Emotional Wellbeing

Mandy Kloppers

Taking your mind to other places

Panic attacks don’t sound like a big deal when you are discussing them in public, but when you’re in the thick of one, it can feel like it’s the end of the world. They’re terrifying, debilitating and confusing and your body can react in a number of ways at any time. Usually, there isn’t much that you can do with a panic attack except wait it out and hope that it’s a quick one that passes nice and easily. Finding the right tricks and tactics to get out of your own head and distract your senses away from the grip of a panic attack is not an easy thing to do. An attack can make you feel blind and can fill your ears with a buzzing that keeps you locked in. With the tactics below, you can try to actively pull yourself out of a panic attack and calm your heart rate.


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Soothing music blasted through headphones that completely cover or fill your ears can help you to settle your heart rate right down. Choose a bunch of songs with at least 60 beats per minute, and you can tap the beat away against your heartbeat in your wrist as you listen.


You need to keep your hands busy. The busier your hands, the more you can distract yourself. Take time to consider the hobbies that can ensure that you have something to take your mind off an attack. For example, an intricate dolls house with dolls house accessories that need to be painted can give you a way to escape. You can also use your hobby to escape your reality before an attack comes on, so you are in a calm and serene state as much as possible.


Believe it or not, using a toy that makes noise or is designed for little children can help your mind to focus. The books with the crackly pages can make for excellent stress relief, as you squeeze, you breathe slowly to slow your heart rate and clear your head.


Other than the traditional counting down from 10, you could play a game with your counting. You need to count out five things that you can see, four things that you can hear, three things that you can smell, two things that you can taste and something that you can feel. This game keeps your mind busy, which lessens the effects of the panic attack.

Dance It Out

Panic attacks can cause a burst of adrenaline to pulse through your body. If you are spending some time dancing like a maniac and moving your body, you are burning off that adrenaline and allowing your body to calm down. The adrenaline firing through your mind and heart make you stop thinking straight. Dancing hard by yourself can give you a way to distract.

Panic attacks are not a joke and they’re not for anyone to poke fun of. They come on fast, so keep your distraction techniques in mind at all times.

Mandy X