Barry’s interview on Blog Talk Radio
Topics covered are
- how to best to end panic attacks
- why most people are getting the wrong advice
- how anxiety can be transformed into something positive
Topics covered are
We have talked many times about the art of acceptance and how if you truly accept your anxiety, you will no longer suffer. One of the most effective ways to lower your anxiety is to increase your acceptance of the sensations you feel. The more acceptance you have of your anxiety, the faster your recovery. Everyone has different methods in how they learn to accept. Continue reading to find out how John accepted his anxiety symptoms in a public place:
‘Last Week My Wife And I Were At A Comedy Show, Everyone Is Obviously Laughing Having A Good Time. While I Noticed A Tense Feeling Creeping In. I Really Couldn’t Concentrate On What Was Being Said, Kind Of Like The Volume Was Turned Down. What I Did Next Has Taken Some Practice, And It’s Not Coping. I Call It “Letting Go”. I Recognized It Was Anxiety, I Told Myself I Have Been Through This A Million Times, The Choice Is Mine. Do I Want This To Escalate Or Do I Want To Have A Good Time. And I Actually Answer Myself In My Head. “A Good Time”. Then Let It Go! I Do This By Imagining The Stress Draining From The Top Of My Head All The Way Down To My Feet, Like I Pulled The Plug In A Drain. One Way I Practice This Is By When IM Not Anxious I Visualize Relaxing Every Muscle, One At A Time From Top To Bottom. With A Lot Of Practice I Am Able To Do This Now In A Few Seconds. I Literally Feel A Warm Rush When I Do It Now. Then I Feel A Second Warm Rush Of CalmA Few Seconds After I Get Back To What I Was Doing. This Way, IM Not Avoiding Any Of The Sensations, Rather Just Letting Them Go. If I Try To Cope And Make Them Go Away, They Get More Intense For Me. This Way I Feel That I Took Them Head On, And I Gives Me A Good feeling Not A Feeling Like “When Are They Going To Come Back?”. I Hope This Helps. I Does Take Some.Practice But It Starts Working Instantly! Even From The First Try. Good Luck, You Can Do This!
It is evident that John has been practicing the Panic Away techniques. Similar to the 21-7 countdown, John has decided to take matters into his own hands, gain control over his anxiety and let it go. He is not ignoring the sensations and urging them to go away. Instead he is accepting the sensations, focusing on every detail in his body and allowing the symptoms to fade away. Thanks for sharing this John!
A Panic Away member visited the forum again after a long time of being absent. In 2012, she described herself as a ’wreck’, someone who was ‘afraid of her own shadow’. It’s 2014, and the reason she has not been on the forum is because she has been busy enjoying life and experiencing new things. I hope reading stories such as this will give some of you hope and encouragement. Know that you do not have to live your life as a ‘wreck’ any longer.
‘Just dropping in to say hello. For those of you who don’t know me, I was a wreck back in March 2012. I changed from a confident person to being afraid of my own shadow overnight. I think you could safely say I feared everything. I wasn’t really plagued by panic attacks as once I’d done the 21 second count down once, I knew there was nothing to be afraid of. The places my brain took me though, is another story altogether and I think I had about every anxious thought you could have and if I didn’t already have it, I soon added it to my endless list of ‘what ifs’ when reading about other people’s thoughts!
This forum came along just at the right time for me and I cannot thank Panic Away and the Forum enough for giving me the support I needed to stop, take check of myself and learn to retrain my brain. First and foremost, just give up the fight! Don’t expect anxiety to just up and go. There is a process which has to be followed where you learn to live along side anxiety and make a friendship with it. I can remember being attached to the forum with people like Choose and Mary, GI Jim, Todd and a couple of other people encouraging me at all times and I couldn’t imagine ever being one of those people who suddenly popped up and said ‘Hi, I’ve not been on the forum for a while because I’ve been busy leading my life’. Well, today that is just exactly what has happened. I will never, ever forget just how wretched I felt in March 2012 and the journey I took to become just ‘me’ again. Not ‘me with anxiety’ or me ‘slowly recovering from anxiety’ just plain and simply ‘me’. Anxiety is in all of us and every now and again I might get that warm glow or that fleeting thought, which I recognise, and I just say ‘I’m fine, thanks, nothing to worry about here’.
