You may feel powerless over your anxiety, pain, and past.  But in reality, you DO have power and influence in this process.  

In this episode I am joined by Dr. Bridget Cooper to discuss awareness, choice, power and responsibility in the recovery process.  Becoming aware that you DO have choice means that you do gain power and responsibility that you can use to propel yourself in the right direction toward recovery.  It’s not easy and not always pretty, but you are not powerless, so let’s talk about it!

The Highlights

  • Your anxiety, trauma, or pain history are NOT your fault.  While you do have responsibility in the recovery process, you have NO responsibility for creating your anxiety disorder or for pain or abuse inflicted upon you by others.  THIS IS NOT YOUR FAULT, but that does not mean you must suffer forever.
  • The first step to finding your power in recovery is awareness.  Dr. B is find of saying, “Awareness equal choice, and choice equals power.”  She’s right!
  • You are likely keenly aware of your pain and suffering, but you may have no awareness of the fact that you do have choice, power, and influence in your recovery.  You are not required to sit passively and be “attacked” by anxiety or pain. You can make productive choices and uncover your power.
  • Recognizing that you have choice, and therefore power, means that you can begin to act in different ways.  You can exercise your power by learning and practicing new ways to respond to your anxiety and pain.
  • Exercising your choice and finding your power means you take responsibility for your recovery.  This is good!  Being responsible for making yourself better means you are no longer at the mercy of your past, others that you can’t control, or the anxiety “monster”.  You are in charge.
  • Unfortunately, none of this means that you instantly banish your anxiety, panic, pain, or trauma.  It does mean that you can act differently in order to build new, productive, healthy ways to relate to those things.  Building that new relationship means that over time you will move past your fear and yes, your anxiety and pain can fade away.
  • Does this mean you will never be anxious, or never experience painful memories or emotions ever again?  Of course not.  No human gets to live a life free of these things.  But becoming aware of your choices, exercising your power, and taking responsibility for your recovery means you do not have to be dragged around by these things any more.  You can finally experience them in healthy, more productive ways, and they will no longer dictate your course or rule your life.

Thanks to Dr. B for joining in.  She’s the best!

Find Dr. Bridget Cooper Here:




Pain Rebel – How We Take Our Power Back

Little Landslides – How We Rise Up From Our Pain


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Podcast Intro/Outro Music: "Afterglow" by Ben Drake (With Permission)






Founder and host of The Anxious Truth podcast. Graduate student and therapist-in-training. Author and educator on the topic of anxiety disorders and anxiety recovery. Former anxious and depressed person.