anxiety Archives - A Step at a Time

The story behind our books!

Posted by | Adventures of Brian, anxiety, bereavement, books, hypnotherapy | No Comments

I often get asked WHY I wrote the Adventures of Brian. With an ever growing book collection many people we meet want to know how it was inspired and what comes next. So it seemed an apt time to share it with you, as the anniversary of meeting the little girl who would prove to be a game changer to my life is coming up soon. So here’s our story… the Adventures of Brian Back Story… I’ve worked with children for my whole career, at 16 I worked in nurseries, progressing up to Nursery Manager and Early Years support roles within the local council. I additionally became a lecturer in early years and health and social care over 14 years ago so I suppose you could say that working with children and young people was in my DNA. I’ve always been a book worm and I love anything creative, as…

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Brains, filing cabinets – and why noone is coming to do your filing!

Posted by | anxiety, bereavement, BWRT, child therapy, hypnotherapy, Responsive Therapy | No Comments

Is your brain talking to you? Just take a moment and scan this communication list…. My head hurts all the time… I have a permanent headache…. I just can’t turn my brain off… I can’t sleep… I am permanently exhausted… I had to take a day off as my neck and shoulders hurt so much… I can’t concentrate… I keep forgetting things… The smallest thing makes me angry… I can’t deal with being around people… I’ve suddenly developed anxiety about things I used to find easy… I feel so fragile all the time.. My family are getting really fed up with me being so helpless… (If you didn’t tick off anything on this list then I can only say well done, you either have fantastic coping strategies in place, a support system which is second to none, are in therapy regularly or have had a peaceful year or a combination…

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5 reasons why anxiety in teenagers is increasing and how you can help

Posted by | Adventures of Brian, anxiety, Uncategorised | No Comments

The NHS defines anxiety as “a feeling of unease, such as worry or fear, that can be mild or severe”, it’s prevalence in the population has seen a steady increase over recent years and in 2016 Mind.uk identified that around 6 in 100 people suffer with anxiety issues and Anxiety UK suggest that 1 in 6 teenagers will experience anxiety. This means that on average there will be around 5 children in any given classroom experiencing anxiety symptoms at any one time. The Fundamental Facts of Mental Health Paper 2016 found that ‘in the UK, women are almost twice as likely as men to be diagnosed with anxiety disorders. From the APMS (2014) results it can be deduced that, in England, 6.8% of all women were diagnosed with general anxiety disorder compared to 4.9% of all men.’ It was shown that generalised anxiety disorder diagnosis’ rose from 4.4% in 2007 to…

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Child Therapy – From a child’s perspective… (testimonial)

Posted by | Adventures of Brian, anxiety, books, BWRT, child therapy, Uncategorised | No Comments

I really love my therapy and coaching work with young people, their imaginations and willingness to open up and explore the child therapy techniques I offer means that they often experience big breakthroughs in 1-6 sessions (depending on the reason for attending). So you can imagine how touched I was when I received this beautiful story from one of my 12 year old clients which she submitted to a local radio station story writing contest, it looks at the session we completed to help her find some inner peace and joy…. she even had the chance to meet Brian my therapy dog! I’ll let her say the rest…    “Once there was a girl named Poppy and she was a big worrier for many reasons that cannot be explained. One day something life changing happened; she was going to see her one and only hero, worry expert Nicki Edwards and her…

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Perfectionism, Stress, School and our Teenagers

Posted by | Adventures of Brian, anxiety, BWRT, hypnotherapy, Responsive Therapy, Teenagers, Uncategorised | No Comments

Having worked with the 16+ age group for 14 years this year (still feels like yesterday that I started) it’s been an interesting concept to watch the changes in mindset, challenges and mental health. One of the key things that is becoming more and more noticeable is that a higher number of teenagers and young people are striving to obtain a level of perfectionism that is causing higher levels of: Stress Anxiety Worry And in more extreme cases: Disordered eating Self-harming behaviours If you read my previous blog ‘Is the world causing our children anxiety‘ you’ll already know that I discussed the influence of social media and technology on our children’s limbic brain development (the part of the brain responsible for emotional behaviours) if not it is worth a perusal to look at the statistics released in the Child Mental Health Report 2017 where we see the links between social…

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Why self-care is NOT selfish

Posted by | anxiety, bereavement, BWRT, hypnotherapy, Responsive Therapy | No Comments

Every day I hear mums and my professional clients utter the same words ‘I can’t be that selfish’…. In fact it’s probably the main thing that they have in common, a belief system that looking after their own emotional health and well-being is ‘selfish’. Having worked in the teaching industry for many years i’m quite accustomed to skipping meals, working ludicrous hours, cancelling personal engagements to opt for lesson planning and marking and collapsing in a heap at the end of term wondering what way the steam train that hit me had gone in… So why is the main thing that I am accustomed to hearing ‘I can’t be that selfish’. Perhaps it’s an archaic belief system, maybe a new one from the unrealistic expectations that we have placed on life, but is it time to acknowledge that selfceare is NOT selfish? How is looking after your emotional health selfish?…

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Is the world causing our children anxiety?

Posted by | Adventures of Brian, anxiety, BWRT, Children's Therapy, hypnotherapy, Responsive Therapy | No Comments

As the years go by my office is filled with more and more children and teenagers who are struggling with unwanted thoughts and feelings. Since I wrote the Adventures of Brian book collection this has only grown more considerably. Leading me to question – is the world causing our children anxiety? 19 years ago when I first entered the world of early years (working in a nursery) we would occasionally meet a child with separation anxiety or thumb sucking but these were few and far between. 15 years ago when I first went to work as a lecturer with 16-19 year olds you may have one teenager in your class with depression or anxiety but again it was much more a rarity than the world presented today. In the early days of my career, or even in my own school days you just didn’t find a huge number of children…

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5 things a narcissist does to stop you leaving….

