You may have thoroughly prepared your speech ...
BUT now that delivering it is close, your confidence flees and doubts run rampant. You doubt whether you can make it to the venue. Even if you did, you know you wouldn't be able to do anything. You're sure you're going to let everybody down.
This sounds too simple to be an effective acute anxiety help tip, doesn't it? But it works.
When we're extremely anxious we tend to either hold our breath or breathe very shallowly off the top of our lungs. The result is we prolong and heighten the physical discomfort brought on by acute anxiety. Short circuit that now.
Stand up,* if possible. Place your feet a shoulder width apart and put one hand on your belly. Now breathe in deeply.
Imagine the breath coming in through the soles of your feet and traveling all the way up your body to the very top of your head. At the same time count to four slowly. Hold the breath for a moment before releasing, again to the count of four.
On the out-breath, imagine all the negativity and anxiety draining away from your body. Feel it leaving from the top of your head to your toes.
Repeat the in and out breath to the count of four at least four times. When you've finished shake your arms, wriggle your shoulders and let the feeling of ease settle in.
For a variation try increasing the count to five or six. Closing your eyes may help you focus better too.
Another twist to this acute anxiety help tip is to 'color' your breath in your imagination.
Choose a color to invigorate and cleanse you and feel it flowing through every cell in your body on your in-breath count.
Choose another color to carry away all the negative energy on your out-breath.
NB. You'll know when you're doing this correctly because the hand you've placed on your stomach will rise and fall with your in and out breaths. If it doesn't move, try breathing more deeply until it does.
*If circumstances prevent you from standing, do the exercise sitting. Be sure though to sit 'square' in your seat. Uncross your legs. Place your feet on the floor, straighten your back and let your arms rest comfortably in your lap.
For ANOTHER EASY to USE EFFECTIVE
BREATHING EXERCISE check in here. Try the variations too.
2.Acute Anxiety Help Reality Check
In the midst of a crisis irrational fears may take over. Often they are quite without foundation. These belong in a murky underworld and can not survive in the clear light of factual truth.
Totally Panic Stricken?
Literally and truly paralyzed by fear?
If that's you and you know what you're experiencing is
beyond normal manageable anxiety
do read Barry Joe McDonagh's article on:
Public Speaking Panic Attacks.
You'll find hope, practical tips and the offer of a lasting solution - an acute anxiety help program endorsed by leading mental health professionals.
Take a moment to ask yourself some searching questions and LISTEN to the real answers.
- Are you mistaking the ordinary adrenalin rush of excitement for fear?
- Have you prepared carefully?
Have you 'survived' this type of feeling before?
If the answer to all questions is YES, do a deep breathing round and let the feelings go!
3.Resist Using Alcohol
Alcohol is an unreliable short term solution. It may quell your nerves but it is far from being an acute anxiety help as it will also dull your ability to respond quickly and appropriately. Save the glass of wine for later!
4.Use Your Imagination Positively
In your mind build huge multi-colored vibrant pictures of yourself doing well.
See yourself at ease. See yourself performing beautifully. Make the images as detailed as possible. Add sound,smell, feel ... Use all your senses to create an outstanding movie in your mind featuring yourself.
See yourself before the performance, poised and alert. See yourself during it, responding to the challenge and see yourself afterward, reflecting on a task done well.
Show yourself the pictures whenever you feel anxiety beginning to tighten its grip. Be sure to make them large and crystal clear! You could build this imaginary slide show into the breathing exercise for extra efficient acute anxiety help.
5.Ask a NON-Indulgent but Understanding Friend to be your Acute Anxiety Help & Support
Sometimes we get so knotted having someone who cares for and understands us alongside is a great help.
Tell them their chief task is to keep you on track. They may understand your anxiety but they are not to heighten it by playing into it.
They are there to remind you to breathe, to see yourself as successful and be of practical assistance etc. Their first job is to banish anybody adding to your stress unnecessarily.
Heavy food in a delicate stomach makes you feel even more unwell.
Eat light foods or if you can't eat anything, take a nourishing drink, like a banana smoothie. (In fact bananas have been found to contain natural beta blockers which minimize symptoms of anxiety.)
