Is it possible for two people to look at the same object and have completely different opinions about it? Sure, they could agree on obvious things such as the colour and shape, but each individual’s prior experiences and knowledge will determine their opinion and attitude towards it. What one person sees as beautiful can be seen by others as ugly and awful. The same idea applies to emotions and our perception of the world around us. While some people are generally positive and optimistic towards life, others will have an overly negative view of the world and will see everything around them in a profoundly negative way. Our view of the world, whether positive or negative, ultimately is what determines what our experience of the future will be.
Does this concept apply to Generalized Anxiety Disorder? Absolutely! In my experience working with people and helping them overcome their GAD and panic; I’ve found that anxiety sufferers have the narrowest spectrum of emotions from day to day. They are sad, angry, bored, confused, or scared to name a few. The common denominator? Most of the emotions anxious people feel on a daily basis are negative. In my own experience at the peak of my athletic ability, ages 26-31, I was consumed by negativity. My view of the world was that it was all bad, and this attitude did not come about overnight. It built up gradually by listening and accepting all of the internal mental chatter that was going on every day. I judged people very quickly and during those rough years, everyone was the same. I honestly believed that no one actually cared whether I lived or died, they just wanted to be around a successful
athlete. Looking back, I am amazed at what an awful way that was to go through life but I learned a very important thing. Your view of everything in this life created your future experiences. During those six years I got more of what I complained about, more of what I feared, and my relationships were always with negative people….