Day 786: High Anxiety

I’m having a little high anxiety writing this post this morning, because I don’t want to be late for the second day of my group psychotherapy conference.

I don’t know about you, but I can have very high anxiety about being late, especially for something like a therapy group, where being on time is

  • expected,
  • important, and
  • affects many other people.

Am I alone in this high anxiety about being late? What can trigger high (or other levels of) anxiety in you?

The San Francisco Hotel I need to reach on time, this morning,  also caused high anxiety for Mel Brooks in High Anxiety, as you can see in the movie trailer I found on YouTube:

Here are some photos I took yesterday, at that “High Anxiety” Hotel:

IMG_6043 IMG_6044IMG_6045

I had some High Anxiety at The High Anxiety Hotel yesterday, because:

  1. I’m afraid of heights,
  2. I revealed some vulnerable and sensitive information about myself in a therapy group of people I had just met, and
  3. I talked about my recently higher anxiety about my very unusual heart, including the likelihood of heart surgery in the near future.

My anxiety might have been high at times yesterday (especially when the changing light in the group room made it temporarily difficult for me to see the faces of the other people), but it was also bearable, because

  1. the other people in my therapy group also revealed vulnerable, sensitive, and important things about themselves,
  2. people offered helpful feedback about each others’ anxieties (and other things),
  3. I learned a lot about my anxiety, including how to trust others more fully, and
  4. I met up, during the lunch break, with a former student of mine, who works next door to the High Anxiety Hotel:


That’s Chris, who previously appeared in this blog post from last year and whose friendly, smiling presence is good for reducing anxiety.  I told Chris — as I’m telling everybody else around here — that I am sick of my High Anxiety about the high snows and low temperatures in my home town of Boston during the winters.  My proposed cure for that high anxiety?  Moving, within the next couple of years, to the home town of the High Anxiety Hotel — San Francisco.


I captured that on-high shot of San Francisco last night, after the conference, from the building next door to the High Anxiety Hotel.  I had very low anxiety when I snapped that because

  • coincidences don’t scare me, and Chris and my long-time friend Lawry coincidentally work in that same building,
  • I had dramatically lowered my high anxiety by talking about it in the therapy group,
  • beautiful and warm locations are natural anxiety reducers for me, and
  • I’m pretty good at helping people (including myself) move from high anxiety to low anxiety.

What about you?  Is your anxiety high, medium, low, or non-existent? What tends to make your low anxiety high and your high anxiety lower?

Do I have any anxiety about what music to choose for this post? Well, I’m letting go of any anxiety I might have about repeating music I’ve posted before (see here), so I’ll share this with you again:

The theme music from High Anxiety — written and sung by the incomparable, anxiety-reducing Mel Brooks — is here on YouTube.

Okay!  I’ve got to go face a day of low, medium, and/or high anxiety, along with many other people.

Thanks to the Hyatt Regency San Francisco, to all those attending the group psychotherapy conference there, to Mel Brooks, to Chris, to Lawry, and to you (of course!), whether you’re feeling high, low, or in between today.

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , | 52 Comments

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52 thoughts on “Day 786: High Anxiety

  1. yeseventhistoowillpass

    I loved that movie! Nice warm day yesterday

  2. I’m with you, Ann. I need to move too. This cold and snow I just do not want in my Life anymore. Great post!!! What provokes anxiety in me is being late. Yup. True. And hoping the weathermen are right this time so that I can go shooting at Niagara Falls on a cloudy day. *sighs* Are they ever right? I hope so this time!!! I’m depending on a cloudy day! Love, Amy

  3. Not too much gives me high anxiety any more now that I am retired, End-of-the-month low cash does, but I usually plan pretty well. When I don’t there is high anxiety!

  4. I’m with you on being late Ann – I hate even the possibility that I might be late and I get mad when others are late. Probably one of my biggest pet peeves! ❤
    Diana xo

  5. That view looking down gave me high anxiety- and made me dizzy. Brave soul you are.

  6. Im with you Ann – being late when others are dependingon me makes me anxious. Now if I was on top of a tall building and running late The anxiety level would go throught the roof.
    Good luck with the conference!

