Anxiety & Stress Reactivity

Between stimulus and response, there is a space.
In that space is our power to choose our response.
In our response lies our growth and freedom.

-Viktor Frankl

Anxiety is a natural reaction to life’s uncertainties and to our personal responsibility for the choices we make. When facing anxiety, however, many people get tangled up in their thoughts. This can lead to patterns of worry, rumination, overthinking, arguing with ourselves, and struggling with our emotions. For many people–especially those who are facing stigma and discrimination in our lives–it can also be linked with negative self-talk, a kind of critical inner dialogue that gets in the way of our potential and our basic goodness. These thinking patterns may go on continuously in the background, outside of our conscious awareness. When unrecognized and unexamined, they can leave us feeling confused, demoralized, depleted, and under-resourced to handle life’s problems.

Mindfulness-based therapy can help to build awareness of stress reactivity, to get a little distance between you and your thoughts, to increase your tolerance for difficult emotions, and to develop healthier coping behaviors. The first step is simply to begin bringing awareness to your inner dialogue and to your reactions so that new insights and possibilities can emerge. Most importantly, it helps to bring about these changes through patience, kindness, and self-compassion instead of perfectionism and self-judgment.

With offices in SF and Oakland, I provide evidence-based therapy for anxiety, stress, and emotional reactivity. I integrate mindfulness, acceptance, and self-compassion with cognitive and behavioral skills for emotion regulation. Please contact me to discuss your needs and to explore how we might work together.