Panic Attacks- Stay in the Present Moment

beth irvine Health Guide
  • This is blog is dedicated to reader named Todd. Thank you Todd for sharing your story and asking for help. Acknowledging your situation and looking for remedies is the first and sometimes biggest step in solving difficult situations.


    Here is the beginning of Todd's story....


    I have recenly been battling panic attacks for the first time in my life. I have had depression and generalized anxiety disorder for years now. I worked as a small boy on a fruit farm and had tyo carry corn by hand in baskets from the field. My coworkers thought it would be funny to load my baskets with rocks covered by corn. i simply dumped both onto the wagon. The owner came only to the demise of the coworkers who hadn't noticed  I was placing both rocks and corn onto the wagon. I walked a mile home that day after writing the owner that I quit since this behavior was not tolerable. My dad reemed me out and said that I was a loser for quitting and never would amount to anything. My dad was a control freak during my childhood and beat me and my brother and worked us every minute we were not in school. We were not allowed to go up a certain staircase in our home or use the dining or living room as this was to be kepy special for visitors. We were not allowed to invite friends to play in our yard football since this would damage the grass. We were made however to weed every weed out by hand and pick out any rocks daily and wash all our cars and clean the house weekly and cut wood and sell it.

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     My brother and I became Eagle Scouts and went to college where I earned three degrees and graduated cum laude. I since got married and have raised three beautiful teenage daughters with no help from my parents (twins and one more) I consider myself wealthy as my children love me. I struggle with fear of losing my job every day. I vomit each morning and take medication clonazapam and celexa but I work for an belittling boss who I believe is just insecure with herself. I need to become an overcomer and get past this fight with depression and anxiety. Please let me know any help you might suggest. Thank you and God bless you.


    To read Todd's full story check out the comment on my last blog Tips for a Panic Attack


    My reply is simply two words: Present Moment

    The present momement is a gift we give our self. Present moment simply means, you stay focused with your task at hand in the present moment. If (and when) your attention wanders to another thought. Notice the passing thought, and gently but firmly guide your attention back to what you are doing. For example use an activity that you do everyday and make it your "practice for staying present." For example, driving you car- turn off your phone, feel your hands on the steering wheel, pay attention to the manuevers, road signs and traffic. If your attention wanders- bring your focus back to your driving. Notice how different you feel when you have arrived at your destination. In time, and with practice you will feel more energy and clarity. It is a very practical and useful way to learn how to shift your attention. This is the beginning, the first step of a new way of training your attention. To learn more...


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    Watch me talk about this idea in a TV segment  Present Moment


    Listen to a podcast of how to relax Creating Healthy Balance Everyday


    Read a previous blog Meditation in Motion


    Sending you very best wishes,


    anxiety expert for health central

Published On: September 05, 2008