At times we can become flooded with anxiety or emotional pain. In these spaces, we need quick, effective ways of getting relief and putting an end to the spinning. Here are 5 steps I commonly use with clients that help diffuse intense emotional symptoms:
Step 1 Remind yourself that thoughts and feelings come and go like a weather pattern passing through. “I won’t always feel this way.”
Step 2 Accept (willing to experience) your current experience, allowing the emotional pain to breath.
Step 3 Describe out-loud or on paper what you’re feeling and the thoughts you’re having, almost as if you were an observing commentator. Label the emotions and describe where and how you feel them in your body.
Step 4 Engage in a five minute grounding exercise. First, listen to all the sounds in your environment intently for 1 to 2 minutes. Then pick out a visual anchor in your environment, something pleasing to the eye, and study it visually for a minute or two. Next notice how your body feels on the cushion or chair or run your hand under warm water noticing the sensations (1 to 2 minutes). Lastly, grab a spice or something that’s pleasing and engage your olfactory sense. Study the smell for a minute or so.
Step 5 Click on this link and engage in the breathing exercise:
Repeat the sequence if needed.