7.Be in the Moment
When you are 'in the moment' your mind is not racing ahead filling itself with all sorts of concerns about what might or could happen. Instead you are focused on what it is you are doing now and carrying out that activity to the very best of your ability. This makes you alert and responsive.
To help you stay in the 'now' practice breathing fully. Use the rhythm of good breath control to anchor you.
One of the best antidotes to is to remember previous occasions when you felt and were successful.
The more vividly you can recall them the more effective it will be. Remember what it felt like! It doesn't have to be the same as the situation you are preparing to meet now. The most important aspect of this exercise is experiencing yourself as a success!
If you have time prepare yourself a 'brag' list on a small card. Put on it your most significant personal triumphs. Now put the list in your pocket. When you feel 'wobbly' you can slip you hand in to feel and remind yourself of them.
Being fully-fledged anxious is all consuming and we let our past successes slide from memory. A touchable reminder brings them back. It helps put your current state of mind in perspective.
9.Seek Professional Acute Anxiety Help
See your doctor to discuss symptoms and solutions.
Be aware that although there are drugs which will lessen the intensity of your experience, taking them is a short term answer. However, if it's an emergency this could be just what you need to get you through.
The doctor will also advise whether your discomfort is the result of physical illness rather than extreme anxiety. When you're the victim sometimes it is hard to tell the difference.
10.Try Natural Remedies for Acute Anxiety Help
There are many available either through a regular drug store or specialist natural health outlets.
One of the most commonly used is Bach Flowers Rescue Remedy. It contains a mix of five different flower essences and is especially formulated to combat the effects of extreme stress.
Other common natural calming aids are special aromatherapy mixtures (which generally include lavender) and herbal teas. Varying mineral and vitamin supplements may help as well.
Ask for assistance from a suitably qualified person to help you get what is most appropriate for you.
Hypnosis is an absolutely natural process allowing you to counter the controlling negative thoughts often underpinning full blown anxiety.
Although the media may portray hypnotists making people behave outrageously that is not how a qualified trained hypnotherapist works! They do not rob you of your will but work with it. These people are not show men. They are there to help you take back your life and live it as you want to.
You'll find registered hypnotherapists in your phone book. Sometimes one or two sessions is all it takes to reverse crippling mental habits. It works as the perfect acute anxiety help for many, many people.
The following is an excerpt from an interview I did with Jonathan Altfeld NLP Trainer and Master Practitioner who specializes in teaching public speaking presentation skills.
"NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) is the study of patterns of excellence -- in behavior, cognition, and language. Over time, this has resulted in an ever-growing collection of success strategies, coaching methods, and accelerated learning systems, that is sweeping the world. As a result, NLP can be used to learn almost anything, better, more thoroughly, and faster -- than many other approaches offer."
Jonathan says, "In my 5-day speaker's training, I literally only spend about 4 hours on the first day getting people past their fears/concerns. That's all I ever need -- all they ever need. Because their fears are gone very early on."
Click the link to read more about how Jonathan uses this extremely powerful method of overcoming public speaking fear in his presentation skill training.
13.Get a Massage
If you have the time make an appointment with a qualified massage practitioner.
There are varying types of massage available all of which work to release tension stored in the body. Discuss what you need when you make the appointment.The practitioner will advise what will be beneficial.
14.Re-Check Your Planning
Go through the 'little' details as these can be the things which in the end cause the most stress, simply because they are overlooked.
How are your getting to the venue?
What do you have to take?
Prepare everything well ahead of time so you arrive with nothing to do but perform. Sometimes it's the easiest and quickest things to fix which offer the best acute anxiety help!
15.Play Soothing Music
Baroque music is known for its calming effect. Its patterning actually alters the brain waves making them clearer and more ordered. Get some Bach or Vivaldi on your music machine now!
You're here reading this. It means you're actively looking for solutions and that takes courage.
It also takes courage to put yourself out as a performer of any sort in the first place. So you are a doubly courageous person ... the sort who will source the action they need and take it.
Don't wait. Hoping it will go away doesn't help either. Waiting and hoping add to your anxiety and out of control feelings. Use the time you have positively. Chose an acute anxiety help tip and use it now!
Many of these suggestions adapt extremely well and children will respond very quickly if given clear instruction and support.