Meditation For Managing Panic Attacks | Zachary Phillips | Skillshare

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Meditation For Managing Panic Attacks

teacher avatar Zachary Phillips, Meditation, Writing, Self-Improvement

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

10 Lessons (23m)
    • 1. Introduction To Meditation For Managing Panic Attacks

    • 2. Strategy 1: Acknowledge & Accept

    • 3. Strategy 2: Present State Awareness

    • 4. Guided Meditation: Present State Awareness

    • 5. Strategy 3: Mindfulness Meditation

    • 6. Guided Meditation: Mindfulness Meditation

    • 7. Strategy 4: Stretch and Breathe

    • 8. Class Project: Meditation Report

    • 9. Further Resources

    • 10. Quick Recap

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About This Class

Learn how to reduce the duration, severity and frequency of panic attacks.

Based on concepts derived from mindfulness meditation, this course will teach you four complementary strategies that will assist you with managing your panic attacks.

You will learn what to do before, during and after the attack, as well as how to stop them from occurring in the first place.

The four strategies you will learn:
1) Acknowledge and Accept
- Fighting/worrying/fearing a panic attack just makes it worse. You will learn why this happens and what to do instead.

2) Present State Awareness Meditation
- What can you feel in this exact moment? Focusing on your senses is an amazing technique for getting out of your head and into the present moment.
* Guided meditation video included

3) Mindfulness Meditation
- By training your ability to focus on the present moment, you will be able to detach yourself from troubling thoughts, and therefore not be as impacted by them.
* Guided meditation video included

4) Stretch and Breathe
- The mind and body are completely interconnected, with the mind taking cues about the environment from the posture and breathing patterns of the body. Change the body, change the mind.

For the class project you will note down how you are feeling prior to meditating (body tension, relaxation and anxiety levels) and compare it to how you feel after meditating. The results will show you that these strategies work. You can also use the class project as a way to ask me any questions or troubleshoot any issues that you may have.

Contact Me:
Website: | Social: @zacpphillips

Further resources: 

Insight Timer: Readings & Discussions Of My Poetry

'Meditate' - ch: 1.9 of How To Get Your Sh!t Together - Zachary Phillips 
‘Become Present State Aware’ - ch: 1.1 of How To Get Your Sh!t Together - Zachary Phillips
‘Ten Relaxation Breaths’ - ch: 1.2 of How To Get Your Sh!t Together - Zachary Phillips

The Happiness Trap - Russ Harris (book)
Waking Up - Sam Harris (app)

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Zachary Phillips

Meditation, Writing, Self-Improvement


Zachary Phillips is a mental health advocate, author and mindset coach. In these roles he has helped thousands of people move from a place of barely surviving to passionately thriving.

He is the author of eight books including: How To Get Your Sh!t Together and Mindfulness: A Guidebook To The Present Moment, and the creator of the Depresso Espresso web comic.

He is also an instructor on Skillshare and Insight Timer, teaching mindfulness meditation, personal development, and creative writing.

He is a qualified school teacher, personal trainer, martial arts coach, and disability support worker. Working in these industries has given him a depth of experience teaching across multiple topics, to learners of all ages and ability levels. It has also enabled him to con... See full profile

