By Teresa Collett, PsyD, LMFT, Worry Topic Expert Contributor for GoodThrapy.org on June 16,2014 When you are experiencing anxiety, it may feel serious or even life threatening. Your heart may race, you may have multiple thoughts going on at the same time, and your chest may feel tight and restrictive as you gasp for air. It certainly does not feel pleasant. When you are experiencing a panic reaction and think you are going to die, try to remind yourself that you will not die from the panic itself. Keep telling yourself, over and over, that you will not actually die. This can help slow down your mind so you can focus on things you have more control over: your thoughts and reactions. So, then, is anxiety just in your head? Does having a consistently elevated heart rate and pulse day after day not affect you in the long term? Is a lifetime of experiencing anxiety not detrimental to your health?