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How to overcome 3 common panic triggers
Mar 13

How to overcome 3 common panic triggers

By Dr Berni Sewell | Overcome your fears

Going to the dentist has always been one of my worst panic triggers.

And last week, two of my fillings had to be replaced. My dentist insisted on an anaesthetic injection. Which I hate! The entire left side of my face was numb, including my nose and eye!

And then the procedure started. I closed my eyes and tried to relax. The bright surgical light above my face blinded me. Two people were pressing against me from each side. Inserting countless instruments into my mouth, manipulating my teeth.

I felt panic gripping me and fought it down.

But then out came the drill. The shrill screeching in combination with the unpleasant pressure against the affected teeth is terrifying. Saliva accumulated at the back of my throat and made me gag.

I tensed up. My finger nails were digging into my thighs. Adrenaline accelerated my heart rate and I wanted to scream, remove those utensils from my mouth, jump up and escape the awful situation so I could breathe again.

Panic had won again.

I felt like a total failure. I knew I wasn’t in any real danger. So, why was I so terrified?

What was wrong with me?

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10 amazing books that helped me heal low self-worth and anxiety
Feb 14

10 amazing books that helped me heal low self-worth and anxiety

By Dr Berni Sewell | Overcome your fears

By the autumn of 1999, my life was soul-sucking misery. I had suffered from social anxiety, an overreactive bladder and irritable bowel syndrome for many years. But I coped. Life wasn’t a blast, but I was ok.

All changed when I moved to Vienna. I chose a University further from home to escape the rejection, heart-ache and bullying of my school days. But it left me alone in the city, depending on nobody but myself for the first time in my life. And I was terrified.

Everything had changed. My emotions were in turmoil and I resisted the new situation, unwilling to adapt. I felt forlorn, helpless, vulnerable.

Even little things, such as popping over to the shop across the road, became unsurmountable challenges and triggered frequent panic attacks. I existed with a constant baseline level of fear. The sick butterfly feeling in my stomach accompanied me from dawn until dusk and then turned into full-blown terror at night. Every unfamiliar sound sent sharp shocks through my chest. My heart was racing all night and I laboured hard to force air into my lungs.

Between lectures, I sat alone while others had already formed friendships. I watched them chatting and laughing. But I couldn’t get myself to start a conversation, to just say hello and see what happened. Maybe I was scared of being rejected again. Maybe I thought I would make a fool of myself. But I was lonely and isolated and I remember that I cried a lot.

But all changed when I read the book that saved my life…

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4 simple mind shifts that will double your happiness
Jul 22

4 simple mind shifts that will double your happiness

By Dr Berni Sewell | Discover your happiness

Let me ask you a question: Are you happy?

Or do you worry too much what other people think or say about you? Beat yourself up for the plunders of the past, endlessly replaying “what if” scenarios in your mind.

Regretting what was and aching for what could have been.

Do you lay awake at night agonising about the future? The fires you fight, the financial problems, dysfunctional relationships and stressful jobs.

I know you are doing your best. But it is never enough.

You feel anxious and depressed. Forever waiting for that perfect person, that sum of money or once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to finally appear and make you happy.

Other people have happiness in their lives. So, why don’t you? You’ve tried everything. But you never get a break. You never feel peace, contentment and joy. You are never truly happy.

So, what is wrong with you?

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61 symptoms of a hidden disease that sabotages your life
Jul 07

61 symptoms of a hidden dis-ease that sabotages your life

By Dr Berni Sewell | Heal your self-worth

You feel stuck. You are unhappy. The time has come. You need to improve your life. You can’t go on like this.

So you prepare. You do your research. You read all the popular advice. You are determined to turn things around this time, once and for all. You hit the gym and embark on another diet but you soon lose momentum. So you remind yourself that everyone is beautiful in their own special way. But, deep inside, you suspect this doesn’t apply to you.

You update your CV and you will send it to higher paying employers…tomorrow. You hope to turn your talents into income one day but you seriously doubt anybody would pay for what you have to offer (even if you had something to offer in the first place). You attempt to stop comparing yourself to other people but your sister is so much better at it than you are. You push yourself to think positively but secretly can’t believe that good things will ever happen to you. You crafted “what I like about myself” and “what I am grateful for” lists but you question how accurately they reflect reality.

All these tried and tested techniques promise to transform struggles and suffering into success and happiness. They help so many other people. Why don’t they work for you? Why can’t you triumph over the disaster that is your life? You tried EVERYTHING! What is wrong with you??!!!!

The answer is simple: NOTHING! You are merely betting on the wrong horse!

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