How to Stop the Panic Now

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Your symptoms are flaring. You are in full panic mode, and you want out. Your chest is tight, your muscles tense, your breathing shallow. You would do anything to escape this feeling, and you’re even realize the feeling is just as awful as the actual physical pain. You want relief.

Here’s how you can push the un-panic button.

Find a place where you can be alone for ten minutes. If you can lie on your back, go for it. You might even cover yourself with a blanket, as that tends to be a soothing feeling for most people. It’s time to soothe both your body and mind, so you need to feel safe, as comfortable as possible, and quiet.

Close your eyes, and follow your breath for ten breaths. Watch the breath go in, watch it go out, and notice the feeling you have inside your chest.

Now move the breath a little deeper—no forcing, just gently expand your ribcage further this time. Think about your ribs expanding to either side. After a few of these breaths, allow your breath to fill from a lower point in your pelvis. Imagine it filling your entire pelvic region before it comes up into the chest and ribs. If you feel like yawning or taking a quick, full breath, follow this instinct. Then move back into the deeper breathing.

As you feel more comfortable with this healing breath, allow your mind to move to a prayer or mantra. Make sure that whatever you say to yourself is kind, loving, compassionate, and gentle. You might try, “I am safe right here. I don’t need to do anything but breathe.” Or, “The breath is relaxing me and bringing healing energy into my body.” Anything that feels comforting to you is perfect.

After ten minutes, the breath will have done its magic. You will feel more relaxed, released from the panic, and ready to step back from the thoughts you were thinking as the panic escalated. You might even take a minute to write down what you were thinking and look at the powerful negative statements that create your panic. You now have a tool to use against these statements, so you no longer need to fear them. You are taking back the power of your own emotions.

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