It’s normal for human beings to experience negative thoughts – in fact us human beings are wired for negativity. Don’t panic! We can do lots of things to help with this. We needed to be wired for negativity thousands of years ago when facing all sorts of dangers. Our brains helped us to survive back then and we have survived to the present day.
Go to: Imagine your negative thoughts as clouds in the sky – rolling in and then rolling out again, leaving the blue sky. Sometimes we think we will always feel like we feel at this moment in time, but our feelings and emotions do change just like clouds in the sky.
Sometimes we believe our thoughts as being true or false or good or bad, but thoughts are purely just thoughts! Not necessarily good or bad or true or false – they are just random thoughts not reality. Try not to get sucked in by them and imagine you can take a step back and let them pass you by. Remember, random thoughts not ‘truth forecasts’!
Why not watch TasTAFE’s Short Talk video series about the three emotion regulation systems and neuroplasticity. It might help in understanding how our minds work and what you can do to help with this
Russ Harris has some great youtube clips on how to manage your mind and his website has lots of useful information on mindfulness, acceptance, defusion and more: https://www.actmindfully.com.au/
Take a look at this clip about seeing thoughts differently: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kwlYXupjoaI
Have you ever experienced a panic attack? It can be quite common and sometimes they can happen without warning. A lot of people who experience one then have the fear that it could happen again, to the point where they avoid situations which they think might set it off. Some signs or symptoms to look out for include:
- a sense of overwhelming panic or fear or danger
- the thought that you are going to die, feeling like you are choking, not in control or going ‘crazy’
- rapid pounding heart rate
- cramping in the stomach
- finding it difficult to breathe
- feeling choked like a tightness in your throat
- sweating a lot
- feeling dizzy, light-headed or feeling like you might faint
- feeling shaky
- experiencing chills
- feeling like you are not ‘all here’ but detached in some way.
People who experience a panic attack feel really tired afterwards.
Frequent and ongoing episodes may be a sign of a panic or anxiety disorder that requires treatment. Panic attacks, while intensely uncomfortable, are not dangerous. However, panic attacks are hard to manage on your own, and they may get worse without treatment. Why not see your GP and ask his/her advice? You could also speak with your student counsellor, social worker or psychologist for helpful strategies.