I remember also wondering if people did really get better, or was this just a lie. Well, it is true. You do get better, you do live your life with a strength you didn’t have before. For those of you who don’t know me, and think that I probably can’t have been that bad, back track through my posts and you’ll see the journey I have taken.
I pop back here to see if there is anyone I can help, because I know just how lonely and terribly frightening anxiety can feel. To everyone, just hang in there and believe in yourself. Make friends with anxiety and go forth together. Much love to you all. Mrs Txxx
If anxiety is an ongoing problem for you, you need to know that you are not alone.
Since my last newsletter the overwhelming response was that people were very glad to know that they were not the ONLY ones in the world feeling this way. They were not the only ones that were struggling with panic attacks and anxiety. They were not the only ones who felt afraid. They were not the only ones who feared they would never get over this problem.
Knowing you are not alone with an anxiety problem is very important because it can be hard to reach out and share what you are going through with others for fear you will be misunderstood or be seen as weak. Talking from my own experience I know that for men it is especially hard to reach out for help because that’s not what we are trained to do. Men feel they have to always be seen as strong.
Well, the good news is that through this newsletter you are connected to me and through me you can connect to many other people who are dealing with the exact same kind of anxiety issues as you. TOGETHER WE ARE STRONGER.
You can connect this very moment if you like and post a comment to this blog. and please dont forget to connect to me by becoming my friend on Facebook.com here :
You are not alone, we are here together.
Photo: The Angel of the North, a sculpture found in the countryside of the North of England
designed by Antony Gormley.
A Panic Away member shares a tip with us. He keeps the Panic Away program saved on his phone. When he begins to feel anxious looks back on the Panic Away material- any time, any place.panic away members shares a tip with us. He keeps the Panic Away program saved on his phone. When he begins to feel anxious looks back on the Panic Away material- any time, any place.
The best thing that I could suggest to anyone is to put the Panic Away PDF on your iphone or any other type of Phone/PDA that can read PDF’s .
The very moment that I felt something was not right I could refer to that section of the book no matter where I was, no matter what time of day and no matter who I was with .. I could read what I need to put back in prospective, what was happening to me. I found that sometimes in the heat of an anxiety attack I would forget what to do …so I would go strait to My Iphone pull up the Panic Away search for the section I wanted to read on …and 9 times out of 10 I felt fine before I could even finish the section. Two things happen here one is reasurence from the book and the other is distraction.
This is a great idea! Thanks for sharing with us. The combination of reassurance with distraction is perfect in helping you to overcome your anxiety.
What is your anxiety distraction?
Panic Away member Jess, went overseas for three weeks. She was nice enough to share her experience with us and give a rundown of her trip and how she coped with her anxiety. Continue reading to find out what she learnt from her trip.
I went overseas for three weeks and arrived back on Monday morning. I’ll give you a brief rundown of my three weeks.
First week – I was normal nervous the day leading up to the flight. I didn’t eat anything all day (I left at night) because when I feel anxious I feel sick and sometimes vomit – but that’s when I have a panic attack. As soon as I left my family and walked with my friends through the departure gates, anxiety and nervousness left me and I felt excited. That’s how I was all week: excited and relaxed. I stuffed my face with the local food and ate the most I’ve eaten all year! I was so happy.
Second week – This week was hard. The trip was a study tour and my first assessment was due this week. I had to somehow fit studying in around touring and everything else and my panic got the best of me. This is when I stopped eating and started dry retching. Nevertheless, I picked myself up and did what I had to do every day – which is a big achievement for me, I kept thinking I would need to be shipped back home or I wouldn’t be able to leave the hotel because I would turn agoraphobic again. It was at this point I told my lecturer that I wanted to quit the unit.
Third week – I was still feeling really anxious but continued doing what I was meant to be doing. I opted not to drop out of the unit and started to prepare for my last assessment. I started to relax again and dreaded coming home because I thought that once I landed back in Australia, my anxiety would increase tenfold. I was eating more this week and started to enjoy everything again. I passed the final assessment with the highest marks in the tour.