Posted by | anxiety, body-image, BWRT, hypnotherapy, Responsive Therapy | No Comments

With the growth of social media quite often you will see the word ‘narcissist’ used within articles, stories, social media posts and films. Often followed with comments of ‘why didn’t they just leave?’ or ‘Didn’t they see what was happening?’…So here’s 5 things a narcissist does to stop you leaving… If you read my previous blog ‘Why you shouldn’t have known‘ you will be familiar with why we rarely see the effects of a narcissist until it is late in the day…. To start here’s a definition of a narcissist: Narcissistic Personality Disorder, the process affecting the lives of innocent women and men every day is a pattern of abnormal behaviour which the narcissist not only has this excessive interest in themselves but combines it with a pattern of non-empathy in which they have no understanding of other people’s feelings and in their pursuit of power, success or self-satisfaction will…

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Why life is like a game of chess…. and how not to get checkmated!

Posted by | anxiety, BWRT, hypnotherapy, Responsive Therapy | No Comments

Have you ever noticed that life is like a game of chess? I was standing brushing my teeth this morning when I was struck by this profound thought (it’s my favourite profound moment place) that life is like a chess game and we can so easily get stuck in chess mate if we don’t watch what is happening…. I should be honest at this point and say that Chess is not a game that I have ever mastered – in fact I am still in awe of those who can play. Many moons ago the 8 year old I used to babysit tried to teach me but gave up when I just ‘didn’t get it’

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4 ways to stop the straw breaking the camels back (and save your social life)

Posted by | anxiety, BWRT, hypnotherapy, Responsive Therapy, Uncategorised | No Comments

You know that old saying ‘the straw that broke the camel’s back?’ well I want to tell you that in the majority of cases it isn’t the thing you have the greatest issue with. The problem with problems is that we collect them. Once we have a highly negative experience we can find ourselves overwhelmed with issues. The problem is we tend to focus on the most recent of these issues and not the cause of the pressure on our brain. We also inevitably do not notice the problem until it is so great the consequence is greater…. or do we? In this week’s blog I want to share 4 signs and actions you can use to ensure that the straw does not break the camel’s back and inevitably prevent it from breaking you…. Let me start with an example (fictitious scenario)…..Emily is getting married, she has waited for a…

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Why our mummy bears need to be encouraged to engage in TLC

Posted by | Adventures of Brian, anxiety, bereavement, BWRT, hypnotherapy, Responsive Therapy | No Comments

Why our mummy bears need to be encouraged to engage in TLC…. Please note – whilst daddy bear is not mentioned in this blog it is not for a lack of respect of his role – we are just focussing on mummies today! I know you’re probably wondering if I have lost the plot after a little too much sunshine this weekend, however it was a conversation I had whilst standing at a book fair that prompted this blog. Mummy Bear Syndrome may not be a known term, in fact it was a new concept that I learnt 5 years ago whilst sat training with Richard Wain in the concepts of Responsive Hypnotherapy but it explains nearly everything you need to know about mummies. On becoming a mummy a woman quickly sidelines her needs and jumps into the defence of her baby. The Mummy Bear leads her pack of teddy…

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2 reasons why your friend is making you feel uncomfortable and how to deal with it!

Posted by | anxiety, BWRT, hypnotherapy, Responsive Therapy, Uncategorised | No Comments

Ever had those days when your friend/partner is making you feel uncomfortable? But not because you hate them…just something is – well off? And I don’t mean in the stagnant water way! The thing is, at times we will find that friends or partners (or even family members) really get under our skin. Our first retaliation is to blame them for it… But what if it’s YOU? Eek…. yep I said it… it’s highly likely it’s you! Before you contemplate killing me for that statement let me explain where I am going with this… Sometimes our friends just drive us insane…. we can love them from the bottom of our hearts, and adore them completely, we would walk over hot coals for them – but still the very second they text/call/email/Facebook/turn up you feel uncomfortable, irritable or just like there is a glitch in the system. Here’s two reasons why…….

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Is your past haunting you? The real reason you are going round in circles!

Posted by | anxiety, BWRT, hypnotherapy, Responsive Therapy | No Comments

Do you ever feel like your past is haunting you? Like you keep coming back to the same problem? Or you have really, really bad luck? Perhaps you feel like the universe is punishing you? Or that you can’t get anything right? Or MAYBE your mind is stuck in a detrimental thought loop that you simply cannot break? Ooh now that’s a thought isn’t it? If you have ever heard that old adage, you can’t change the problem, only your attitude to the problem then you might see where I am going with this. If not then Hi! Welcome to my thought process today! So now we have established a small chance that your past is NOT haunting you, (and rather your thought processes are) I’ll explain where I am going with this…. Our brains and patterns… Every week in my office I meet at least one client who tells…

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Grief – 4 things you need to know….

Posted by | anxiety, bereavement, loss, trauma | No Comments

Grief is a subject that presents almost daily in my work as a therapist. Working with clients who have experienced a bereavement or loss, through death, illness or trauma I meet women who are experiencing a wide range of the symptoms from grief. This may be through overwhelming sadness or pain to experiencing anxiety, depression or PTSD or those who are experiencing negative habitual behaviours due to longer term unresolved grief. From my experiences here are 4 things you need to know about grief…. 1. Your brain cannot process it All of our behaviours, habits and responses are learnt, from when we learn to walk to when we learn how to count our subconscious mind creates a sequence of patterns associated with a trigger so behaviours are generated on requirement. For instance we see a path and our brain receives a message to walk or we see a fire and…

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