Panic Attacks, Anxiety, and Breathing Meditation: Talk 17

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How should one breathe for panic attacks and how to breathe for regular worry? Panic Attacks and every day worry have some things in common, but also a big difference. We can learn a lot from panic attacks, whether we have them or not, because they point us in the direction of the right attitude in meditation.

I sure hope this has been helpful to you in your exploration of meditation.

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  • Andrea Robinson

    This is about the best description of the difference between a panic attack and normal, everyday worries and anxieties that I’ve ever heard. You’ve made it really easy to understand the difference – not that either one is a desired state, but that there really are differences.

    Also, thanks for pointing out that trying to force meditation into the role of “fixing” everything doesn’t really work. There are ways that meditation can enhance the life experience normally, but it’s marketed as a fix for everything. It’s refreshing to hear a deeper understanding. I can see that the breathing might be helpful when used as an ongoing practice, and not just as a Band-Aid to be used only on occasion.

    Finally, thanks for the relief of knowing you don’t have to fight back against a panic attack or anxiety as though they are enemies. I really get that people who suffer from panic attacks are presented with sensations that we just don’t experience, and that there is double the fear when trying to resist it. Once again, you’ve presented us with some very well thought-out insights.

  • Dan Iel

    Hi Alan great stuff you’re doing it really is a nice way of teaching. Are there retreats you know of that are taught in a breathe joyfully manner that you discuss? Thank you.

    • AlanKlima

      Hi Dan,
      I was thinking of doing an online course or something about this. I don’t know of anyone quite with this approach in all its facets, but one component of it is based on a Thai Forest Meditation practice that I trained in and there is someone in the U.S. now who is from that tradition. It might not touch on exactly the same things as I do but it is a direct expression of this one particular technique coming straight from the source: that would be Thanissaro Bhikkhu at Metta Forest Monastery in San Diego, CA.

      • Mmagician

        An online course would be very interesting!

      • HS

        Hi Alan – both my husband and I would love join any online course you teach. Your explanation of the feedback loop in this episode has really changed his perspective and helped his panic attacks. Are you available for sessions via FaceTime or Skype? He would like to learn more from you on this subject with guided meditations. Thank you for the great podcast!

        • AlanKlima

          Hi HS!

          I’ve borrowed some money and have been paying a guy a lot of money to build a website for this but he still hasn’t finished! I hope in a few weeks to open an online group. And, it will include ways to interact live. There is nothing I like more than interacting in real time. Please do sign up for the email list here to get announcements. In the meantime I could perhaps talk to people interested in joining the group/course on Skype. Email me at– Alan at academicmuseDOTorg. I’m not doing paid sessions or anything like that because I don’t have time for that, but I am always happy to meet people interested in meditation and hear about their challenges and see what might be said about that.

          • HS

            That’s great thanks, looking forward to seeing what you are building! Will be in touch.