honey915

I know Jeff has a lot of advice about biology. 

what really confuses me is why since being sensitised the anxiety starts in the morning like clockwork. I could put a timer on it. It’s bizarre. I wake a lot during the night as I have a baby who feeds a lot which is fine. I deal with that and it doesn’t bother me. For example I woke this morning at 3:30am and at 5am and both times I have zero anxiety... 

Then every morning by 6am I can feel the anxiety flooding my system and my thoughts slowly deteriorate into negative ‘this is chemical and out of my hands’ type of thoughts. At this point I can no longer see how I have any control over this? I know this is chemical because it’s literally woken me up am as well so it happens whether I’m awake before 6am and apprehensive or whether I’m fast asleep and minding my own business. 

At the start of this setback the anxiety lasted for most of the day but then slowly the evenings have been a little better with each passing day with the odd blip here and there mostly triggered by my own thoughts. It’s the mornings I just don’t understand. If anxiety is really psychological and self created and brought on by our own thinking why does this feel so chemical and out of my hands? 

In the last I have gone weeks without thinking about anxiety at all. Then there are days where I have it on a low level and I just accept it and get on with my day without letting it phase me. But the anxiety I feel during a setback is so powerful it stops me being able to think or care about anything else but figuring it all out. It’s so hard NOT to do that! I feel so hopeless and negative and after being fairly well for some time I feel hugely disappointed. I genuinely believed that I would never experience anxiety like this again because I had been so accepting. I know I’m not accepting now but I feel like I’ve hit a wall. 

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jeff

For a brief answer I’d say you are missing something you need since from my own experience when this was happening to me I was mildly depressed. When awake during the night you know that you are going to be going back to sleep. But in the morning, when you have to face the day, then you flood your mind with your unresolved worries mostly in the form of testing and checking up on your anxious feelings to see if they are still there. The only way I found to deal with this is to just get up and not analyze them as they have no answer, just habitual. 

Also for me my stomach played a part in my anxious waking. If I drank lots of coffee, alcohol, citrus, carbonated drinks, then over time my stomach lining would be stressed and these testing thoughts had an even bigger reaction. I had no stomach pain but just a “blah” feeling. It’s because when you are anxious your stomach secretes acid to clear out the contents  as a stress reaction so you can be ready to run or fight without food to digest if any. Problem is that there is no food and the daily bombardment of the acid on your exposed stomach lining exposed the sensitive stomach nerves beneath the mucus lining to being highly reactive to your thoughts. The vagus nerve is a direct link from your brain’s fear center and the stomach- they act together and you feel even more sensitized. 



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jeff

Read this (click on next post): Vagus Nerve as Modulator of the Brain–Gut Axis in Psychiatric and Inflammatory Disorders

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jeff
https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&cd=12&ved=2ahUKEwjT-taf55TmAhVQ-qwKHbuPA90QFjALegQICBAB&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov%2Fpmc%2Farticles%2FPMC5859128%2F&usg=AOvVaw2yzMeH2mnRwnmwZaqf1tiQ
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honey915

That is an interesting link. My stomach was awful at the start of this setback. I felt so sick I couldn’t eat much at all for a couple of days. So you think the link between gut and brain when sensitised leads to more sensitisation? 


I thought this was a depression but on the second day I was so sensitised I took a beta blocker (I take them rarely these days) and it eliminated the entire feeling. This makes me think it must be anxiety because after taking the tablet I was back to feeling calm and could think hopefully. Beta blockers reduced the adrenaline released into the body and since we know anxiety is fuelled by adrenaline I’m guessing that was the issue. I feel very consumed with working it all out. This is how I get at the depths of anxiety. Strangely enough I couldn’t care if I had a panic attack or even if anxiety is crippling because this feeling is something else entirely. I had baby blues quite badly after each child. Where I cried on and off for about two weeks, felt very low, couldn’t work out why, felt I could end it all, the sunset was the worst time. Dusk. It felt lonely and dark and it was like a pit of emptiness where all that mattered was this hopeless feeling and I worried I would always be this way. That is what this feels like. Similar also to a drug comedown. I dabbled a little in my early 20s so had a few comedowns which were enough to put me off drugs for good! Would you say that is anxiety? It feels out of my control to be honest whereas with anxiety usually I feel positive and hopeful after using psychology on myself and acceptance. This feels like there is no way out, although I know with time it will lift. 


