a face of fear: anxiety

Anxiety is the subconscious side of fear

It wells up from deep down.
Then, after some time in the subconscious world,
it breaks into your conscious realms.
In the conscious realms,
thinking starts to form a story,
many stories,
around that undetermined feeling of  ‘what-do-you-feel-exactly‘.
Often stories, just stories, not based on truth,
only based on discomfort and what could be the reason thereof.

that feeling under your fingernails - feeling nervous, 'without' a reason ... perhaps subconscious anxiety

that feeling under your fingernails – feeling nervous, ‘without’ a reason … perhaps subconscious anxiety

Anxiety is a poison

slowly eating your self esteem
slowly eating your energy
your initiative
your passion for life.


I see that a lot of subconscious anxiety is related to my childhood.
A feeling of not living up to expectation, some kind of shame.
A feeling of not having done enough, some kind of regret.
And then I feel the stress of the unknown fear.
The fear is often unknown, the source unknown,
we don’t even realize there is fear,
we don’t realize there is anxiety.

Anxiety causes stress,
but stress does not necessarily cause anxiety!


Interesting links:

Wikipedia:Wikipedia – Anxiety is an unpleasant state of inner turmoil, often accompanied by nervous behavior, such as pacing back and forth, somatic complaints and rumination.”

BBC – Advice – Anxiety & stress

Huffington Post – Anxiety vs. Stress: What’s The Difference? http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/15/anxiety-stress-difference_n_1152590.html

Anxiety in Childhood: Prelude to Anxiety in Adulthood? | AboutOurKids.org http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:4RuG3H91iMIJ:www.aboutourkids.org/articles/anxiety_in_childhood_prelude_anxiety_in_adulthood+&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk


41 thoughts on “a face of fear: anxiety

  1. That’s a very useful post, Bert!
    We do develop anxiety from childhood, in response to expectation of performing our best, comparing ourselves to others, and not feeling confident, or protected enough.. In grownup age anxiety aggravates from a law self-esteem, and from the lack of identity – what am i good for? What if i’m not good enough, ridiculous, what if others are staring and judging me?
    It’s important to find out and acknowledge who you are and share it proudly with others – that’s what battles the anxiety at the root.

  2. Boy, is this post ever going to resonate with a lot of people, me included!! The subsconscious side of fear, huh? Yup.

  3. Another timely thought-provoking post Bert. Your comment “anxiety is the stealth version of fear” has given me food for thought. I have found recently that in this new role of caregiver to elderly parents I am feeling a bit like I am losing myself and feeling anxious in the process.

    • thank you for the encouragement.
      As a caregiver, there must be many overwhelming days, next to so many beautiful moments. One aspect of caring is to see ourselves reflected in the ‘patient’. Empathy is a limited resource. Whatever runs over the bucket goes under our clothes and into subconsciousness waiting to be dealt with. Being aware of this is important. It will allow you to see the need to make more time for the events of the day, after the day. Private time is important. Spending it wisely when it is scarce, is vital 🙂
      Being aware of empathy can transform it into compassion. Compassion has no limits. I think the reason therefore could be that we are not its source.
      Strength to both of you. I admire you for this beautiful gift to those you care for.

      • Bert, I can’t tell you how much your posts are helping me through what we are dealing with right now. I went into this knowing there would be challenges but not thinking about how my Type A personality would kick in so quickly. I have forgotten about balance and find myself weary and emotionally drained. I realize that I have to step back a bit and reevaluate if I am going to make it through the summer. 🙂

        • A little holiday, even a weekend, also works miracles. If you could arrange that.
          It’s like looking after babies, except that these babies don’t cry all the time, they can talk and they are often grumpy and very unhappy, and dare to blame you for their unhappiness.
          🙂 smiley or cry-me ?
          I “sometimes” take care for my dad, who lives two houses from here. When he’s helpless, and just back from hospital it’s OK to care for him, but when he’s well on his feet, but not well enough to do what he would like to do, nothing works, and he then wants everything to be done ‘his way’.

  4. This is a very good post that inspires dialogue. In our world of almost constant pressures and endless demands, many, many people experience, (at least at some point in their life), some form of anxiety disorder … and they are all crippling. Living with anxiety of any kind can and often does severely limit one’s world. And there is no easy remedy … it is rather a life-long learning about self and how not to let fear take over.

    Take Care,

    • Thank you for your encouraging words.

      “… a life-long learning about self and how not to let fear take over”
      I think that is the best solution to the problem. I answered more or less the same thing to a friend on the phone 4 days ago answering the question “what the world really needs to change”

      Fear is a lot larger than anxiety alone. Anxiety is the stealth version of fear.

  5. Anxiety, even now, is my biggest problem. I have learned to really deal with most of it, but still am on something that not only helps with sleep, but is an anti-anxiety to boot.
    Growing up, however, was much different. I was a stressed-out, anxiety-ridden child and the stroke stemmed from never fully dealing with that.

  6. Anxiety – I try to remember that the worst I can imagine, never happens. Anxiety for me is waiting for the shoe to drop. Expecting a reaction to some thing. Never really knowing how intense that might be. Almost 60 years of living have taught me that I’ll probably be just fine. Still, sometimes, it’s hard to shake, even knowing all of this.

    • It is. We are hardwired during childhood. The mind cannot undo experience. Although in the brain, this part is not within direct reach. Our conscious thinking has but little influence on this part of our shadow.

  7. Interesting. I read it and saw a snake. The curling of the phases or levels of anxiety. Kundalini rising because you use the throat chakra. At the base unresolved trauma leads to a lot of anxiety. Buried in the subconscious indeed. Until you address it and purify. Heart chakra. Are you ready to purify? And, I do wonder if at the top anxiety will be transformed into premonition or pure insight? Great assist, Bert.

  8. An important post and aesthetically pleasing in form and photo I think as I sit here reading it with a knot in the pit of my stomach. I am a master at anxiety as are most all those closest to me. The BBC article had some good points. Thanks for presenting it all in such a concise and well-ordered form.

  9. I really like the presentation style you used here Bert. This is a crucial topic to the long-term happiness of every individual. I also have observed that much of the anxieties I experience are related to childhood experiences and environments that were ingrained. Challenging those origins in a way that sticks has been quite a challenge.


    • Thank you, Loren for your encouraging comment. Keeping anxiety away for ever … might not be a possibility until fully self realized. 🙂 A combination of changing habits, being aware of your self and mind, and re-surfacing the past and closing it, might be a good start to a lesser and lesser side effects. Fear itself might be a ground state, an absence of love, ‘easily’ removed by being open and accepting. Of course, ‘easily’ only works when being aware of it,

  10. Thanks for a very good description of the predicament. Finding the way out from it is, of course, contained in what you say: ‘… often stories, just stories, not based on truth’. The habitual tendency to act out little scenarios created to support the fictional ‘self’.

    • That is certainly a very important part.
      Attention should also be given to the source, the undigested childhood experiences … bringing them to the surface, putting them in the right perspective. Giving the past less and less power.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s