To have written that header fills me with great pride. It’s now 40 years since I took courage and shared my lived experience of conquering anxiety – the agoraphobic reaction – and the successful means of overcoming that.
My book, In Stillness Conquer Fear, remains a world first – an open discussion on the topic of anxiety and the offer of a natural solution for anxiety relief.
My story, however, is not just about fear. Telling my story, was important too, because it honours the unique insights and work of renowned Melbourne psychiatrist at the time, Ainslie Meares. The success of my story and the point that has resonated so powerfully for others, is the healing that evolves from the simple, natural and powerful style of meditation that he taught: the simplicity of mental rest and a style of meditation that enables the relief and management of stress, anxiety and similar conditions.
But it also took courage at that time to speak so openly about fear, a topic that exposes a human frailty and our innate wish to conceal such vulnerability. Now, well into the 21stC, we have watched the previously secreted word ‘anxiety’ evolve into a very familiar term – even more so since our entire world has been shattered by the onset of the COVID virus. People are scared and fear has become a readily accepted blight on our happiness.
Happiness is a golden gift that maybe we sometimes take for granted.
When we lose our sense of happiness, it’s time to remember that life makes demands. But it’s through those demands and the challenges they bring that opportunities to change can become part of our own story, our personal growth, our potential. These were the powerful thoughts that enabled me to persist in conquering anxiety. And having achieved that, relief was tangible, and restored ease of mind propelled me in a further direction – to the objective of assisting other anxiety sufferers.
When In Stillness Conquer Fear was first published, I received countless letters, cards and phone calls. In more recent years, the pleasure of snail-mail has been replaced with emails, texts and likes. It is an honour to be part of the lives of those thousands of clients and also the new clients who seek my help today – people just like all of us who seek to be just a bit more content and quite a bit more happy.
I remain grateful for the trust others place in me; for the stories people share; for the hearts that open so frankly and freely simply because from my own experience, others know I will understand.
And so, in working with others, I have seen extraordinary changes take place in people’s lives – from near at hand and throughout the world. Some, despite their being at a vast distance, even having read my story has assisted when they have trusted enough to attempt stillness of mind one might say, by ‘correspondence’. And in many cases, the facility of Zoom.
Thank you for sharing part of my conquering anxiety journey.
Long may the gift of stillness thrive and become the simple practice for calm control, inner strength, personal peace and a hope for greater peace throughout our world …
With warmest wishes for whatever the future holds …