Note: It’s not often I begin posts with the words, “I should tell you that I’m not a Doctor…”, but, with this one, I should.
I’m not a Doctor.
I’m a magician and a comedian. This means that, when I’m talking, there’s a good chance that I’m either lying or joking.
So I repeat: I’M NOT A DOCTOR.
Warning over, let me share something I read in a book recently (Emotional Resilience by Harry Barry – don’t let the comically rhyming name put you off!) that could be really useful if you’re panicking and stressing about your wedding or party planning.
It’s a simple CBT exercise to help deal with panic and anxiety – symptoms a lot of brides and party planners experience at some point.
The exercise is called “Flooding” and it helps you train your brain not to be so scared of things that aren’t going to kill you, such as choices like deciding whether to cut the cake at 20:01 or 20:03.
If you find yourself feeling panicky, here’s what you should do:
- Allow yourself to experience your feelings.
- DO NOT FIGHT THEM, just let them wash over you, like a wave…a very uncomfortable wave.
- Accept that these feelings, though uncomfortable, are not dangerous – Panic is not going to kill you. It’s like when the mother in law visits – just allow it to happen and it’ll be over soon enough.
- Continue to allow yourself to experience whatever you’re feeling until it passes (your attitude should be one, of “Bring it on!*”).
If you try this you’ll notice that, as long as you don’t fight the symptoms of panic, they should go away fairly quickly.
Fighting panic actually feeds it – it gives it the power and strength it needs to keep going. Allowing it to happen and do it’s worse is it’s Kryptonite**
If you’ve been panicking over the planning recently, remember to give yourself space, time and permission to experience those feelings – they’re natural. Uncomfortable, but natural.
Don’t fight it.
Allow your brain to experience it and learn that it’s got nothing to worry about.
* AGAIN: I’M NOT A DOCTOR!
** You may choose to add the suffix “BEATCH!”.