Alan Fraser home


Company Director, Aged 41.

It was always my opinion that anxiety only affected weak people and that the way to deal with it was simply to “get on with life and don’t lie down to something which is intangible”. I am a 41 year company director who has been affected by anxiety and at the time was totally oblivious to why and how.

Over a year ago I noticed that I was having bouts of intense sweating during meetings. I couldn’t really understand why this was happening but started to notice it much more often and was getting very self conscious of the affects. It had a knock on effect and the net result was that in most meetings I would think about the sweating and start to have small panic attacks, which always was resulting in the sweating getting worse.

At this time the company I worked for had just been taken over by another organisation, also I was involved in another two business ventures which had been intense for the previous 2-3 years but the workload involved was now reducing.

My initial reaction to these panic attacks was to research as much as I could on the internet. There is a plethora of information available, much of which is very interesting, but could lead you down numerous avenues. Which one would be best for me and was it actually anxiety I was suffering from?

My thoughts were “I’m too busy to go down these long drawn out procedures, I wanted the magic pill which would give me the instant fix I needed”. Unfortunately I quickly realised it was not as easy as that.

Summer 2008 was the time when I realised I needed some professional help. I approached my GP and was directed to a psychiatrist who in turn referred me to my psychotherapist and counsellor, Alan Fraser.

Looking back I really didn’t understand how these initial sessions with Alan were doing me any good. We talked about various things and he suggested cognitive therapy techniques, which I did try, but again I was expecting the quick fix. Throughout my professional life I have always been of the opinion that things are only black or white, with no in-between. If a situation wasn’t fully transparent then it didn’t merit time spent on it until it was clear. The initial sessions with Alan weren’t clear to me; I couldn’t really understand how they would help me overcome anxiety. However as the sessions went on I started to understand why Alan structured the sessions as he did.

I think the main turning point for me was started to understand why my body reacted in the way it did. By working with Alan I began to realise how to cope with these feeling and to try and counteract them. I have come along way in around 9 months, I still have anxious moments but I am more in control of them now. Throughout my experiences I have came to appreciate things more. My anxiety was no doubt influenced by a slow down in my hectic life. Juggling 3 businesses over a 2-3 year period then slowing down as 2 of them reached their conclusions.

Working with Alan has been very beneficial; being able to see the wood for the trees for the first time has been eye opening. This experience has in a way been good for me, my anxiety was a warning sign, I was vulnerable like everybody else. Anxiety should not be feared but when understood can have positive affects. In my situation I needed someone to guide me through these experiences and to help me understand why my body reacted in the way it did. Alan has been highly instrumental in providing this support.

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