 

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jeff
In time it WILL lift. It always does - especially for new mothers. If you can ignore the desire to “figure it out” you might improve faster. Your analyzing isn’t helping - adds more tension as in hormonal dysfunction. Rather than saying adrenaline causes anxiety, I believe it’s the other way around. 
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Shen
To answer a few of your questions.

Anxiety it's indeed heavily psychological, after all, Before the mechanical process, and the chemical imbalances, There is a trigger. and this trigger IS generated by Thoughts and beliefs. Of course, once you are anxious, there is a broad spectrum of symptoms. and with enough self-awareness and bad beliefs you can also develop even Meta-triggers, The fear of feeling fear.

This is what I believe it's your problem. You say that you get anxious when you wake up.  This is probably due to the adrenaline that kicks in when you wake up at the usual hour. You fear this adrenaline because it reminds you of past traumatic memories related to anxiety and panic. You have associated that Adrenaline it's Anxiety, which it isn't, adrenaline it's just that, Fear that comes with it, it's the psychological part, but of course, it's very normal to be naturally afraid of it if you have previously experienced panic attacks or anxiety. 

But remember that adrenaline can be enjoyable, People take stimulants all the time to feel good, From caffeine to cocaine and meth, those are some powerful stimulants that bring a ton of adrenaline. But they feel really good, while anxious people feel horrible with them, this is an adapted response to excessive adrenaline. Adrenaline can make you nervous, Shaky, much more alert and self-aware, BUT it won't make you anxious without the FEAR factor, that's why people who aren't anxious are fine on them, Without that massive psychological response you have adapted to those sensations, you could snort some cocaine and feel euphoric. 

Also,  it isn´t true that if you accept everything anxiety won't come up. This could maybe work if you applied this mentality when you were a child, but anxiety its heavily related to past traumas events and beliefs, and they will cause anxiety regardless, because they are already "installed" on your brain. You have to start to defuse every one of those triggers, and that takes a lot of time and introspection, because there is a lot of things you didn't know that cause those anxious responses. thats why its so common to have setbacks, Defusing years and years of fears and beliefs takes a lot of time, and they also take a lot of discipline, it's easy to fall again on the same anxious response to them, and takes a lot of tries sometimes to just take one trigger. and they can come back if you don't pay attention to your reaction. Of course, eventually, it gets easier, and life gets easier, I'm proof of that, I'm far less anxious than I was before my trauma (that caused my panic disorder and heavily sensitization), I pretty much live a normal life, and I do anything that I couldn't do while I was heavily anxious (and even before that), but even now I have some triggers that are kind of annoying, they take me a day or two to accept them if they caught me, and it will take me a time to completely defuse them, but they just cause me a little discomfort now, back when I was more anxious, those caused me severe panic attacks and even agoraphobia, So yeah, Things have improved a lot. also I haven´t had a real general setback in a long long time

I can clearly see that you are indeed very Anxious now, You over analyze, You believe that your mood swings are probably something more, and you are probably stuck on "why this is happening". this is clearly Anxiety. and I'm sure you realize that. 

