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Anxiety as a Smoke Alarm Part 1

3 Min
Life Coaching
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Cass Carlopio
Sleep Expert, Psychologist & Meditation
This talk uses the analogy of a smoke alarm to better understand anxiety.
From the community
142 reflections
C
Chelsea
Smoke alarm
I learned a new analogy for anxiety that makes a lot of sense. I am a generally anxious person but I feel very empathetic towards people who have it much worse than I do.
T
Tammy
Anxiety smoke alarm
Great way to look at anxiety as a smoke alarm alerting you to danger or threat. It is simply related many times to chronic stress. Unfortunately, a sign of our times is that everyone has chronic stress and therefore anxiety.
T
Tammy
Smoke alarm
Great way to understand how anxiety feels to the body. It is like a smoke alarm. Can’t wait for part 2.
L
Laycee
Anxiety
Anxiety is the body’s sense of danger. We can take two different responses to it, fight or flight. We can go through it or run away from it in many situations. It is like a smoke alarm, we need to train our body’s to only set off when it is needed. When we set off the alarm when it is not needed it puts extra stress on the nervous system and the whole body that we don’t need.
E
Elaine
Smoke Alarm
I learned that the smoke alarm is a really great analogy of anxiety and it helped me understand anxiety more.
K
Krissella
Excited for pt.2
My anxiety has been crippling the past 4 months. I’m excited to see what tips pt.2 can offer me!
E
Emma
Anxiety
I am not alone and they may be a answer.... can’t wait to hear the rest.
K
Kathy
Stoic
Being stoic means to learn to not let sorrow overtake you or your life. Sorrow prevents joy. This was just perfect today for me as I was grieving all last night over more news about my daughter’s declining health. I have gained a new insight with this session and I will, hopefully, use it.
B
Britannia
happy!
I felt understood and now understand whats really going on in my head. this has given me the urge to not only control my stress but to stop it!
A
Ava
Excited
I learnt that my anxiety is going to go off when I over think a situation I’m in
M
Miri
Stress and anxiety
I think this is such an important insight that you can feel anxious just because you are very or chronically stressed. If your stress is constantly high you can develop crippling anxiety just as a warning to level down generally. Yes, once you’re chronically stressed already little things can trigger your fight and flight. Yet the fact that the smoke alarm is thus permanently on still indicates that there is a fire... it’s however a fire that burns more subtly like a cable fire. It’s crippling and you might not even know it because you’re so focused on the little things and not that general exhaustion or level of stress you made “normal” for yourself.
G
Gina
Too much smoke
It’s good that I am aware of the anxiety I feel, but it’s not enough to simply be aware of it. Through this lesson, I learned that I must dig deeper to figure out why I feel the anxiety I’m feeling in order to deal with it accordingly.
S
Stacey
Smoke Alarm
Discovered that although I have anxiety, I know the cause and it not as a constant fire alarm going off but is as normal as ones could be I suppose. My challenge is deciding whether I’m going to continuing freezing or battle what needs to be done.
J
Jose
Smoke alarm
This was a good exercise because it helps you look at a common personal problem like a smoke alarm and helps you relax if you look at it the same way.
M
Matthew
Greatful
I'm grateful that the anxiety I do feel is somewhat normal and manageable. My anxiety occurs when I feel like I'm not taking the best care of my family that I can...something which has been quite prevalent since my stroke took me so far away from them for so long, altering all of our lives drastically. I don't suffer with anxiety, and I pity those today who seem to have self-diagnosed with crippling anxiety. My eldest child is one such. She allows this to keep her from trying unknown things or interacting in normal ways with strangers. It stops her from living the life I want for her...and never having been through any sort of therapy, she's not been diagnosed by a professional...she just claims it as a self-diagnosis. Drives me nuts to see her mincing and cringing over this! I blame the Internet. Having had unfettered access to the Internet has allowed her to learn to rely upon the ”advice” and ”research” of completely unvetted resources, who she turns to and trusts before the two people with only her health and best interests at heart! My wife and I feel like we've failed her in many ways because of this.
