It occurred to me this week that so many people are in limbo at the moment: waiting for lockdowns to end, for quarantines to finish, to find out if they can go on holiday this summer, or waiting for test results. I am full of sympathy for those who have been waiting on tenterhooks for exam results and now find themselves waiting for the results of clearing or appeals. I am waiting too: I am hoping that nothing will happen to affect our holiday to Wales in a couple of weeks, and I am waiting for my son to start school in September. This is a big deal for him and for us as a family, and for all of us it has brought up feelings of excitement as well as anxiety. (Although my son has stated categorically that he is ‘not excited’!) Fortunately, homeopathy has been on hand to help us navigate through some uncomfortable emotions, and will hopefully be useful too when the big day arrives.
I thought, then, that it might be helpful to highlight how valuable homeopathy can be in dealing with all issues of anticipation: exam nerves, anxiety about public speaking or giving a presentation, performance anxiety or stage fright, worries about a ‘big game’ in sports, waiting to go on a date, or even over-excitement before something that you’re really looking forward to like a wedding. There are very few people who haven’t experienced one of these emotions at some point in their lives, and for many these feelings can be quite debilitating.
Looking in a homeopathic repertory (a wonderful reference tool for homeopaths which lists symptoms and their related remedies), it is comforting to find remedies listed for stage fright, going to the dentist, people who worry about events but cope fine when it comes to it, and even for those who fear going to church or to the opera!
In my other life as a performing musician, I used to take a combination of remedies called Triple A’s before auditions. It contained the homeopathic remedies Ambra grisea, Anacardium and Argentum Nitricum, and covered the areas of embarrassment, going blank under pressure, and nerves, all of which are things you really want to avoid in an audition situation.
Let me tell you a bit more about some of the most commonly used remedies for anticipatory anxiety:
Argentum Nitricum is one of the main remedies for anticipatory anxiety and those who need it may become superstitious or have obsessive or ritualistic behaviours associated with this anxiety. In anxious states they can be nervous and fidgety and talk too much, and may also suffer from panic attacks.
Gelsemium is very useful for exam nerves and, unlike Argentum Nitricum, the person needs to be quiet and undisturbed. They can suffer from insomnia in the lead up to events and even get fevers (often with diarrhoea) at such times. I have seen this quite a few times, especially in children.
Lycopodium helps those who dread new situations and lack confidence, but who also put great pressure on themselves to do well. They can experience intense anxiety before an event, but will often be fine and do very well once things are in full swing. They frequently try to overcome their nerves with huge amounts of preparation, for example going over and over a speech that they have to give.
Dysenteriae Bacillus is for anyone who gets really worked up about forthcoming events, whether they’re pleasant and exciting or not. People who would benefit from this remedy get flustered and agitated, have butterflies, diarrhoea and blush easily. They tend to be quite perfectionist and always fear that something will go wrong.
In treating someone with anticipatory worries, I would usually offer treatment for the immediate issue, to give relief and help them get through their current event or situation. I would also try to look at underlying causes or susceptibilities and provide individualised treatment for these, in order to prevent a constant recurrence of the feelings.
If there is anything here that you relate to, do get in touch. I offer a free 30 minute discovery call for you to talk to me and find out if homeopathy can help you.
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Wishing you all safe and well, Alice