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Anxiety and Panic (what helps you?)

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  • #73988
    EC22
    Participant

    When I first started experiencing anxiety and panic I though I was going crazy. It seemed no one understood. The physician I went to see stared blankly and quiet frankly looked a bit scared — herprescribed Xanax and I filled the prescription but vowed not to take any because I felt that just covered not cured what I was experiencing. I read books, tried accupuncture, aruyvedic medicine, khundalhini yoga, and meditation. The yoga and meditation seemed to help the most and over the years I felt I had conquered it for good (that was over 10 years ago). Several weeks ago it happened again — and now I see that all along the trigger was stress — both times work stress and lots of negative self talk in my head, and a feeling of hopelessness. After this most recent episode I again turned to books (and the library) and found one that has a clinical bent to it but explains everything so well I have hope again to conquer this. The book is called “Rewire Your Anxious Brain” by Catherine M. Pittman and Elizabeth M. Karle. Does anyone else have any recommendations of books or therapies that have helped them?

    #73991
    Melanie McGregor
    Participant

    I used to suffer panic attacks and i was really bad for them to the point where I felt i was going to die. There would be days I would be scared to leave my home as I felt something awful would happen to me. I recovered I am pleased to say and I feel although I read a great deal of material I managed myself to just accept that these were thoughts and thoughts are of course just energy nothing more. When you get like this as soon as you have a thought that is negative then stop and question it. Is the thought fact or has your imagination played part, are you seeing clearly, are you predicting the future, what is the worst that can happen? Keep a journal take a note of what these negative thoughts are and then you can start to stop them in their tracks and turn them into a positive. Stress related anxiety I found mindfulness a great technique as a method of reducing the stress.

    #74020
    Tiny Butterfly
    Participant

    Keeping a journal, breathing techniques and sleep are my safe havens when I’m feeling stressed or anxious. I have found cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) to be beneficial particularly when I’m in a heightened state of anxiety – hope this helps 🙂

    #74073
    RC
    Participant

    Pema Chodron’s writing changed my life! I highly highly highly recommend her books, I cannot emphasize that enough!

    EFT therapy was also very helpful to me, I had it done by an acupuncturist who was also a family friend,

    Best,
    R

    #74089
    EC22
    Participant

    Thank you everyone for your replies — I want to conquer this for good and will try using your suggestions till I find something that works for me.

    #74096
    A
    Participant

    I had an event at the end of 2013 that triggered my first, physically-crippling panic attack while I was driving on a freeway. I’ve always been a worrier and anxious person in general, but this was the fist time it ever manifested itself physically. I was having panic attacks frequently after the first one happened. It was more of a fear of having more panic attacks than fears about anything specific, and that was extremely frustrating. I went to the Dr. and got anti-anxiety meds. I took them for a little bit, but realized that if I kept with it, I’d be relying on medicine for the rest of my existence to cope with anxiety and fear. I wasn’t tackling it at the roots. I didn’t want this for myself, so I decided to go about it from a CBT-esque standpoint instead. Every time a full-on attack would begin, I would keep reminding myself by slowly repeating “nothing truly disastrous is going to happen” over and over in my head. I’d imagine those words circling around my brain, bouncing off the sides of my skull, and would take slow, deep breaths to slow down my heart rate. The combination of positive thinking and calming breathing made the attacks less frequent and less lengthy. I learned to laugh at myself when I felt an attack coming on — reminding myself that it’s simply a temporary overreaction within my brain — nothing more. I started to view my panic as something that may happen, and I learned to say “So what?”. So what if it happens? What’s the worst that can happen? Embarrassment if someone sees you in an episode of panic? So what. You’re gonna come out of your panic eventually, and all will be okay.

    So, what helped me was utilizing my favorite coping techniques (positive thinking, belly breathing, laughter) anytime I felt my anxiety was on the verge of getting out of control. I’m still a generally anxious person today, but I haven’t had true panic in months now.

    • This reply was modified 6 years, 10 months ago by A.
    #74430
    Jim
    Participant

    Hi. When dealing with anxiety, it is important to raise your serotonin level. The two most powerful natural ways to do this are 1) At least 5 days a week of moderate to intense aerobic exercise. Things like swimming, biking, running, ect. Getting your heart rate up and breaking a good sweat for at least 45 minutes. 2) Getting plenty of sunlight. Sunlight also releases serotonin in the brain. I had developed developed generalized anxiety and OCD in my late teens. Then at age 20 I started jogging outdoors and found I was a pretty good runner. Running outdoors instead of on a treadmill, gave me the added benefit of getting lots of sunshine. Soon my anxiety was gone and I’m still running at age 61. The last thing is that when you have anxiety, you should limit your caffeine intake. Too much caffeine makes anxiety much worse. Best of luck and hope this helps!

    #74440
    Bronte C
    Participant

    Hi!

    There is an excellent book called:

    “THE BODY KEEPS THE SCORE”

    I hope you find peace and happiness.

    Take care,
    Bronte

    #74486
    Corina
    Participant

    Yes try to keep a journal what the person said above.
    I like going to the gym and working out.

    #74545
    EC22
    Participant

    I do some moderate exercise but I probably should try to do more. Living where I do we really don’t have much sun, especially during the winter — I have a natural daylight lamp on my desk at work and it helps some. I am reading lots on the subject and all your replies are usually touched upon in these books (thank you for confirming that certain steps DO work) — I know my job (which requires absolute pefection) is stressing me and negative thoughts keep popping up. I am looking for another job but, we all know finding something can be difficult these days and I can’t loose the job I have. I have a ways to go — thank your for your support.

    #74801
    Aeris
    Participant

    I’ve recently started a book called ‘The Happiness Trap’ and it’s the best book I’ve ever read for anxiety. I have struggled with anxiety and panic attacks since I was a child. I’ve been affected by it on and off over the years. I’ll go months and months feeling great and in control and then something will trigger panic, and I will live in a state of fear and anxiety for months after that. The Happiness Trap teaches a therapy called ‘Committment and Acceptance Therapy.’ It’s about acknowledging your thoughts, not trying to run from them or push them away.

    A simple technique it teaches (that has helped me a lot!) is saying ‘I notice I’m having the thought that…’ Instead of ‘I’m feeling so anxious and scared’ say ‘I notice I’m having the thought that I’m feeling anxious and scared.’ Too often we view our thoughts as absolute truth, but they really aren’t. I can think, ‘Pink elephants are real’ but it doesn’t make it true. Our thoughts are just words. Once we acknowledge them as just words, they lose a lot of their power, and aren’t so scary. This technique works with lots of other things in life, too.

    Just know you aren’t alone in this struggle. It makes me feel better to know I’m not the only one.

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