D
Debbi
Realization
A great way to think of our nervous system as a smoke alarm.
L
Laycie
4 am smoke alarm
My smoke alarm is constant and it’s a good way to look at anxiety. Looking forward to hearing more of how to better understand and deal with what is going on with my mind.
WJ
Walter J
Anxiously...
Awaiting Part 2 of Smoke Alarm. In part 1 Cassandra does an excellent job describing anxiety as a smoke alarm. You certainly want it to go off and work if there is a fire, but not if it is just burnt toast. I think it is very helpful to think of anxiety as an early warning system for us and not as a problem itself. It is a natural thing that we just need to learn to deal with to be able to use it properly. Thanks Cassandra this could help a lot of people I know. Looking forward to part 2. ❤️☮️🍀
T
Tara
🌟 amazing analogy
This is a wonderful analogy and it explains a rather complex physical reaction in a very simple and easy to understand way. I have a metabolic disorder and anxiety is one of the symptoms. It means my adrenal system is stuck in the on position. My anxiety is caused by over exertion and along with pain and fatigue it is one of my primary warning signs. If I can’t control it, it leads to heart palpitations. Not pleasant. Chronic anxiety is extremely harmful to the body. I’m sharing this today with my Facebook group. Thanks to Aura my anxiety has been under control lately.
L
Leah
I felt this was a great explanation for anxiety - I think I can reflect and use this
I can hopefully turn the alarm off or remove the battery! It will allow me to pause and think how my body is reacting to the anxiety
B
Brianna
Overthinking
I really feel that a lot theses “alarms” in my head are really just false alarms. But it’s hard to tell the difference. So I’m really glad that this started to put some things into perspective for me.
J
Jennifer
Smoke
I felt comforted knowing that the anxiety level can be changed. The smoke alarm analogy was very understandable and easy to relate to.
J
Jake
Anxiety as a smoke alarm
Anxiety is a a response from my body, and it’s supposed to happen, but my smoke alarm won’t turn off
S
Sasha
Framing anxiety as a smoke alarm helps put it in perspective. I’m looking fwd
S
Sara
Don’t run from anxiety.
L
Laura
Need to listen to part 2?!?
C
Carlie
I learned that anxiety can have a positive effect on you
K
Karly
it is a normal It’s flight or fight intuition, amplified by emotion such as fear
B
Brendan
Anxiety can be a good thing
C
Candice
I learned that I have many unnecessary periods of “fight or flight” responses.
M
Monika
To stop and think whats going on because at most cases Im overreacting
C
Charleigh
I felt like...
Someone actually cares and takes time out of their day to record themselves saying very helpful things for people like me who have severe anxiety and depression to try to get us across that border of seeing things all horrible to seeing things to be magical and lovely. I really appreciate it. Thank you.
P
Paula
Anxiety as a smoke alarm
I learned that I need to use meditation to stop the constant flight or fight mode.
E
Elie
Never giving up
I have had anxiety and anxiety in my childhood ever since. I also have obsessions that have ruined my life by being so strong and having such a strong impact on me. anxiety and anxiety plus fear of something I do not know what d is are things that then and now continue to hinder me how I really want to live. it feels like I'm controlled by them and captured by them.
M
M
Commit to love
I found the analogy of the smoke alarm to be helpful in terms of what I need to avoid and where I can improve.
T
Trinity
The mind
The mind is a very dangerous thing. Dont let it slip away keep it as a weapon for positivity
R
Rox
Anxiety is like a smoke alarm we want it to go off when something bad is happening but not to hear it constantly beeping
G
Gavin
Faith
Have faith that you khan do it even though you think you can’t
A
Ashley
Anxiety
I learned that Anxiety can be good because it tells you there is a reason to fight or flight. But sometimes it goes off when it doesn’t red to ie using the toaster vs an actual fire.
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Tina
Loved the comparison of the smoke alarm. Made me understand anxiety in a different way. Thanks!
L
Leah
Science behind BS anxiety!
A
Arabia
What I already knew
F
Francois
Fantastic
L
Lisa
I learned that anxiety is the body’s response to something being wrong.
