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My anxiety is out of control!

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I am a naturally anxious person, but i think that what happens is when a small incident happens (like someone being rude to me at work), a whole CASCADE of anxiety begins to flow.  It's like a flip has been switched and I get really stressed out and paranoid and worry about the same things over and over. 

Right now I'm pretty new at a job and a superior spoke to me very harshly.  Long story short is that I burst out crying and (privately) had a mini breakdown complete with hyperventilating.  Now I'm getting anxious that my reaction will get me in trouble. 

I also just started dating someone I really like, but I'm so nervous for him to see this side of me.

How can I calm myself down when I start freaking out?  I do have a script for ativan...but is there anything else I can do?  Once the feelings start to flow, it's like they take on this incredible life of their own.  I cannot afford to lose my job because of my anxiety.

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Anxiety attacks are adrenaline out of control. Actually I believe there are two separate kinds. There are anxiety attacks, and panic attacks.

Anxiety attacks are what you are experiencing at work.(by my definition) You are new there, want to do well, and most likely run "worst case scenarios" when you don't realize you are doing it. Then when it does happen - uh oh!

There are things you can do outside of work that will help with this. For me, exercise is key. I am getting back into swimming. This helps with 1) my being in shape and setting off key endorphins and 2) regulating my breathing. Both of these are helpful when I get into a stressful situation.

I also meditate. I started with a CD by Dr. Andrew Weil ( cheap on Amazon) on breathing. His voice is so soothing that it is really easy to get into. Then I went on to meditation. I eventually boosted my time from 10 to 30 minutes.

And finally - you have to acknowledge the problem and you have to commit the time it takes, each day, to work with it. These are not quick fixes I am suggesting, but you didn't get into this quickly either.

Meds are one thing - but we, the sufferers have to really try too. Or we just do the same things over and over again.


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