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Author Topic: What is GAD to you? How do you experience it?  (Read 1306 times)

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Offline AshleyNova

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Re: What is GAD to you? How do you experience it?
« Reply #20 on: June 11, 2014, 01:46:08 AM »
Great question, and I hadn't really thought about how I would define GAD for myself until a few weeks ago when I was trying to explain it to a family member. I have always been more anxious/sensitive than most people I know, and I am pretty sure I've been living with GAD from the time I was a very young child. The way I would describe my GAD is this: For me, the feelings of anxiety and dread come and go - seemingly out of nowhere. I'll be fine, going about my life, and then BAM! Something (usually something that would not really alarm a non-GAD person) will send me into a downward spiral. The things that set me off vary - anything from feeling that I have a serious health issue to thinking that there is something horribly wrong with my house to intense worry about what people are thinking about me. I tend to obsess over whatever issue has set me off - for awhile - and when the issue resolves itself, the anxiety does not go away. It just seems to attach itself to something else. As each issue (imagined or real) is resolved, the anxiety remains, and if there isn't something obvious for me to attach it to, I will look for something - anything - to be anxious about. Eventually, the anxious feelings subside, and I am able to live normally until the next episode strikes.

My main symptoms are:
- Whatever I'm worried about plays over and over in my head - like a tape that you can't turn off.
- Inability to concentrate (can't read or watch TV or have a real conversation) because I keep going back to the obsessive thoughts.
- Difficulty staying asleep.
- Rapid heart beat - especially in the early hours of the morning - 3 or 4ish.
- Sinking feeling in my stomach.
- Nervous energy - having to keep busy for fear that my thoughts will make me go crazy.

I guess that overall, I picture my GAD as a velcro ball. The ball rolls in with a worry on it, and once that worry subsides, the ball keeps rolling until another worry sticks to it. This cycle repeats until there is no more velcro for worries to stick to, then the ball rolls away. At any point in the future, another velcro ball rolls on in. That is really my GAD in a nutshell. Looking forward to reading about everyone else's experiences. Wishing all a beautiful and peaceful weekend.


I agree with all this Lori! Sadly I get many more physical symptoms along with this. I get chest pain shortness of breath facial sensations leg pain back pain muscle twitching.. All scary I can never convince myself it's anxiety
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Offline houndlvr1

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Re: What is GAD to you? How do you experience it?
« Reply #21 on: June 11, 2014, 02:19:43 PM »
Well I've not had luck with the one med I tried (Zoloft) because I had some kind of weird reaction to it that actually created hot flashes/panic the day after I started it and I wound up in the ER (yipe).

Now I'm afraid to try anything new at all and have been "toughing it out" on my own with some CBT therapy. NOT the easiest route.  I do often though think I may be better suited with another med but that one attack was so severe I'm scared to try another.

I read as much as possible and would like to get more involved with a good forum and/or attempt some meditation. Folks seems to believe that helps them a lot with their panic.

I find that, as someone else here mentioned, if I am really distracted (at work/doing some oil painting, etc) it seems to be less of an issue. However, when you live alone as many of us do it becomes difficult to keep upbeat and when the thoughts come in it's so much harder to turn them off than if I'm with people.

Thanks for the book suggestion - I'll check out Amazon!
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Offline tinam7

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Re: What is GAD to you? How do you experience it?
« Reply #22 on: June 12, 2014, 07:32:00 AM »
It is hard work, to be sure. Distractions help but if the brain is not willing to cooperate, it is one uphill trek. We must find new sources of distraction. Meditation is big for me. May seem easy, yet is not. Was going to write A Tribute to Dad for Dad's Day (writing as distraction), but was advised not to bother because there are too few good ones around.

Will look into The Happiness Trap. Want to learn more about ACT. Thank you for mentioning it.
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Offline forever young

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Re: What is GAD to you? How do you experience it?
« Reply #23 on: June 12, 2014, 09:37:44 AM »
Tina what is the ACT you talk about. and where did you get the info. I am looking into ways to help me. I also have heard about CBT but again where can I get the info. I have ignored the elephant in the room long enough and need to do all I can to get my self recovered.
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Offline tinam7

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Re: What is GAD to you? How do you experience it?
« Reply #24 on: June 12, 2014, 11:26:03 AM »
The library may be a good start as well as the Web. I learned about both at this site. Have now ordered the ACT book from the library. It's not a new book yet has holds on it. May invest in it if I like it. ACT stands for Acceptance and Commitment Therapy which sounds very good. Believe in both.

Yes, it takes work but is well worth it. Wishing you the best.
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Offline houndlvr1

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Re: What is GAD to you? How do you experience it?
« Reply #25 on: June 12, 2014, 12:40:37 PM »
Forever, there are lots of good books on cognitive behavior therapy out on Amazon and in your local library. I find some very good information just from others on this board.  I was unfamiliar with the acronym ACT but am now reading more about that program.
Truthfully, I find comfort in just knowing I"m not the only one out here with GAD.  It sometimes feels so isolating to be suffering in silence and then I find others are in the same boat - makes life much more tolerable for me :)

There is actually a book called CBT for Dummies - it's great for beginners looking to understand the premises.
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Offline worldbeat99

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Re: What is GAD to you? How do you experience it?
« Reply #26 on: June 12, 2014, 10:41:42 PM »
houndlvr, I know what you mean.  It's comforting just to know others are dealing with GAD.  Seems like there's not much talk about GAD in the chat room here.  I had an in person Meetup group in Chicago for GAD folks.  About 10 of us.  That was cool.

By the way, Anxietyzone won't let me post external web addresses.  But if you have an interest in being part of an anxiety group online that I started,
let me know.  It's on   f a c e o f f     If you know what I mean.  About 6 of us have GAD.

To reach me directly, go to my site...     dwightokita     com 
There is a guestbook on first page

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Offline houndlvr1

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Re: What is GAD to you? How do you experience it?
« Reply #27 on: June 13, 2014, 05:31:43 PM »
Emailed ya this morning :)
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Offline worldbeat99

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Re: What is GAD to you? How do you experience it?
« Reply #28 on: June 13, 2014, 06:25:52 PM »
Hi Hound,

Thanks for emailing.  I'm not seeing your message.

Was it a message through a note in my guestbook page of my site?
Or a direct email to my ***** account?  Or could it have been a privte message
thru the Anxiety Zone site?  I checked all three places and didn't see your message.

I wish Anxiety Zone wasn't so proprietary.  The trick to communicating outside AZ is to
use personal emails and such.

Dwight
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