Part I: The Power of Collective Benefits for Anxiety & ADHD

Even though you may feel as though techniques are not making a difference, this is not always the case. You can learn why.

In this podcast episode, which is part one of a two part series, we discuss the power of collective benefits for anxiety, stress and ADHD. We also share a number of suggestions that you can easily implement today.

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Many people search for an all-encompassing solution.  Regretfully, many people keep search for one magic pill, so to speak.  I am here to tell you that there is not one thing but the collection of a number. 

You see if you think about it: even if some of the things you do for your anxiety, don’t work and some do, there is still a net benefit.  Then if everything you do maybe just does a little bit for you, this translates into a really big benefit.  Huge actually in the aggregate, in the collective sense.  Now think about this and keep this in the back of your mind for the rest of this podcast.

There is no need to despair but I and others in the PanicAttackRecovery.com community have always found it works best to be realistic. 

If you have ever felt that things aren’t working out, I have some things I’d like to mention again.  Yes they are things I’ve shared in the past but I’d like to provide some reminders.

Not everything works all the time

Not everything is noticeable all the time.

Many small effects add up over time.

Sometimes the effects are more notice, sometimes less

Taken together, many small effects = a large effect

Breathing Exercises

We’ve shared before that they are Easy to do, quick to do, but it is the regularity.  most time effective and cost-effective techniques for stress.

Hypnosis

Relaxation can be brought about through self-hypnosis techniques, meditation or even a script in which someone leads you through hypnosis. Herbert Benson, M.D., coined the term “relaxation response”.  He was referring to the physiological changes that happen within the body when it is relaxed during meditation and hypnosis.

Meditation

Meditation helps with mindfulness.  The authors concluded: “These results suggest that mindfulness-based therapy is a promising intervention for treating anxiety and mood problems in clinical populations.”

Dr. Daniel Goleman, in his video on Focus: The Secret to High Performance and Fulfilment discusses the power of mindfulness, which he refers to as cognitive control. In particular, Dr. Goleman discussed a longitudinal study in New Zealand that looked at Cognitive Control.

The results of the study revealed that:

“Cognitive control was as a better predictor of financial success and health later in life than the subjects’ IQ or socioeconomic status of the family.”

Mindfulness can also be achieved as easily as:

1) by choosing to focus your attention on the present moment and really making a commitment in this regard, and

2) bringing your attention back to the moment when it begins to drift.

Physical Exercise

Dr. John Ratey, M.D. who has written a book called “Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain” explains how exercise, particularly sustained aerobic exercise, promotes improved learning, memory, and executive functioning.*

*Executive functioning refers to the ability to organize a variety of tasks in our day to day lives, for example the ability to initiate and stop actions, to monitor and change behavior as needed, and to plan future behavior when faced with novel tasks and situations.

Additionally, Dr. Ratey reports that people who perform sustained aerobic exercise are more mentally alert and attentive, less fidgety, have longer attention spans, and their ability to sort through information and take it in is increased.

Relaxation Exercises

One of the very enjoyable aspects of recovery from anxiety and panic attacks is learning to truly experience relaxation.

Relaxation is not something that anyone can expect to have 100% of the time.  However you can learn to experience relaxation for anxiety and really find yourself immersed in the moment.  The relaxation techniques I share here are not meant to be exclusive from the techniques and strategies shared in other sections of the website.  They are meant to work in a collective fashion as you recover from your anxiety, panic attacks and agoraphobia.

The added bonus from learning relaxation techniques is that they not only benefit you by providing anxiety reduction and calm, they can contribute to your overall wellness and enjoyment of life.

To be clear: relaxation techniques for anxiety is not referring to sleeping your life away.  Rather you can think more clearly and work more productively when you are calmer.  Over time you can learn to be motivated, excited and passionate, while remaining appropriately calm.

Supplements

Medication where appropriate and prescribed by a professional can be helpful for some.

There are also many research studies she discussed did show the benefit of broad spectrum nutritional supplements in treating ADHD, psychosis, Bipolar Disorder, anxiety and more recently, stress and PTSD associated with the Canterbury earthquakes.

There was also research demonstrating that just eating a healthy diet, meaning a diet that consists of foods in their natural form, fresh produce, fish, and nuts (very different from a traditional Western diet) can be helpful for mental health as well.

This is indeed an exciting and interesting topic and one worth following.  Would you like to check out our article (video version available) on having a healthy gut can do for your mental health.

Omega 3 Fatty Acids

If you are concerned about fat in this case don’t be: essential fatty acids are a good type of fat and truly are ESSENTIAL for our bodies. And the majority of people are not consuming enough of them! This is concerning because a wide range of brain problems might result from inadequate levels.

We’re not suggesting omega 3 for anxiety as a cure-all.  Rather, omega 3 fatty acids are essential for your body. Consequently it is reasonable that not getting enough of them could have negative effects on the brain. Therefore it makes sense that anyone suffering anxiety and panic attacks would want to ensure that they consume adequate levels of omega 3 for anxiety.

I’m not sure that one needs to take a supplement.  However, everyone should attend to their diet and make sure they are getting enough sources of omega 3s.  They can be found in fish, nuts and seeds and certain oils.

Drinking Enough Water

Water is beneficial for a variety of reasons, some of which are: transporting nutrients, oxygen and glucose throughout the body, helping you flush toxins out of your body, lubricating joints and cushioning organs, aiding in digestion and relieving constipation and overall wellness. When one considers that 85% of brain tissue is water, it seems a good incentive for the anxiety sufferer to ensure he/she is getting adequate amounts of water.

I’m not here to preach about how much water for anxiety is required, but I would like to chime in about my personal experience. I started increasing my water intake a while back and noticed I had more energy and tended to eat less (which was a good thing since I had been trying to lose a few pounds). Overall I can honestly say that my mood was better.

My experience started me thinking about some important things:

For people that are really ill, how many of them drink enough water? What if they did?

Let me be clear about the health benefits of drinking water: doing so will not cure your anxiety. But many anxiety sufferers worry about their physical health not just their mental health. And it can be quite relaxing for the anxiety sufferers to know that they are getting adequate amounts of water and addressing an important aspect of their health.  I think it is important to carefully look at your own hydration levels and ensure you are getting enough water.

New things coming out from us all the time.  And remember what I said? You needn’t despair.  There is no need to give up.

You do not have to spend a lot of time on any individual thing each day.  You can do a little bit on each one or not do each thing every day. 

Doing things regularly doesn’t mean doing them every day.  You can take a creative yet effective approach.

If you knew the synergistic benefit, I think you’d find the little bit of time you’d need to do each one.  As I’ve said before: I believe that the best approach for recovery from and panic attacks is an holistic approach.  That is, by using an all-encompassing approach you can address all aspects of your recovery. I’m not talking about something far out there…But there really are many other techniques for anxiety.  Click here to subscribe to our free newsletter.