Panic attacks can really uproot your daily life, but it doesn’t have to be that way. You can take back the control and show anxiety who’s boss, and this article will show you how. Read on to learn three simple steps to stop your panic attacks cold.
First of all, it’s important to mention that these three techniques will NOT cure your anxiety in the long-term. For that, you will need to practice addressing the core of your anxiety issues, which may require the help of a professional therapist. Cognitive-behavioral therapy is the best therapy out there for healing anxiety, because it gets to the root of the unrealistic and harmful thoughts that are causing it. However, there are effective ways of addressing anxiety and specifically panic attacks, in the moment they are occurring.
The first step to dealing with an anxiety attack is to get as far as you can away from the anxiety-inducing situation. Don’t hesitate and certainly don’t feel ashamed to remove yourself from a situation that is not conducive to your overall mental health. Escape to the restroom, leave the room for a brief walk, whatever it takes to put some distance between yourself and your stress. You’ll be surprised by how much a simple five-minute break can halt your cycle of anxiety. Remember, there’s no reason to feel embarrassed about taking charge of a situation that can cause you great distress. Just do what you have to do.
A second option is to breathe deeply and calmly. To do this, find a spot where you can be alone and undisturbed, and concentrate on your diaphragm. Put your hand on your stomach to ensure that your breath is coming from the correct place, and begin to breathe deeply for five seconds. Hold your breath for five seconds, and then slowly release. Do this until you begin to feel relaxed, and try to make a habit out of it every day. The more you practice, the better you’ll become at practice, and the more accessible this technique will be when you truly need it. Learning to relax at will is an art, but it can make a huge difference in your life when you’ve mastered it. Even people who don’t experience frequent anxiety attacks can benefit from deep breathing, because most people breathe in such a way that makes them vulnerable to hyperventilating when anxiety strikes them.
Finally, spending time in nature and going for long walks is a great way to manage anxiety and lessen the frequency of panic attacks. Humans are designed to spend time in communion with nature, and it’s really one of our greatest tools for self-soothing, albeit a tool that’s all too often neglected in our hectic lives. Try to spend a few hours in nature every week to truly reap the greatest benefits it has to offer.
These three actions are just the beginning of a well-rounded plan that will banish your anxiety and lead you to a happier, calmer, more productive life.
“Anxiety-Home Treatment.” <http://www.webmd.com> 10 Nov 2012.
“Effective Treatments Available for Anxiety Disorder.” <http://www.mayoclinic.com. 10 Nov 2012.