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Joshua Fletcher tells us it’s ok to be anxious



Joshua Fletcher

He’s a 31 one-year-old psychotherapist who overcame a diagnosis of anxiety disorder, wrote a book, then spends his time reassuring people that it’s ok to feel frightened. Joshua Fletcher has been working in the media of late talking all things anxiety, with a particular focus on panic attacks.

“Since the pandemic has started, I have been inundated with inquiries linked to a whole range of anxiety-related issues. Interestingly, they are not all related to COVID, but about sudden surges of anxiety that presents as personal to each individual.” Fletcher explains.

Fletcher was diagnosed with panic disorder 7 years ago. Since then, he has overcome the condition and spends his life working with and reassuring other anxious sufferers. Joshua believes that reassurance that we are actually ok during episodes of anxiety and panic goes a long way: “a lot of people think anxiety means the first sign that we’re losing our minds, or losing control, or even dying – particularly if we catch ourselves panicking! This is all actually really normal. It’s discomfort and not actual danger.” He reassures us.

When anxiety and stress hit its peak, we can often experience something called a Panic Attack. Joshua tells us, “I think the term panic attack is often misused. A genuine panic attack is a terror, fright, and the belief that something awful is going to happen – all combined. It is the body’s way of getting us out of a life or death situation. However, when we are not in such a situation, we often get really confused and worry about why we are suddenly experiencing all of this fear. I often say to my clients, “this is just adrenaline” and explain that they are not going insane. This is normal.”

Joshua Fletcher

Psychoeducation is a part of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, which is the go-to modality of therapy for anxiety disorders. Joshua believes more emphasis on psychoeducation can be preventative regarding the onset of many anxiety disorders. Joshua is the author of two best-selling books for anxiety and panic, as well as the host of The Panic Pod podcast and Notes on an Anxiety radio show on Wellbeing Radio.

His counseling practice is called The Panic Room and is based in Manchester, UK.