Breaking Down My Breakdowns: I Created a Hall of Fame for My Panic Attacks

I’ve been having a lot of panic attacks lately. Usually, I can keep them spaced apart by reassessing what I’m doing in my life: am I working out? Getting enough sleep? Eating things other than Chipotle?

In fact, for the longest time I just called these bursts “feeling anxious” as opposed to an attack. I didn’t think it was justified to constantly say I was having panic attacks. I mean, how droll. How fanciful. Nay, these were simply little fits of anxiety where I would start crying and circular thought patterns and may hyperventilate. Let’s not get carried away and call that a panic attack

I think I was hesitant to do so because I had truly experienced some mega panic attacks. To me, panic attacks remind me a lot of the migraines I used to suffer from in high school. Before I really knew what was happening, I would have the 12 hour migraine. My head would be splitting and I’d sit in the dark with a bucket, ready to throw-up again. When I finally learned what was happening, I was able to get the 12 hours down to eight, and the eight to four. I knew my warning signs and was able to cut them off for the most part. I was still down for the count–it wasn’t pleasant–but I wasn’t sitting in the dark with a bucket.

In a similar pattern, my first few panic attacks where outrageous. They lasted for hours and the next day I would wake up feeling so relieved it was over. It was a hangover but instead of feeling drained and crappy, I felt an overwhelming amount of gratitude and euphoria. It’d be so lovely that I’d look back on the previous day and figured I’d just overreacted.

But then another panic attack would hit. Same thing–last for hours, feel awful, eventually sleep, wake up feeling amazing. It finally clicked that this was more than just a moment of overwhelm, though that took me years to learn. Nowadays, I still get panic attacks but I know so much more how to shorten them down. I know my warning signs. I’m not sitting in the dark with a bucket.

Since it’s Mental Health Month, I wanted to shed light on panic attacks and how crazy they can get when they are untamed. A lot of the attacks I share in this episode where truly horrible to experience. But I look back now at the situation surrounding the attacks, how unimportant the events actually were, and…I can actually laugh about it now.

I use this practice to help heal my wounds and to take away the power they have over me. There’s a moment in the Harry Potter series where this creature called a boggart is wrecking havoc in a warddrobe. Boggarts turn into the thing you fear most, which is supposed to stun you and stop you from attacking it. The way to conquer the boggart? You cast the spell ridiculous and it turns into a hilarious object instead. When you laugh and enjoy the boggart, it starts to weaken.

That’s how I approach a lot of my mental health. My panic attacks do not dictate my life, but when they happen on astronomical levels, it’s helpful to look around and see what was going on. In the episode, you’ll hear that I thought at one point at 2:00 a.m. I could calm down if I watched Titanic. Yes, the movie where everyone dies and true love is separated for decades. That was supposed to calm me down. Or the forgotten Christmas party I ended up going to mid-panic attack. I would never do that now. There’s so much humor in that pain, and being able to shake my head and sigh about it now makes me feel so much better. I feel for Young Elaine but am glad she gave me a wonderful story I get to share.

Enjoy this induction ceremony of my panic attacks to the Hall of Fame!

What’s gettin’ me through right now:

  1. The Fitness Marshall: I’ve talked about this a LOT but I seriously have so much fun dancing to these videos. I’m also getting fit? During quarantine? And it’s not burpees??

2. How I Met Your Mother: This was my show. The way that people love Friends or The Office–that’s how I feel about How I Met Your Mother. It was probably one of the last shows that I binged watched the first few seasons and then caught up with live television for two more years. I watched the series finale in my dorm room. I’m not one to rewatch things, so about five years has gone by and I happened to see it was on Hulu. And I realized I didn’t remember a lot of the episodes. So now, I’m rewatching one of my all-time favorite shows and it’s like I’m getting to watch it all over again.

3. Halsey’s album Manic: I’ve always liked Halsey but at first, I only had heard “You should be sad” which is not my fav song, so for some reason I dismissed the whole album. But this may be one of my favorite albums of all time. Yes, I’m saying it’s up there with my love for Lana Del Ray’s discography. Current jams: clementine, killing boys, 929.

The ‘Rona Rut: Creative Pressure, Self-Reflection, and the Future

The ‘Rona Rut: the phenomenon where you decide to start 10 projects at once because you have “tons of free time” during quarantine, only to discover around week five that you are nowhere near accomplishing any of your 10 projects and decide you are a complete failure and eat tubs of ice cream in the same sweatshirt for a whole week.

Week Six seems to be a bit better so far! I realized I was very burnt out on my job before quarantine and that being at home as allowed me easier ways to pause to quell my high levels of whelm. (Love a good whelm). Work has still been incredibly stressful, but I’m glad I’m able to take a quick walk outside, pause and read for a bit, and come back refreshed better than I was able to at the office.

