The following are some of the ways that we can cope and deal positively with panic and anxiety.
- Remember that although your feelings and symptoms are very frightening, they are not dangerous or harmful.
- Understand that what you are experiencing is just an exaggeration of your normal bodily reaction to stress.
- Do not fight your feelings or wish them away.The more that you are willing to face them, the less intense they will become.
- Do not add to your panic by thinking about what “might” happen. If you find yourself asking “what if?” Tell yourself “So what.”
- Stay in the present. Notice what is really happening to you as opposed to what you think might happen.
- Label your fear level from zero to ten and watch it go up and down. Notice that it that it does not stay at a very high level for more than a few seconds.
- When you find yourself thinking about the fear, change your “what if” thinking. Focus on and carry out a simple and manageable task, such as counting backward by 3’s or snapping a rubber band on your wrist.
- Notice when you stop adding fearful thoughts to your fear, it begins to face.
- When th fear comes, expect and accept it . Wait and give it time to pass, without running away from it.
- Be proud of yourself for your progress thus far, and think about how good you will feel when you succeed this time.
Reprinted courtesy of the Mental Health Association. Understanding panic disorder.