Do you find yourself avoiding whatever brings you out in a cold sweat and makes you feel nervous and anxious? Of course, it's perfectly understandable behaviour! We all do.
If you want to tackle your fears then which things can help you, naturally, to take on those scary situations and not let them control your life?
I'm a former therapist with qualifications in clinical aromatherapy, anatomy and physiology, essential oils, naturopathic nutrition, herbalism, crystal healing and CBT (cognitive behaviour therapy). I am still fascinated by complementary therapies and the valuable role they have to play in helping modern society ease the pressures of modern day living. Because of this I continue to study therapies for fun and personal interest and am currently undertaking professional level courses in Acupressure and Professional Relaxation Therapy (PRT).
I'm an anxious person myself and over the years I have learnt many self help techniques when it come to tackling nerves, fears and anxiety.
Here are my top four tips on natural self help for facing your fears:
1. Go floral - Bach Flower Remedies use homeopathic principles to help us tackle tricky emotions. There are 38 different remedies designed to help with everything from impatience and despair through to guilt and uncertainty. The best ones when it comes to facing fears are:
*Rescue Remedy - this is a blend of 5 Bach Remedies for demanding and stressful situations. The Rescue Remedy is now considered something of a staple when it comes to helping with difficult circumstances and can be purchased in the form of drops, mouth spray and pastilles from many supermarkets, chemists and health food stores.
* Mimulus - for fears of known origin, such as when taking a flight or an exam.
* Aspen - for fears and worries of unknown origin and a general feeling of unease.
2. Herbal help - there are many herbs which you can take in the form of drops, tablets or teas to help tackle nerves, fears and anxiety. Some of the best known are:
* Avena Sativa (Oats)
3. Aroma aid - aromatherapy uses pure essential oils, the essence of plants, to help the body in many ways, physically, mentally and emotionally. The oils should not be used neat or taken internally, instead place a few drops in a bath, mixed in a base oil such as sweet almond and applied to the skin, or on a tissue and inhaled. The oils you use will have specific instructions on the bottle you can follow. Here are my favourite oils for easing stress, calming breathing and helping to instill courage and positivity in awkward situations and panic attacks:
* Ylang Ylang
4. Pressure point - the concept of placing light pressure onto specific trigger points in the body to help ease certain conditions has been around for centuries. If you have ever used those wristbands with the little nodules on them which you put around your wrist to ease seasickness or general nausea then you have used acupressure already!
One of the best, and easiest to find, acupressure points when it comes to fears, anxiety, phobias and stress is:
Inner Gate/P6 - this point is the same one as you use with those seasickness wristbands! It can be found three finger-widths above the centre of the inner wrist crease (i.e. work back up your arm, from the wrist towards elbow). To locate the point place the middle three fingers of one hand into the wrist/lower forearm of the opposite hand with your third finger resting against the crease of your wrist. The point you want will then be underneath the pad of your first finger. Use your middle finger to apply the pressure at 90 degrees to the point, you can support the middle finger either side by resting the first and the ring fingers on the inside of your arm. Hold the point, if you can for a few minutes, slowly increasing pressure.
Facing your fears is the theme of my latest novel If You Only Knew:
Fear versus love
Happiness versus sadness
New love versus old flame…
Faith has a fear of falling in love again but Zane persuades her to risk a relationship with him.
Maybe this time things will be OK.
Then she discovers who Zane’s business partner is and her world is turned upside down.
Faith owns The Coffee Pot in the outdoor adventure sports mecca of Derbyshire’s Peak District. She hasn’t had a man in her life for a while, as she’s been too busy serving cakes to weary rock climbers and mountain bikers to find time for the complications of a relationship with the male of the species.
At least, that’s what she tells herself. The truth is that since she got her heart broken she’s had problems trusting men.
When she meets Zane, one of the new owners at the Carrdale Extreme Sports Centre, Faith finds herself enjoying his company even though part of her can’t help wondering why he’s so reluctant to talk about himself.
Then the past comes back to haunt her in the shape of Zane’s business partner Matt, who just happens to be the guy who broke Faith’s heart all those years ago.
With Matt out to cause trouble and Zane keeping secrets Faith’s life is about to get very complicated indeed…
If You Only Knew is available in paperback and ebook