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Signs of an Anxiety Attack and How to Fight it

Updated on October 6, 2019
Jackie Zelko profile image

I used to work at a job that threatened my safety, undermined my authority, and allowed for others to bully me.

Am I Having an Anxiety Attack?

Anxiety can present itself in different ways in each individual. Below are four common stages that present itself in people with anxiety.

Stage 1: Your face

When an anxiety attack is working its way up in you, you will first feel your face get warm. You will notice, if looking in a mirror, that your face is starting to get flush.

Stage 2: Lightheadedness or blurred vision

Two things may happen to you after you feel your face get warm. You may find yourself getting lightheaded, or you may find your vision getting blurry. Either one will most likely result in the room spinning around you.

Stage 3: Shaking

Next, you will notice your hands start to shake uncontrollably. You will feel scared as the room is spinning around you, and you will feel helpless as you cannot control your movements.

Stage 4: Hyperventilating

The last stage is when you feel like you are suffocating. Your chest feels tight, and you find yourself gasping for breath as you continue to shake and get the spins.

Other forms of an anxiety attack can be chest pains with hyperventilation.

What is the Cause?

Anything that causes you stress can be a cause. It could be because of your work life, your relationship, your home situation, or an argument with someone.

How Do I Fight This?

Sever cases of anxiety: If you think you may be diagnosed with severe anxiety, go see a doctor. They will have the knowledge and the resources to help you further.

Mild cases of anxiety: If you feel your face getting warm and see that your vision is getting blurry, that is the time where you have the power to make it stop. I found that the best solution to overcoming an anxiety attack from completely taking over is to close my eyes and take deep breaths in and out slowly. After a minute or so, I will feel almost back to normal.

Mild forms can be taken care of in other ways by eliminating the cause of stress in your life. Here are the following ways you can help improve your anxiety levels at home:

  1. Yoga or other forms of exercise.
  2. An emotional support animal.
  3. Take a nap.
  4. Choosing a hobby that relaxes you and makes you happy.
  5. Surround yourself with people who love and support you.
  6. Have pictures of these people on your desk at work.

My Story

Everyone says that your first job out of college is going to be the worst, and they were right. For two years, I worked in a toxic work environment that I would not wish on my worst enemy. Each day when I had alone time, I would cry painfully at my desk.

It was routine that I was bullied by my coworkers every day. Days when I said they were not welcome into my room, they would barge in anyways making me feel so small. They made fun of me behind my back when I was in the same room as them. I attempted to express my concerns in a professional way to my department head, only for her to make matters worse.

My bosses were no better. They forced me to stand up in front of everyone and allowed them to criticize everything they did not like about me. They would allow for others to threaten my safety and allow for me to be cussed at each day. My bosses would also interrogate and ambush me in my performance reviews.

During this time I had unexplained medical issues happening to me in regards to my heart. The doctors never did figure out what was wrong with me. In fact, I believe they thought I was a hypochondriac and I was faking it. Once I moved to a job that was safe, showed me gratitude each day, and came with most supportive staff you can imagine, that is when I came to my own medical decision; it was my job that was affecting me. All of my unexplained medical issues completely disappeared once I moved to a job that had a positive work environment.

Learn From My Story

Do not let this be you. If there is something or someone toxic in your life, cut it out immediately. It is not worth the damage that it is doing to you mentally and physically. You have one life to live, so do not waste it on things or people that cause you stress every day. Choose a better life for yourself. You deserve it.


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    • Jackie Zelko profile imageAUTHOR

      Jackie Zelko 

      10 months ago

      It’s amazing what stress can do to the body. Glad to hear you are doing well now!

    • renee21 profile image

      Tori Leumas 

      10 months ago

      Great article. I had a toxic relationship a few years ago, and I suffered from severe panic attacks for months. I am now better, rarely get them anymore, and I'm happily married.


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