When You’re on the Verge of Panicking

Anything can trigger the panic.  But once you sense that you’re on the verge of it, there are things you can do to focus yourself on something other than the intensity of feeling like you’re losing control.  Distract your mind by looking at something and finding yourself in it.  Or put your hand on your chest to bring yourself back to the present moment, or reach out to hold someone’s hand like your spouse’s or your child’s.  You can get up and move (pacing works) to get your circulation going, you can stretch away the stiffness (reaching up to the ceiling helps), and you can exercise (swift walking will do it) to escape a little through a healthy endeavor.  Also do some deliberate relaxation where you focus on one body part at a time.  Remember to talk to yourself as well—tell yourself what you need to hear so that you don’t give in to the panic.  Parent yourself, counsel yourself, encourage yourself.  Do what you can to resist the panic at every turn.

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