How to Dissolve Anxiety

By Ben Fuchs | Pharmacist Ben

What we call anxiety is a complex that forms at the juncture of a physical sensation and a thought. It might be called the “Thought-Feeling Complex” {Anxiety = Physical Sensation + Thought}.

To dissolve anxiety, first notice these two components. Isolate the feeling and thought components of the Thought-Feeling Complex.

AnxietyNow you’re ready to dismantle the complex by first sensing the feeling in body, without thinking or applying thought. Just concentrate all your attention on the sensation, its quality, texture, color etc.. Notice where in the body you feel it and savor the sensation. Feel it as an energetic, dynamic “something” that is just there. Get curious about this sensation and observe it like scientist. Is it a warm sensation? Or is it cool? Is it large or tiny? Red or blue? Soft and squishy or hard and sharp? Don’t try to make it go away, simply let it the sensation do its thing in your body. When you get really good at this exercise, you will notice that, when separated from is accompanying thoughts, the sensation, which is nothing more than a neutral tingling energy, is actually quite pleasant!

Now, turn your attention to the anxious thoughts. Simply notice how the thoughts arise and subside, again with scientist-like curiosity, as best as you can, paying no attention to physical sensations that may arise in accompaniment as you notice each thought. Only observe the arising and subsiding of each thought. Noticing it as it arises from its home in the (?), notice how sits awhile in the forefront of your attention and then notice again how it subsides back to its home in the (?). Get curious. Where do these thoughts come from? Where do they go? Where exactly are they when in your attention, as you are “thinking” them? Can be said to be anywhere? Don’t try to answer, just be interested.

What you will find out is that as long as you are only focusing one point or another, either the raw, thoughtless physical sensation OR the pure, naked thought as a brain/mind phenomenon, free of any physical body qualities, anxiety cannot arise. That’s because anxiety is a complex, the Thought-Feeling Complex and as long as it’s two components are segregated it cannot take shape.

If you feel angst you have somehow collapsed or combined these two points of attention back into a Thought-Feeling Complex. No problem, for most of us combining these two components is a lifelong habit and it may take some time to break completely. But it’s worth it! Simply notice the Thought-Feeling Complex again and break it apart making sure to either feel the raw feeling divorced of thought OR observe the pure though free of feeling. Do it as often as you need and over time you will reach a critical mass. When anxiety arises you will automatically, reflexively separate the components and at that point, your anxiety will be a thing of the past.

If you want some, cool, easy-to read books that can help you understand and diffuse anxiety check out:

F**k It: The Ultimate Spiritual Way
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To say F**k It feels good. To stop struggling and finally do what you wish . . . to ignore what everyone is telling you and just go your own way . . . feels really great.

F**k It: The Ultimate Spiritual Way


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Vividly bringing to life the latest scientific research in psychology, cognitive neuroscience, philosophy, and behavioral economics, Gilbert reveals what scientists have discovered about the uniquely human ability to imagine the future, and about our capacity ..

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Sweet Zen: Dharma Talks from Cheri Huber
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Posted by Ben Fuchs in Health