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1. Introduction To Meditation For Managing Panic Attacks: Hi. Welcome to the course. Meditation for managing panic attacks. I'm Zachary Phillips, online mental health advocate and author. In this role, I share my experiences with mental illness, trauma and the recovery process, providing guidance to thousands of people who are looking to go from a place of surviving to passionately thriving. I know from first hand experience that panic attacks are just terrible. And for some people, the frequency and intensity could be extremely debilitating. In this class will teach you four complementary strategies that will help you to reduce the duration and intensity of panic attacks as they're occurring as well, helping to reduce the overall number of panic attacks that your face. And the best thing about these strategies is that they can also be applied to generalized anxiety disorder, as well as with stressful life events to the same level of effectiveness. And for students who want to delve deeper into this topic. Also provide you with a number of resource is as well as free access to three chapters of my book, How to Get Your Shit together. Let's jump into 2. Strategy 1: Acknowledge & Accept: the first strategy for managing a panic attack is called acknowledging and accepting. When a panic attack occurs, your heart's gonna start baking fast. You might feel a bit shaky. Might feel a bit sweaty. You might have feelings of fear or foreboding or impending death. Now all of these things come very quickly, and that can come as quite a shock, especially if you're untrained at dealing with panic attacks or you've never experienced panic attacks before. What happens is, is those thoughts freak you out? You start thinking about them is not going on. My God, is this what's happening up? You freak out That freak out perpetuates the penny attack and makes it worse, causing you to freak out more. You see, this is a perpetual cycle. It gets worse and worse and worse and worse and worse. This is why panic attacks could be so intense and so overwhelming because you're going Ah, and it just makes everything worse for you. Instead, I would encourage you to acknowledge and accept it. You've experienced a panic attack before. You know these symptoms, you know what's gonna happen. So the key is for this strategy is to recognize when a panic attack is occurring for me. When I noticed it happening, I say the following to myself in my mind, over and over and over again. This is a panic attack. I recognize these symptoms. It will pass. I Noel pass because every panic attack I have ever had has ended. I say this to myself over and over and over again. I don't fight it. I acknowledge the symptoms. Yes, my heart is beating. Yes, I'm feeling these thoughts. Yes, my breathing is struggling, but I know that this is a panic attack. I recognize these symptoms Evil past. I know pass. Because every panic attack I've ever had in the past has also passed. If you click the notes in the project section, there'll be a downloadable post up with this these words that you can print off and stick on your wall to practice daily 3. Strategy 2: Present State Awareness: the second strategy for managing panic attacks is called present state awareness. He's basically involves you, drawing attention to what your senses are telling you. So what can you see? Hear, touch, taste and smell. Right now it works in helping you mitigate the impact off a panic attack by getting you out of your head and into the present moment. The panic attack is making you freak out and think all of these different things. But if you can focus your thoughts on what your feet are feeling right now, or what you can see in this exact moment, it's easier to mitigate the impacts of the panic attack. So basically what you do is you take a deep breath and you stop focusing on each sense in turn, deep breath in. What can I see? Deep breath in what can I feel and so forth in the next video, I'm going to take you through a guided meditation off present state awareness, and this is something you can come back to and practice over and over and over again also encouraged you to check back with this channel because very soon I'm going to release a whole VIGOR course on present state awareness in depth, so make sure to check that out as well 4. Guided Meditation: Present State Awareness: this video is a guided meditation of present state awareness. Feel free to return back to it whenever you would like, but like you to take a seat on the ground or in a chair, see comfortably but with good posture. I stopped slowly breathing in through the nose and out through the mouth. I want to draw your attention to what you can feel in your body right now. Can you feel any pressure or sensations with tingling? I can feel the wind. What temperature is? It wants to really focus on what your body is feeling in this moment right now. Other sensations changing. Can you feel it Moving? Is the pressure constant? What does it vary now? I want you to draw your attention to what you can see when you hit to the left or to the right and take a look. What can you see right now? What details that you first noticed. Now you can see in more depth one of the colors like what are the shapes and text just, like, really focus on what you can see in this exact moment. Have you noticed anything near any little lines or details that you might have missed at first glance. Now I want you to close your eyes and focus on what you can hear. And, of course, hear the sound of my voice. Perhaps you can also hear the people or traffic. Are the voices really listening intently? What sounds can you hear? What exactly do those sounds sounds like? Are there any sounds that you noticed now that you didn't notice when you first started listening? Now I want you to draw your attention to your nose. Big breath in smell. What does the air smell like? Can you notice any fragrances and aromas? Have a pleasant of a unpleasant What exactly does it smell like right now? Have you noticed any new smells now Like you to draw your attention to what you could taste ? Focus on the sensations coming from your