Today I thought I would share with you 5 ways that I like to minimise the chance of having a panic attack whilst on holiday.
Some of you may know that in 2015 I mustered up the courage to go on a holiday of a lifetime with Contiki across Europe with one of my friends from highschool. In Australia, going on a Contiki tour is practically a right of passage now and for most people it just sounds like a month long adventure fuelled by alcohol, parties and a bus full of young adults seeing landmarks across the globe; but for me it was more than that. I mean, don’t get me wrong, it was practically all of the pre mentioned but it was also a huge personal test for me and my anxiety.
I toured across London, Paris, Bordeaux, Rome, Venice, Florence, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Monaco and so many more incredible destinations and yet every single day I struggled to be present in that moment and honestly, without the photographs I took my trip feels like a complete blur. I had 4 panic attacks in the span of 4.5 weeks, my friend at the time didn’t know it, or maybe she did and didn’t mention it, but after just over two weeks in I almost booked a flight home in the middle of my tour because I was going to bed in tears and constantly feeling like I wasn’t going to be able to make it through the whole trip. Thankfully, I didn’t go through with it!
The whole point of this is for you to know that you aren’t alone and if you suffer from panic attacks and are about to go on a holiday, these are some things you can to do try and minimise the chance of a panic attack affecting your trip!
// Research emergency numbers and points ahead of your trip//
// List out your triggers //
// Designate a friend for support when needed //
// Distract yourself //
Take a book or your iPod and if you feel yourself starting to work up to a panic attack take some time out and lay down and distract yourself with some music or a book and focus completely on the words, sounds and the way the book or iPod feels in your hand. Engaging all of your senses at once does wonder for me when I’m anxious or going through a panic attack.
// Remind yourself why you want to travel & why you are where you are //
Pretty please remember that I am NOT a psychologist or am I qualified in that field in any way shape or form, these are just things I wish I had done or things that worked for me! Please always take your doctors advice over anything you read online, as anxiety works differently on everyone so what works for me may not always work for someone else.
Until next time,
Love, Angela xx