There I was, at 7:20 am on a Sunday, trying desperately to not add more fear and anxiety to my frightening physical symptoms. My fight or flight response was well on its way to completely consuming me and there was no way out. I was trapped. I tried to do some deep breathing techniques like I was told by my therapist, but I couldn’t catch my breath. I tried to distract myself and play some music, but I was in too deep. It was only a matter of time before the feelings of choking, trembling, numbness in my arms, complete unsteadiness and dizziness led me to take action and call emergency – after all at that moment what else can you do? Thankfully, I had my trusty bottle of Clonazepam nearby and I was able to numb some of my anxious feelings through this anti- anxiety medication. But I knew in the back of my mind that this wasn’t the end. I knew it was just a matter of time before I would be completely overtaken by these feelings that the fear would bring on again.
When you suffer from generalized anxiety disorder and experience panic attacks on a regular basis, you bring along with you certain symptoms of anxiety throughout the entire day – symptoms such as feeling a lump in the throat, dizziness and headaches – compared to sudden feelings like body zaps, heart palpitations, numbness and shaking. Those can be so frightening and alarming that they could leave you with major panic attacks which then lead to more confusion when they subside. They always subside. The thing is, what you practice is what you manifest and since the human brain is the most complex object in the universe, I needed to come up with new strategies consciously but also subconsciously. Subconsciously? Yes – the subconscious mind where the amygdala is deals with emotions, memory processing and how we react to the triggers of fear and stress. So along with having a conscious plan of attack to overcome your debilitating anxiety levels and panic attacks, it’s important to implement the two most powerful ways to reprogram your subconscious mind: Mantras and Visualization. Never heard of them before you say? When you hold an image in your mind you stimulate the subconscious into accepting it as part of your reality, and when you repeat a certain mantra that you want repeatedly with great emotion behind it, you begin to apply a new program into your computer that begins to look for things that empower you rather then lead to self- destruction.
Voltaire once said, “Common sense is not so common,” and it’s true. There are many things we already know we need to do in order to regain control of our mental health and our lives, but few of us actually execute them on a daily basis. I’ll give you an example of the power of repetition. When I was a young boy I was fed tennis ball after tennis ball by my tennis coaches trying to build a weapon that was my forehand, which was the most practiced shot for me. My coaches wouldn’t let me move on to a new shot until my forehand was a consistent weapon of mass destruction on the tennis court, and my opponents feared hitting to that side of mine. Well, when I grew up and I hit my peak height of 5 foot 9, I had decent speed and a decent serve, but a forehand that led me to many victories completely on its own. It was then that I started to realize the power of repetition.
So, take some time and come up with some ideas on how you can implement these two powerful subconscious tools to reprogram your subconscious mind, and believe me when you begin to make this a daily ritual in your life, you will find that what you once feared is now just a distant memory.