So that was my three weeks in short. And now I’m back home. I’ve learnt so much from this trip!! The big one being that I can do anything I want to and cope just fine.
Thanks for sharing Jess. You didn’t have a 100% anxiety free trip and that is ok. You went on a 3 week trip overseas and actually enjoyed it- that is a huge achievement in itself. Do not worry if anxiety comes and goes, it is important to know that there will be setbacks along the road to recovery. There will be days in the beginning when you will feel fantastic and then suddenly you will wake up one morning feeling like you have made no progress at all. Please be aware that this is normal and do not let it upset you. If you understand that setbacks are commonplace, then you can be prepared for them when they happen, and this prevents you from feeling like you have failed.
The first thing to remember is that setbacks happen. Try to never let a setback convince you that you’re not making progress. It doesn’t mean that all your progress has been undone. In general, setbacks are inevitable, and you need to have an accepting attitude toward them.
Have you been on a trip recently? Please share your story with us
Panic Away member, Roy shares his anxiety story with us. For anyone doubting themselves, or the Panic Away program, Roy is here to tell you and reassure you that: YOU CAN DO IT!
“It’s been a little over two years since I found the Panic Away program, and the Forum. I had suffered a pretty nasty panic attack around October of 2010, and not being able to understand what it was that I experienced, the fear of it drove me to a pretty bad case of anxiety.
I suffered through all of the nasty symptoms that most of us experience with panic and anxiety, and I’ve been through some pretty tough and challenging experiences in my life, including Army boot camp. Nothing came close to the battle, and the challenge of overcoming a really heavy case of anxiety, and the fear of another panic attack.
If you’re someone that has just started this program, or you’ve been on this journey for a while and you’re trying to get back that life you once enjoyed. I’m hear to tell you… you can do it!
I’ve seen and heard people say, (and I said the same thing myself)… “I just want my old self back.” I’m pretty sure what you’re going to discover on your journey through this experience, is that you will find yourself again, but you’ll be a changed person because of it. What I mean by that, is that you’ll be so much more aware of things that you didn’t pay attention to before your struggle began, and you’ll be a better person for it.
I heard this great quote from an NFL coach who won his battle against leukemia… he said “it’s not your circumstances that define you, it’s how you deal with them, and overcome them, that make you who you are.”
I think the hardest thing to accept through my recovery process, was that it was going to take time. I heard Barry and others say this over and over, but I wanted it to go away now. If there’s one piece of advice that I can give you, it would be this… try not to rush the recovery process. Give your mind and body time to heal itself, and it will. Accept where you are, and believe that you will get through this by working through the program, being patient with yourself, and giving it time.
I can honestly tell you that I don’t know exactly when the anxiety no longer effected my daily walk through life. It just begins to fade away when the focus on living your life, becomes more important than the focus on your struggle with anxiety. I still feel a little anxious now and then, but that’s to be expected. After all, it is human to be a little anxious and fearful of things sometimes.
The memory of what I went through with panic and anxiety will always be there, just like the memories of all the good times, and the struggles I’ve experienced in my life. I think they’re a reminder of what’s important in life, and that past experiences help us to avoid making the same mistakes in the future. Sharing our experiences can also help others get through tough times, and maybe avoid some of the pitfalls in life that you’ve experienced.
Yesterday… I checked in to say hi. I haven’t been back to the Forum much over the past year, so I stopped by to say hi to an old forum friend… Pam. She’s been quite an inspiration to many of us, and I just wanted to let her know that I was doing well, and I hoped the same for her. Pam replied, and suggested that it might be a good idea to tell everyone how I’m doing. She said it might help some others to know that they too can get through this struggle, just like I did.
Thank you Pam for being such a caring force for many on this Forum, you will always be my friend. Thank you Barry for sharing your life experience, so that all of us can use your program to help regain the life that anxiety, and panic took from us. I am a better person today, because of my experience. You can, and will get through this… stay strong, have fatih, and believe.
Anxiety prevented John from flying. Even the thoughts of getting on a plane scared him to death. He felt angry, frustrated and scared before getting anywhere near an airport. John now flies regularly and even enjoys the flight! Wow! Continue reading to find out how he made this big change in his life.
“First off, welcome to the PA family. I’ve been here since January, and it has helped me tremendously.
