Tip #3: If you are experiencing symptoms of anxiety, find online forums where other people describe the same symptoms as you in relation to their panic attacks.
The why: It only takes a very quick google to find thousands upon thousands of people who also have anxiety describing exactly what you are going through now. The knowledge that other people have been through it, survived, and now know that their symptoms were due to anxiety is incredibly reassuring. It tells you that what your body is doing is normal for a panic attack. It has happened before to many others, and just like them, you will get through it.
For instance, once when I developed a new and rather odd symptom that I did not believe could be anxiety, I followed tip #1 regardless, and what I found was a whole host of people who had experienced the exact same thing. Not only that, but I also came across a physician who explained exactly how anxiety had caused this new and exciting (not really) sensation. Immediately I felt calmer knowing what I was up against, and knowing that others had felt the same whilst in the midst of an anxious episode.
Imagine sitting at a dinner party surrounded by strangers (unless like me you have social anxiety, in which case perhaps do not), now imagine one of those strangers begins to describe a very eccentric and odd thing that they do, now imagine you happen to do that exact thing to, and so does everyone else in the room. Pretty soon, that very eccentric odd thing turns out to be incredibly normal, and you realise that you’re not strange or weird, and you feel safe and calmer.
This is what online anxiety forums are like. Scrolling through the questions and replies is like tiny lifelines being thrown from one corner of the earth to the other, connecting, sharing, informing, letting you know you’re not alone. When you’re facing an enemy as powerful as anxiety, knowing you’re not alone is a powerful thing.
Finding forums, chat rooms, facebook groups, blogs, or strangers on twitter can be an incredibly valuable tool in your toolkit against anxiety.
Here are a few I would recommend to get you started:
Know Someone Who Might Need This? Share It!