Ruby shares some ways to deal with a panic attack through the grounding process.
Becoming aware and aware when we feel like a panic attack is approaching is key. What are the stimuli that make us feel this way? For example the environment, task and time. Then it’s about deciding how to deal with that feeling. For me, it’s about being focused and in tune with yourself. After returning to work since the lockdown, I had a panic attack before my first shift. I knew why this was happening: because I had no longer only seen people in my household, but was in contact with many people. I also knew that the routine I knew at work would be vastly different to keep employees and customers safe. Since I’ve learned how to deal with a panic attack, I now find it easier to manage my own.
In this post, I’m going to focus on the process of grounding yourself to calm down during a panic attack.
The goal of “grounding” is to be in control of your surroundings as panic attacks can induce a sense of detachment or separation from reality. This can help fight your panic attack if it is approaching or actually happening. An example of grounding is to focus on what is around you. For example, find 5 things you can see, 4 things you can touch, 3 things you can hear, 2 things you can smell, and, if you do it safely, 1 things you can taste can. The reason grounding can be helpful is because having a panic attack can make you feel like you have lost control of your surroundings. By focusing on what is around you, you will see that you are safe, can distract your mind and regain the feeling of being in the here and now. This is similar to the 3-3 rule. This includes noticing 3 things that you can see, 3 sounds that you can hear, and 3 parts of your body that you can move.
Second, using a square to control breathing can help relax the body when it is in an overwhelming state. To do this, find a square in the room. This can be a pattern on the wallpaper, TV screen, sidewalk, etc. Inhale for the first row of the square and exhale on the next row. Repeat on the court until breathing and heart rate become regular. Controlling your breathing through long inhalations and exhalations helps:
In addition, holding and analyzing an object is also a grounding method. If the object is small, it can be taken with you so you can grab it when you feel you need it. You can focus on:
This technique allows you to take your mind off anxious or stressful thoughts and focus on the moment.
While these are useful techniques to try, these are suggestions only. You should seek help from a family doctor if your panic attacks persist. It is possible to control your panic attack very safely in any setting if you find the technique that works for you.
For more information on caring for your mental wellbeing, please visit the Student Minds resources page.
Hello! My name is Ruby and I’m 20. I’m studying at a university in Kent and just finished the last of my essays from home and the second year is now over! I wanted to get involved in this blog because I am studying BA Consulting, Coaching and Mentoring and my goal is to become an integrative consultant.