Magical Cures are a Myth
Joseph Hart wrote, “Although pharmaceutical drugs can help moderate our bodies’ physical response to stressful thoughts or stimuli, non-pharmaceutical treatments – like cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) – are beginning to replace drugs as the preferred treatment for anxiety disorders.” Simply stated, CBT treatment teaches people to recognize their apprehension symptoms like nausea, heart-racing, a flutter in your stomach, or an instant rise in anger. Recognizing your anxiety and panic symptoms is phase one of learning to cope with this condition. The second phase is to teach people that if there is no true threat, this flight or fight response is temporary. There is a physical component where our panic thoughts cause our sympathetic nervous system to overreact. So we need to learn techniques to calm our thoughts and reactions back down to normal. Exaggerated and unhealthy anxiety is like our mind seeing a mirage and interpreting it as a dangerous oasis to be feared. The Buddha once commented “Know all things to be like this – A mirage, a cloud castle. Nothing is as it appears.”
Please note: if your anxiety or panic is seriously debilitating, it is time to talk to your primary physician or make an appointment with a counselor or therapist that specializes in this area.
Helpful Method to Reduce Anxiety or Panic Attacks
If your anxiety is something new in your life or is not to a level where you feel you need to see a physician or therapist, here is a basic method I use as a counselor with 20 years of experience. You can try this anxiety/panic reduction method and see if it works for you. In article 2 of “WARNING: Anxiety and Panic Outbreaks”, I introduced a simple 5 Step Plan to reduce Anxiety and Panic Attacks. It included taking slow deep breaths from your belly, recalling a pleasant memory, using empowering statements and figuring out the message your body is trying to convey the feeling of anxiety. What is at the very root of the feeling, how can you proactively change the situation? This final step empowers you to take control of your life and make concrete, positive steps in the direction of a healthy, happy life. Stable, happy people do not normally experience anxiety unless there is a real danger. If you want to reduce your anxiety and panic, work on ways to reduce the root problem.
Encompass a wide variety of techniques to reduce your anxiety:
A person needs to realize fear, depression, and anxiety are predictable and normal responses to situations that are putting you at risk. But when it happens when there are no at-risk stimuli, there is an “imbalance” that needs attending. It is a complicated mix of chemical, brain biology and chemistry. Anxiety, fear, and panic were meant to prepare our bodies for our flight or flee survival trigger. Increase heart rate, dizziness, feeling wired, sweaty hands and shallow breathing are all byproducts of this instinct.
If this response has become a problem – try a whole spectrum of interventions. Cut back on caffeine, try yoga or tai chi, and use relaxation techniques like (listening to Relax, Unwind and Sleep CD by Vicki Langemo (available on Amazon and iTunes) Good nutrition, regular exercise, deep breathing, my technique revealed in article 2 or other psychological approaches are all positive solutions. Altogether, these methods can help you break the shackles of worry. But everyone needs to find what works for them and which combination of remedies will make their life manageable. If anxiety is impeding on your health or happiness, try the remedies mentioned in this article which denote methods from modern science, simple self-care, and ancient wisdom. Find your anxiety-busting methods and reclaim your life!
If you would like some suggestions for books, try “Natural Relief for Anxiety” by Edmund J. Bourne, Arlen Brownstein, and Lorna Garano or “The Relaxation & Stress Reduction Workbook” by Martha Davis, Matthew McKay and Elizabeth Robbins Eshelman. Books that bring peace of mind to this author are “Zen and the Art of Happiness” by Chris Prentiss, “”Listening to Your Inner Voice” by Douglas Bloch and “Jesus Calling” by Sarah Young.
Some helpful articles from this author are “Empower Yourself to Move Forward in Life… Starting Today” and “Gain Self-Knowledge by learning your Unique Personality Strengths” by Vicki Langemo, LPC, MA
Otherwise, you can book a conversation with Vicki at www.suportivetalk.com