Occasionally, we become so upset or stressed that we may be on the verge of panic, or may tip over the edge to the brink of a panic attack.
What can you do when you begin to feel your body physically in the throws of panic (e.g.: heartbeat rising, palms sweating, feet tingling, breathing shallow and rapid, etc.)?
Try this quick strategy:
Describe where you are: Be observant of your surroundings, look around you, look closely and carefully at the things you see around, noticing the detail of shapes and colours, naming (in your head or out loud) what you see as you go.
You can use this strategy no matter where you are: at home alone, in the cashier’s line at the supermarket, in a board meeting, in the playground at school – anywhere.
This helps you come back into the present moment. It gives your mind and emotions a little break from the stress or upset, and this creates a small distance between you and panic. This small break can be enough for you to then seek help or actively engage with other techniques that will help calm, centre and ground you.