What are Panic Attacks?
Here are Some Other Potential Depression Symptoms:
Returning to the Present
In addition to your breath, you can you can notice anything in your environment. What can you touch? What are you touching right now? For example, I can touch the cloth of my pants that I’m wearing.
What can you smell? What can you taste? What can you hear? What do you see in your environment?
Just by focusing on those senses, you’re able to come back to the here and now and move out of that thought chain that’s going to lead to the panic attack. However, in order to do that, you have to be present.
If you’re not in the here and now, these thoughts are going to keep arising and you’re not going to notice that feeling of anxiety building inside of you. Then you’re going to lose the opportunity to stop that thought train in its tracks before it leads to panic attack.
We need to work on our ability to be present and our self-awareness about what we’re thinking about and how we’re feeling at each moment.
This nerve is called the vagus nerve.
It’s responsible for your fight/flight/freeze response.
In other words, when enough stress builds up enough in the system, we either want to fight someone or run away or we freeze up and our system shuts down. This nerve is responsible for those reactions.
The good news is that we can play with the vagus nerve to strengthen it so that our system is able to better handle and respond to stress.
When we’re having a panic attack, that means that our stress level has already peaked. By stimulating this nerve using certain methods we have an opportunity to signal to our nervous system to relax.
There’s a whole branch of yoga called bhakti yoga which is the yoga of celebration, love, service, joy, welcoming and acceptance. One of the main ways that Bhakti yoga is practiced in the West is through chanting.
When we think of yoga, we tend to think of the physical practice and stretching. In reality, there are many, many different kinds of yoga. Bhakti yoga is practiced through chanting.
Bhakti yoga shows us that we can reach altered states of consciousness through chanting.
It might sound funny, but the method is to chant the vowels: a e i o and u.
Take the maximum possible inhalation you can. Then hold each vowel sound one at a time for as long as possible.
By taking such a long inhale and such long, slow exhales, it signals to our nervous system that it’s OK to relax.
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