    • I am glad I didn’t go through any roofs, because they were all very high. Thanks for your usual anxiety-reducing presence and energy, Val.

  7. I love San Fran! When we lived in Reno we made it over there once, I’d love to go back as an adult!

  8. I’m so glad you’ve decided to move to San Francisco, Ann. A lot of your high anxiety stems from living in a place with such cold winters. Much as you might love Boston, you’ve got to do what’s best to stop that high anxiety Look how relaxed and happy you’ve been these past couple of weeks! Loved your photos, by the way. 🙂

  9. Sunshine Jansen

    “Oooo, …ziety” is my favorite line from any lounge song ever recorded. And moving to San Francisco would definitely reduce my anxiety by a magnitude that is more than a little high. Wish I could come out there too. (But who knows maybe I will, after I write my bestseller!)

  10. yeseventhistoowillpass

    You might have to put on a light coat tomorrow.. In the low 60’s here!

  11. You have taken this post to great heights, Ann. I can feel your release of tension because of good colleagues listening, good friends supporting, and good plans forming. Ahhhhhhhh.

    I am anxious about snow, cold, work, money. The usual.

  12. I know that I said that I will not spill 🙂 I thought I am alone on high anxiety about being late as well and also about height. I think good music help get in the lower state.

  13. Jim McKeever

    Looking to move to the SF area as well! Done with snow. Heights I don’t like, especially 8-foot high snowdrifts like those at the end of my driveway.

  14. What wonderful views and places Ann; anxiety is at my peak to learn new tips from the Social Work Conference! Like the ones you gave on the post of “How to Look at Things”! Am I being nosy?

    • You are not being nosy, Maria! But I can’t write about what happens in any therapy group; we all agree to confidentiality — that is, what is said in the group stays in the group. This helps reduce anxiety and allows people to speak freely. I hope you’ll find my writings in future posts helpful. As always, I appreciate your visit and your comment, very much.

  15. My greatest fear of high anxiety arises when I feel the symptoms of mania approaching, or worse yet, the free fall into very dark depression when I have failed to recognize my mania, and I’ve been ‘lost’ in a creative mode of operation. It’s the facing of that denial, the anger and resentment for not ‘catching’ myself soon enough.
    How do I correct or adjust to my loss of control? I evaluate my nutrition, sleep and exercise, and force myself to engage with others by returning phone calls, making lunch plans with a friends and using music or TV as distractions.

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  17. That’s one of my favorite hotels in SF. I love that open interior. If you have time have lunch at the slanted door in the ferry building. YUM! :)) if you like Japanese mochi theres a great authentic shop Minamoto Kitchoan 648 Market St, San Francisco, CA 94104 it’s just two BART stops from you, or a nice walk. Super yummy, and direct from Japan. It’s fun just to go in and try to figure out what they have. Lol!!They have inexpensive singular packaged mochi in the front. They fly it in from Japan. Yummy!!!

    • I’ll have to follow all these excellent suggestions the next time I visit San Francisco. I’m facing some high anxiety about flying tomorrow morning, when I get on a plane back to Boston. As always, it’s great to see you here.

  18. Oh ya, like photography , near mochi shop? Fraenkel Gallery 49 Geary St #450, San Francisco, CA 94108. Just around the corner. You ll pass by Harajuku Hearts on the way, look in the window or go in, 15 Kearny St, San Francisco, CA 94108, the cutest clothing for club kids!! 🙂

  19. Umm, if you need sourdough bread to take home, go to a local grocery store and get alfaro’s Santa Cruz sourdough bread. It’s crusty, sour, and if toasted —- yummy!!! 🙂 The touristy sourdough is a mystery to me. :))

    • I did have some wonderful sourdough bread here. I could easily get anxious about all the things that are not as good, back in Boston.

  20. I can do high anxiety at the slightest provocation, so I fully sympathise. I loved the film though it is many years since I saw it. I think San Francisco sounds like a good idea long term

  21. I’m wondering why you had to reveal sensitive information about yourself to people that you just met. That worries me. Is this a California thing?

    • It’s possible, but it’s mostly a group therapy thing. Do not worry, dear Maureen, and many thanks for the High Quality comment.

  22. I just had anxiety I added to your anxiety 🙂

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