Believe it or not, I’ve been where you are. My first panic attack occurred in October 2008 when I was flying hometo California from D.C.. I just remember saying the following words to myself, “I’m going to be in a tube for 6 hours?” It was the worse thing I had ever felt. Fortunately, I stayed the night at my friends home, and his wife gave me a valium so that I could fly home the next day. HOWEVER, I couldn’t fly for a while. I avoided it all-together.
And then, I had to go to Vegas for my best friends wedding, and then fly to Denver for another friends wedding. I know what it feels like to book a flight online and feeling very panicky. I remember saying “why am I freaking out when I’m no where near a plane yet!” It angered, frustrated, and scared me to death. No matter what I did, I felt like crap just thinking about booking a flight. It was crazy!
What did I do? Honestly, I just thought about the end result. I thought about what was awaiting me in the end. I will say that I do have Clonazepam pills in case I do have panicky moments before or during the flight. Easy way out? Sure is, but knowing that the pills are there just in case has helped a lot. Like I have said in other forums, I’m not a fan of medication whatsoever. BUT, if it can get me through the rough patches, then I will do it as long as it helps me out.
Just this past year, I flew to D.C. where it all started. A straight 6-hour flight without an issue. I enjoyed the flight and just let it be, just like old times. On the way back, I did have moment of “oh boy”, but I just flowed with the feeling and let it be. And then I flew to New Orleans to see my friend retire from the Navy (and where I was the guest speaker, which is another story.) Next month, headed up north to see my cousin, whom I haven’t seen in a few years. The common thought for all: I will not let anxiety, fear, or panic ruin quality time with family and friends. We, as anxiety sufferers, cannot let anxiety ruin our lives period.We will get over this. Put one foot in front of the other and enjoy life. It might be really bumpy (like a turbulent flight), but it will pass. Think about the end result and be happy. You have a honeymoon coming up, and I’m sure you want to enjoy it. Think about the good times you’re going to have, and not about the flight itself.
I no longer have the anticipatory thoughts like I use to. Some still linger, but I just give it the middle finger and move on. You can do the same, you just need to believe in the positive thoughts, and not give credibility to the negative ones. Easier said than done but you can do it. It took me a while but I did it.
Thank you so much for sharing this post John. You should be very proud of yourself. Two things really stood out to me in this post:
- “I will not let anxiety, fear, or panic ruin quality time with family and friends”
- “Put one foot in front of the other and enjoy life. It might be really bumpy (like a turbulent flight), but it will pass”
John’s comparison between life and a turbulent flight is very true, what an eloquent use of words! We all experience turbulence at some point in our lives, what is important is that we don’t let the bad times control us.
A Panic Away member explains has gone from an anxiety stricken life to a busy, normal, happy and healthy one! A combination of Panic Away and practicing faith, love and hope have gotten her to where she is today. She has now gotten perspective over her anxiety journey and see’s it as a gift. Continue reading for more info about this wonderful and inspirational success story.
“Faith Love Hope, these three words are what helped me to live a full normal healthy busy life again. It’s been nearly 4 years since my first experience with a Panic Attack. As most of you I’m sure I didn’t know what hit me. Is this a Heart attack? was this a Nervous Break down? some kind of Seizure? I was worried and desperate and I felt so alone!
My dearest friend suggested that it might be Panic Attacks so I started my research. Days turned to weeks and weeks to Months, I was struggling terribly, no medication that my Dr gave me worked! I couldn’t sleep because I was so scared something might happen to me when I did. Now I know that sleeping well is one of the most important gifts we can give our Anxious bodies
One Doctors visit followed another, one test after another nothing seems to be wrong with me physically. At last I dicided to buy the Panic Away Program (at first I thought it might be a scam boy was I wrong!) I immediately printed the booklet (I bought the online copy) and started reading. I cried heaps because someone understood! Someone knew! Someone have been through this horror and survived!
I joined the Forum and it became a life line. Panic Attacks and Anxiety is a lonely road. Family and friends don’t understand, they try but they don’t. This Journey is YOURS and yours alone!