tongue. What can you taste right now? Now I want you to draw your attention quickly back through old five senses When I click my fingers I was to tell me what you can feel. What can you see? What can you hear? What can you smell? What can you taste? Okay in practice. You can do that meditation as quickly or as slowly as you like. You can focus on one sense or all sensors in any order that you like and rotating through them as quickly or slowly as you like. My personal favorite is to focus on hearing a known feeling that works best for me, so I encourage you to try to practice each sense as a group and each sense individually and use the ones that work best for you. 5. Strategy 3: Mindfulness Meditation: the third strategy off managing a panic attack is called mindfulness meditation. This strategy is so important that I've already made an entire video course on this topic, and I'll put the link down below, and I strongly encourage you to check it out because it will help you not only with panic attacks but also with your mental health in general. Basically, what mindfulness meditation is is the act of during your attention back from the thoughts, emotions and ruminations that going on to the present moment off the sensation of the breath entering and leaving the nose. That's it. It sounds deceptively simple, but what you do if you do it every day, is your basically training your brain to acknowledge and accept what's going on up here. But bring itself back to the present moment. This is obviously vital when combatting a panic attack when dealing with it with. When managing, I practiced meditation daily. I can't suggest enough to you that you should, too. Why it helps is is that although it might not stop the panic attacks occurring, they'll occur less often because you're more aware of what's going on. But even when they do occur. I hope you did not be blindsided by you. See the panic attack coming and you stop taking preventive actions, You could do some of the strategy that I'm sort of talking about now. You can also just get yourself into a position like physically that will enable the panic attack to pass rather than being out and about doing something. You can take a seat, you can go home. You know what's up? It also helps you to acknowledge and accept what's going on during the panic attack rather than freaking out by the symptoms. You're looking at the symptoms and going, Oh, I see that. I see that my heart is beating fast. I see that my brain is churning over lots. I see that I've got this feeling of impending doom. Those thoughts is still there, but because you've practiced mindfulness meditation, you're a little bit detached from them. You're not here in the thought. You're over here and sort of looking at it from a calm perspective. This allows those thoughts to pass more quicker. It'll have a panic attack to end way faster and in a less extreme manner. I'm going to play for you the guided meditation that I did in the mindfulness meditation course after this video. But I strongly encourage you to check out that whole course because it goes into death about having mindfully meditate as well as give you further resource is and discussions on that topic. Once again, I couldn't recommend it enough for panic attacks, but mental health in general. 6. Guided Meditation: Mindfulness Meditation: so follow is a one minute mindfulness meditation video, and I encourage you to return back to this video. Maybe put it in your links or somewhere that you can access it because you'll be able to use this video as a guided meditation of salts. What I want you to do right now is take a seat either in a chair across lay it on the ground and gently close your eyes. Take a big date birth in through the nose and out for the mouth. I want you to keep that breathing process going into the meditation stunts. What I'm going to do is in a moment I'm going to stop talking and I want to draw your attention to the sensation of the breath, entering and leaving the nice That's it. If you mind want us, just bring it back. If your mind what is again, just gently bring it back. What I'm going to do is I'm going to click my fingers like this to stop the session and in 20 seconds and then it 40 seconds onto another click like this. So you know how far along you going? Let's get started. Okay. So if you found this practice beneficial. I would like to use this video whenever you like, as a form of guided meditation. So feel free to note it down and come back to it whenever you need to. 7. Strategy 4: Stretch and Breathe: The fourth strategy for many gene panic attacks is called Stretch and Breathe. This strategy works off the idea that your mind and body are completely interconnected and what happens toe one impacts the other just for a very quick second. Just sit with a bad posture. Slumping heads Let me shoulders sort of curled up, breathing shallowly. Just doing that. How do you feel now? Instead, sit back. Good posture, sit toll and do slow and date breaths. The difference to your mental state is obvious. Bad posture slumped in makes you feel terrible. Good posture, slow breathing. Slow deep breathing makes you feel good. They've done studies on this. They're showing that people's happiness improves statistically significantly when they smartly as opposed to when they're frowning. When people walk around bed posture, they feel more confident. What this shows is that our bodies impact on mental state. What happens is is your mind is basically looking at your body for accused of what's happening in the environment. So if you're sitting there standing tall, slow, deep breaths, it goes home were actually okay right now, if you're freaking out, if you've got bad posture, small breaths, it's going on. My God, what's happening in and it goes were in danger. So in combination with the other strategies, what I would suggest you do is when a panic attack is occurring. Or just when you're feeling bad. Just remember your posture. Remember slow and deep breaths such stretching in opening up your body and just getting some movement, slow controlled movements. What I want you to do right now with me is five slow and date breaths in through the nose and out through the mouth. When you do this, you sit back with good posture, nice and calm. And I just want you to notice how good you feel. And as you're doing this, always have a smile on your face as well. You ready? - Now , continuing those breaths, we should just rise your hand right up. Big stretch now comes out pulling back a little bit and by your side. So how you feeling right now? I'm sure you feeling a little bit better than what you were. The idea of this strategy is when you notice the symptoms of a panic attack occurring when you find yourself in a panic attack. Remember? Sit back. Good posture. slow date breaths and stretch your body. You might not feel like you want to, but it will will certainly help, particularly when combined with the other strategies that I've previously mentioned. 