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Anxiety Makes Us Feel Unreal

Panic attacks can suck the reality out of us!

I talked two people down from panic attacks recently and both of them had been worrying that they had lost touch with reality. They felt totally disconnected to the world around them. In talking to them, they were so convincing. I almost believed that this episode was different. But I let go of my own fear for them. (My worry doesn’t help anyone.) I quickly assessed that they were not, in fact, psychotic. They were speaking rationally and eloquently.

And I remember from my panicky days how I felt different and disconnected.
Anxiety makes us feel unrealAnd this feeling different and disconnection totally charged up my panic. It went through the roof! Making me feel even more disconnected. This is because anxiety is what we feel when we are disconnected. Anxiety comes from a feeling of separation. That there is something missing in us that doesn’t allow us to handle situations. A false assumption that we are different than other people (thus separate).

Feeling disconnected is a very scary illusion

It feels so much like it is possible we won’t come back to ourselves. Like our sanity is about to go off a cliff somewhere, never to return. This is terrifying! And feeds the anxiety. An already huge snow ball, rolling around, gathering yet a wider girth. Intense panic ensues.

If your panic is this intense:

Stop and remind yourself that this is just panic, not death, not psychosis, not a cliff.

Remember: I cannot guarantee much in life, but I can guarantee that things will change, you will not stay here forever. That is impossible. This too shall pass.

Remember: You have most likely been here before and came out the other side, it only feels like this is more intense because it is happening right now. It was probably this intense before and you survived (or you wouldn’t be reading this.)

Know: You can get rid of problemed anxiety

Please tell me what is on your mind!

By Jodi Lobozzo Aman

I blog here: Heal Now and Forever Be In Peace
and here: Anxiety-Schmanxiety Blog,
share here: Twitter@JodiAmanGoogle+
inspire here: Facebook: Heal Now and Forever Be in Peace,
Get my free E-book: What Is UP In Your DOWN? Being Grateful in 7 Easy Steps.

276 thoughts on “Anxiety Makes Us Feel Unreal”

  1. I feel disconnected when I panic. Sometimes I “force” that feeling of being disconnected to avoid the situation i am living. I become a witness to the situation and not a part of it, and it feels so real. It was considered psychosis, and was prescribed anti psychotics, but i wasn’t convinced. It didn’t help. The feeling of being disconnected often comes with visions of what “will happen”. It can be anything, something bad like jumping from the 10th floor or something good like getting a hug. Whatever it is, it brings peace for a while. When feeling disconnected and needing to “come back”, the best thing is to have someone talk to me about anything, but i also try to notice and focus on the physical symptoms that come with the anxiety: shaking, breathless, chest pain, etc. It brings me back to reality. Feeling disconnected is very scary, but I learned to use it and now it is helping me.

  2. When I am in the midst of anxiety and panic, I definitely feel disconnected from others and different from others. I feel like everyone else if doing fine–why can’t I? You described this very well, Jodi!

    When I’ve very anxious, I can be with another person, but still feel disconnected from him or her–like I can’t focus.

    1. Hi i am 17 year girl..and suddenly i start getting wei4d symptomps in my body very weird that doctora refuse to blv me ..i did all test like ct scan mri of brain but all was titally normal.
      But thn i wen to a phsycatrist and she gave ne medication..as i use to take i was nt totally out my synptoms but yeah i t qas better thau atleast i can handle..
      But .. i startd hoempathic of it as it doest nt harm.
      But almost 1 year gonw i dnt feel normal..
      My hands lefa scalp of head ia always constantly numb…
      i cant get over it..getting frustrated nt able to study …go out of town for frthrr studies..i feel helpless like there id no solution..i feel so uneasy alld time..it feeldlikei am ..forcely happy just to gorget these symptoms

    1. I would probably start to worry that i couldn’t trust my own cognitive state to make intelligent decisions. My anxiety is so bad that i have been on permanent disability for 10 years. I can relate to feeling “alien” around other people and this aggravates the anxiety even more, this is all just too depressing for me to contemplate for the remainder of my life.

      1. Hello womble,
        Anxiety can indeed be debilitating, frustrating, and depressing. If you haven’t done so already, you might consider working with a professional. And if you have done so, you might consider seeking different professionals until you find one with whom you click. Therapists and psychiatrists can be very helpful, but it does take time both to find the right one and to chip away at anxiety. If you are feeling particularly overwhelmed, there is immediate help available at http://www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org/ (or 1-800-273-8255).

    2. You are so right, when I get them I have to say to myself it’s ok it will be over in a minute. But, it does feel like the worlds closing in on me & that every can see I’m having an attack. It’s crazy but like I said your right. Somebody once told me ” this to shall pass” and it has stuck with me from that moment on. So, if you can keep telling yourself that, it will help. Or it atleast helped me.

  3. Actually, when you are on panic your mind is automatically block because you are focus on what is happening and you are worrying if you would be hit or something.

  4. My anxiety is taking me on a field trip,first I was convinced I had cancer,then I was convinced I was crazy now I think I’m schitzo its so scary,I be so out of it I get so sad and think I may have to go to a menatl institute because I have two little boys!I get scared because so many weird thoughts run threough my mind..can u relate?

    1. Yes, Shletha, I can relate and the fear of it all has it increasing! Once you know this is fear, it may settle your mind a little, and stop snowballing. This is what you want.
      Is there someone you can talk to? To help you through?

  5. Hi im currently in the process of thinking I’m going mad. I don’t even feel like me. Why is this? I feel stiff, feel like I can’t breathe and my heart is racing. My mind won’t stop. I thought I was going mad till I read this so thanks!

    Thank you all. I know it will pass. xx

    1. Hey Milly did your anxiety pass. Because I’m feeling exactly that way, it started early this month it comes an go but I really don’t like the feeling an I’m a varsity student I feel like its gon affect my studies.

    2. I’m scared it like I really don’t know myself I don’t get wants wrong wit me I feel like I’m not me I hate looking in the mirror I feel like I’m n the wrong body I have bad dreams n I feel like can get out my head idk wat to do but sit n pretend like I’m OK but I’m not I feel empty like I always been crazy and didn’t know it can someone please reply n give advice???

      1. I feel the exact way you just described. I’m seeking CBT treatment and I heard it can really help and totally fix the situation we are in, which is just fear even tho it feels like some sooo much more. Maybe you could look into CBT yourself?

      2. …also. As a quick fix solution I got prescribed Diazepam from my GP which is a sedative! Sounds drastic but it totally relieves the feelings for a bit. The only downside is that they are HIGHLY addictive! But therapy is the way to go.

        1. I think you raise a very valid point, Rob. Sometimes medication really is necessary — and helpful. But the side effects (including addiction/dependency) can’t be ignored. You’re right that therapy is very effective. Sometimes a combination of approaches is necessary. Even if it takes time to find just the right approach, anxiety is indeed treatable.

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