Something that I read stuck (I think it was Barry that said it) You will get to the other side and it would have been worth while! Really? You’ve got to be joking! I feel horrible! I feel sick all the time! My tummy is upset, I can’t eat, I’m nauseous and dizzy all the time. I’m so so scared!! How on earth can this be worth anything? Well today I can say the same. This has been a difficult but WONDERFUL Journey and I am actually glad that I had been given this Gift.
Have faith in yourself and your body.
Have faith that you will come through this.
Create your own Recipe for healing and have faith in it.
Start every day with the hope that today is going to be better than tomorrow and tomorrow even more better. Without hope our days will be an endless struggle. We hope and we strive for calm and for peace in ourselves. If like me you couldn’t drive any more, just DO it, every day, as much as possible because the day will come that you hoped for, driving will be easy and calm again. If you’re scared to leave your house, just DO it, if you walk 100 steps more every day, soon you will be able to go as far as possible and the day you hoped for will have arrived. If you’re scared of Flying (like I was) buy a ticket and just Do it, because you might be besides yourself with fear, you might even have a Panic Attack but you will be okay and the next time you will be able to do it easier and the next even like the experience.
Learn to love yourself. Accept yourself for who you are. Love YOU! Look after you. Give yourself the time you need to recover and to recuperate. It’s okay to be a little selfish, it’s okay to say NO.
Recognize your blessings no matter how small they seem to be. Being Positive and thankful is the best Love you can give yourself.
My life is full of Joy and Peace. My life is Calm and Comfortable. My body is healthy. My Mind is healthy. This Journey has been a blessing and it still is every day. Every day is good!
You can have this too, just believe! Don’t wait for this to be over, WORK at it as if your life depends on it! Do what you want to today, go for a walk, go for a drive, go for a visit don’t put it off because you feel anxious. Have Faith, have hope and have Love.
Thank you for sharing these wonderful tips and inspirational story with us! You truly deserve your new, anxiety free life and you should be very proud of yourself!
When Jane found Panic Away she found great comfort in the realization that she was not alone. Jane had suffered from panic attacks since the age of 12 and knowing that others were going though the same thing helped her tremendously. Jane used to have a fear of flying and would not get on a flight. Now, she is married to a pilot and flies at least 12 times a year on both long and short flights. Alongisde the Panic Away program, Jane also discovered many tips and tricks that were valuable tools for her on her journey towards an anxiety free life. Find out what her 5 tips for reducing anxiety are below:
“Once I discovered I wasn’t alone it helped tremendously and the Panic Away course was the only course I ever purchased. When I was at my panic peak I’d spend a lot of time on the forum and when I am ok, I don’t use it. It’s good to know it’s there should I need it.
Now I know it will pass and I’m not alone. I’ve also learned it helps:
1. To get good sleep,
2. To have ave a level of fitness as hyperventilation starts when I’m unfit.
3. To maintain a good weight.
4. To eat regularly and to not skip meals. I keep biscuits or energy bars in my bag if I know I might miss a meal.
5. Writing down my blessings when I feel an uneasiness start. I’m more anxious when I’m unwell which, thank goodness, is rare.
Point 5 is of utmost importance because when you write down your gratitudes you fill your consciousness with positive thoughts and vibes. This immediately lifts your spirits and I feel the calmness seep into me. As a child I’d sing hymns or read psalms from the bible. Anything positive to distract from the attack.
It’s very hard to convince someone in the middle of an attack that it will pass. When you feel like you’re dying it’s hard to think logically. This is the key time to use what you’ve learned. I used to be terrified of flying, afraid an attack would start at 36000 feet. Now I’m married to a pilot and fly at least 12 times a year mostly long haul flights of over 6 hours in length. The trick is to have many and varied distractions. I have my kindle, my knitting, my iPad, where I write affirmations if I feel uneasy
I do not take any form of drugs to control my anxiety. The thought of a drug controlling my problem doesn’t sit well with me. Therefore it’s important I learned to control the attacks naturally.
Thankfully over the years the attacks have lessened and I’ve not had a major attack in over 20 years. I raised my kids to speak of their problems and should they have an attack to call me. Thankfully they don’t have this affliction. I used the lessons of my fear-ridden childhood to raise my children differently and it’s paid off. Im very grateful for that”
Thank you for sharing your story Jane!