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Breath as a Lifeline: Navigating Anxiety and Overwhelm

Sometimes my job feels like a gift: every time I manage to really help a person, I feel great. And, every time I manage to help someone, I also help myself, and learn how to help others as well.

In case you haven’t noticed, anxiety is all around us these days. So is panic. For some, because of past pain, every challenge that comes their way feels so threatening that they go into a panic, even if they know they can handle that challenge.

I’ve felt that pain, and that panic, but really didn’t clearly see how to help myself and others until I was able to help another fellow sufferer. She was a friend, and because of our working through her panic together, I was able to not only help myself, but my clients many times over.

What I discovered is this: It’s all about breath – long slow breathing – in and out, 4 seconds each way – filling your lungs until the panic subsides and you can feel a settling in your abdomen, and until you can feel space to move, both inside you and all around you. When that happens, it becomes possible to be present with possibilities that you simply couldn’t access before.

I spent an hour reminding my friend to breathe long and slow every time they felt any panic symptoms at all – any time they began to feel confused, or began to judge themselves harshly, or began to feel they would let someone down. Every time they began to feel overwhelmed.

If unsure or confused and if what you are confused about isn’t a priority, park it and let it go. If you begin to fixate on everything you may have done wrong; if you’re worried you’ll let someone down, decide what is realistically possible for you to do, do it, and then see how you feel. If you feel overwhelmed with what you feel you need to do, move your attention to the first important thing and do only that until done, then move to the next important thing.

Above all, breathe. Long and slow, and regain your inner knowing and stability.


Quote of the Week

It is a strange thing, but when you are dreading something, and would give anything to slow down time, it has a disobliging habit of speeding up.”

– J K Rowling, The Goblet of Fire


The funny side of fear


I hope you enjoyed this article. When you’re ready to take the next step on your life journey, book a free 20 min consultation with me.