There is quite a difference between having a case of the butterflies, anxiety and full on panic attacks. Anxiety that builds to the point of panic is severe. Your body and brain are stuck in panic mode – there is little you can do. You feel breathless, you can’t sit or walk and it feels like your anxiety will never subside. It is one of the worst feelings someone can experience. If you’ve had one, they still suck if you have another, yet you know that eventually it will pass. Sometimes medication is necessary and can be super helpful. But there are also some things that can help with anxiety before it reaches the point of panic.
- After suffering from just one panic attack can leave you heightened to any sign of anxiety so try not to let your experience trick you into thinking you’ll suffer another panic attack. If frequent panic attacks occur, seek help from a psychiatrist or psychologist. Or if you prefer, speak to someone who can calm you, such as a wellness provider, friend or pastor. Time between panic attacks is your best friend and will definitely help you gain your own control over anxiety.
- Once you have experienced even a week free of panic attacks, you will be stronger and better skilled at never having to suffer from one again. So read on for how to deal with anxiety.
- Learn to not be afraid of it. This is very important in recovering.
- Learn about anxiety. This will further strengthen your ability to handle it.
- Understand and be kind to yourself as you learn to handle anxious feelings. Many doctors recommend sitting with these uncomfortable feelings to defuse their power.
- Focus on self-care, self-love and treat yourself as a parent would treat a hurt child – no blaming yourself, instead figure out the source if you can and speak lovingly to yourself. Or if you’re too upset, try coping techniques that will center yourself, such as deep breathing. Breathe in deeply through your nose for a count of three to five seconds and breath out for three to five seconds – whatever feels comfortable. Repeat this at least five times. You should feel your body relax. Keep breathing this way as is comfortable for you.
- Diet, nutrition and proper sleep are important things for your body and mind to function properly and rest helps your brain heal. Take the steps to incorporate the healthiest lifestyle you can.
- Don’t completely avoid anxiety-provoking situations or stimuli. This will only increase anxiety. For example, I had body-image issues bad. I was anorexic by age 13. So I challenged this fear by joining a modeling agency and forcing myself to be onstage in front of an audience. I did the same thing over my fear of running – I simply became a runner gradually. It totally defuses the fear and is worth it!
- Think about safety items. It could be always having your phone with you or always placing yourself near an exit at a restaurant. Be aware of items are activities that you do so you feel safe. Challenge these safety measures and learn new behaviors.
It is not easy or fun to be anxious or to experience a panic attack. Realize the source, challenge it and most of all be kind to yourself. It may take time to unlock the mystery of your anxiety, but it is worth it! I hope this information helps anyone out there who may suffer from this. It’s coming from someone who has and with experience and understanding of your anxiety, you too can learn to gain back control and live life without it.
What I talk about here is anxiety that is immobilizing, not just a case of the nerves. Don’t be upset if you need medication or any other form of help to calm you at first and get a good span of time being anxiety and panic free. Have belief that you will find your way through this and it will absolutely lose it’s power.