I’ve just watched a fascinating discussion about anxiety on TV. I have found anxiety to be one of the most disturbing aspects of chronic fatigue. And when I look back on the disturbing events of my life prior to becoming physically ill, anxiety is generally at the core of most of them.
I’ve had social phobia as long as I can remember, and suffered panic attacks in my 30s. Worry over what other people think is still at the core of my most frustrating inhibitions. So I found the discussion on Insight about anxiety fascinating. The bottom line is that the most effective treatment for anxiety is to change the way we think about the things that we fear, and to face them in a controlled manner which ensures a positive outcome. Then repeat as often as necessary. I guess you could see this as a form of amygdala retraining, which implies that treatments which work on anxiety might help chronic fatigue too. Or at the very least, they’d take away the nagging worry that keeps us from enjoying what we can still do within the boundaries imposed by the illness.