Anxiety is an awful experience to say the least. The first time I experienced it I was 21 years old. I had a job that I felt I had to do to pay my rent, but really hated it. One day as I was getting ready for it and I launched into a horrible anxiety attack. I didn’t know what was happening to me. I was short of breath, my heart was pounding and it felt like my legs and arms were disappearing and going weak. It was scary and very physical.
I had a roommate that was 8 years older than me. He said: “Welcome to being an adult.” He went on to explain that I was having an anxiety attack and that it most likely was because of my feelings about my job and where I was in life. I was shocked that something that seemed so internal could shake me up like that.
This continued from 21 years old to 30 years old. I did not discover breath work until about mid way at 26. I was also having a spiritual awakening that I was not aware of. Mundane things that did not bother me before, all of a sudden I couldn’t stand. I lost many jobs simply because I couldn’t go to work due to pending anxiety when I tried to get ready. I learned that if an environment wasn’t healthy for me this anxiety would ensue. It was a problem. I wasn’t old enough to have figured out my life or what my purpose was, so I just needed to work.
How I Discovered My Cure
Finally, I found meditation and breathing. The breath work came first and from a very unexpected source. An ER doctor. I had an anxiety attack so bad that my nose started gushing blood from how fast my heart was beating. I was 26 years old and simply at my wits end. It was the worst anxiety attack I have ever had. I didn’t understand why doctors were not giving me anything or helping me. I wanted relief and NOW. The doctor asked me if I was happy. I thought: seriously? You’re asking me if I’m happy right now? Clearly not!
He continued that I needed to change my life and that this would not be the last time I would experience a panic attack. He also refused to give me any anti-anxiety medicine. Now, I am very thankful for that. I had to work through it. I remember his directions: “You’re going to go home tonight and wake up all night long in these panic attacks. Just breathe deeply through each one and cry if you need to. Then everyday start making changes. Do not drink alcohol or smoke. Eat healthy and start finding out why you’re not happy.” That doctor was an ANGEL.
He was in fact correct. I went home, went to bed and woke up every hour in a panic attack. I breathed into a bag, I breathed without the bag. I tried breathing slower to slow down my heart rate. It worked eventually and I did this each time a panic attack occurred. I continued to have them unexpectedly but used breathing to get it to stop. This led me to discover more about breath work, how to do it and the connection between our emotions and anxiety. I eventually used meditation as well, but at first I just wasn’t there. I needed a simple, immediate tool and it was breath work.
When you are having a panic or anxiety attack, your parasympathetic nervous system is on overdrive. It’s instigating fight or flight. Your body has identified a threat. It’s bad enough to make your body think it needs to flee. This is helpful when there is an actual physical threat. It’s downright scary when there is not.
So why does this happen? Your body does not know the difference between the two. It’s doing its job to eliminate the threat. This may be unhealthy behaviors, a bad relationship or a way of life that is no longer supportive. As odd as this seems, it is very effective. Exercise does help to flush this extra energy out of your body as well.
Breath work begins to calm the body by taking in big gulps of air. If you were running from an animal, your breathing would change. This is no different. The first thing I suggest is getting outside where air is more consistent. Being inside during a panic attack can make it last longer. The quicker you can get outside and in nature, the better. Your body will recognize the air and outside healing benefits. If you cannot get outside, it’s okay. Still do the breathing.
For assistance on HOW to do breath work, go to: How to Use Breath Work To Induce Altered States. Although the purpose is slightly different, the directions are the same.
Grounding & Beginning Your Healing
Doing this breathing will begin to calm down the heart and ground you in your body. You become ungrounded so you can “fly” out of your situation. If you are able to walk back and forth or sit on a dirt/grass area to help ground you while you breathe, please do!
Another reason your body may create panic attacks is because a certain behavior or situation you are currently in is beginning to trigger a past experience (most likely from childhood) that needs healing. It may not be exactly like your past experience. Again, your body doesn’t know the difference and is using its past to predict the future and help you stay safe. Safety is what this panic is trying to achieve.
This is also an indication that deeper emotional healing is being asked of you. It is spirit that is coming forward and helping to trigger this breathing mechanism. If you think about it, its brilliant. I don’t know that I EVER would have started to do the breath work or meditate on my own, had I not of experienced panic. It forced me into my healing.
The other wonderful side effect of this deep breathing is that it will surface the emotions you are not feeling and allow them to release. Many breath work sessions end in tears in this early stage. The breathing=emotion=release=calmness and the end of the anxiety attack.
It took me a while to realize this recipe. At first I used the breathing just to calm down the anxiety but it would arise at another time. Once I realized how effective it is at bringing up stored emotion, I took it to another level.
If I was at home and felt a panic attack coming on, I would lay down on the couch or my bed and begin my breath work. I would also ask my higher self to help me release what I cannot see. Something pretty incredible began happening. I would have such an intense emotional release and would sometimes have a vision that would come out with it. They were visions about my childhood that were painful and holding me back from living a more fulfilling life. As simple as this seems, it was a miracle.
Doing this breath work was necessary to my healing. It led to meditation which led to the full opening of my Clairvoyance and Channeling. Even if that had not of happened, it still would have helped me to heal the toxic emotions that were ruining my life progress. It would have led to me opening my purpose no matter what it was. This is my hope for you.
Know that you are not the only one this happens to, that there is hope to feel better and not have to take drugs if that is not what you want to do. There is a purpose to your anxiety. As soon as it is addressed and you use the tool of breathing to move through it, miracles will happen.
Mastering Meltdown & Crisis is a meditation Raina created specifically for sudden panic and anxiety attacks.
Trance Channel, Clairvoyant Healer and Spiritual Teacher, Lori Camacho, has been serving others with her gifts of clairvoyance and vibrational healing abilities since 2003. It was in 2007 that Lori began to spontaneously vocalize Raina, the wise consciousness she had memories of communicating with as a child. Together Lori and Raina have created many workshops, classes and writings.