People with high functioning anxiety and depression are typically not running to therapy until they are so emotionally overwhelmed or depleted that they can barely stand it.

What separates those with high functioning anxiety and depression from those who have what some may call clinical anxiety or depression is the expression of the anxiety or depression. People with high functioning anxiety have developed maladaptive coping strategies that hide their suffering. The core of much of this behavior from men and women is the feeling of shame.

For men, shame is rooted in weakness. For women, shame is rooted in the concept of managing multiple areas in their lives with the unrealistic expectation that it all has to be perfect. If something small goes wrong in one area of their life, they internalize that as them being a failure.

If one overachieves, is a perfectionist, and acts ridiculously happy, then no one can perceive the shame that clings to the high functioning anxious person. They often receive praise and are seen as having it “all together.”

But let’s be honest. No one has it all together. Our work together will focus on recognizing the suffering that you are bringing upon yourself and learning ways to let go. We have an illusion of control; believing that if we do everything right then everything will work out as it “should.” Turns out, however, this grip on needing to control everything brings us far more suffering than if we learned to have faith in a process.

I utilize mindfulness as this helps to retrain the brain to develop new pathways for slowing down, versus its normal pathway of going a million miles an hour. Mindfulness has been shown to have proven effects in reducing stress, and it helps us reconnect with our self and soul by bringing attention to the mind and the body.

We will work together to set boundaries in your life — with yourself and with others — in a way that you can stay more present and have less anger.

If you feel as though you are on the brink of exhaustion from trying to hold it all together, or you want to be proactive and correct the issues before they get out of hand, call me at (360)-818-4573 in Vancouver, WA for a free 15-minute consultation.