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The Benefits of Anxiety Counseling

June 21st, 2020 by admin | Posted in Psychology | No Comments » | 51 views | Print this Article

Anxiety is an issue that troubles millions of people all over the world. There are many different types of anxiety disorders and some people are more affected by them than others. However, no matter what kind of anxiety you’re dealing with, or the severity, your goal is likely to lessen it. One of the main ways you can do this is through anxiety counseling.

What is Anxiety Counseling?

Anxiety counseling is when you talk to a trained professional about your anxiety issues. Because anxiety is a mental condition, it is often helpful to discuss your issues with a neutral third-party. Just like you would go to a doctor for a physical problem, like a headache or broken bone, going to a counselor is often one of the best things you can do for anxiety.

According to Dr. Piper Walsh, a provider of anxiety counseling in Orange County, California, “Professional counseling offers a safe environment that allows us to explore our thoughts, feelings, and hopes with the advice, guidance, and insight of a professional.”

But what are the specific, concrete benefits you can expect to get from anxiety counseling? Below are just a few of the most common benefits.

Stress Relief

The first major benefit of anxiety counseling is stress relief. When we are dealing with difficult emotions, it can all become bottled up inside us. If you don’t have a healthy way of dealing with your stress, it can quickly take a heavy toll on you. Anxiety counseling gives you someone to talk to and air out everything that is stressing you. Many people find that after a counseling session, it feels like a large weight has been lifted off of their shoulders.

Confidence Building

For some people, their anxiety keeps them from doing things they would like. This avoidance leads to a feeling that they wouldn’t be good in a particular situation. For example, someone suffering from social anxiety may avoid going to parties with their friends. Their anxiety tells them that there is something to be afraid of at this party, and as a result, they don’t go.

Anxiety counseling can help individuals analyze these fears, then build up the confidence to overcome them. The anxiety counselor may give the client some exercises designed to build up their own self-confidence. After a few therapy sessions, they may feel better about themselves, and be able to attend that party.

Having confidence is an important part of progressing through life. You need it whenever you are looking to try something new, like get a promotion, start a new relationship, or begin a new project. Through anxiety counseling, you can slowly build up your confidence in key areas, so that you can finally start doing those things you’ve been wanting to do.

Improved Health

We often don’t realize it, but stress and anxiety, while mental conditions, can have a large impact on our physical health. It’s not uncommon for someone suffering from anxiety and stress to feel tired or sluggish throughout the day. Anxiety can also cause bad habits, such as smoking or over-eating unhealthy foods. By addressing the root cause of these problems, you can start to live a healthier lifestyle.

Develop Healthy Habits

To really deal with anxiety, it’s often about taking the next step, rather than just the first one. Many people are able to get a handle on things, only to slide back into bad habits a few weeks or months later. Keeping up with anxiety counseling sessions can help you to establish healthy habits so that you don’t find yourself in the same place somewhere down the line.

An anxiety counselor will give you the tools you need to establish these healthy habits, then check in with you to ensure you’re practicing. Sometimes we don’t even realize we’ve reverted back into bad habits and it takes a therapist to point it out to you. By taking the time to develop these healthy habits, you can set yourself up for long-term success.

Potentially Avoid Medications

Finally, anxiety counseling may prevent you from needing medications. While anxiety medications are helpful in some situations, they can also cause some side effects. If you are able to manage your anxiety without medications, this is usually preferred. Regularly attending anxiety counseling sessions is a great way to get to the heart of the problem, so that you can work on yourself without having to rely on medication. Then, if you’re still having trouble, you and your counselor can discuss medication options that work in conjunction with your therapy.

Get the Help You Need

If you’ve been struggling with anxiety, you owe it to yourself to consider anxiety counseling. There are numerous benefits that can change your life for the better. We all deserve to be happy, so if you think a counselor may help you, find one in your local area and set up an appointment.

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Evolution and Information; A Theory of Origination

June 18th, 2020 by Robert DePaolo | Posted in Psychology | No Comments » | 32 views | Print this Article

