PTSD, depression, or anxiety. These feelings may have had their onset early in life, but now are surfacing and causing anything from mild continual discomfort and unease to full-fledged illness in the body. (It’s possible stress or anxiety could be manifesting or aggravated by the circumstances over the past couple of years.)

Pushing down pain is not the answer, as it will likely result in physical illness. Emotional, (energetic) imbalances result much the same as when you ignore the instrument lights in your car that signal warning. When we emote, that is a signal. Something energetically is out of alignment, out of integrity. Pushing down emotional pain causes it to erupt in another way. (If you don’t add oil to your car, it causes damage to your engine).

Inner work can be painful to begin. But there is only one way through that door. And on the other side, is relief from suffering. It is true that you can be fully in your childlike bliss once again. Want to feel happy and free as you were when you were little? You can, with a little guidance from a trusted coach. True joy and health are available now.

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