Why Therapy For Anxiety Disorder?

Written by Jim Folk
Last updated May 17, 2021

why therapy for anxiety disorder

Research shows that the most effective way to overcome anxiety disorder is with the combination of good self-help information and therapy,[1] especially therapy delivered by professionally trained therapists who have struggled with and have successfully overcome anxiety disorder themselves.[2] Our personal and professional experiences with anxiety disorder agree with this research.

Anxiety occurs when we behave apprehensively. Anxiety disorder occurs when apprehensive behavior interferes with a normal lifestyle.

Apprehensive: anxious, worried, uneasy, concerned, nervous, agitated, afraid, scared, frightened, fearful

Behavior: the ways we think and/or act

Therefore, anxiety disorder is caused by unhealthy behaviors – the ways we think and act in overly apprehensive, and therefore, anxious ways.

To eliminate anxiety disorder, we need to identify and address the factors that result in overly apprehensive behavior. We call these factors the underlying factors of anxiety disorder.

The underlying factors of anxiety disorder are: the behaviors, situations, and circumstances that motivate apprehensiveness.

Everyone is anxious from time to time. So, anxiety is not a problem itself. Anxiety only becomes a problem when we behave anxiously too frequently and/or dramatically and the consequences cause impairment to a normal lifestyle.

To overcome anxiety disorder, we need to identify and successfully address those underlying factors so that they no longer cause problems with apprehensiveness.

Because anxiety disorder isn’t caused by a biological, chemical, or genetic problem, WE have to work at making healthy change, and this work is specific.[3]

To that end, here are some of the reasons why working with an experienced anxiety disorder therapist has many benefits:

1. Anxiety disorder is caused by underlying factors (those behaviors, situations, and circumstances that motivate apprehensive behavior).

Unless you are a trained and experienced anxiety disorder therapist, and one who understands the many underlying factors of anxiety disorder and knows how to address them, most likely you won’t recognize your unhealthy behaviors and/or won’t know how to make healthy and meaningful change.

Unless the underlying factors of anxiety disorder are successfully identified and addressed, it’s unrealistic to think that using the same behaviors will result in a different outcome. The saying, “The definition of crazy is doing the same things over and over again and expecting different results” is befitting, in this regard.

2. It’s often difficult to identify our own specific underlying factors.

Many of our underlying factors are invisible to us (because the underlying factors that make us overly anxious SEEM normal and not problematic). Trying to discover them on our own can be difficult. An experienced therapist can illuminate the underlying factors at the root of our specific struggle with anxiety unwellness.

3. If you can’t discover your own issues, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to address them or know if you are working in the right direction.

You can spend a lot of time and money chasing down ideas that either don’t work or don’t apply to your specific underlying factors. An experienced anxiety disorder therapist can sort this out for you, and in some cases, very quickly.

For example, anxietycentre.com has developed proprietary diagnostic tools that, within a few sessions, can pinpoint your exact underlying factors, their degrees, and mixes. Because there is no “guess work” involved, our therapists can have you headed in the right direction more quickly than working with other therapists.

4. An experienced therapist can keep you headed in the right direction.

Rather than trying to blaze a trail to recovery on your own, it’s wise to follow someone who already knows the way. An experienced therapist can point you in the right direction, and keep you headed there so that your success is assured.

5. Healthy change requires a healthy support network to encourage you forward.

Because many of us come from unhealthy backgrounds, those around us are often unhealthy themselves, and therefore, typically don’t believe change is required and/or resist and even discourage us from making the healthy changes required. Making healthy change, even if you know what that is, is difficult without healthy support. An experienced anxiety disorder therapist can provide the ongoing support needed to make meaningful and lasting change.

6. Making healthy change requires taking many small steps.

Along the way, there are often many questions and hurdles. An experienced therapist can answer your questions and successfully guide you through the hurdles as they arise.

7. An experienced therapist can model healthy behavior.

An experienced therapist will know how to handle difficult situations in healthy ways. It’s much easier to make healthy change when it is demonstrated to us by someone who has had to make similar changes in his or her own life.

8. Most people have a hard time holding themselves accountable to making sustained change.

Unless you are extremely strong-willed and focused, making sustained change on your own can be a challenge in itself. An experienced therapist can be an important motivator and keep you on track to lasting success.

9. It’s difficult to work through to new behaviors and easy to fall back to old behaviors.

Returning to old behaviors (because they are familiar and easy) is often a significant barrier to lasting success. An experienced therapist can help you succeed by reinforcing healthy change and keeping you on track to lasting success.

10. Rather than trying to figure out everything on your own through trial and error, an experienced therapist can provide you with solutions that are already proven successful.

And, they can map out the shortest route to lasting success, which eliminates the many pitfalls of a trial and error approach.

11. Talking about your anxiety issues with someone who truly understands anxiety disorder from both a personal and professional level can provide comfort and reassurance.

Often, that in itself has many benefits.

12. None of us has all the answers. Discussing your anxiety challenges with an “expert” can save you time, money, and effort, and a great deal of suffering.

There is wisdom in the saying, “It’s wise to seek counsel from those who have walked the same road before you.

These are just a few of the many advantages working with an experienced anxiety disorder therapist can provide.

In addition to the above advantages, working with an experienced anxiety disorder therapist is also more effective, faster, and provides the most complete results.

All of these reasons (and there are many more) are why we recommend working with an experienced anxiety disorder therapist such as those recommended at our website.

For more information:

The combination of good self-help information and working with an experienced anxiety disorder therapist, coach, or counselor is the most effective way to address anxiety and its many symptoms. Until the core causes of anxiety are addressed – which we call the underlying factors of anxiety – a struggle with anxiety unwellness can return again and again. Dealing with the underlying factors of anxiety is the best way to address problematic anxiety.

Additional Resources

Return to our Anxiety Therapy page.

Return to our Anxiety Frequent Questions page.

anxietycentre.com: Information, support, and therapy for anxiety disorder and its symptoms, including Why Therapy For Anxiety Disorder.


[1]"Facts & Statistics." Anxiety and Depression Association of America, n.d. Web. 16 Sept. 2016.

[2]DISCLAIMER: Because each body is somewhat chemically unique, and because each person will have a unique mix of symptoms and underlying factors, recovery results may vary. Variances can occur for many reasons, including due to the severity of the condition, the ability of the person to apply the recovery concepts, and the commitment to making behavioral change.

[3]"CBT can be recommended as a gold standard in the psychotherapeutic treatment of patients with anxiety disorders." - Otte, Christian. "Cognitive Behavioral Therapy in Anxiety Disorders: Current State of the Evidence." Dialogues in Clinical Neuroscience. Les Laboratoires Servier, Dec. 2011. Web. 14 Sept. 2016.