Finding calm in the panic

We’re in a time where the world feels like it has gone crazy and what we know has been turned upside down.

The rising panic is palpable, I don’t know about you, but I am left not knowing what’s real and what’s not.

The trouble with the unknown and threat is that it breeds fear and our survival instinct steps in. We react. It is hard to stay connected to our hearts and to that place in all of us of love, kindness and peace.

I have struggled with the constant media updates and the shocking headlines and the rising fear and can feel the panic rising up within. It’s taking all my focus to stop and pause and step back from the panic. This is what is helping me right now.  

Set boundaries with watching and listening to media updates- the constant news feeds adrenalise us and create fear and panic. Yes it is helpful to stay informed, but the constant headlines and newsfeeds grip us into a frenzied panic. When I find I am getting in this state, I breathe (breathing in for a count of 4 and out for a count of 6 so the outbreath is longer) and I have been grounding myself (see below).

Ground yourself-with all the fear find ways to ground yourself- some main ways are to do something physical- go for a run or a walk or if you are self isolating shake your energy out the body- shaking our arms and legs are a way to dispel the pent up energy. Also ground yourself in the moment- what can you see, hear, feel, taste, smell-this all gets you out your head and into the now- this moment. Breathing and stepping away from whatever is bringing on the panic helps to give space to process the information.

Humour– these times are unprecedented which brings about fear and panic. In this moment put on something you find funny to lighten the mood, laughter will help release some of the much pent up fear. I love old friends episodes or anything by Michael McIntyre. 

Nature-if you can, get out in nature – nature has a way of calming our body and reminding us that we are all connected and the slowness and peace of nature has a way of reminding us of the bigger picture. 

Music-music transports us to other places and other mindsets, put some tunes on to get you in the here and now and lift your spirit.

Be kind-fear makes us act in ways that aren’t how we would normally behave. Kindness gets forgotten. I believe we are all linked energetically and that by being kind and looking out for each other in whatever way we can, we can learn and grow from this challenging time. What act of kindness can you do today?

Be kind to you– self care is key at the moment, what can you do look after you? Read your favourite book, have a bath, do exercise, anything that makes you feel soothed is key.

Develop sea legs-I remember reading in Susan Jeffer’s book on uncertainty years ago about developing sea legs for choppy waters- we are in choppy waters, our sea legs can anchor us so we can go with the flow and not be pushed over. 

Change perspectives-hard as this is to do, I have found trying to look at the situation from different ways has helped, I may not be able to go out to XYZ but I can have much needed quiet time at home.

We have no idea how long this time will continue and with so much fear and worry it is hard not to get caught up in it. We all have a choice as to how we react to every situation we are in- this included. Let love and kindness to be your guide. Know that your needs will be met in some way and that if not then you will handle it- we all will. 

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