Mynd.Works - Anxiety Treatment Canberra

5 Ways to Stop Anxiety and Panic

What happens if you’re feeling anxious, about to panic but don’t have half an hour to calm down with meditation…

Here are some quick-fire ways to drop the ANXIETY and refocus your mind.

DISTRACTION

You’re in a queue in cafe, your coffee’s almost ready and suddenly, you’re overcome with anxiety. Did you remember to ask for a sugar in that drink? Do you ask for that sugar now… or when they give you the drink? Will you hold up the customer behind you? What if you need to visit the toilet, but your drink isn’t ready? What if your card doesn’t work at the checkout? What if that urgent call you’re expecting happens as you’re paying?

What if…? What if…? What if…?

Quickly stop your mind from derailing and find some things you can focus on. The idea behind this technique is to use all of your senses.

  • Look around – find objects, people, furniture, signposts… whatever you can see and focus on them. Notice shapes, colours and textures.
  • Listen – What sounds can you hear? Try to hear individual sounds and notice where they’re coming from.
  • Touch – What textures can you feel? Run your hands over your clothing, whatever you’re carrying or perhaps the closest piece of furniture or object. How does it feel? Hot, cold, smooth, textured?
  • Taste and Smell – What scents fill the air, can you separate individual smells or tastes.

Refocussing your senses helps drag you back into reality when your anxious thoughts have taken over everything.

A POSITIVE MEMORY

When I’m feeling low or something/someone has annoyed me, I find that I can usually turn things around by directing my mind away from the immediate situation and towards a thought or a memory of something that made me smile or feel good.

It takes a bit of practice beforehand, but if you’re forearmed with some examples… that time you heard that baby laughing and started chuckling yourself. That funny show you watched on Netflix, you know the one; The comedian on YouTube that had you in stitches or those funny cat and dog movies.

Sometimes, to get out of feeling down or anxious, think of something that made you smile or laugh and focus on it until you feel your anxiety drop.

SO WHAT?

Ask yourself in your head if there’s any REAL evidence to support your anxiety and if there is, what’s the worst that can actually happen? Will holding up the customer behind you be the worst thing in the world? If your card is declined, use cash or explain that you’ll go to the nearest cash machine. Try to rationalise the situation. Is worrying about what might happen going to actually help or stop it from happening? Can you change anything? If so, do it… if not, move on!

NUMBERS

This one’s a great one. When you catch yourself feeling anxious quickly attempt to recall your phone number… backwards!

That’s right, forwards isn’t usually a problem, but backwards gets you thinking. If you want to have fun, try repeating the alphabet backwards, or your address. Anyway to get your brain into analytical mode will steer it quickly away from anxiety.

 

NIP TO THE LOO

If there’s one near and the situation allows for it, nip off for a quick toilet break. Even if you don’t ‘need’ it, a toilet break will give you a quick time-out to take a breather.

You can even do the other techniques at the same time. It can help just to get a bit of quiet clarity before returning a little less overwhelmed.

What other quick ways help reduce anxiety when you have no time?

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Celebrity Anxiety Tips

A celebrity may project an image of success and control, living an enviable lifestyle in the mainstream media. But even some global superstars, models, actors and sporting heroes suffer anxiety. They’re only people, after all.

Here are just a few famous names explaining what helps when they feel anxious.

1) Singer Adele always seems perfectly composed on stage, however she has suffered anxiety. “I’m scared of audiences,” she said. “One show in Amsterdam I was so nervous, I escaped out the fire exit. I’ve thrown up a couple of times. Once in Brussels, I projectile vomited on someone. I just gotta bear it. But I don’t like touring. I have anxiety attacks a lot.”

 

In a moment of fear, Adele asked herself, ” ’What would [Beyoncé’s alter ego] Sasha Fierce do?’ That’s when Sasha Carter was born.” It was a combination of Sasha Fierce country singer June Carter and Adele channels this whenever she needs to summon her courage and confidence. Who could you channel to give you strength and confidence when you need it most?

2) Lena Durnhan sings the praises of exercise for tackling anxiety. ‘It ain’t about the ass, it’s about the brain,‘ she wrote on social media recently. She continued ‘To those struggling with anxiety, OCD, depression: I know it’s mad annoying when people tell you to exercise, and it took me about 16 medicated years to listen. I’m glad I did.’