8. Class Project: Meditation Report: I got to know into the class project. Basically, I'm using. This is a way to help you to troubleshoot your problems with any of the meditations or strategies that I've covered. So if you do, the class project will provide you with direct answers to your questions and problems that you might be facing with any of the strategies we've overcome. Basically, the class project is this out of 10. Note down how you're feeling right now in terms of body tension, relaxation levels and anxiety levels. They'll be a little template for this in the class project section after you've noticed. Noticed that down, I wanted to do a one minute present said Awareness, meditation or relaxation, breathing and stretching meditation. Or you can even do both. If you want feed that on both, they don't want you to give me another subjective reading. How you feeling after the meditation out of 10 in terms of body tension, relaxation levels and anxiety levels. Basically, the idea of this is to show you two things Number one, that these strategies work to reduce anxiety and number to help you to overcome any issues or problems or troubleshoot any issues that you might be facing. If you comment, I'll get notified and I can help you out with direct comments and feedbacks. We can keep having this discussion until you've got it down. Pat walked in. The idea is that you've also practiced these techniques. So in a panic attack does happen. You've got them in your back pocket, ready to go? Yeah, And if you also find that you've had a panic attack after you've tried this course, come back and let me know on your project are as a comment and saying, Hey, it worked for this reasons or didn't work for that reasons. How can I address this? And I'll give you comments and feedback or more further rating and resource is if that's what you need. 9. Further Resources: For those of you who want some more information on managing panic attacks or anxiety in general, old recommend that you check out the waking up app by San Harris. This will teach you how to mindfully meditate, but that has a direct relationship to dealing with anxiety and mental phenomena. In general, I would also recommend the Happiness Trap. This is a book by Russ House, and it's a basic introduction into the concept off act therapy in the class. Descriptions of also put access to three free chapters from my book How to Get Your Shit Together, These chapters on presence in the West. Meditation and relaxation, Breathing and stretching. You can read them all this into them as a blogger or as a podcast. I would also recommend that you enlist the services of a professional therapist. Why? Because they can provide you with direct feedback based on your specific problems and help you work through both processes in real time. I see a therapist once per month and more wind necessary. Depending on where you live under the costs could be out of this world, but I also know that a free and anonymous online services are available to anyone who's gotten into any connection. So there really is no reason to, you know, get therapy if you can access the Internet connection, which you are right now, so click those links. Check out those resources, and if you want further discussion or information, connect with me. You can find me on social media at Zach P. Phillips or by the comments sections on skill share, and we can start working through some of these issues that you may have, and I can guide you further. 10. Quick Recap: Spencer taking this class with these four strategies of acknowledging and accepting prison state awareness, mindfulness, meditation and breathing and stretching. The next time a panic attack occurs, it will be significantly reduced in duration and intensity. In addition, the amount of panic attacks that you suffer if you practice meditation daily will steadily start to reduce. I can't encourage you enough to do the project, upload the project so that I can give you some direct feedback on any of these strategies that we've talked about. If you want that feedback applied the project and they start that dialogue and we can get your troubleshooting any issues you may face. I also encourage you to share, follow and connect with me following me on steel shared because basically, I'm gonna be releasing a bunch more videos on this topic of always already got mindfulness meditation for mental health. Out. I've got a bunch more down the pipeline that relate to these topics. So if you like this video like this concept off using meditation and the sort of strategies to improve your mental health, you like what's coming up. I also suggest that you connect with me on social media at SAC P. Phillips or on my website at Zachary. Hyphen Phillips dot com. And finally, if you enjoy these videos, please please place click that thing up the top there. It's saying, Hey, do you like this video? Can you review a click show and then click down and leave me a little comment? It really does help, and it makes me feel great whenever I read the comments and the reviews and that sort of stuff Ah, little like bogo sort of my heart. I'm like I'm doing this for a reason. So please, if you can spend that 30 seconds to just let me know how you felt about the class and also what's of classes you would like to see next, because I'm soaking to give you guys what you're after catch up.