I’ve also had a lot of SeLf-rEaLiZaTiOn this past month. I lost purpose of what makes me actually want to do this podcast. It felt like homework. I refused to go to graduate school because I never wanted to do homework again. Ew.

In the episode, you’ll hear about how I figured out what my “why” was again. Slowly but surely I’m easing back into the swing of things at Angus Eye Tea.

I wanted to provide some things that have helped me get through quarantine so far. I hope these help you out, too!

The One World Together at Home Concert

Lady Gaga put together this amazing “at home” concert that has uplifting videos in between songs as well as some real info on COVID and how we can help. It’s tear-jerker but in all the right ways. I couldn’t stop smiling the entire time.

The Fitness Marshall

No lie, the past two weeks of my life has consisted of me interjecting The Fitness Marshall’s dance workouts into every conversation. The reason why I love these workouts so much is that:

  • Caleb is hilarious throughout the entire video
  • One of the dancers on the team is plus sized like hello YES THANK YOU
  • This doesn’t feel like a workout. Some dance videos I do randomly have 30 seconds of just straight squats. I have never seen Britney Spears suddenly do 30 squats in her videos. J-Lo didn’t pause during the Superbowl to do lunges with Shakira. ANYHOO, I don’t feel like I’m doing a direct workout.
  • I feel like I’m learning how to dance so I’m not as awkward at the bars. And yes, I do intend to bust out an intense routine once everything opens up.

My guilty pleasure read is the Pendergast series and I FINALLY got my hands on the first book. I started completely out of order which luckily is totally okay to do with this series. Pendergast is this refined, rogue Southern FBI agent who is incredibly smart and all these crazy things happen around him and, you know, it’s a thriller/crime novel.

I am loving this book so far! Here’s the synopsis:

Just days before a massive exhibition opens at the popular New York Museum of Natural History, visitors are being savagely murdered in the museum’s dark hallways and secret rooms. Autopsies indicate that the killer cannot be human…

But the museum’s directors plan to go ahead with a big bash to celebrate the new exhibition, in spite of the murders.

Museum researcher Margo Green must find out who-or what-is doing the killing. But can she do it in time to stop the massacre?

The Skimm

The Skimm is a daily newsletter that gives you the news in a matter of minutes with a clever, entertaining delivery. It’s where I’ve decided I’m getting my news right now so that I’m not overwhelmed by thousands upon thousands of articles. If you do every want to go more in depth, each mini-section has a link to a bigger article that you can dive into. For me, this is the perfect amount of info I want right now.

theSkimm

Guided Meditation: A Trashy Friday Night

Do you miss going out on Friday nights? As someone who just started enjoying going out, I have to say I miss the shenanigans of a Friday night that goes off the rails. The kind where you think you’ll only go to one bar and then somehow it’s midnight and your screaming karaoke in a bar you’ve never visited.

Ah, such precious times.

But, alas, we are all staying home. And while we are keeping ourselves and others safe, it is still hard to not think about what you’re missing out on right now.

I’ve been meditating recently to keep my cool and to also not get trapped inside my mind. I was doing this meditation from a YouTuber I like and I realized I loved it so much that I desperately had to parody it and turn it into this monster of an episode.

Enjoy spending your night celebrating your friend Stacy’s half-birthday party. Blood will be shed, punches will be thrown, shots will be had, and a secrets will be revealed.

Are you ready?

Tips and Tricks on Making Friends as an Adult Ft. Author/Therapist Hope Kelaher

Hey, Heifers! Finding new friends as an adult is hard. Where do you find these humans? How do you ensnare them into being friends with you? How do you handle toxic friendships? How do you break up with friends? What if someone friend-breaks-up with YOU?

Hope Kelaher, therapist and author of Here to Make Friends: How to Make Friends as an Adult, helps us out with all of these questions!

You can find Hope at http://hopekelahertherapy.com/

Get your own copy of Here to Make Friends !

Let’s chat! Email: anguseyetea@gmail.com

Follow me on Insta and Twitter @AngusEyeTea.

Want to support the podcast? Check out our partners below!

BestSelf Co: BestSelf has goal journals, planners, thought decks, and a ton of productivity tools that are extremely helpful for those of us who are anxious and depressed and need some motivation. Use code “HEIFERS” for 15% off your order!

I am not a health professional. I am simply someone who was diagnosed with an anxiety and depression disorder. Please talk to your friends, family, teachers, doctor, trusted human, etc. if you need help. I also have a resources page on my website that can direct you to different hotlines, therapy websites, and more at https://anguseyetea.com/resources/.

The Monthly Meltdown: Home Sweet Home in April

Hey, Heifers! New month, new goals, and a new appreciation for my four walls.

We’re in a weird time and for this Monthly Meltdown, I lay out some goals that are quarantine specific. I also talk about what’s helped me so far, which I hope you can use in your daily routine, as well!

