Chloe was experiencing regular panic attacks and her fear of having more panic attacks began to take over her life. It seemed no area of her life was unaffected. She quit her job. She quit spending time with friends. She felt unable to participate in many of the activities she and her significant other had previously enjoyed.
And possibly worst of all, any decision or opportunity had to first run through the filter of “Will this make me panic?”
The effect of her behavior extended far beyond her own experience. She was hesitant to be in any situation alone, thus demanding added attention and reassurance from those closest to her.
She sought to be proactive in dealing with her anxiety and panic. She researched panic attacks and understood they did not pose a true threat to her health. With this information in hand, she would combat feelings of panic by trying to calm herself down with facts, logic, and other forms of reassurance, but to no avail.
She knew it wasn’t logical, but she still felt intense fear during a panic attack, even to the point of feeling like it would never end, or that death was just around the corner.
Her efforts were in vain. When she was not able to “solve” her panic attacks on her own, she reached out to others to learn ways of calming herself down and “preventing” the panic, but this too led to more frustration.
Finally, she found Anxiety Solutions and was introduced to the concept of Exposure Therapy.
We met with Chloe and taught her a different way of working through her anxiety and panic, rather than trying to avoid or prevent it. We helped Chloe develop a new perspective on anxiety and her body’s response in such situations, thus leading her to change how she reacted in those instances of intense fear.
Exposure Therapy teaches you how to approach situations of anxiety rather than avoid them. By doing this, Chloe became more confident. She was able to approach situations of uncertainty without the fear of being overwhelmed by her own emotions.
Situations which previously invoked fear were now sought out with the confidence that she could deal with the unexpected, and with each decision to move forward, her confidence continued to grow.
Using the strategies we taught her, Chloe’s panic attacks eventually stopped completely. She was free to live her life again.
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