3) Jemma Kidd, make-up artist and sister to supermodel Jodie Kidd recommends distracting yourself when you start to feel anxious. ‘If I was driving and felt anxious, I turned the music up loud and sang along. If I was at a dinner party and thought I might have a panic attack, I turned to the person next to me and really concentrated on what they were saying.’

4) Actress Emma Stone has gone on the record about her anxiety issues, saying that she used to suffer panic attacks from a young age and was scared of ‘failing’. She says she used acting to ‘give her a sense of purpose’. She also recommends baking to help with anxiety; stating that it helped her to regain a sense of control, knowing that she could control how the cakes came out.

5) Amanda Seyfried takes time out of her schedule to take it easy and tries to focus on the positive things in her life to help her to manage anxiety and panic attacks. She also credits painting as helping her to relax and unwind.

6) Jennifer Lawrence has talked about her social anxiety issues claiming that acting helped her to feel ”capable whereas before I felt good for nothing”. Finding what you’re good at and what you love doing, like Jennifer did, could be a big help.

7) David Beckham says he plays with lego to calm himself down and control his anxiety, saying he find it ‘very therapeutic’. Anything carefree and childlike could help, or just something that engages your attention and distracts you away from anxiety.

8) Youtube star Zoella has often vlogged about her experiences with anxiety and works with the mental health charity MIND. She reminds everyone that they should ”feel ok to speak out, to talk to friends and family about what they’re going through, to ask for help”. Anxiety is extremely common but it’s not often talked about and reaching out to a friend or family member can really help.

People can appear very confident while feeling anxious or shy on the inside.

Check out some more anxiety tips, techniques and advice here on myndworks instagram page.

 

If you suffer with overwhelming anxiety and negative thoughts, book a free consultation and let me show you how to reduce and remove the burden.

No More Panic Attacks!

Panic, fear, frantic, irrational, reaction, phobia,So, what is Panic? 

“A sudden sensation of fear which is so strong as to dominate or prevent reason and logical thinking, replacing it with overwhelming feelings of anxiety and frantic agitation consistent with an animalistic fight-or-flight reaction”.

Most people panic from time to time and if not controlled, panic can turn into a debilitating mental disorder over time.

According to the NHS in the UK, nearly one in 10 people has panic disorder and according to the Department of Health in Australia that number climbs to one in 7 people.

If not recognised and treated, panic disorder can be devastating because it can interfere with relationships, school work, employment and normal development.

If you panic during stressful situations, I think you’ll find the following tips very useful:

Disengage

If you let yourself succumb to that stressful situation, the more you’ll panic. The brain, during a panic attack, is like a kid throwing tantrums. Give in and it wins. Blow it off and it may forget about what it’s so upset about. The Journal of Neuroscience suggests that the more the brain tries to suppress negative emotions, the more active the amygdala becomes – the part which sends messages throughout the brain.

Break it down

If the problem at hand is making you panic and feel overwhelmed, break it down to smaller pieces that can be addressed and managed. Tell yourself “I can do it!” even if your inner critical voice is saying you can’t.

Breathe, breathe and breathe again

During a panic attack, simple breathing and relaxation techniques can help you be more in control. Practising proper timed breathing exercises (inhale for 4 seconds, exhale for 4 seconds) can make your panic attacks less frequent and easier to conquer.

Walk away

During a panic attack, it may seem like there’s no emergency tool that can help you calm down. But sometimes, the most basic activities, such as walking, can take your mind off from anxiety, so take a walk.

Light aerobic exercises can also trigger your brain to produce endorphins – the feel-good chemicals that improve your mood.

Confront your fear

Make a note of your panic attacks – record your thoughts, symptoms, worries and the emotions you experience. When you are feeling better, go back and re-read your entry. This will help you identify your panic triggers and allow you to tactically overcome any more panics.

Talk to a therapist

A good therapist can help you get to the root of a problem and devise a strategy to resolve it. You may also consider joining a support group. Group meetings can give you further insights into your situation because you get the chance to hear how other people cope with panic attacks.

Hypnotherapy is very effective at eliminating panic attacks, you can read more about it >>>here<<<.

Effectively dealing with panic attacks is a skill that you just can’t develop overnight. It takes time and practise to apply these techniques and other strategies to cope with panic attacks but it is definitely worth the effort. Once you start to learn about panic and stand up to it, life will become easier.

Let me know if you found these insights useful and helpful, and please feel free to share with others.

Richard Scott
Clinical Hypnotherapist
www.mynd.works