Is there any way to force yourself to do something you are extremely anxious about...

Is there any way to force yourself to do something you are extremely anxious about? Any way to actually get rid of anxiety about something? I need to do something but can’t get myself to. It’s so bad that I get physical pain when I think about it for too long and my mind just makes it so I can’t think about anything at all. I have PTSD from the last time I made myself do something I was worried about and it ended badly and I’ve regretted it ever since. But there’s something in me that says this time will be different if I just work up the courage.

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What are you trying to do?


All you can do is embracing and dealing with it. Also change your mindstate:

>But there’s something in me that says this time will be different if I just work up the courage.
Instead of that "lol, bet I'm going to fuck up even harder this time" relieves more pressure. Be realistic, in worst case scenario, nothing will change. The important part is to keep trying. Attempting to do something and messing up is far, far, far better than not risking it in the first place.

Thanks for the actual advice. The thing is I’m not even actually that afraid of fucking up, it’s more about the mental block I have towards going. If I could get myself to go I think I’d feel a lot better but that’s the impossible feeling part

Just do it. Get past the point of no return and just do it. Go fuck up a few times and then you won't be anxious about it anymore. Condition yourself to be used to it

If I were in control of my emotions I would like to just do it and get it over with but I literally might not be able to force myself to go because of how fucked up my psyche got from last time. Trust me I have the same philosophy as you

What exactly is your problem? You're auditioning? For what?

But what's exactly causing the mental block? What's the main worry? Surely no matter what happens, it can't be that bad in the end. You'll regret not taking the chance much more. Doubt there is much one can do but minimize thinking about the stuff and just doing it. The "yeah, whatever" approach worked for me for most things, used to over-prepare and plan a lot ahead before – and shit, just thinking back about it makes me cringe.

Reward yourself for going before you go. By that, I mean give yourself any reason to get out of your house before the audition that is positive. How extensive that reward is, is up to you. Treat yourself to a meal at your favorite restaurant. Go somewhere that brings you happiness. Buy yourself something you've wanted for a while. You'll be in a more positive mood for your audition. You'll be more likely to leave your house, instead of sitting at home talking yourself into going. I've done this by buying a cup of coffee at my favorite shop before going to a doctor's appointment I was dreading. I've purchased plane tickets for a vacation when I re-enrolled in college. The expense of it isn't important (as long as it's within your means) as long as it's motivating you to get out of yourself and something that makes you feel rewarded.

*out of your house

I guess to sum it all up, the root of the problem is that I can’t force myself to do things I don’t know the outcome to anymore. I think because when I was a teenager I took a lot of risks and did a lot of hard things that took a lot of time and ultimately didn’t pay off, now my mind just doesn’t let me do anything remotely risky. When I say “my mind” I know you’re tempted to say “just do it” but I really can’t control my will. I’ve tried and meditated and contemplated for so long and it hasn’t helped

Alright thanks. Maybe I’ll buy myself a bunch of games and then say I can’t play them until I come back

That's probably your issue. You want to do something, don't overthink it. I used to worry ahead of time a lot. As I've gotten older I've learned to chill a bit more. I realize things aren't as bad as they seem, what will be will be, and I have no reason to no try doing something if I feel like doing it. I feel slight tinges of anxiety here and there, but once I get into whatever it is I was anxious about it starts to wear down. Even still it isn't so much about stopping anxiety, it's about not letting it stop you. It'll be there, but so what? It's nothing more than a feeling. It only stops you if you let it.

Sounds like your mind has an impossible expectation, for a lot of things, you simple can't tell the outcome, just estimate the couple most likely options.

If it was really just a feeling I would just suck it up, but it’s so intense that I start stuttering and shaking and can’t do what I’m trying to. That’s what happened last time, and I thought I could do it up until the exact moment I was supposed to- that’s when it started, and that’s why it’s so scary

But so what? There is nothing to be scared of. Worst that can happen is you appear very nervous in front of a bunch of nobodies. There's nothing to be anxious about. You sure you didn't have a panic attack or something?

Yeah maybe it could be classified as panic attack. Again, I’m trying to reason with the part of myself that controls my feelings and it’s not at all logical

Are you a female?

Try reading Scott Adams' How to Fail At Nearly Everything But Still Win Big. It's from the creator of Dilbert, who tried and failed at a lot of different avenues (sometimes in a life altering way) and ended up having a psychological block where he couldn't speak for some time. With a then-career as a public speaker. It's humorous so it's not tedious, but sometimes it helps to see someone with the same perspective end up turning it into a success. It helped me a lot when I went through something similar.

Thanks I’m checking it out

me in the car

Any way to rehearse what you wanna do? Maybe a few safe repetitions will help you feel more relaxed about it.