404: Panic Attacks sometimes make me disassociate and pass out

In this week's podcast, we're discussing a listener question about what you can do if panic attacks cause you to pass out, struggle with making decisions, or dissociate yourself from the world.

Listener question: "Anxiety causes me, at its’ worst, panic attacks that result in me passing out. At other times, anxiety makes me question my thoughts and feelings and causes me to dissociate myself from people and activities that I enjoy."

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Notes from this episode

*Firstly, if you haven’t already, please see a doctor to check there isn’t a physiological or nutritional cause behind the passing out.*

A little about dissociation

Dissociation can occur as a protective state for someone with an overloaded nervous system. It's a way of stepping back and shutting off from further disturbance.

If you suspect there is trauma at the root of your suffering we recommend working with a counsellor for support.

How Grounding Practices can help

Exercises that encourage mindful movement with full awareness of your breath and body are helpful because they draw you into the present moment.

Working with self-awareness is the perfect antidote for overcoming the feelings of mounting stress and anxiety that can lead to dissociation. Practice bringing your awareness to your breath and your feet connecting with the ground and paying full attention to that connection.

Mindful walking is another way of doing this. If you're looking to balance frequent spells of disconnection we recommend practising mindful walking daily for at least 20 minutes.

Practice engaging your senses in your surroundings with this simple mindfulness for calming anxiety practice:

List five things you can see, four things you can touch, three things you can hear, two things you can smell, one thing you can taste.

This listener question also mentions dissociating from people and activities. Conscious reconnection can help. Try brining your awareness to the people you are with; pick one person at a time and look at them, hear them, consciously connect with them via your attention in a similar way to practising mindful walking.

And you can do the same with your activities too. For example, if you enjoy baking you could try mindfully baking bread by drawing your senses to notice colours, textures, temperature, sounds and smells. Kneading dough is a great activity for getting grounded and bringing your senses in to the present moment.

Tapping Points that help when you feel faint

Ananga teaches Meridian Tapping points for stopping fainting and feeling more grounded.


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