It makes sense that I would feel a lot of anxiety often because my body often feels things are wrong as a result of my daily interactions with my husband.
M
Mandy
They I want to hear part 2
D
Dorothy
I have learned to recognize my anxiety. Now I need to understand it and work on feeling safe.
C
Casandra
That not everything requires anxiety
M
Michelle
That we need to make sure are inner alarms work
A
Alena
my nervous system should only be anxious when it is fully necessary
LM
La’Mar
What Anxiety is and how it functions
A
Alison
My smoke alarm is stuck going off 24/7
K
Kunta
To focus on the now
J
Jax
That it’s important to pay attention when your internal smoke alarms are ringing - focus and destress
M
Meenakshi
Anxiety
I feel like anxiety can be managed with intentional thought and action
M
Meenakshi
Anxiety
I learned that anxiety can be managed with intentional thought and actions
A
Alexis
working on anxiety
i learned that i need to work on feeling safe and my anxiety should only go off when necessary
J
Jen
Smoke alarm stuck on
I suffer from ptsd. My alarm has been stuck on for a very long time. It is exhausting and has held me back from truly living my life.
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Paul
Anxiety/Smoke Alarm
This resonated with me. I do try to make anxiety just go away. After listening to this it makes perfect sense that anxiety is essential, but I feel it over too many things and end up putting many things off that shouldn’t cause any anxiety. I’ve managed to get a lot of smaller jobs out of the way over the last few days and feel much less anxious in general now. Each job ended up being nothing to worry about but I attached the possibility of negativity to each and that’s what makes me avoid doing things which then makes everything feel overwhelming. I need to acknowledge that I’m feeling anxiety more often than I realise and not allow it to hinder the completion of small tasks, enabling me to complete more important ones.
A
Autumn
Anxiety as a smoke alarm
I learned to not put stress on my nervous system and to not try to make anxiety go away, but to let it rise only when flight or fight is needed. This was amazing.
P
PoY
It’s good thing to have anxiety
When I feel anxious then I have to think about what it warn me to pay attention with. What is the situation I’ve faced till an alarm is work out so loud.
J
Jada
My anxiety is a smoke alarm
I learned that my anxiety is a natural alert that I shouldn’t ignore or get upset over. Rather I should acknowledge it, find the problem, and face it head on.
T
Terry
Smoke alarm
I learned that I should not deal with something that has not happened, just because I think it will
L
Laura
Smoke alarm
I learned that my "alarm" is stuck in the on mode most of the time.
H
Hannah
Today
Today is day one with this app. So far, I like it and feel this will help guide me to remission of my anxiety and hypomanic stages again. Today I’m feeling joy. So much joy and emotion that any thing happy I see, any thing that’s blissful and inspirational, life itself is bringing tears to my eyes... but happy tears. Today my empathy is all in. Feeling every emotion at such a strength, a good yet dangerous strength. Today is a good sensory day. Sounds and sensory items aren’t so much a bother today, but yesterday every repetitive noise, loud sound, breathing, people being too close, was all too much. But, I pushed through and reminded myself to breathe, take a step back and tell myself it’s all okay. Slow down. Just, slow down.
B
Bara
good analogy!
Thank you for this good analogy! I’m eager to discover the next parts! 🙏🏻😀
A
Alex
Helpful
The idea of being in chronic fight or flight with anxiety really hit home for me.
J
Jeanisse
Flight or fight
In order for us to handle -more than battle- anxiety, we need to acknowledge what triggers it -what’s the real cause for it. Yes, is a nervous response when we feel we might be in danger, but, what happens when the danger is not real? An old smoke detector might go off by the slightest of things if not maintained properly; the same goes for us.
E
Erinsinclair
Anxiety attack
What I do when my anxiety comes on I relax myself & meditate & write my journal & do some colouring therapy & have a cup of relaxing tea
J
John
Smoke alarm is a good analogy to anxiety
I had my smoke detector beeping in the night a few days ago. It needed a new battery. Anxiety is like that. Waking up and being distracted. You could fall back to sleep but then something grabs youre attention again.
