People with anxiety, whether in a high pressured job, relationship or even those who are troubled by day to day “life stuff”, encounter what I call mini-panics. This is a state where you do not recognize all the details of what is going on and you react as though the absolute worst possible reality has suddenly descended upon you. Many folks live their days full of such moments and it makes for a very anxious time indeed. This typically happens when one sees an unfavorable outcome happening and has automatic thoughts about it, judges him or herself in the extreme and engages in catastrophic thinking about the situation as a whole. Such a state brings about feelings of fright, dread, sadness among other distressing feelings all because you’ve likely focused solely on one particular upsetting aspect and your mind run away with it.

When one is in a panic, it is very hard to settle down and be reasonable about your thoughts and actions. One tends to think and act more impulsively and can go into a doomsday scenario. Pay attention to yourself when you feel such mini-panics coming on. If you can simply notice when it begins to happen, you can redirect your attention to other qualities of your inner environment (i.e. breathing, body sensations) or outer environment (sounds, sights). Also, just the increased practice of simple noticing or observing can strengthen your overall ability not to hyper-focus on the negative and hone your ability to experience a more wholistic reality (and feel ok about it).

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