#5: Develop Your Happy Place
Before you have your next panic attack, you should develop a happy place in your mental imagination. This place should incorporate your five senses and be a place you can easily access in your mind whenever you start to feel a panic attack coming on. In this imaginative place you should feel peaceful, safe and happy. It could be someplace beautiful in nature or with someone, or something, you love. For example, you could imagine yourself watching a brilliant sunset over the Pacific Ocean with your feet in the sand, or sticking your feet in a babbling creek surrounded by trees, or petting the soft fur of your jolly Golden Retriever, or looking at the details of your lover’s face. Have this “happy place” readily available for your mind to visit. The next time you experience a panic attack and you go into your deep breathing, close your eyes and let your mind go to this place. Notice its details — its sounds, temperature, smells and textures.
#6: Try Tapping
Tapping is an exercise that is designed to stimulate the connection between the two hemispheres of the brain (this is called “bi-lateral stimulation”). Your right side of the body is connected to the left hemisphere of the brain, while the left side of the body is connected to the right side of the brain. The two different sides of the brain process different information — rational facts, versus emotions. Tapping is an exercise that incorporates movement in the body, alternating from the right side, to the left side.
The easiest way to practice tapping is to cross your arms and place your hands on opposite biceps. Tap your right hand on your left bicep. Tap your left hand on your right bicep. Alternate. Tap your right hand. Tap your left hand. Tap your right hand. Tap your left hand. Repeat for a minute or two.
Another way you can do this is by snapping your fingers, alternating from right to left. Or try tapping your knees.
By utilizing the right and left side of the body, you trigger the right and left sides of your brain. This allows you to balance your ration with your emotion. The technique reduces the irrational fear, stress and worry that is brought on during a panic attack.