After my last AF attack I swore I was going to do as much as I could to reduce the chances of having another attack, so I have lost a stone and a half (go me!), got a bit fitter, and have read as much of the good advice on here as I could, while (as always) hoping the next attack was going to be as far off as possible.
As luck would have it, a "friend" decided yesterday was a good day to upset me... and that stress led, unfortunately, in the middle of the night, to an attack. So, I thought I would try a few things that have been suggested here and report back. First, I did a yoga-sort-of stretch, putting my arms to shoulder height and then pulling them back as far as I could. While this didn't do anything to stop the AF, it did make my chest feel less uncomfortable. So I would give that a qualified thumbs up. Definitely better than scrunching up.
After that, I decided to try simple meditation (not easy when something you really dislike is happening to you, I know, but bear with me). For me, that was just lying as still as possible, and trying consciously to relax all my muscles - amazing how you do clench muscles during one of these attacks, I realise. I was also counting my breaths - to ten, and then starting again over and over, to keep all thoughts at bay - which really is a good idea, because during an attack they can be quite negative... I have to say, this didn't do a lot for the AF either, except that I was able to doze and relax rather than spend the night sleepless. So I would definitely give that a big thumbs up.
Another thing I would note is that I felt, though I didn't record it, that my heart was not beating as fast as it usually does (it can rev up to 170bpm). For me that was a big bonus. It was hard to ignore that weird floppy-fish thing going on, but it definitely helps, if you persevere.
As early as I felt I dared, I went to take my daily beta-blocker tablet, and went back to bed for an extra half hour. And whether it was the relaxed state, or the extra fitness or my heart hadn't been working quite so hard due to the meditation, or whatever, while I slept my heart went back into sinus. Now, this was a lot quicker than normal, because usually the attacks last around 12 hours and this time must have been five hours max.
I still feel bleugh today, as if I'd run a marathon or been ten rounds with Mohammed Ali, but generally I'm pleased. And if anyone has any other tips they would like to share that would be great. Undecided whether to report to doctor...