1. Use Deep Breathing Techniques to Trigger Calmness
When your body senses danger, real or imagined, it prepares itself for the situation. The sympathetic nervous takes over and activates the “fight or flight” response.
You’re probably familiar with symptoms such as an increased heart rate and shallow breathing. This is all part of anxiety’s game plan.
One of the most powerful weapons you can use to stop an anxiety attack is also one of the most simple. It calls for you to force yourself to take long and slow breaths. Breathing in this manner sends a signal to your brain to deactivate your “fight or flight” response system. In short, deep breathing tells your body that everything is okay.
2. Relax Your Body to Turn Off the Stress Response
Much like breathing, relaxing your muscles also turns off your body’s natural stress response. There are several things you can rely on to help you relax.
Many people take time out to go for a walk in nature. Others depend on stretching their muscles like in the practice of yoga.
Another great way to force your body to relax is simply to stop, sit, and focus for a moment. When you stop yourself from frantically moving to and fro, it allows you to anchor your mind back into the present. This mindful act not only makes you feel more in control, but it also helps to stop an anxiety attack from barreling through your calm.
3. Be Aware of Your Anxiety Triggers
Most people are aware of what stresses them out. You probably are, too. Understanding that some situations are more stressful than others helps you to prepare for them.
Maybe it’s your monthly team meeting at work or a lunch date with your in-laws that sends you into an anxious mode.
When you accept that these situations cause you more stress, then you can bump up your self-care routine beforehand. A strong self-care routine can strengthen your state of mind and help to alleviate any anxiety that tries to creep in.
4. Understand that Your Body is Simply Responding to Stress
Reading about how your body works is much easier than identifying exactly what it’s doing at the very moment it’s doing it.
For instance, in the past, your heart might have been pounding for a full minute or two before you even noticed it. All you knew was that something was off and you were feeling panicky. But as you start to be more aware of how your physical body feels and the changes it makes before an anxiety attack, you can manage these onslaughts.
In understanding your body, you can then be confident that you won’t feel this way forever. It’s a passing moment caused by thoughts or a situation. And you can accept that this is a natural way for your body to respond.
5. Distract Yourself from How You’re Feeling
The sly art of distraction works great on young naive minds, so it’s often disregarded. But, did you know that it also works wonders to stop an anxiety attack?
Anxiety is often a product of out-of-control thoughts or misperceived situations. Your mind has a way of taking a thought and running wild with it. That’s the power of a brain.
But, you can take a stand against this cycle and create a distraction for yourself. Think of it as derailing a train. When you change your mind’s focus, it sort of swings your brain back into manageable thoughts.
If your anxiety has become difficult to manage, please contact me. I’d enjoy helping you address the stress that is causing you anxiety. Together we can formulate a plan to help alleviate it.