What is solipsism anxiety?

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This post answers: What is solipsism anxiety? How do people with solipsism anxiety feel? What is solipsism? Why does solipsism cause anxiety? What is Anxiety? What are the signs and symptoms of anxiety? What are some ways to manage anxiety? What are the therapy options for anxiety?

What is solipsism anxiety?

People with anxiety may, at times, lose touch with reality. They become so disconnected from themselves and the world that they no longer recognize and feel both themselves and the world as real.

People with solipsism anxiety feel like everything they feel, see, or touch is only inside their heads. They view themselves, their anxiety, and the world as a product of their imagination. 

However, they are in an extremely confused state, which is also common in anxiety. They find it hard to distinguish between what’s real and what’s not.

How do people with solipsism anxiety feel?

People with solipsism anxiety do not trust anything. Their anxiety is so severe that they may regard themselves as “crazy” or “mentally retarded”. In its most common form, solipsism manifests itself in anxiety as either depersonalization, derealization, or both.

People with solipsism anxiety feel like they don’t exist. There is a divide between what they perceive as their self. They feel like they are split in two bodies and can observe themselves. This could be considered as an out-of-body experience, although it’s not necessary that this is always the case.

These people feel like they are external to their bodies and are observing their bodies. In such cases, they find it extremely hard and annoying to distinguish between who they are observing and who is making the observation.

It feels to them like they are both the observer and what’s being observed by the observer. The question of “If I am observing myself, then who is making the observation?” constantly bugs them.  

People with solipsism anxiety also feel like the world is unreal. Everything seems foggy to them, and they feel like they are in a dream. They feel like there is a translucent glass between them and what’s the real world.

Their anxiety stems from their attempt to want to see what’s beyond that translucent glass, which they regard as the actual reality. But, in their minds, they constantly fail to grasp what’s beyond that glass. Their subjective fuzziness of reality is what makes them extremely anxious.

What is solipsism?

Solipsism is a philosophical idea that whatever we observe or feel, through any of our senses, do not exist in reality but are rather the products of our mind. 

Everything is a figment of consciousness, they believe. People have had, and are still having, a hard time refuting the idea of solipsism. Solipsists not only believe that reality is the product of our minds, but they also believe that such a reality doesn’t exist.

They believe that everyone has their own private experience of reality, which they believe proves that the perception of reality is a subjective construct. 

They not only believe that there is no connection between the mind and the body, they believe that the body actually does not exist.

Why does solipsism cause anxiety?

Anxiety is primarily about the fear of uncertainty. People who are anxious are always in a state of confusion about what might happen in the next moment. That’s why they stay very alert and suffer from sleep problems.

Solipsists actually believe that one cannot say with certainty that what they see or observe is real. This puts them in a state of inevitable uncertainty. They perceive reality and, at the same time, question its existence in their minds. In its severe forms, such anxiety may have tremendous negative consequences for one’s personal life.

These people may actually start questioning the existence of their loved ones. They feel like their loved ones are not real. They may also feel that their love, affection, and care, and the love and care they receive, are not real as well. This hinders their ability to connect with people. The uncertainty of reality is what causes anxiety in people who think in a solipsistic way.

What is Anxiety?

Problems and resulting stress are usually accompanied by some common emotions like confusion, feeling at the edge, a sense of helplessness, and recurrent negative thoughts which can collectively be seen as an individual experiencing what’s commonly called  Anxiety. 

Every human has their unique ways of dealing with these difficult situations and the following emotions, some try to adapt to the circumstances and find the best and most comfortable solution while others try to find an escape route for the same, in both cases the main aim is usually to get over the uncomfortable emotions of anxiety. 

What are the signs and symptoms of anxiety? 

Anxiety is characterized by a set of signs and symptoms such as:

 

  • Sweating
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sense of choking
  • Complaints of chest pain
  • Shaking or trembling
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Dizziness or Lightheadedness
  • Fear of losing control over oneself and their environment
  • Fear of impending doom
  • Hot or cold flashes
  • Tingling or numbness
  • Increased heart rate

These symptoms vary in severity from person to person. However, it is noted that many people experience anxiety attacks that are not significantly displayed.

What are some ways to manage anxiety?

Identify and acknowledge the triggers

The most significant strategy that can be used to control one’s anxiety is by identifying and acknowledging those triggers.

Being able to recognize what makes an individual anxious makes them better equipped to take action.

Relaxation techniques

 

Even though anxiety can be bought under an individual’s control it cannot be predicted. In such situations, it is necessary that an individual actively carries out relaxation techniques.

