Thinking Your Way Out Of It
A very common symptom of a panic disorder and excessive anxiety is the irrational belief that the survivor can ‘think their way out’ of feeling the way that they do. People who go through anxiety and a panic disorder often feel scared for no reason (that’s identifiable) and, more often than not, this leads to the person questioning the state of their own sanity. Some common thoughts that accompany a panic disorder include:
“I think I’m having a nervous breakdown!”
“What if I’m going insane?”
“Maybe I’ll feel this horrible for the rest of my life.”
“I hope they don’t section me.”
“Why am I still feeling this panicky? It’s been a long time now!”
With a panic disorder, one of the most common ‘mistakes’ that people make is that they believe that, if they spend time dwelling on the worry, they will come to some miraculous thought that will put an end to how they’re feeling. The Panic Room has coined this as searching for the ‘miracle thought’. Unfortunately, this miracle thought does not exist. However, this should not alarm the reader.
Episodes of rapid thinking are ever too common when dealing with a panic disorder. When the sufferer decides that they are to take time to sit down and think about how to stop the anxiety, this automatically places emphasis and importance on what are already irrational thoughts. Therefore, it is impossible to rationally come to a miraculous thought during an irrational process. This is why many people spend years dealing with the condition. They wake up not feeling themselves, then irrationally spend time trying to rediscover a method or a thought that will make them feel normal again.
Of course this is not the survivor’s fault. When our thoughts are dictated by fear and worry, we automatically rush to try and find a quick solution for all of this anxiety. Instead of treating it as ‘just anxiety’, it is often assumed that the feelings of panic point to something worse. The imagination often consumes the brain with catastrophic scenarios and the body releases a load of adrenaline to make us feel uncomfortable. This adrenaline, in turn, perpetuates this cycle of trying to ‘think our way out of it’ by causing our thoughts to race. The mind is trying to find a reason for why there is all of adrenaline. It is trying to look for the danger.
This symptom of anxiety is ever so common. It is of no wonder that we try to use our brains to try and decipher the puzzle that is a panic disorder. There is no way to think your way out of anxiety, it will just go away once you treat it for what it is. You must allow yourself to be anxious and let the biological elements of anxiety pass. The moment that you start to panic, then take time out to think your way out of this panic, is the moment where you place far more importance on a situation that can be let go of.
If you suffer from panic disorder or excessive anxiety then why not check in at The Panic Room for advice and counselling. This can be done face-to-face, over Skype or via telephone counselling.
Alternatively, you can read Anxiety: Panicking about Panic by Joshua Fletcher. This book has been quoted as being ‘the best book on panic disorder I have ever read’ by various customers on Amazon.