There are worse things than having behaved foolishly in public. There are worse things than these miniature betrayals, committed or endured or suspected; there are worse things than not being able to sleep for thinking about them. It is 5 a.m. All the worse things come stalking in and stand icily about the bed looking worse and worse and worse.
The following structure for this group’s discussion was taken from the following CBT book:
Corrie, S., Townend, M. and Cockx, A. (2016). Assessment and case formulation in cognitive behavioural therapy. Los Angeles: SAGE.
‘Generalised Anxiety Disorder’ (GAD) is characterised by “Excessive worry and preoccupation about a number of events and activities”. The condition is diagnosed when this occurs most days; the feelings of anxiety causing restlessness, easily tired, finding it hard to concentrate, tense, disturbed sleep and affected functioning.
- The belief about the worry is worse than the actual worry
- Worrying is actually a way of coping
- The worry thoughts can centre around ‘what if?’
- When did you first notice that worry was a problem?
- What were the circumstances when you first started worrying?
- Has the worry changed or developed over time?
- Are there any significant worriers in your family?
- Have there been times in your life when things were going really well and how did you cope with difficulties then?
- Is it important to you to know what is going on all the time?
- Can we think about worry differently? As a process without getting dragged into the actual fear, rumination or content.
- Can we alter the way we talk to ourselves about things? E.g. not be so critical, perfectionist or brutal to self, instead be kinder, caring and give yourself a break.
- Can we discover coping strategies?
Some strategies that the group have amongst them were to set a worry time (although this doesn’t work for everyone), meditation, write down the worries and then throw them away. Accept that life is imperfect and uncertain. Actually facing that uncertainty head on rather than avoiding it will see the worry gradually decrease over time. Other skills that the group already employ included the use of poetry, adding a little transition between the days events e.g. to sit in the car for a few minutes after a day at work and going home, and remember that although you may feel anxious, others cannot see your anxiety.