By Bertil Hjert
So many coping strategies for anxiety, panic attacks and depression rely on the ability of the sufferer to achieve a sense of relaxation. When you are relaxed your heart rate slows, your breathing slows, your blood pressure drops and your muscle tension eases.
These are all the direct opposite effects of what you experience during a panic attack or anxious moment. The ability to counteract your body’s panicked tendencies will help you confront, overcome and resolve your fears. But you can’t deal with your problem if you can’t get your body and mind into a relaxed state.
Achieving relaxation isn’t easy. It takes a lot of practice to just on the spot meditate and alleviate your fear. This approach is for more experienced practitioners of various relaxation techniques.
If relaxation is new to you or you have a lot of trouble with it, try for a generalized state of relaxation.
By engaging in deep relaxation for 30 minutes a day, you will see the calming effect spread to the rest of your day and the other areas of your life over time.
Deep relaxation practice will help to reduce the cumulative stress in your body and mind and prevent additional stress from compounding your condition.
Reducing and eliminating stress is vital to increasing your energy, improving your ability to concentrate, getting better sleep and restoring your self confidence.
The most common methods for achieving deep relaxation are abdominal breathing, meditation, visualization and progressive muscle relaxation.
While other methods are certainly available and successful, these methods are the most accessible for novices.
Learning how to utilize one or more of these methods will greatly help you in your fight against anxiety, panic attacks and stress.
Panic attacks and anxiety are a product of an overactive mind, fueled by worry, anticipation, fear and dread. These powerful emotions spark physical and chemical responses that send your body into heightened states of survival mode.
The ability to relax the sensations coursing through your body will more quickly and easily allow you to control the physical effects on your body and prevent them. Stopping the physical effects is of course only half the battle, the mind that is creating these responses has to be shut down too. Hence, deep relaxation…
Abdominal breathing is probably the best place to start for most people. It is relatively easy to do, serves as a basis for some other relaxation techniques and can be done anywhere.
Your breathing pattern is a guidepost to the level of anxiety the rest of your body is experiencing. The quicker and shallower the breaths, the more anxiety there is. The deeper and slower the breathing, the more relaxed you are.
Abdominal breathing actually forces you to release a lot of built up tension in your body. You can’t breathe from your belly when your body is tight with tensed nerves. It is a method of relaxation that actually forces your body into a calmer state when it is done correctly.
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Bertil Hjert is author of the Panic Goodbye program.
This program includes 7 eBooks about:
- relieving Panic and Anxiety Attacks,
- OCD, and
- Social Phobia;
- using Abdominal Breathing & Meditation,
- Body & Mind relaxation,
- Yoga & Progressive Muscle Relaxation.
Also see Stress Relief Programs
Photo above: Deanne Repich, creator of the Conquer Anxiety Success Program.