Panic attacks drive me crazy
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October 10 is Mental Health Day. As relevant today as ever. Unfortunately, now for many, the state of increased anxiety is already becoming habitual. Practicing psychologist, associate member of the Russian Federation of Consultant Psychologists Marina Fokina toldwhat is happening to us, and how to deal with it.
1. Panic attacks drive you crazy.
Literally – such a wave of panic is overwhelmed that there is not enough air, the pressure jumps and the heart is pounding furiously. And chaotic thoughts: “I will die”, “We will all die”, “Something irreparable will happen.” At the same time, someone falls into a stupor and freezes in place, someone, on the contrary, begins to move chaotically and randomly.
What to do:
The first and most important thing to remember is that you don’t die from panic attacks. Dot. If at the moment of panic all thoughts fly out of your head, write down in advance on the sticker “I WON’T DIE!” and paste it throughout the apartment.
How to bring down the panic heat: there are several recommended ways:
* Run. This is not a metaphor – to jump out into the street and run-run to “drain” the stress hormones, cortisol and adrenaline, which are raging in the blood.
* Feel yourself “here and now.” Find any five objects in the room where you are and look at them, noting the smallest details. Four items to touch, feeling textures. Three – listen. For example, how does a crystal glass sound when hit with a spoon. Or how noisy water flows from a tap. There are two items to sniff. And one is to taste. While you are looking for all this and sniffing, licking – the panic will go away.
* Panic to victory. That is, “live” the attack to the end, stimulating it even more. For example, constantly saying to yourself: “Come on, attack, come on. We’ll die, you say? Let’s try!”. The goal is to achieve the maximum “splash” of adrenaline and cortisol – the stress hormone. After the peak, everything will decline simply according to the laws of physiology.
2. We choke on “poisonous” emotions
If you listened to psychologists and stopped suppressing emotions in yourself, that’s good. However, there is one “but”: pronounced, and especially negative emotions merged onto innocent heads can “eat” you yourself.
– One of the negatively colored feelings prevailing in the current period is hatred, – says Marina Fokina. – A very destructive feeling. From the inside, “eating away”, like acid. And with him, I would still recommend fighting, and not reconciling and not “living through” it.
What to do:
Look for what lies behind the hate. In almost one hundred percent of cases, this emotion is secondary. And it grows out of fear. And fear, as a rule, is associated with some kind of trauma. Moreover, it is even possible that this is not your injury and not your fear. Perhaps the fear of generations. Or the fear of a particular relative who was important to you.
But most often the reasons lie on the surface. Behind hatred may be the fear of losing something or someone. Fear of losing yourself. Fear of not belonging to a certain “community”. Fear of hunger and poverty. When your personal fear, hiding under the guise of hatred, is identified, it will be possible to deal with it already. And toxic hatred, as a secondary emotion, will go away.
3. “Is it possible to laugh when such things are happening around?”
Now it seems to many that when everything around is bad, it is impossible to rejoice and have fun. And to be happy is completely criminal in relation to others. People “press” the positive in themselves, refuse everything that causes joy, postpone pleasant moments until the time “when everything is over.” Such immoderate “decency” can lead to deep depression.
What to do:
All bad things will never end – this is an axiom. There will always be many people who are more unhappy than you for one reason or another. But do not plunge headlong into the abyss of troubles that have nothing to do with you personally.
And these are not empty words. Even in the most difficult times, people played weddings. We fell in love. They gave birth to children. They wrote great books and music. They picked flowers, enjoyed the taste of food, admired the paintings of artists. We made friends, laughed and made grandiose plans. Because, in fact, this is what helps to survive in any troubles and disasters – a drop of joy that must be sought in everyday life. And create them with your own hands for yourself and for loved ones.
If you constantly forbid yourself to rejoice, the psyche will eventually put a “taboo” on all other emotions. Because it is impossible to turn off one thing, the entire emotional “apparatus” will eventually be blocked. And then depression is inevitable. In order not to bring this up – rejoice. And rejoice. And be glad that you can please someone.
4. Fear of uncertainty
For three years now (since the beginning of the covid pandemic), uncertainty has been our constant companion. And most of all, people who are used to planning everything suffer from this. And control the implementation of plans. And when external circumstances do not allow this, someone falls into apathy and depression. Some are angry and aggressive. Someone – leaves the situation in alcohol, games, shopping and other destructive “fields”.
What to do:
Create your own definition. That is, plan, execute and control only what depends on you personally.
– I emphasize – personally from you, – Marina Fokina emphasizes. – Any plan that involves at least one other person besides you is potentially at risk of uncertainty. One of my clients, used to planning everything and everything, at first cried from her new diary. Where it was necessary, instead of the former grandiosity, to make items: “Brush your teeth”, “Wash the floor”, “Throw through the closet”. “Walk fifteen minutes to the bus stop,” “Read twenty pages of a book.” But these were trifles that depended only on her. With this approach, you regain a sense of at least some certainty. And at least some control. At least over something. And when this feeling appears, horror and confusion in front of social, external uncertainty become much less.
Well, a certain philosophical note appears in the view of the world: “The day has passed – and thank God.” And there’s something soothing about that too.