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Video: Panic Attacks? Don't Panic! - Quality Of Life, Self-development
Read the first part of the article on panic attacks here.
A simplified version of the recipe for getting rid of panic attacks looks like this
1. Change the attitude
Change your mind about panic attacks. Accept them as part of yourself. Do not avoid them, but try to catch moments of calm and understanding even inside the panic attack itself, as circus performers catch and maintain balance on a tightrope for years of long training. And do not " turn off " the panic, but watch it, study yourself in this state.
2. Solve the problem
Solve the problem! A panic attack is just a symptom; these are the “ tops ”, but not the “ roots ” of the problem.
- What kind of chronic stress do you live under?
- What are you most afraid of losing at this stage in your life?
- What prevents you from living happily; what are you running, wanting, but unable to free yourself?
- What are your vital needs suppressed?
The problem must be “ unearthed ”, realized, and most importantly - formulated in the form of a task for the solution of which one can plan and take concrete actions. Then the scattered energy of panic will be focused into the energy of purposeful life / personality changes.
In conclusion, a small example.
Tatiana (name has been changed), 26 years old, housewife, on maternity leave with less than six months left until the end.
I applied for more frequent panic attacks. In her words, previously, there were no more than once every six months, and now two or three times a week. At first, PAs were disguised as " heart problems ", but Tatiana underwent a series of cardiological examinations in different clinics, and nowhere were any pathologies revealed.
When the panic attacks became more frequent, their symptoms were enriched - trembling and numbness in the hands, lack of air, mild nausea, insomnia, an acute fear that she would lose consciousness and at that time something terrible would happen to the child were added to the rapid heartbeat. In addition to the cardiologist, she visited a number of doctors, including a therapist, neurologist, endocrinologist; attended physiotherapy procedures and changed sedatives four times. But the attacks became more and more frequent …
And now the most interesting thing is Tatiana's family situation. She is married to a man for whom, according to her, she " got out of pity ", since his father drank himself and died early, and her mother changed three more husbands and practically did not pay attention to the children. The husband works in one of the law enforcement agencies, his work is quite dangerous, and he is often on duty - he is absent from home for a whole day. By the way, Tatiana's panic attacks happen on those nights when her husband is on duty. And the starting point for panic is the thought: “ What if something happened to him there? "
Another important thing: the husband drinks regularly; about once every two to three months goes into a deep binge for several days. The husband adheres to patriarchal views, believes that the wife should always be obedient to him.
In a binge, he becomes aggressive, and begins to " teach life ", turning into a real family tyrant. Tatiana, oddly enough, justifies this behavior, which indicates (plus a number of other signs) to codependency. Nevertheless, Tatyana's relatives consider their family to be prosperous, knowing nothing about how terrible her husband is when he is drunk. Tatiana is very afraid that they will find out the truth, and tries to maintain this image of a “ happy family ”.
At the first stage of working with panic attacks, Tatiana learned to observe her condition from the inside. The result of observations was the understanding that in fact, more than anything else, she is afraid of being left alone. Because this will mean that no one loves her, that no one needs her, that she will be left without a livelihood, that she is helpless and weak, that the child will be left without a father, that she will be ashamed to look her relatives in the eyes, etc. etc.
The fear of loneliness is understandable, but what was the actual problem for Tatiana, the solution of which would help get rid of panic attacks? The problem was that the relationship with her husband fell apart right before our eyes, like a house of cards. It was very scary to face the truth and admit that her husband really does not love her, and there were a lot of examples and proofs of this. In addition, he irrepressibly slides into alcoholism, and she has neither the strength nor the desire to become a victim of this alcoholism and make the child hostage.
As soon as the bitter truth was realized, it became possible to plan concrete steps to solve the problem. I will not say that these steps were easy. First, Tatiana tried to restore relations with her husband - to help him recover from alcoholism, to revive the feelings that had died out in marriage. The attempt failed, but, most interestingly, already in the process of its implementation, the number of panic attacks decreased to the previous level, that is, once every six months. And the attacks themselves were no longer taken so hard. Panic always recedes when a decision is made, a goal is set, and when we begin to do at least something to solve a key problem.
I would like to end this story with a happy ending, but in fact it is still just beginning. Tatiana divorced and went to her parents in another city. I got a job. Builds a relationship with a new candidate for husbands. Learns not to be afraid of loneliness, to believe in their own strengths, to trust their feelings. She has only had one panic attack in the past year. Yes, and she was provoked by a phone call from her ex-husband, who, being drunk, dialed her number out of habit and began to teach.
Can this be considered the final victory over panic? Wait and see…
Read the first part of the article on panic attacks here.