There is nothing better than hearing tips to beat phobias from people who've been there, done it and lived through the often lifelong impact of a phobia. We recently added a post on the forum asking members to contribute their tips to beating phobias and we received some interesting and very helpful responses.
Before you look at the tips it is worth noting that each of us are very different and what works for one person may not work for another. However, there will most certainly be at least one tip in this particular list which is likely to help you reduce the impact of your phobia/anxiety.
Some people find it very helpful to carry around a small business card sized note which lists the top five things they need to do in the event of a phobia, anxiety or panic attack. Some of these include breathing techniques, finding a distraction, calling a friend to avert your focus, repeat positive statements out loud yourself and breathe into a brown paper bag. These techniques seem to work for a number of people approaching panic attack levels whether this is because of anxiety or a phobia.
Many people use relaxation DVDs to refocus and retune their mind and to help them combat potentially anxious situations. Those who have tried this particular method have suggested that you need to use these on a daily basis before they really help you. If you use them as a one-off then your brain may not associate the relaxing DVD music with the calming influence that you need. The fact is that the quicker you can reduce your anxiety levels and return to a calm state of mind the better.
Comment from PhobiaSupportForum.com: "We plan to build this section to become a one stop shop for ideas and tips about beating phobias. If each of us add our best tip for beating phobias (something that works for us) this WILL help others. Also, many of us may come across tips and ideas we had not even thought of which would be useful in the future. "
Ensure you are cool and relaxed
A number of phobia/anxiety sufferers have expressed the opinion that difficult situations can seem a whole lot worse if they are hot and bothered. For example, if you feel a panic attack coming on when driving then simply switch off the radio, put the air conditioning on cold and open the windows to reduce your body temperature. Calm surroundings and a relaxed atmosphere are a very popular way of at least taking the edge off an oncoming panic attack.
Avert your focus to something else
As we touched on above, when you feel an anxiety, phobia or panic attack coming on your mind seems to focus wholly upon the situation in question. If you can in some way shape or form avert your mind’s focus to something different this can be a great help. This may be something as simple as focusing on a crack in the ceiling, perhaps an enjoyable part of your life or even your favourite celebrity. The ability to avert your focus away from the oncoming panic attack can in some instances stop the attack dead in its tracks.
These are just a selection of many tips from those who have suffered anxiety, panic and phobia attacks on a regular basis. It is worth trying different techniques to see which works best for you because while some will work for others they will not work for everybody. That is the beauty of the human body and the human mind, we are all very different!