When he was referred to me, Hashim was a teenager who was living in a constant state of anxiety and panic. He had developed a panicky brain that, I discovered, was due to the continual, angry, verbal violence between his parents, with him in the middle. It was as if he had PTSD, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. He trembled almost continually and complained that he felt chronically terrified and would often feel stabbing, anxious and panicky sensations for no apparent reason. His thoughts were in an endless whirl that made studying and concentration very difficult.
A few years earlier, the family had moved from the Middle East to North America and with all the torment going on at home, Hashim was finding it impossible to make friends, fit in at school and navigate his new culture. He referred to his life as a miserable mess.
One of the secrets of rewiring your brain and breaking up anxious and panicky patterns is to recognize that it is very often caused by a protective self-reinforcing cybernetic loop that has established itself within the body. This cybernetic loop cycles between the individual’s protective fear system in the brain, which is controlled by the amygdala, and the fight or flight adrenaline system, which is controlled by the adrenals in the kidneys. The system is designed to protect the individual from harm but it can get itself stuck on automatic.
You see, the amygdala gets turned on because of some very fearful and unpleasant trauma in the environment, in this case the continual shouting matches and angry exchanges between his parents. When there is trouble in the environment, the amygdala sends a signal to the adrenal system that the body is under imminent threat and needs to get ready for a fight. The adrenals oblige by pumping adrenaline into the blood stream to get the body ready for a battle.
Unfortunately, the amygdala, now senses adrenaline in the bloodstream and stays on high alert expecting trouble at any moment. This high alert state sends another signal back to the adrenals to pump more adrenaline into the bloodstream to get ready for that upcoming battle. It’s a never ending cycle and a major cause of panic attacks and ADD and PTSD type symptoms.
Does this sound familiar? Have you ever felt this way? No fun, is it?
Fortunately, there are a number of very effective and clinically proven ways of rewiring your brain and breaking up the sensations and patterns associated with chronic anxiety and panic attacks, regardless of their causes.
In our ten weeks together, I taught Hashim how to calm his breathing. Breathing properly is a vital skill in managing episodes of anxiety and panic. Rough breathing affects our heart rate which, in turn, sends mixed messages to the brain. Once he started to get the hang of smooth breathing, he found he was becoming calmer more of the time. Next, I showed him how to use very effective cranial electrostimulation tools and modalities to improve his sleep. More importantly, I showed him how to use each sleep cycle to reprogram his thinking and feelings, while he slept, to interrupt the anxious panic patterns and to remain calm, cool and collected in previously scary situations.
His panic and anxiety symptoms subsided, his concentration improved, he was able to focus better on his schoolwork, his grades soared, the bullying stopped and he made new friends.
Then another wonderful thing happened: Hashim discovered Post- Traumatic Growth. Post Traumatic Growth is the discovery that once the stressors have been removed from your life, your brain and body have the capacity to heal themselves and grow beyond well the point when the stressors started.
Hashim’s intellectual development surged and boosted his peak mental performance. He had awakened his mind. He is now at university in a different city, he has a lovely girlfriend and his world has opened up for him. Way to go, Hashim!
Change your brain ~ Change your life