Thoughts about anxiety and the physiological experience of anxiety go hand-in-hand. When your clients talk about anticipated difficult events and how they cannot cope with what might happen, their bodies generate a fear response. This is a great therapeutic opportunity. Utilize such moments to teach your clients how to respond to anxiety-producing thoughts.
Pause. Gently, clearly state, “Let’s pause for a moment.” This gets your client’s attention, directing it away from the anxiety-producing thoughts.
Clients who are depressed, on disability, or unemployed often find themselves lapsing into an amorphous life. They can’t find reasons to get out of bed, clean themselves up, or accomplish things, and doing so depends entirely on their impaired willpower.