K
Katie
I found this quite helpful
I've had anxiety for one week straight and this definitely helped a bit. But not quite enough..
M
Mia
«stop»
A buddy of mine tiped me of a method where when u feel the anxiety u can close your eyes and spell out «s t o p» to try to take control over your mind again. And it doesnt work for everyone but it helps me alot
P
Paris
No
I didn’t really feel like this was a good analogy for anxiety.. it was kind of silly to me and it made me laugh.
M
Michelle
Good analogy
I think it worked as a good analogy for my own anxiety as it’s often a red light for some other issue in need to address in my life and the longer I ignore the real problem the worse my abortion gets and the harder it is to deal with
S
Sarah
What is this!
Not helpful , and made me more anxious Wear us the conclusion and steps learnt ?
W
Wendy
Boring
I don’t get anxiety this was irrelevant and I couldn’t skip it
M
Max
This is good
I learned that anxiety can be controlled, as as said in this, thought of as a smoke alarm. However, I don’t know how to control my anxiety at all.
A
Ashley
I am not the only one dealing with anxiety and there is a way through it.
I am not the only one dealing with anxiety and there is a way through it
J
Jordan
I felt calmer listening
I learned my fight or flight may always be on, I liked the calming nature of her voice and the analogy of the smoke alarm. I don’t want my Smoke alarm always on
R
Renee
Getting out of my own head
I tend to overthink and get stuck inside my own head. My overthinking is my smoke alarm, but it’s one of those hard to silence ones. Practicing turning off that alarm and preventing it from taking over were they keys I learned from the meditation.
V
Vanessa
Excellent analogy
The analogy of anxiety as a smoke alarm that we want to alert us when there is a real problem, but not when there isn’t is very useful. I found this session insightful and relaxing.
T
Tyson
Amazing!!!
I already know about anxiety, but the analogy to the smoke alarm and the calming voice was the absolute best way to describe it! Great 3 minutes!!
K
Kimberly
Smoke Alarm Anxiety
I liked this analogy. Relatable. Can’t wait to learn how to prevent the alarm from going off just for burnt toast.
N
Nikki
Smoke alarm
I liked the analogy. And am looking forward to getting my smoke alarm working properly.
B
Brittany
I felt relieved
I learned to accept my anxiety and to listen ton myself what it is telling me
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Jessica
Smoke alarm
I understand this analogy, it makes perfect sense. When I was in my situation my “smoke alarm “ was constant for so long, I’m now having trouble getting it to turn off
C
Crystal
My Smoke Alarm
My smoke alarm is definitely over worked. But I look forward to learning more techniques to get it in check.
S
Sanj
My smoke alarm requires a break so that it does not go off at the drop of hat & is better equipped
I learned that I can learn how to control my smoke alarm & be better equipped to deal with life's daily stressors.
E
Erin
Day 1 - April 14th
I felt depressed today, tired. Anxious about money, tired of having my boys trapped in the house. I don't feel good about myself.
C
Caitlyn
I am TIRED of my smoke alarm!
I like this comparison. I think it’s a really great way to explain anxiety to people that don’t experience it very often. However no matter what I do my smoke alarm is going off. Although, that might be the fact that I have a severe GAD. This is hard. Life is HARD. But I’m in control and I think I need to start fixing my smoke alarm. 4-14-19
G
Grace
A relief
I have anxiety and this really helped me understand what and how it works, I really recommend this... especially if you are confused of why you have anxiety and what it is doing to you.
JL
Jose Luis
Great analogy
Looking forward to the second part of this, where we will learn about fine tuning the smoke alarm.
R
Roberto
Nicole
nicole made me upset today because she posted on insta tweets that indirectly refer to her not liking me and not wanting to talk to me
S
Squirrel
I have never compared anxiety to a smoke alarm but it def makes sense.