These might include meditation, yoga, and deep breathing which helps to reduce the intensity of anxiety within a short period.

Socialization

 

A key to reducing the frequency and intensity of anxiety attacks could be spending time with close family and friends.

The kind of emotional and practical support provided by these social and personal groups help the person feel connected and aid in distracting one’s mind from negative and recurring thoughts that lead to anxiety.

Apart from friends and families, individuals can also consider speaking to groups of people that are experiencing similar problems.

Set realistic goals

When an individual is feeling overwhelmed, setting goals and targets keeping in mind priorities can help resolve overwhelming feelings of fear or panic.

Setting goals provides structure and routine to an individual’s life reducing space for uncertainty which can be a major trigger for anxiety in many cases.

Take up new challenges

Apart from doing activities that an individual is usually fond of and has expertise in, trying new and challenging activities that put an individual outside their comfort zone in a healthy manner may help reduce the stress and anger temporarily.

Signing up for new activities also provides a path to meeting people with similar stories and concerns.

Lifestyle changes

An individual’s lifestyle plays a major role in their experience of anxiety. An unhealthy and busy lifestyle usually leads to unhealthy eating, lack of exercise, lack of adequate sleep.

A combination of a well-set diet, exercise, and sleep can help to regulate an individual’s mood and equip them with a favorable coping mechanism.

These coping mechanisms in turn help to get control over once anxiety concerns in a more adaptable manner.

lack of proper diet, sleep, and exercise can make an individual sluggish, dependent, moody and vulnerable to anxiety attacks.

Making journal entries

Last but not least having a journal to write down how a person is feeling and thinking when they are anxious helps them to reflect upon their thoughts and feelings.

Putting down one’s thoughts and feelings onto a paper helps to provide a sense of temporary relief.

In the case of journal entry, a person does not even have to fear being judged by another person regarding their thoughts and feelings.

What are the therapy options for anxiety?

Cognitive-behavioral therapy

Cognitive-behavioural therapy helps an individual to control their anxiety by using strategies like relaxation and breathing. It works on the principles of replacing negative thoughts with positive ones.

Exposure therapy

Exposure therapy is a kind of therapy in which an individual is exposed to a particular stimulus that they usually fear or are anxious about in a graded order.

As and when the individual gets comfortable with the situation or stimulus introduced or exposed to them with each session, individuals get more comfortable with a real-life situation that might have otherwise been a source for triggering anxiety.

Group therapy

 

It is based on the principle that when an individual interacts with other people who are suffering from the same fears they might not feel left alone or isolated. Group therapy usually involves a group of individuals who are experiencing similar symptoms and problems.

Medication

Anxiety can also be treated with the help of medication prescribed by a health care professional.

Though medication alone cannot help in reducing persistent anxiety it can help in restoring a sense of control and bring temporary relief. 

Online therapy  

In cases where reaching out physically to a professional is impossible or discomforting an individual can opt to seek help through the online medium. 

In this, the therapy sessions are carried out one-to-one over a video or audio call. Some individuals also prefer interacting with the therapist through text as well due to various reasons. One of the most common is the fear of being judged by the therapist or some personal hesitation. 

Online therapy can help individuals to regulate some aspects of their anxiety that aids individuals in carrying out a stress-free life over time

Conclusion

Anxiety can take over a person is the belief that everything is unreal. Solipsists question the existence of reality by regarding it as a figment of imagination and consciousness. 

People who think in this way suffer from extreme uncertainty and, therefore, severe anxiety. It’s also the case that solipsistic thinking may actually arise as a defense mechanism against the pain and suffering of anxiety.

Frequently asked question: What is solipsism anxiety?

Is solipsism anxiety a scientifically accepted psychological disorder?

No, solipsism anxiety is not a type of anxiety that’s supported by research. It bears similarity with what is known as the depersonalization/derealization disorder.

Can anxiety push people towards solipsistic thinking?

Yes, people with anxiety may start denying the existence of reality in order to deal with the uncertainties of their lives.

What is the best way of treating solipsism anxiety?

If it stems from neurological disorders, then a neurological treatment would be best. However, if it’s just due to distorted thinking, then cognitive behavioral therapy may be very effective.

Citation

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/mind-brain-and-value/202010/the-psychology-solipsism-our-own-private-consciousness
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solipsism_syndrome
https://dictionary.apa.org/solipsism
https://www.alleydog.com/glossary/definition.php?term=Solipsism

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