An update on my therapy journey (Briony)

I’m not sure if you’ve seen my other blog posts – for those of you that haven’t I’ve written a couple of blog posts about my own therapy journey. For those of you that have read them you may have noticed that I’ve not updated on my progress for a while. At the start of February I began with chronic back back, which resulted in me needing surgery on my spine. Now that I am well on my way to managing my anxiety and worry, I thought it may be useful to explain how the therapy I’ve had at Yorkshire Psychotherapy Ltd, has helped me during this years’ less than positive events. Now don’t get me wrong, spinal surgery was certainly not on my lists of things I wanted to do this year, but it was a situation I had little control over so I learnt that I had to accept it. At one time I would have been driving myself to distraction with the whys and what for, but CBT has helped me to realise that this wouldn’t help in the slightest. What would it change? Would it make me feel better? Would it be helpful? All rhetorical questions of course!During the weeks leading to my surgery, when I struggled with my body physically letting me down, I learnt to deploy my CBT skills, shifting my thoughts and mindset to a more positive stance. Instead of focusing on what I couldn’t do I had to focus on what I could do, like being kind to myself.

I spend so much time running around -there’s always something that I don’t have time to do or enjoy. These weeks gave me time to binge watch boxsets, read magazines, have coffees and catch ups with friends and family, crack on with my to do lists of organising jobs around the house. On the day before, and morning of my operation I was understandably anxious/nervous but the anxiety was not ‘all consuming’ and although I still felt the tell tale nervous stomach, I also felt in control. The knowledge that my anxiety was completely natural and my body was behaving perfectly normally to a psychological perceived threat.

I’m not going to pretend that the ‘big pink bunny’ didn’t begin to rear his ugly head (if this makes no sense check out my previous blog post yorkshirepsychotherapy.co.uk/a-light-at-the-end-of-the-tunnel) my mind started going off on unhelpful trains of thought, Heather reminded me of a great little trick…

So there I was gowned up, ready for theatre and I played a game with my husband where we took it in turns to name singers/bands beginning with all the letters of the alphabet. It’s not possible to think of two things at the same time, so when the going gets tough, get your thinking cap on and start pulling those random bands out of the depths of your memory (although you may need Google to adjudicate for the more obscure ones ).Just to add, as I was about to be put under general anaesthetic I shed a few tears…..I always do……and that’s ok too. CBT has also taught me that emotions can come and go without judgement.

Briony

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