I’m also proud to say this is one of my episodes where I DON’T SING AT ALL. LIKE, NO SINGING OCCURS. CAN YOU BELIEVE??

Let’s chat! Email: anguseyetea@gmail.com

Follow me on Insta and Twitter @AngusEyeTea.

Want to support the podcast? Check out our partners below!

BestSelf Co: BestSelf has goal journals, planners, thought decks, and a ton of productivity tools that are extremely helpful for those of us who are anxious and depressed and need some motivation. Use code “HEIFERS” for 15% off your order!

I am not a health professional. I am simply someone who was diagnosed with an anxiety and depression disorder. Please talk to your friends, family, teachers, doctor, trusted human, etc. if you need help. I also have a resources page on my website that can direct you to different hotlines, therapy websites, and more at https://anguseyetea.com/resources/

When The World Is On Fire, Can We Turn to The Stars? Ft. Astrologer Crystal Warren

Hey, Heifers! The world is chaotic right now, so I thought it would be refreshing to focus our gaze on the skies instead.Astrologer Crystal Warren and I have a chat about what astrology is, does it have scientific backing, why it’s important, and a whole lot more.

Here’s where you can find Crystal:

What Happens When You Ignore Self-Love?

Ft. Dr. Shainna, author of The Self-Love Workbook

In this episode, I am excited to have such an amazing guest, Dr. Shainna Ali!

Shainna authored The Self-Love Workbook which I have found incredibly helpful. The book contains a series of exercises that act as a toolkit to help with personal growth and saying, “Um, k bye” to those inner demons (my words, not hers).

We discuss what self-love means, how it is accepted (and not accepted), why it’s so hard to practice, and much more.

Make sure to also check out Shainna’s newest version of the workbook, The Self-Love Workbook for Teens!

Here’s where you can find Shainna:

My Podfest Solo Adventure | Anxious Traveler

Week one of March is done and ohhhhhhhhhhhh boy, y’all. I drove 7 hours to Florida, stopping at rest areas along the way that might as well have been coronavirus cest pools. I applied hand sanitizer so much that the skin actually fell off of my hands and now I just have meat hands. It’s as uncomfortable as you would imagine.

This is my second podcast conference I have ever attended and I feel like I know my way around these here parts now. I saw my old buddies and made some great new friends and, of course, learned about so many new podcasts I can start binging!

I love gatherings like Podfest because being around so many creative people is highly inspiring. I go through waves of feeling eh about my ~craft,~ and seeing people who are doing what I’m doing and how passionate they are reminds me that, oh, yeah–I do like what I’m doing!

Also, DST/Spring Forward happened that Saturday where there was a party AND karaoke, which meant when I wrapped it up at midnight and got to my room at 12:30 a.m…it was 1:30 a.m. And I had a 9:30 panel I wanted to hit the next day. So. Yeah. Oops.

I did do karaoke, and I’m starting to think this is my new conference go-to. At She Podcasts Live, I debuted “The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia” by Reba McIntire. This year, I knew I had to up my game, so I brought out the wringer.

“Simply The Best” by Tina Turner, sung by Elaine Best.

Iconic.

I’m off to rest up and slowly work on all the great ideas I gathered from Podfest. I hope you enjoy listening to my anxious adventure!

Have Mercy, March | The Monthly Meltdown

Listen here!

March’s mantra may need to be “I’ll sleep when I’m dead.” I’m set to go to a conference last minute, I have my first interview on the day before I head out, I’m stressed at work, my personal life is a firestorm, and I’m feeling VERY dramatic!

Monthly goals keep me in check during all the chaos. In this episode, I follow along with my goal template which you find here and the reflection template here.

I Read My Dog’s Tarot Because I’m Tired | Hipster Witch

Hey, Heifers! I’m fatigued from a stressful month and a very stressful weekend, so I decided it was time to whip out the Hipster Witch nonsense we love here on Angus Eye Tea to give my brain a break. I let you vote on what I would tarot about and y’all chose my dog’s future. Because of course you did. 

Check out the show notes at  www.anguseyetea.com.

Let’s chat!

Email: anguseyetea@gmail.com

Follow me on Insta and Twitter @AngusEyeTea.

Want to support the podcast? Check out our partners below!

BestSelf Co: BestSelf has goal journals, planners, thought decks, and a ton of productivity tools that are extremely helpful for those of us who are anxious and depressed and need some motivation. Use code ANGUSEYETEA for 15% off your order!

***

I am not a health professional. I am simply a human who was diagnosed with an anxiety and depression disorder. Please talk to your friends, family, teachers, doctor, trusted human, etc. if you need help. I also have a resources page on my website that can direct you to different hotlines, therapy websites, and more at https://anguseyetea.com/resources/