It will get better. Take care of yourself, eat well,exercise, Apply the techniques of claire weekes, Meditate (mindfulness somatic meditation it's perfect for anxiety) and you will be fine, Maintain this routine, and you will be even better than ever 🙂
You Can Do This~
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honey915
Thankyou Shen. I am already feeling better to be honest as the worst of it lifted by just getting on with life although I did carry out some protective behaviours like researching anxiety and trying to work it all out. That is probably why it took a few weeks and not a few days to pass. I paid it too much attention. Out of the worst of it now and I currently just have an awful cold virus and am feeling too physically ill to worry about anything other than where my next lemsip max is coming from! Hopefully this proves that my mind is recovering from anxiety. I have been using beta blockers at work a little lately and I have been feeling great! Maybe I shouldn’t be doing anything to avoid the feeling at all because that is teaching my mind that it needs to be avoided. It takes a lot of patience to get better doesn’t it? The last time I had a setback like this I stopped all meds during my recovery and did everything Without meds and felt good and bad most days but had a sense of achievement because I managed without meds and faced the fears head on. 
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LuckyLife
Honey,  I'm going to take a bit of a different view than the other posters here. As a long time vet of morning anxiety, you should try to realize this isn't your fault. I've made huge strides in recovery over the years, my life is much fuller and more rewarding than it was when all of this started. But, I do still get some difficulty on waking. Usually starts during late stage sleep, dreams. I've had this intensely since the beginning. When I get setbacks, it always starts just before I wake... during sleep. So while I agree with the sentiments here that our thinking plays into it over the long term, and we do need good mental habits to react the best we can... THERE IS CLEARLY a "chemical" element involved. The good news? It's not permanent and the chemical element is actually hormonal... and based on our long term sensitization. Claire weekes wrote about this decades ago.

So, be careful how you interpret advice on these forums because while well intended won't always apply perfectly to us because for some of us there is an intense physical/biological component to the process.  IF you have intense morning anxiety on waking, particularly the kind you describe where you're actually fine in the middle of the night... this is an easy tell that you're dealing with sensitization and the affects of long term anxiety in your body. It's a physical, biological process that you're not going to stop one morning by thinking positively and it's certainly not your fault!  I went years thinking I was "doing it wrong" because I had intense waking anxiety. Ten years I was told that. I finally realized some of this was just how my body processed stress... not something I set off by making conscious choices on waking.  Heck, often it's already well underway by the time I even open my eyes. 

So go easy on yourself.

And again, I DO believe this can totally be rectified. I've not seen a total lift but during my normal stretches, I barely care about feeling off when I wake. It's not even worth bothering with. Most mornings are fine now. And when the hard times do come, yes... we have to employ the very best acceptance mindset we can. On that fact, we all agree here. We need to keep working all day long to change how we view anxiety and continue to bring down our sensitization and give our bodies a chance to resume normal functioning. This is not permanent and it's not a "chemical imbalance."  You do have control IMO... but it's control over the long haul.

Anxiety is not always situational. It's not always the result of your immediate thought/reaction in a given moment. That anxiety you felt this morning may be the result of WEEKS of life stress, unhelpful thinking patterns, worry and in your case even some female hormonal issues thrown in.  So, be patient with yourself as you change the BIG PICTURE factors that contribute and slowly over time you will see mornings get better.
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honey915
Thanks lucky life it’s good to know I’m not the only one with the morning doom! Although of course I wish none had to suffer from this at all! It is actually clearing up and I’m feeling better again and back to myself but looking back on this whole year I’ve been dealing with lots of stress really and it would make sense that this is a build up of that stress. 
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LuckyLife
honey915 wrote:
Thanks lucky life it’s good to know I’m not the only one with the morning doom! Although of course I wish none had to suffer from this at all! It is actually clearing up and I’m feeling better again and back to myself but looking back on this whole year I’ve been dealing with lots of stress really and it would make sense that this is a build up of that stress. 


See! It's not permanent. It will fluctuate with your overall state. And it's not a one-off, one time situational thing. You won't stop it by saying the right thing, or thinking the right thing on one particular day. Morning anxiety is a cumulative, automated response which we can slowly dissolve with day to day habits. (Including, yes.. how we react when it comes)

And of course your stressful year played a role. 

Hang in there, we're all learning as we go here. Some of us (in my case) very slowly. 🙂
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