It’s been a bit grey and miserable, the rain is threatening to dull my sparkle and I’ve been beginning to wonder if that’s the end of the summer. I thought I would try and rekindle my positivity by writing a little about self-soothe. It’s one of the areas of the awesome Marsha Linehan’s DBT; a type of therapy that focuses on enabling an individual to experience, tolerate and accept feelings. It’s pretty great, often fairly intuitive and I’ve found that with a little practice, some of the kills have been really helpful! There’s a great DBT book called the The Dialectical Behavior Therapy Skills Workbook by Matthew McKay, it goes through DBT skills and gives you lots of different options and ideas to try. Some of the ideas are a little odd… Like sitting in some nice underwear to self soothe (ha!) but there are some brilliant ideas and working through the different lists can act as a really good distraction in itself.
Here are my top ten list of my favourite self soothe techniques:
- Hand cream- I was constantly using hand cream when I was on Naomi but it really helps me feel calm… I also have eczema so it helps my hands from drying out too.
- Making myself into a blanket burrito- a soft cuddly blanket can be great for times of stress or when you’re struggling.
- My pets– really they should have been at the top of the list, but my pets are a real comfort and really calm me. The Society for Companion Animal studies are formally researching the use of PAT dogs for people with mental health problems, something I am fully in support of!
- A nice bubble bath- I’m a huge Lush cosmetics fan and a good bubble bath with some nice smellies is a sure way to help me feel a little better.
- Mood lighting- I have a few lights in my room that are really soothing, fairy lights are good for general use and I get out my super Projector Lamp for when I’m feeling anxious or can’t get to sleep… This light has been a real comfort as I really struggle with insomnia and it really makes my mental health struggles worse.
- Lovely smells- the key to effective self soothe is to use all of your senses. I have a really pretty Woodwick Melt Burner (I use it with yankee or woodwick tarts) which adds to my pretty lighting but also smells amazing! I tarts last for a really long time so it’s quite a cost effective way to have a lovely smelling room, plus you can get Yankee stand ins that are really reasonably priced too.
- Pinterest- I’m a bit of a Pinterest addict but it’s quite handy for collating soothing images that can then be revisited if I’m having a tricky patch.
- Photos- these can be old ones from my childhood or more recent pictures on my phone.
- Letters and cards from my family and friends- I have such a wonderful support network around me and reading through letters and cards or messages is another helpful soothing option.
- Being outside– fresh air and nature are possibly one of my favorite self soothe past times, bringing the dogs along with me is even better!
I could go on I’m sure, but those are a few of my favorites, try and soothe with your senses and work out which one helps you the most! ❤️❤️