We all have smoke detector alarms built in. Rather than a loud beep, we feel a tenseness in the body, a racing heart, a quickening of the breath – the collective of these symptoms is known as anxiety. Anxiety is one of the most common mental health conditions in Australia, with one in four people experiencing it at some stage in their life.

Easily triggered, anxiety acts to protect us against a perceived danger or threat. However, how we experience and express our anxiety is important for our wellbeing.

In this presentation, Professor James Kirby will discuss anxiety, its functions and how we can understand and validate our experiences of anxiety.


Image of James KirbyDr James Kirby

Senior Lecturer in Clinical Psychology, School of Psychology, UQ

James is a Senior Lecturer and Clinical Psychologist. James has broad research interests in compassion science. He evaluates compassion focused programs, as well what fears, blocks, & resistances people have towards compassion, as well as behavioural and physiological responses to compassion. James also holds an Visiting Fellowship at the Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education at Stanford University. He continues to work as a clinical psychologist helping individuals with self-criticism and shame.



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