My smoke alarm seems to be stuck on and what is the most frustrating is that the people around me can’t hear it! This obnoxious noise meant to Alarm people of the danger approaching and they can’t hear it. It’s only pounding in my head and it makes it even worse
S
Sophia
My anxiety
I am young but I do have very bad anxiety during class my “smoke alarm” will go off at any moment I’ve had about 10 these few past months my mom said that this app will help this is my third time using it. Anxiety isn’t something to mess around with it’s not fun have these attacks all of a sudden it’s scary sometimes to it’s hard dealing with these things but I know that I’m not alone and other people have it I just want to say thank you Aura thank you very much
B
Bree
Anxiety
I learned that my anxiety smoke alarm may be constantly on. I feel hopeful to find ways to lessen it to fires only
T
Taylah
Smoke Alarms
My smoke alarm goes on often and I just need to train it to go when shit happens
D
Divya
Realisation
I was scared of my anxiety before because I didn’t know why I had it in the first place. Now that I know that it’s a response to threat, I might be better able to handle it and maybe stop it from triggering every now and then.
A
Aubrey
I like the comparison of anxiety to a smoke alarm. I think that it’s a good way to understand anxiet
Anxiety can be beneficial. It’s hard to think of it as being good. I want to learn how to better control my smoke alarm
L
Lindsey
Confused
I tell myself I'm okay but there's always that tightness in my chest always say it's not there but it never seems to go away so it away I feel like I confuse myself to tell myself it's not happening and it's not helping me by doing them
F
Fiona
23 May
My anxiety is triggered by certain details or thoughts which are usually work related, without warning. It is constantly on the lookout for something to react to. I can relate to the analogy of a smoke alarm.
F
Faith
Realization
I think the analogy helped me to better understand myself and the things happening to me. I was able to realized the importance of knowing myself more and to pay attention to the good and bad things about me
J
JoBeth
Reflection of me
This session was a total reflection of what I’ve been feeling lately. Can’t wait for part two
J
Jane
Next session
Interested to hear next session about anxiety as a smoke alarm and how to turn off
C
Christian
Anxiety
Can’t wait for part two I’m trying to control the smoke alarms during this crazy pandemic
I
Ivana
My Smoke Alarm
I learn and you have to not let your anxiety or your smoke alarm go off at every little of smoke but only at large sire's and you have to learn how to control both sides as well as learn how to avoid your anxiety or your smoke alarm from going off at the slightest breeze both smoke just have to learn how to be calm during the little times and not overreact yet when there's a fire we need to be called but no hard to take action but this has been very helpful this session I understand it I didn't think I would but we'll see how it goes
J
James
Journal 2
I don't deal with anxiety on a constant "fight or flight" mechanism like the narrator described, but my stress does seem to go off at the slightest touches or whiffs of danger (ie. criticism, self imposed demands/expectations, etc.). So I guess, i need i really need to learn how to recalibrate my smoke alarm so that I'm more mindful of what's actually a danger and what's actually helpful.
M
Megan
Day 1
I felt understood. I learned what anxiety stems from and why we have it.
AM
Anne-Marie
Anxiety
I learnt a new way to think of my constant feeling of panic and I will have to stay in a fight response..I dont want to always have this ball feeling of dread
G
Guinevere
ANXIETY as smoke detector
I learned that there is a function for anxiety. That helped me feel a little better about it. I now feel like I can retrain my anxiety response to work appropriately. And now I can also use the anxiety to figure out what it thinks I'm being threatened by.
V
Velena
anxiety
Anxiety is like a smoke alarm 🔊🔊🔊 Also "chronic anxiety" is constantly in anxious state
C
Candice
Day 1
I learned that my smoke alarm is broken. And that there is a way to fix it
R
Rachel
Smoke alarm /anxiety
I learned that I can recognize my smoke alarm/anxiety and maybe calm it down before it gets too much
S
Stephanie
Anxiety
This meditation made perfect sense and is allowing me to look at my anxiety in a different light.
E
Emily
Smoke Alarm
It made sense and it was nice to be reminded that anxiety is not always correct and can be a false alarm
P
Pahuni
Anxiety Cause
I learnt that anxiety is caused by having the nervous system in stress all the time. So anxiety occurs more often and maybe permanently sits there. We need to train to have a calm mind and nervous system so anxiety may only come when it naturally needs to in bigger events and not when we’re just making a toast.
