For anyone suffering not only from panic and anxiety attacks, but any kind of mental torment a go – to person, if chosen correctly, can be a great addition to your arsenal for defense. You must learn the importance of a go – to person and what “qualifications” they should possess.
You must select a person, or even a few people that are easy to get ahold of. Speed dial can become your best friend. Take this into consideration when you enlist the help of your friends. Many people cannot take calls at work. Many cannot wake up from a sound sleep and pull it together quickly. Some people are tending to small children and when you need help you need 1 on 1; you need it now and without interruptions. A child calling out mommy or crying in the background will not give you the attention you need.
Availability is one of the first prerequisites. That is why you may have several go – to people that can be reached at different times of the day.
The next important thing is that this go – to person cannot possess the same tendencies that you have that makes you prone to attacks!
- The tendency to overthink things and a wild imagination.
- The tendency to entertain worst-case scenarios.
- The tendency to be responsible for too much.
- Worrying too much, lack of hope or depression
- The tendency to be negative and pessimistic
If they possess any of these tendencies, they are easily drawn into your state of panic, anxiety and worry and can not only be of no help, but they can intensify your symptoms by being in agreement of what you are experiencing. They may seem to be empathetic and compassionate, but they must truly understand what not to say! They cannot repeat any negativity you may spew and in fact they must be quick thinkers to turn everything to a positive.
Do not let negativity be a chain around your life
When you choose your go to person remember this. As soon as you start to feel symptoms of an attack you are to call them up –
IF YOU SAY –“My heart is racing, I am short of breath, I feel like you’re going to die….”. Well in doing just that you have reinforced the negative. This creates a real fear on top of the adrenaline surge that started the symptoms from an unknown stressor and more adrenaline is released!
THIS IS WHY IT IS IMPORTANT THAT YOU HAVE HAD A COMPLETE PHYSICAL SO THAT YOUR GO – TO PERSON IS CONFIDENT THAT YOU ARE IN NO REAL PHYSICAL DANGER.
INSTEAD – Once you educate your go – to person you should just be able to just say “HELP ME!” that is their cue to start to get your attention off yourself. Just rapid-fire questions and answers whatever it takes.
The initial goal is to be able to stop the release of any more adrenaline by not entering into fear about the symptoms. This way you can start to get some control and limit the attack to only one release of adrenaline. Which by itself only lasts about 10 minutes.
We recommend a go – to person reading through the BLOG to get a grasp on what you are experiencing. Together you should find ways that work for you and if there is anyway you can force yourself to laugh or they can get you to laugh. The body will not release any more adrenaline. Simply put; when there is laughter the body cannot interpret fear!
EXAMPLES of those you should not choose:
A person may have a lot of empathy but it is not helpful if their tone of voice or look of worry on their face reinforces any hint of pity. This is not what you need to become free.
Just a SIDE NOTE on self-pity, if there is nothing you can see as positive in your life it is human nature to draw attention to yourself. In fact; many with a history of panic attacks get to the point without even realizing it seem to be in a competition to compete for who has the worst circumstances in their lives. If your go – to person makes comments like, “That was the worse one you had yet, or I don’t see how you do it, you look terrible, you must be so tired of this all….”. you see they are reinforcing the negative, in their attempts to be empathetic. Actually, it is like they are creating an anxiety medal of honor for you to wear instead of helping you fight back and fight the fear.
Let’s revisit our bullet points above:
If the person is an overthinker and has a wild imagination they could bring up ideas, you have not yet thought of…. Like “Is it so bad that you could stop breathing?” or “Could it cause a blood clot?” Wow that would surely set you off on a new array of fear and a subsequent adrenaline release. You have enough of that type of thinking all by yourself. You can see how some people gravitate to the worst-case scenario, although their intent can be genuine, they are not the type of person you need.
If you chose a worrier or someone depressed or with lack of hope, you just end up in a tailspin that goes nowhere. Example: You are a newly diagnosed diabetic. And you seek the counsel of your best friend, who weighs 367 pounds and lives off soda, chips and sweets. Think about it?!
If someone takes on way too much responsibility, they may not be available when needed, and their attention may be diverted to several things at once.
The last trait listed above was that of a negative pessimistic personality. Talk about the blind leading the blind. Negative people invite tragedy and evil into their lives by continually speaking words that support the evil and the tragedy and its perpetuation. It’s very important to make sure that you are not entertaining negative, harmful thoughts. If you find that you tend to keep going back to negative thoughts, it means your mind has developed ruts in your thinking. The only way out of the ruts is to fill them in with a desirable outcome, a way out. Most people do not realize that they are often through repetition of the negative they are the ones responsible for everything in their life that they wish was different. Your goal – to develop a new healthy mindset!
To do this, check out this link to positive quotes. We recommend to write down your favorites and read them repeatedly to retrain your brain.
You need a strong positive person with a “You can do this!” attitude. Seek out people whom you trust and respect and who are reliable. You want them to be perceptive. You also want to have access to people who can make you laugh. This person may or may not be in your immediate circle of friends. Look for someone you admire. Someone not as you are but who lives life as you desire.
Do not think of it as a cross you must bear think of it as a challenge you will defeat!
If you are going to put an end to the beast of panic attacks, you’re going to have to be relentless in the way you think and speak. You and your go – to person must determine that panic disorder is no longer an option.