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Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Comfort Zones

Everybody has their 'safe spot' or 'hiding place'. Basically what these mean are the places where you feel the most comfort and you can escape from the real world or 'run away' from whatever problem you are dealing with. Some comfort zones you may have subconsciously, and not even realize they are a safe place for you because you're so used to it being there that you don't think twice of why you love it and why it makes you feel safe.

So as some of you may know, I struggle with panic attacks. I've brought that up in a couple of posts before but here I am going to address it more direct. For me, I can be free of panic for months and then all of a sudden BOOM I will get one and from that one on, I will just get them more constant for about a month or two and then they will slowly fade away.

My comfort place is my car. Even though I have had a car accident and panic attacks in that car, for some reason it is my hiding place. What happens to me is that I will be driving and then park at the destination I was inclined to go to and then for some odd reason, I won't get out of my car. My legs go numb, and I can't move. I usually sit in my car for about an hour to an hour and a half just sitting and staring and I will think and think and think. That's when the panic attack arrives, because I am overthinking and I get freaked out because I can't get out of my car. Once the panic attack is over (because they do always end) my body is completely exhausted and aches all over. So then I stay in my car longer because I'm too tired to move. That's why I end up staying in there for over an hour.

Comfort zones are good, everyone should have a place that they know they are able to get to to calm down and just hide from the world for a few minutes and what not. But you can not stay in your safe spot forever, you need to move and grow. Even in my safe spot (car) I still get panic attacks! So no matter what, life will always catch up to you and you need to learn to face it and not depend on that safe spot forever to save you, because it won't always be there to save you and you need to face your fears. 

Coping skills I use to shake off the anxiety:

  • Find the reason I am feeling anxious..there is always an answer to the question 'WHY' in every situation

  • I actually say the word STOP out loud, like I'm speaking to the anxiety

  • I listen to Disney music because that always makes me feel better no matter what

  • Always take long slow deep breaths. Taking 20 short breaths IS NOT the same as taking 10 long full breaths. 

  • Start from the top of your head and move every muscle in your body until you get to your toes and then reverse it. Sometimes I have to stop when I get to my stomach because I can't feel my legs yet and so instead of freaking out, I just restart the process until I am able to move my leg muscles or I'm doing it for so long I don't realize what I'm doing and I end up moving my leg muscles in the end

 - lovely advice from a great friend of mine
Do you have any tips or tricks to help with those who suffer with this? Do you suffer with this?

xx, Lillie

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