M
Michael
Tuesday
Anxiety is a tool of the body to get your attention to an area of your life that feels like a threat, managed correctly it can be a good thing
E
Emily
I learned
That this is mislabeled and is the grass is greener where you water it! Still not bad - I learned to say nice things to myself even when I don’t believe them and eventually the grass will breakthrough the soil and you will.
P
Pam
Smoke alarm
A good analogy of the nervous system and explanation of anxiety.
P
Pam
Smoke alarm
A good analogy of the nervous system. And explain action if anxiety.
M
Manny
Fight or flight/smoke alarm
I think that a good explanation was given to describe what the “smoke alarm” is about, and how we need to not be on panic mode with slightest worry.
S
Steph
Anxiety
I learned that I can view my anxiety differently and move towards acceptance of it at times.
C
Cj
Well this helped
Anxiety happens to everyone, and I can calm it down and change the way I breathe simply my belly breathing and realizing
T
Tina
Fine tuning our reactions to serve us
I learned I need to fine tune my smoke alarm so I can determine real danger not just feel anxious every time my computer gets a ping. This helped me realize I attach anxious emotions to situations that don’t need them and that risks making it hard to determine times when I do need them.
L
Lynn
Anxiety is soooo fight or flight
Smoke alarm goes off over burnt toast not ideal Adrenal gland disorder???? ;)
Ae
Aimée
Anxiety
I noticed that after this lesson I am more calmed down and relaxed and ready to go on with my day
L
Laura
Anxiety as a smoke alarm
I learned that my smoke alarm is chronically stuck in the on position.
M
Mandy
Smoke Alarm
I notice my inner smoke alarm never turns off. EVER. Especially on school days or when I think about how I should be doing more with my kids or straightening up the house. I mostly freeze and then show fright by shouting and I guess flight by needing to rest.
M
Memory
Anxiety
I noticed that my smoke alarm is constantly ringing no matter the circumstances.
K
Kourt
Anxiety as a smoke alarm is such a great methaphor!!
I really like that and had never heard that before. I thought it was a really good methaphor of our flight / fight / freeze response.
A
Ava🩰
It's ok
I learned that when you have anxiety it's normal but when you're anxiety tends to hold you back from the things you enjoy it's not normal and sometimes that's what happens to me I fall into this deep hole and I sometimes I can't seem to get out sometimes I need a little bit of help to get out but sometimes I don't always have help so I need to pull myself out of it I want me back I want to enjoy the things that I used to love I'm scared and I don't know what to do I want me back I want my life back I don't want anxiety to be control me.
A
Alisa
Smoke alarm 1
I need to get my smoke alarm back in proper working order. But how?
J
Julie
My smoke alarm goes off too much
Fight or flight all the time... I need my smoke alarm to stop going off every time I make toast
E
Erin
Smoke alarm
I realize that when my smoke alarm goes off and catastrophize immediately.
L
Lea
Settling down
I realized that I need to settle down and not set off my snoke alarm so much.
A
Ann
I’m not sure how I feel
Anxiety is doing its job but we have to make sure it’s working properly.
J
Joni
Early detection
I try my best to PAUSE and start breathing slowly and deeply.
M
Mandy
What is anxiety
I learned that anxiety can be stuck on. I’m trying to turn my off because I feel like my flight or flight can’t be controlled. Where is part two?
B
Brooke
Day 1
I feel overwhelmed by parenting and life in general. I hope to calm this feeling and live more in the moment and enjoy my life more. I hope to not feel so overwhelmed by daily tasks and instead be more mindful and motivated to stay on track and enjoy my family and my clients more.
R
Renee
Anxiety
I learned that if you are too stressed, you ability to handle panic becomes a normal state.
L
Linda
Very helpful analogy !
Thank you! I am so stuck. This will really be helpful as I continue working
N
Nikki
Great Analogy!
Smoke alarm seems to be the PERFECT analogy for anxiety. thanks a lot for giving me a new perspective
J
Joanne
Smoke alarm
I love the analogy of a smoke alarm. Looking forward to part 2!