Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 12
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    , , Croatia.
    Posts
    1,342

    Pushing through; big steps; small steps... what works?

    Hello everyone,
    I'm curious to hear about your experiences with overcoming agoraphobia? I'd like to know what 'strategy' works best for you. Do you find that taking lots of small steps, say, going to the same place that's near to your house a couple of times a week, and then gradually progressing from there and going further, works best? Perhaps doing something massive, something that's completely out of your comfort zone is the key to building your confidence up?

    I often find that going certain places is still a struggle for me, regardless of the fact that I've gone there and much further in the past. I'd like to come up with a permanent solution so as to solve this issue effectively.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    , , Croatia.
    Posts
    1,342

    Re: Pushing through; big steps; small steps... what works?

    Thank you.
    My anxiety is at its worst in the evening, so going out in the mornings sounds like a better option for me. It's much easier to have someone to keep me company; I'm glad someone else relates to that.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Posts
    483

    Re: Pushing through; big steps; small steps... what works?

    Hi,
    I think no one 'cure' fits all.

    I do think when agoraphobia is at its peak/worst, going out at night/dark is less stressful.
    in general there are less people about to see you or bump into who may want to 'trap' you in conversation.

    I personally find going out with someone at the EARLY stages more 'trapping/stressful' because when I knew I had had enough the OP ' ' forced/encourage me to go ' one step further, '
    If I really couldn't, I was left feeling useless,worthess and despondent.

    HOWEVER
    When I was attempting to go much further afield where I couldn't reasonable walk home by myself quickly should I panic... I did need and rely on another person who would drive or arrange taxi or 'ambulance' home

    I have tried both methods.
    Flooding ..going really far from home. Although on those occasions it was to weddings where I was doubly 'trapped' due to 'having' to stay at the function where my 'flight' desire became overwhelming!

    I had to use valium and many other 'safety' measures to achieve the outing. And whilst I did achieve the outing, I never fell it was successful as I exhausted myself with meticulous forward planning of 'what ifs, catastrophising,; major flight and fight during; and and exhaustion afterwards.

    Claire weeks suggests constant repeats of same length exposure is the way to go, and I have tried this too.
    It was successful for shorter journeys, but I found on massive exposures, 2 or 3 concurrent of them left me extremely anxious and having a set back.

    I will say however, over the last two years, I can now attempt (on a very good day) an 18 mile return journey by myself by car which I could never have thought possible before. And this journey makes the very small exposures seem almost 'easy'. So long term continued practice WILL improve Your condition

    I also have bad days (although becoming fewer) when any journey seems impossible
    And
    Even though I have improved and HAVE actually got out and about...having a set back. Brings irrational thoughts that I will never be able to leave the house ever again. Part of the agaraphic condition I think!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    , , Croatia.
    Posts
    1,342

    Re: Pushing through; big steps; small steps... what works?

    I appreciate the advice. Personally, I don't have an issue with people 'trapping' me into a conversation. Quite the opposite: I find comfort and reassurance talking to people I bump into as they take my mind off my anxiety and distract me.
    Slow and steady wins the race then, going on what you've said there. I'm also experiencing a set back at the moment, but it's all part of the journey!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Posts
    483

    Re: Pushing through; big steps; small steps... what works?

    So, we seem to have different issues within the agoraphobia spectrum, and also different needs and ways of dealing with these problems. Ie I feel traped by OP. you welcome them as a distraction.

    Exposure therapy has been the only thing that has helped me in 30 years.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    , , Croatia.
    Posts
    1,342

    Re: Pushing through; big steps; small steps... what works?

    Yeah, the share the same underlying issue.
    Thank you for your reply. I suppose exposure is the only way; moving forward, small steps mixed in with some big steps... Hopefully we'll all get there in the end!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    180

    Re: Pushing through; big steps; small steps... what works?

    keep in mind that the goal initially isn't to not feel any anxiety, it's to feel the anxiety and persevere and move through it. Small steps, yes but be sure to feel the fear and do it anyway. It gave me a great feeling of accomplishment when I went through it. If you can work with a CBT therapist, they'll guide you through the steps to success. Good Luck!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Posts
    1,279

    Re: Pushing through; big steps; small steps... what works?

    I was taught that using other people as company is a 'safety behaviour' and will just feed the anxiety. That said it can be easier said than done doing these things alone.

    Repetition also works.

    I myself am having a major setback from being 'partially' healed and everything is difficult. The further I get from home the worse I feel. Unfortunately I feel pretty bad with a constant state of anxiety at home too so sometimes getting out is nice for a change of scenery.

    I'm managing to take the dogs to the beach every day (only a 2-3 minute drive) but anything else feels impossible.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Posts
    1,646

    Re: Pushing through; big steps; small steps... what works?

    For me it was running across a massive beach to the sea. I didn't plan it, just went for it. Scary as hell, but it sure felt good. That was over 20 years ago, and pretty much cured my serious agoraphobia. Had a few tiny blips over the years but nothing major.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    , , Croatia.
    Posts
    1,342

    Re: Pushing through; big steps; small steps... what works?

    Shaz, I'm the same: the further from home I get, the worse I feel. Also, sometimes I'm anxious at home, just like you, so I'm forced to choose the lesser evil: go out (or stay in)? Phuzella, I'm pleased to hear you did something brave that helped cure your agoraphobia. I'm hoping that lots of little steps will eventually lead me on to something major that will push me 10 steps forward as I constantly feel like I keep going backwards; sporadically and partially, but backwards...

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. small steps but I did it
    By almamatters in forum Success Stories
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 29-11-12, 16:12
  2. small steps
    By R.Barratt in forum Success Stories
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 08-06-12, 16:25
  3. Replies: 6
    Last Post: 16-12-10, 18:34
  4. Small steps
    By kate in forum Success Stories
    Replies: 45
    Last Post: 06-01-07, 16:58

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •