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This is a part of a series of articles with questions, which will help us understand our emotions and how we can free ourselves from unwanted ones.

Here we need to direct our questioning towards:

1. "What is it that I believe that I must have here in order to be happy?"

2. "Why do I need it?" What will be missing from myself, if I do not have it?"

3. What do I believe which makes this experience so painful? What do I believe about myself which makes this situation so painful?

4. "Can I believe that life gives me exactly what I need in order to continue my evolution and that it is giving me now exactly what I need?

5. If I can accept that (3), then why is life giving this situation about which I am not happy? What is life asking me to do or learn here?"

The above answers will lead to two basic questions:
a. What beliefs do I need to change in order to be able to accept what Life is giving me, and be happy with things as they are, even if they never change.
b. What beliefs do I need to change in order to initiate various actions and changes of behavior so as to create more effectively what I need and want from life.
In the case of the second category, frequently one of the actions we need to take will be to communicate more effectively and assertively to those around us concerning what we need and expect from them.

In such a case, we need to clarify for ourselves exactly what we want to express to the others. We can practice this in the form of a psychodrama, in which the we express our feelings and needs to another who is pretending that he or she is the person whom we want to communicate with.

Having practiced with another, we may then be ready to communicate our needs, feelings and beliefs to those with whom we have the problem, without accusing or rejecting.

Now you may like to describe how you would like to think, feel and respond in future situations. You may find it more powerful to write your description in the present tense as if it is already a reality.

For more on dealing with emotions you might want to check out these sources:

If we care for our bodies and minds,
they will care for us.
Be Well
***** Reference Box for Publishers *****
(Robert Elias Najemy's recently released book "The Psychology of Happiness" (ISBN 0-9710116-0-5) is available at
and .
His writings can be viewed at where you can also download FREE articles and e-books.)
******** **********

David C. Mathis, Ed.D.
Anxiety is a normal part of life. Some children tend to be more anxious than others but all children experience anxiety at times. Anxiety in children is expected at certain times of development. For example, even healthy children, from approximately age seven months through the preschool years, may show intense distress (anxiety) when separated from the their parents. Children may also have episodes of developing specific fears about various activities, events and occurrences. Much of this is normal and will soon pass. However, when anxiety becomes severe it begins to interfere with normal activities. For instance, children may have trouble separating from parents, attending social events, making friends, attending school or trying new events. Many of the activities may end up being endured with a great deal of anxiety or even avoided.
Severe separation anxiety may be seen in the following ways:
* frequent headaches, stomachaches or other physical complaints
* clingy, dependent behavior
* excessive worrying about things before they happen
* unable to sleep away from home
* refusal to attend school or wanting to leave early
* fears about safety for self and parents
* severe anxiety/panic attacks where separated from parents
If children are showing these reactions, parents should consider seeking an assessment from a psychologist or other mental health counselor. Many anxious children tend to be quiet, eager to please and cooperative. Thus, their problems may be overlooked. As a result, problems may become ingrained and more difficult to change. Early consultation with a counselor may help ward off difficulties, such as, loss of friendships, low self-esteem, and failure to achieve potential in social and academic areas. In addition, since anxiety tends to be a chronic problem, early intervention can help prevent the problems from becoming excessive.
Parents may often plant the seeds for anxiety by being over-protective. In helping their children, they may also be having to facing some of their own fears and anxieties. Believe that your child can and will learn to face the situation or event that he or she is anxious about. That belief will become a source of confidence for your child to continue. The success in facing his or her anxiety will ultimately lead to self-confidence.
Dr. Mathis is a Licensed Psychologist with Health Service Provider status in the state of Tennessee where he maintains a private practice. Click here to visit his website.