Anxiety is “NOT” a choice!

March 9, 2015Karen Courcy

1e97210e8af65ca92df38efa0fac92f0That moment when you go from 0 to 100 in a matter of one second!

The sense of doom and dread – your heart pounds – your lips go numb – your palms sweat – the heart beats faster – you lose all sense of what is real and what is not!

You then start pacing the room back and forth thinking your about to die; thinking something really bad is about to happen – you think it’s the end – everything gets dark – fear is clinging onto your every thought – and the cycle repeats itself making all the symptoms heighten until you somehow pull yourself out of it – or worse pass out!

THAT is anxiety! NOT a choice! Who would EVER want to go through that?

A woman on Facebook name Dani Johnson, “well known” for her wealth, and making millions of dollars by giving people tips on how to be successful wrote a status message saying “Anxiety is a choice, instead, CHOOSE peace!

“INSTEAD choose peace?????”

Screen Shot 2015-03-09 at 11.02.30 PM

When I read that, my blood boiled, as did thousands of other people who read that and found it’s offensiveness!

Anxiety I assure you is NOT a “choice”! Anxiety is crippling to the mind and body, and when these attacks come on, it’s far from anything I can control.

I experienced my first Anxiety attack when I was 22 years old. It was so bad an ambulance was called because I thought I was having a heart attack! Come to find out, I was experiencing a full blown anxiety attack. The attack  was so bad that I feared having another attack, and I couldn’t sleep for weeks.

Does that sound like a choice to you?

who would ever choose to not sleep for weeks? I would do anything for peace, but THAT was not a choice! Peace was no where to be found in the lingering fear that anxiety would find it’s 2nd or 3rd round!

Sometimes the attacks I have gone through were so bad that it left me cold and shaking until I fell asleep, and when I woke I felt like I had been through a war! it was a war, an internal fight to where I was 1 against 100! 100 things going on inside that I had no control over!

Over time, I have learned to control them better, but never a choice of when or where they will show up.

I have learned to re-frame my mind a little better when they come, I am able to jump out of an anxiety attack quicker, but NEVER can I stop them from coming or taking over anytime it happens.

It’s never been a choice of mine when it happens or how it happens! it’s self crippling when it happens!

If Anxiety were a choice, there would be no such thing as anxiety. You can’t choose anxiety, you can’t even make it happen, or worse off, you can’t even make it stop when it starts – it’s something completely out of the mind and body’s control.

Millions of people in the world suffer from anxiety. People with PTSD, war victims, people who have disorders and or other health issues, this is NOT a choice. Saying anxiety is a choice is like telling people Cancer is a choice.

I feel heavy hearted having read this woman’s cruel hearted opinion of others, and still she stands by her belief.

Sadly, it’s people like her that are the “stigma” for mental health and people who suffer from these issues in the world NOT talked about. It’s people like her that put people like us who suffer from such anxiety INSIDE an isolated world where “no one understands” “we are not allowed to talk about it”. ANXIETY is REAL!

No anxiety doesn’t show up on a breast exam or a mammogram, or even a MRI, you can’t see anxiety, but it’s there! no one could possibly understand the depths of anxiety if you have never experienced it – there are no words for it’s crippling marks it leaves on the mind and the soul. You feel alone because no it’s can’t be seen, only felt!

But, I say this – just because you can’t see it, doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist! People suffer from it, and we need to start opening our eyes to those who deal with this horrible disease. Stand up for those who suffer and help those who are ignorant to these helpless diseases, and show them how real it is. Give all a voice to what is real and what others go through!

if you suffer from Anxiety, YOU ARE NOT ALONE! even those who are in denial of it’s realness.


  • Andrew Budek-Schmeisser

    March 9, 2015 at 11:23 PM

    Amen, Karen Beth. Anyone who thinks it’s a choice, and that you can ‘choose peace’ is an idiot.

    I have PTSD, severe enough that sleeping…and reliving events through nightmares…is something I try to avoid.

    I’m also not really ‘safe’ out in The World, because my responses are keyed to combat. Wholly appropriate there, and wholly inappropriate here. I’m an embarrassment to those I might be with, so I keep mainly to myself.

    As you so gracefully described the process, you can adjust, but you can’t choose to be ‘well’. It’s not a choice.

  • Anne Costa

    March 10, 2015 at 6:53 AM

    I don’t this women has any real credentials, does she? The intricate balance of mind, body and spirit…when damaged by trauma of abuse causes real physical changes and damage that lead to chemical imbalances and other changes to the brain that cause panic attacks, PTSD, anxiety, depression and even a host of other physical ailments. This is not a choice, it is an illness… a dis-ease if you will. Can we learn to manage it? Yes. But it required long term treatment and a day to day healing process AND we need understanding,compassion and love along the way. Thank goodness, we can come here for a bit of that!

  • gelpersevering

    March 10, 2015 at 11:37 AM

    Hi Karen,
    Thanks for speaking out on this. I think you wrote something important for many of us.

    I’m sorry I haven’t been visiting you much lately. I’m involved in a healing project that is taking a lot of my energy. It’s good. It includes an online forum so I am writing a lot there too. Just helping others and helping myself.

    I think about you often and read your writings. I send my love and best wishes to you.

Please take a moment to comment! I love connecting with others!

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