Evolution and Information:
A Theory of Origination

by Robert DePaolo

Darwin’s theory of natural selection comprises the most widely accepted scientific explanation of how organisms originated and evolved over time. While aspects of his theories in Origin of the Species were more complex than some modern characterizations suggest the idea can be whittled down to a kind of reverse causation. While science typically emphasizes the deterministic model – the notion that causes precede effects, natural selection holds that there is no cause, or central theme (biological or otherwise) in the origin and development of species. Instead the process unfolds as follows. First, comes the mutation – which is a function of probability-based errors in traits arising from genetic shuffling with each generation. Then comes the environment – both in terms of its existing state at the time of any give trait/mutation and in terms of its changes over time and impact on the future survival or organisms.
The term ‘environment’ was defined in a broad context by Darwin to include both inter species competition and what he called sexual selection; which refers to females’ preference for males with advantageous traits which they hope will be transmitted to offspring.
There have always been several problems with this theory. One has to do with the competition factor. It is very rare for one species to drive another to the point of extinction. Lionesses will never cause the extinction of zebras – indeed only succeed on a hunt one out of ten times. Arguably, rather than threaten the zebras’ existence, selecting the weakest zebras as prey actually enhances the species, making it more robust and attractive to one another, thus enhancing propagation. In that sense the hunt can ultimately increase the prey population.
Competition can be for resources but this results in extinction only in extraordinary circumstances. Lions, hyenas and vultures compete for the same food sources but the intelligence of each species enables it to obtain meat without directly competing. Vultures wait for scraps or move in when lions have left the vicinity unaware that there is a carcass on which to feed. Hyenas confront lionesses but much of this ends up in a standoff. If hyenas have the advantage of numbers they will feed first. If not, and if the male of the pride is in the area the lions will dominate. But as long as there are still prey in the hunting grounds each will find a way.
A similar caveat applies to sexual selection. No female on earth is prescient enough to determine what traits will prove adaptive in the future. They do not mate in terms of environmental vicissitudes. Rather they mate in terms of what they view as species norms for fitness. In that sense sexual selection is based more on present sense stagnation than future adaptability. While human females can and do change their preferences for males with changing times (in the fifties it was either large pecs or a college degree, in the sixties, a puerile “cute”look and the trappings of “social consciousness”) no other females have such attitudinal malleability. Those factors offer a challenge to natural selection as a prime model of evolution, particularly the basic components of random mutation and environmental selection.
That model assumes there is enough coordination between trait mutations and environmental shifts to keep the phenomenal volume of life on earth flowing. While it makes sense to assume mutations will either be A. irrelevant to survival B. advantageous to survival as juxtaposed on the environment, or C detrimental to the organism’s survival. Yet that hardly comprises a systematic process.
Considering the enormous disparity in timelines within which organisms mutate and the environment changes it seems possible that natural selection has little net effect on organic evolution – that genetics and the ecology are for the most part two ships passing in the night. In other words, like the lioness and the zebra, genetic change probably misses the environmental target most of the time. In that case even the reverse determinism inherent in Darwin’s theory seems hard to defend.
There is another possible explanation, based more on information dynamics than biology and perhaps coincides more closely, and systemically with the origin of life forms.

Systems and complexity…

An information system is one in which there are stabilizing codes to go along with some degree of variability. For example the letter sequence…. ffffff-g-ffffff-g-ffffff-g… has some repetition (the sequence of f’s) and some variability (seen in the letter ‘g’). If the ‘g’ occurred randomly it would not comprise a code, but since it occurs each time after 6 f’s it has variability that falls within the context of the overall information system. In other words variability within structure is the formula for any intact information system including a life form
For any information system to last it must have a central, versatile base of stability so that whatever variations occur will, while causing a slight drift from the main trend, not dissemble the system. When a system has variability it can more effectively deal with change. That is because it’s integrity does not depend on the sustenance of any one element. Thus the more complex the system (that is, the more its capacity to vary without unraveling into entropy) the more resilient it will be. With that in mind a different view of comes into play

In the Beginning…

The first task of life forms was molecular. While protein synthesis, DNA and RNA replication were necessary components of life, it is likely that macro-molecules similar to or the same as those were probably floating around in the methane-based environment of early earth. Back then the days were hot, the nights extremely cold and such drastic changes in temperature would have broken up molecular bindings rather frequently. That means life did not simply appear with the advent of amino acids, proteins and DNA but instead came and went for millions of years without actually forming anything resembling a life system.
If that is true, it seems the crucial factor in the advent and evolution of life might have been the makeup and resilience of the internal organic components (featuring a “threshold stability/variance” information system) that gave the macro molecules via increasing complexity and made them more resilient. With more molecular (integrated) diversity the organic information system could more effectively resist environmental vagaries. This means instead of evolution depending on adaptation to the external environment, it could have arisen in the first instance from a proto-organic insulation capacity: in other words, by developing increasingly separate but interdependent cells and organs that could share and support each other and dilute the effect of environmental intrusions. As the proliferation of cells continued the cellular structures developed a resistance capability and became more “environmentally immune.”
One aspect of this model that seems plausible is that while adherents to natural selection typically think in terms of traits such as coat color, size, strength, the length of fangs, the position of the eyes or tensile grip they seldom consider the complexity of cellular interactions and increased redundancy of organ systems as comprising the prime survival mechanism.
Perhaps having multiple systems work cooperatively to provide nutrition to the cells and keep the organic entity intact – in a way similar to the brain losing cells via post adolescent tissue loss without loss of memory or general intelligence post is the prime physiological function.
In that context the cells of the heart, lungs, digestive system, muscle system, kidneys etc. really are sub components of a general physiological information system, that is, more than “organs’ also encoding mechanisms serving to prevent environmental factors from undoing the information content and systemic integrity of the body. The question is, why such a complex – arguably abstract process exist in the concrete world of biology?
One possible answer lies in the most frequent and insidious cause of extinction for all organisms – disease. Lions won’t extinguish zebras and great white sharks will never drive seals to the brink. But bacteria and viruses can kill millions at once and perhaps that has always been the driving factor in evolution. To the extent that integrated cellular variability deflects the impact on any foreign agent among numerous cells and organs the impact will be less. The target that is moving is hardest to hit and the more information any one entity contains the more resistant to harmful impact it will be. Indeed that very cellular diversity/integrity does something extraordinary for the health and survival of any organism. By redirecting the target of disease it gives the immune system more time to engulf and destroy the intruder.
Because of its ties to information dynamics i will refer to this concept of evolution as a theory of ‘progressive encoding.’ In the course of time the internal organ and bodily transport systems became more diverse, also functionally redundant. Cells with some variety gathered and something held them together – most likely carbon which has the capacity to meld together a variety of molecules. That led to the first step in organic evolution – integrity; so that temperature changes and other factors could not dissemble the original molecular conglomerates. That resiliency/internal protective factor led to a proliferation of complexity (increased information content”worked”) so that while death by predation, earthquake or famine were still possibilities, the real competitor (the bacteria and viruses) were coming under increasing control. This is a speculative notion but perhaps offers a less random alternative to natural selection.

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