I have been under a lot of stress for a while now, and I’ve not been listening to my body and mind even though they’ve been screaming at me to rest.
I’ve kept going, going, going, doing, doing, doing.
I’ve ignored the pain in my body, avoided noticing the rising panic as I ate and drank and watched tv and resisted listening to what my body and mind needed.
Its like I’m standing in the middle lane of the motorway, being knocked by every single car and lorry that goes by and there’s a huge truck coming straight at me.
And so on Sunday the wave crested and bang, massive panic attack.
The cause as always self inflicted. Taking Amelia to the country park for a fun walk when an idiot pulls out of a side road just in front of us.
Of course I did the usual, beeped the horn, flashed the light and swore loudly over and over.
As luck would have it, just a mile down the road there was a traffic stop for roadworks and the light went red just as he reached it with me right behind him.
I didn’t take time to think, even though I was shaking with reaction from the near miss he had caused, I switched off the car, got out and went up to the driver’s window to give him a piece of my mind.
And I did, shouting about him being an idiot who shouldn’t be driving, almost caused an accident blah, didn’t even look blah blah. He of course put the blame on me and rolled up his window and I stomped back to my car feeling even more worked up and angry, powerless, crazed.
As I got my seat belt back on and started the car, the stop light changed to green and we all took off and I had to gasp in pain, my whole body spasmed, excruciating waves of agony flowing from the centre of my chest to the rest of my body. My limbs went rigid, I could barely breathe.
I managed to make it to the car park I was heading to, luckily just a couple of miles away. And pulled to a stop where I just sat, overwhelmed by the pain.
And I started to count my breath in and out. I didn’t try to manipulate or change it but in observing my breath it started to slow down and deepen, the pain started to lessen and I became calmer.
I was able to get out and walk Amelia, although the pain in my chest was still there, it had stopped radiating out to my limbs.
Driving home I realised that I’d done what I always do when I’m deep in resistance and avoidance. I’d ignored everything that was bothering me until one seemingly minor thing tipped me over the edge into confrontation.
Because believe me when I say I do not do confrontation. Another thing I avoid at all costs and then I get upset with myself when I get treated like a doormat, which again had happened earlier this year.
And from August onwards I’ve been avoiding, resisting and hurting. sure I’ve been doing some of the work required to keep me on an even keel but not nearly deep enough for long enough. Sometimes what comes at us is more than what our daily maintenance practice can cope with and so it was with me.
So I had a melt down.
And some poor old sod who probably has been getting away with pulling out at that corner in the face of oncoming traffic for years got what he never expected, but certainly deserved – a good telling off.
But as for me?
Still feeling the pain in my chest.
Thankfully I had a session with a friend and fellow hypnotherapist to help take the edge off the pain and then I had a session with my therapist to help me dive into the deeper need for healing.
Resilience isn’t just a buzzword, its a quality we must cultivate within ourselves. And sometimes that starts with taking a rest.
So I’m slowing down my schedule, taking a break and doing far less for a few days to recover whilst I also do more healing work on myself; journaling, self hypnosis, rest, taking care of myself.
I’ve updated my RWID manta to these words: safe, warm, nurtured, protected, taken care of.
The feel good feelings they invoke in me make me feel, well…safe, warm, nurtured, protected and taken care of.
See how that works? Think about what you want to feel and you’ll give yourself the feelings you want to have. Its a beautiful power we have and use so infrequently.
What would I advise for the aftermath of panic attacks: observe your breath, count the inhale and exhale, as you observe become aware of your breathing getting slower and deeper.
Be gentle and kind with yourself and be aware of what you’re avoiding and resisting. Know that you can deal with it, you can deal with anything and you can feel okay about it too by using your thoughts to create feel good feelings.
Every life is going to have struggle and pain points. Its how you come back from them that counts.
PS. Please like, comment and share below is this message connected with you. I love to hear how my work lands with people. And also, stop messing around! If you’re reading this, you need me. Email or message me to see how best we can work together to give you what you need. It might be a list of free resources I offer, it might be a program or course that’s not too expensive or you might want to jump right in and fully commit to yourself with a personal 1:1 hypnotherapycoaching program. Whatever you need, I’ll work with you to guide you to gaining it all. That’s a promise xx