Experiencing an anxiety attack can be a frightening event. Shortness of breath, palpitations, blurred vision, and feeling like you might pass out are just a few of the many symptoms that can occur from an anxiety attack. What can be just as frightening for someone who has experienced an anxiety attack is the fear of experiencing another one. Having a plan in your back pocket to cope with anxiety attacks can create peace of mind.
By following the five simple steps of this grounding technique, an anxiety attack can be stopped in it's tracks.
This particular grounding technique is based on an awareness of the five senses. To start, take a slow, deep breath in through the nose and out through the mouth. Repeat this breathing pattern as the five steps are implemented.
Look at five objects or features from your surroundings. Becoming aware of what is visually in your environment gives you a focus to help regain your sense of calm. Look at the colors and features of these five objects.
Identify four items that you can touch. Bring an awareness to the moment through what is tactile. Consider the texture, the temperature, and the firmness of these items. A smooth desk, a warm cup of tea, or maybe a fuzzy sweater. Again, having a focus helps to return to the moment and avoids anxiety taking control.
Become aware of three sounds within your environment. Maybe this is the sound of birds outside, a car driving by, office sounds, music in the background, or the sound of a person's voice.
Note two smells that you can identify. If there simply are not any available odours within your surroundings, think of two smells that you like. Calming smells like peppermint or flowers can help you focus and maintain control of any threatening anxiety.
Identify one feeling that you are experiencing. Even if it's a sad or scared emotion, becoming aware of your emotion brings you back to the moment and helps you stay in control. Consider verbalizing your feeling to another person and talk it through.
Many people will turn to medication for anxiety attacks. Although medication may be necessary in a number of cases to manage an attack, first consider the grounding technique. Having the education on how to manage an anxiety attack may be just the right prescription.
Grounding has been used by therapists to assist clients dealing with anxiety. It is a very effective and useful tool. Don’t try to think you have to figure it out alone. At High Expectations Counseling we have trained therapist that are ready to meet with you and help you get your life back on track. Call us today at 407-967-1327. Get a free 20 min consultation.