Fear and anxiety and deeply troubling, let alone sheer panic that no-one likes. These can reflect feelings that are subtle and run in the distant background continuously, or take full force and stop us from breathing or being focused (known as panic). However, these emotions have a purpose in our life and that is to keep us alive because they are survival emotions. What happens when these emotions are unbalanced? Furthermore, what occurs when they’re out of control and living in our heads without our permission?
The Fight/Flight response
The Amygdala, our emotional fight/ flight centre regulates fear in the brain. Imagine running from a bandit or tiger. We need the fear system stimulated in order to make our heart pump. This then activates our sympathetic nervous system, so that we can move our arms and legs. What happens if it’s triggered when we have to go to the supermarket? Alternatively, when driving the car, entering a meeting or confronting the boss? Our logical mind maintains that it’s ridiculous, but for those suffering from pervasive fear and panic disorders, it can be debilitating and very restrictive.
Panic attack symptoms
The first time I had a panic attack I didn’t know what was happening. I was in the middle of a sales meeting and all of a sudden I couldn’t think straight. My words wouldn’t come out and I couldn’t finish a quote. I had to end the conversation as fast as possible, telling my client that I would email something as soon as possible. I experienced a tight gripping sensation in my chest and throat that I could barely speak and my legs were tingling and numb. I thought I was ‘coming down’ with a cold or virus. I took some time off work and when I returned it happened again. This continued happening a few more times.
I was describing my symptoms to my colleague and she said:
“I think you’re having panic attacks, it happens to me too”. I immediately searched Google and discovered that those symptoms were in line with my own.
Fear and anxiety symptoms include:
- Feeling weak, faint or dizzy.
- Tingling or numbness in the hands or fingers (mine was in my legs too).
- Chest pains.
- Loss of control.
- Racing heart.
- Sense of terror, impending doom or death.
- Breathing difficulties.
I was burdened by these symptoms before I started Kinesiology but today, I don’t experience them anymore. In the past, I had heard the expression “panic attacks” and I couldn’t comprehend it. I imagined the actresses from the black and white movie era who would hold their forehead when the handsome man walked into the room before gracefully falling onto the chaise lounge. However, now I understand that they are real and physiological (rather than psychological) and for some people very debilitating.
Now I understand that they are real, physiological (rather than psychological) and for some people very debilitating. Imagine you have an event to attend and you know it could trigger intense fear or panic. The mere thought of it can prompt a physiological response, so you quickly focus on your breathing, putting positive affirmations on and doing some Nick Ortner Tapping or EFT. However, the more you do, the more you become consumed by focusing too much on the event, worsening the situation. This is what it can be like for someone who suffers from a panic disorder. No amount of holding acupressure points or re-focusing seems to be able to redirect the impending panic attack that is waiting to launch itself out into public view.
Overcoming fear and anxiety can be intense but fortunately I have Kinesiology to help myself and many clients combat issues associated with fear and panic.
How Kinesiology addresses panic, fear and anxiety
In Kinesiology we deal with stress, so if you come for fear balance, we would talk about when this stress occurs in your life? When was the last time it was triggered? I will get you to think about that
In Kinesiology we deal with stress, so if you come for fear balance, we would talk about when this stress occurs in your life? When was the last time it was triggered? I will get you to think about that state. During this state, we are telling the body, “this is the stress that we are dealing with today”. I would then ask a series of questions, “what else are we dealing with?” Do we need to look at hydration? Do we need to look at hormones or neurotransmitters? Do we need to go back in time? Is there an area of the brain we need to consider? Are there nutritional or a biochemical components at play? We will also consider what could be triggering this feeling in the senses. Is it smell? Is it a sound? Is it something visual? After answering these questions, we will gather information about the source of this stress.
The stress pathway and its effect on the fear response
Once we have established the cause of the stress, we begin treatment. When this happens, we release the energy and emotions from deeply ingrained neural networks that run this system. This is like putting a diversion, a “detour” in a superhighway. We are effectively giving the brain another route from which to operate.
At this stage during the balance, you could go into a very deep and relaxing state, similar to sleeping but not actually sleeping. From here we are de-stress the pathway involved in the fear response, as well as some very deeply suppressed emotions. This can be a profound and illuminating experience for people because it returns choice into people’s lives. After the treatment you will be able to choose between fear and how to act.
What about those people who don’t have exacerbated feelings of fear or panic? These types of people often live a life ‘hiding behind doors’, not wanting to be seen, not wanand not applying for jobs because they don’t want to put themselves first. They can also benefit from fear balancing. For these people, fear may not be the big physiological grip that is apparent in a panic disorder. Fear may be a continuously running program that has been in a person’s life, so much so that it has truly become “the norm”. It can present in various ways such as not wanting to drive the car or go to new places alone. It can also manifest in not taking an initiative in life, an inability to make decisions and being unable to make eye contact. It can even lead to certain behaviours such as blaming, bullying, playing the victim and being aggressive, which are all fear based behaviours.
What is a positive mindset?
Our life doesn’t have to become ‘out of control’ before we decide to create positive change. We all have the power to take a proactive approach to our wellness. Most of us take the time to clean our wardrobes once a year, so wouldn’t it make sense to clear out some of the baggage from our real home? Our body and mind.
The body needs our fear and panic system, as it is there to keep us alive, but the art is to recognise when these systems are triggered appropriately.