Did you know that panic causes bad situations to become one hundred times worse? Once panic sets in, the problems will continue to get worse. During a natural disaster, this could and will cause more lives to be lost. These lives are the unnecessary ones that could have been saved if only we stayed calm.
Let’s take a look at a smaller scale of panic. How about the panic that some have of thunderstorms. Some people will have panic attacks during such storms. This can be something that person may feel they have no control over. These panic attacks are very real and can cause very real bodily harm. Panic attacks like these can cause heart attacks if they are bad enough. I’m no doctor and have never claimed to be, but I do want to help these people to understand not only the physical damage, but also the mental damage these can cause.
First let’s examine exactly what panic is. Panic is the fear of something that is believed by the person or persons to be beyond the person or persons control. The dictionary states panic as “To feel overwhelming fear.” Now I must ask, has panic ever helped in any situation? Of course not, so we must train ourselves not to have these overwhelming fears. Easier said then done I’m told, however the military has been training panic out our people from all walks of life for as long as there has been a military. How do they do this, you may ask? With training and more training. The mind can be trained to think beyond panic. This is by no means any kind of brain washing. This is simply looking at a situation with a different point of view.
I’m not suggesting that you join the military to solve your panic situations. This is not necessary. You can do this on your own if you just put a little thought into it. Let’s take our fear of thunderstorms as an example. If you have a fear of these and they bring you to a panic, ask yourself this, “Is my panic changing the way the thunderstorm reacts?” The answer to this is of course a big fat no! Okay, so is your panic over these storms causing you trouble? Well of course it is. You are allowing something you have no control over to harm you unnecessarily. You are hurting yourself physically and with allowing your brain to control you instead of you controlling your brain, you are actually hurting yourself mentally. You may not like these storms, you may even hate them and you are allowing them to beat you up and cause you harm for no reason at all. The thunder is going to boom, the lightning is going to crack and the rain is going to come. What are you going to do to stop it? Absolutely nothing! It’s going to happen if you like it or not. So why let the fear take over when it’s not going to help? If you want to help yourself, get indoors, close the windows and enjoy the light show and drums. There is something happening that is awesome to experience and you didn’t even have to pay admission. Not a band in the world is going to give you that kind of show for free.
I must add this before I decide not to, we all are caught off guard by panic sometimes in our lives. When we are caught, it depends how fast we can get ourselves back under control that counts. As a trained fire fighter, the one thing that I should never do is panic during a fire, but it happened to me once over something very small in size. When my wife and I had first moved in together, I had an episode that still bothers me and yet makes my wife laugh to this day. I was watching television, lounging on the couch while my wife was cooking dinner. Out of the blue, my wife very calmly said, “Scaggs, I have a fire.” She had a small grease fire on the stove. Instead of calmly getting up and putting out the fire, I jumped up, almost leaving my skin still on the couch and yelled, “where, what!” Then she looked at me with a small grin. This seemed to calm me down and I had the fire out in the matter of seconds by putting a pan lid on the pan. There was absolutely no rhythm or reason for my panic, but it did happened. I have seen alot of bad fires, but I panicked on a very small situation. Until I calmed down, I was making the situation worse. Once calm, all was well. So you see, sometimes even training can elude us. Don’t beat yourself up too badly over things like this. Just file these instances for future reference and don’t make the same mistake again.
Let’s move on to natural disasters like earthquakes, tornadoes and hurricanes. Is panic going to help during these things? No, not even close. If you panic, your setting yourself up to be one of the many that will be searched for when it’s over. The person who can put aside the panic and look for a way out, has the greatest chance of survival. Of course your going to be scared. You wouldn’t be human if you weren’t, but don’t use that when things are happening. When it all comes down, this is the time to use your brain for survival not for running in circles. When it’s over, that’s the time to get the shakes and let the tears flow. Don’t start out failing! Think survival not panic and you have a chance to see tomorrow. If you panic, chances are slim that you will survive.
So what is panic? Panic is not only fear but also failure. You have already quit on yourself before you have even given yourself a chance. As far as these panic attacks that come to some of you out of nowhere for no reason, there is a reason. You need to figure out why you are having these so you can move on to getting rid of them. Until you have overcome them, breath through them and ask yourself, “Is there a reason I’m doing this now?” It will help. Take care my friends and Remember, we are all in this together.