We can try to overcome panic attacks by leaning into the fear.

By Arash Emamzadeh

Leaning in

In a lot of ways, a life of survival is a life of panic. The panic-stricken individual only wants to know whether an object is harmful/harmless, and is not interested in learning about the object’s nature, function, or mechanism of action.

But that broader and deeper interest may be precisely what is necessary to successfully manage panic attacks. That is, one needs to behave in ways that are inconsistent with a fearful and single minded focus on harm and survival. One needs to stay with the experience of fear, and examine it with interest, curiosity, and engagement.

Which is why the self-help technique I would like to suggest to you—assuming that you have already made sure no medical or psychiatric condition is responsible for your attacks (as explained in my first article), is leaning into the fear.

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