What is anxiety?

Anxiety is our body’s way of indicating that it may be in danger. Sometimes the danger is real (e.g., a bear chasing you), and sometimes it is not (e.g., saying hi to a new friend). Let’s imagine that your anxiety is like the fire detector in your home. If your fire detector goes off every time you boil water, it may be too sensitive. Anxiety is like having an overly sensitive fire detector. Your fight, flight, and freeze system is on overdrive, even though you are not in danger. That can be exhausting and even debilitating.

Anxiety is a normal part of life. Everyone, and I mean EVERYONE, has anxiety every now and then. However, if this anxiety gets in the way of you accomplishing your day to day goals, you may need support.

“Experience is not always the kindest of teachers, but it is surely the best.”



  • Feeling nervous, restless, or tense
  • Having a sense of impending danger
  • Having an increased heart rate
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sweating
  • Trembling
  • Feeling fatigued or tired
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Having trouble sleeping
  • Muscle tension
  • Racing thoughts
  • Experiencing gastrointestinal (GI) problems
  • Having difficulty controlling worry
  • Avoiding things that trigger anxiety
  • Panic attacks
  • Irritability
Man hiking up a path with wood stairs with trees on either side and clouds in the blue sky


Treatment typically starts with gathering your history and understanding the role that stress/anxiety plays in your life. Stressors and triggers will be noted so that they can later be targeted. I explore your coping strategies and help expand those coping strategies to make sure that you have a strong base to work from. If you have been avoiding a specific anxiety-inducing stressor, we will work on increasing exposure to that stressor so that it “loses its power.” When you experience something enough times, it becomes boring. And that’s exactly what we would like to do with your anxiety-inducing triggers.

With any treatment, I like to explore your values and what’s important to you. We would not do any treatment unless it feels as though it is moving you toward the person you want to be (e.g., if quality time with family is important to you, we would work on creating more work-life balance and engaging in activities you might want to do with your family). Also, I am a firm believer that emotions are a window into your values and needs. I will check in on your emotions every now and then to explore what your underlying needs may be and how we can meet those needs.