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8 Tips to Stop Being a People-Pleaser

What is People Pleasing?

People-pleasing is when a person commits themselves to meeting the needs, opinions, or requirements of others, to the detriment of their well-being.

A people-pleaser will go to great lengths to please other people, even at the cost of their own needs; this could be due to the fear of rejection, abandonment, or the desire to avoid conflict, or another person’s disappointment.

A people-pleaser wants to feel loved, safe, and secure.

What Makes a Person a People-Pleaser?

There are a number of reasons a person becomes a people-pleaser;

People-pleasing can develop because of childhood trauma, it could be that to feel safe and avoid conflict within the home, the child learned to protect themselves by going out of their way to appease their parent or caregiver.

The devoted love and attention or harsh criticism experienced as a child can have a lasting influence on a person’s world perspective.

If people-pleasing is something that a person has done since childhood, it becomes the norm for them, and this is frequently carried through to adulthood causing a whole host of problems.

Similarly, societal expectations that people should be passive and compliant might lead people to please people, there is also a cultural and generational element to the belief that if you please others you are polite, considerate, and generally a good person.

Sharon Martin writes about an evolutionary component to people-pleasing. Our early ancestors were known to form tribes so they could pull resources, and help protect each other. The more a person had to offer within the tribe, the more they would be protected. If they were not accepted in the tribe or community the more likely they were to die of being attacked by a predator, or of starvation.

What are the Consequences of Being a People-Pleaser?

Trying to make other people happy may, for a short time, ease tensions in social interactions, however, people-pleasing often results in unhelpful outcomes. The following are some of the most significant problems that can occur because of people’s good intentions.

Suppressed Emotions
When you consistently put the needs of others ahead of your own, one of the unintended consequences is that you learn to suppress your own emotions.

Stopping your feelings and putting another person’s needs before your own can result in physical health problems such as digestive problems, headaches, and muscle pains. A person’s mental health has a direct link to their physical health.

Reduced Self-Worth
You can risk losing your sense of self when you are frequently influenced to accept things from another person’s perspective or adapt to suit another person’s preferences. A people-pleaser may find it difficult to construct long-lasting and deep relationships as they are not allowing the other person to get to know their authentic self.

People-pleasing can result in feelings of shame if a person behaves in a way that is not in alignment with their values, in order to please another person.

Exploitative Relationships
People who tend to be more passive or considerate can put themselves in harm’s way by allowing others to take advantage of their kindness or lack of boundaries. This may lead to a vicious circle of misunderstandings and hostility between the parties.

Stress and Burnout
Constantly putting the requirements of others ahead of your own may result in stress and burnout; both are detrimental to your mental and physical health and should be avoided at all costs.

The Connection between People-Pleasing and Resentment

You can become resentful if you try too hard to make others happy in various ways. People who routinely put the needs of others before their own could one day find that they struggle to articulate dissatisfaction or displeasure. It can be the case that a people-please can lose sight of what makes them happy.

We all want to see our friends and family happy, but when you continually sacrifice your own needs to do this, it won’t take long for you to feel resentment develop.

When individuals fail to meet the standards set by others, people pleasers often experience feelings of regret and humiliation. This can instigate critical self-talk and feelings of “not good enough”.

Breaking Free from People-Pleasing

1. Self-Reflection:
Reflect on what motivates your drive to attempt to improve the lives of others around you. The first step in implementing change is recognising and managing the factors that previously prevented you from progressing.

2. Boundaries:
The ability to set boundaries is an important life skill that we should all learn; it’s acceptable to put our needs above those of others, so don’t feel guilty about it!

3. Assertiveness:
Be assertive; let people know your needs, preferences, and goals. Through open and honest conversation, working on existing resentment or conflicts and strengthening relationships with others is possible. Learning how to be assertive will help you in your personal and professional life.

4. Mindfulness and Emotional Awareness:
One benefit of regular mindfulness practice is gaining a deeper understanding and tolerance of your feelings. Recognise that your feelings are genuine and deserving of being expressed. Journalling can help increase self-awareness and provide time to reflect.

5. Embrace Conversation:
Try to see differences of opinion not as something to be avoided but as an opportunity for personal development and improvement. Learning to engage in healthy debates may benefit the quality of your relationships and keep your mind active.

6. Seek Support:

Be proactive and get help by discussing your issues with family members or a professional counsellor. If you want to overcome your tendency to please others, having a solid support system may be one of the most important things you can do.

7. Self-Care
Self-care is scheduling time for fun and calming activities. If you take care of your physical and mental health, you could find that you can regulate your emotions better, get to know yourself and what you like and dislike, and get a clearer idea of what’s okay.

8. Self-Compassion
Treat yourself with kindness and compassion, acknowledging that you deserve love and respect.

Wrapping it all Up

Remember that the path away from people-pleasing tendencies requires patience and self-compassion. Learning to prioritise your needs and communicating your feelings in an uninhibited manner may lead to a stronger sense of inner calm and emotional resilience, particularly in the middle of conflict.

Giving up trying to please others is not the same as being selfish; instead, it is putting one’s health and happiness first and learning to value one’s perspective. Doing so allows you and others to develop more meaningful connections with one another and yourself.

If you would like to stop people-pleasing, but feel you need some support Clear Haven Therapy can help with this! Book a free Discovery Call.

The Importance of Therapy for Men: Exploring its Impact

Regardless of gender, anyone can be affected by mental health issues.

Regardless of gender, anyone can be affected by mental health issues. However, fewer men are still seeking therapy; let’s examine why this is the case.

It is a fact that men experience the same challenges as women, including anxiety, depression, relationship issues, and trauma. However, these issues can present differently for men. For example, depression may show as anger due to men tending to suppress emotions. Suppressed emotions contribute to mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, and stress.

Physical issues, such as headaches, digestive problems, and muscle tension, can also result from suppressed emotions.  A 2019 study concludes that concealing one’s emotions can hinder mental health, physical health and general well-being.

Case Study

I recently worked with a client who contacted me due to struggling with social anxiety and low self-esteem. We worked together for six weeks, and at the end of this time, the client left therapy knowing their worth which changed everything for them.

The client opted for an RTT hypnotherapy session; during regression, they returned to an incident that occurred at school when they were aged 8. They spoke about a time they could not answer a question in front of the class; they felt shamed and humiliated before their teacher and peers. The incident left the client feeling profoundly embarrassed and feeling like a failure. After the session, the client spoke about vaguely remembering the incident and feeling embarrassed whenever they thought about it. However, they did not recognise that what they experienced then deeply continued to influence how they felt about themselves today, which was that they were not good enough.

Working through the emotions associated with this experience and reframing outdated beliefs was life-transforming for this client.

Therapy for Men – The Statistics

It is not unusual for men to mask the symptoms of depression as they will take an “I just need to get on with it” approach. However, this can encourage unhealthy coping mechanisms such as drinking alcohol, substance misuse, pornography addiction, or gambling.

When these unhelpful coping strategies become “the problem”, men will recognise they need help, and at this point, their mental health may have declined significantly.

Statistics demonstrate that men’s mental health is something that requires more attention.

  •  The Office of National Statistics (ONS) 2021 states that 74% of death by suicide cases are men.
  •  In England and Wales, suicide is the most significant cause of death for men under 50.
  •  The Institute of Alcohol Studies (IAS) 2020,  men of all ages are likelier to become alcohol dependent than women.
  •  Men are more likely to be experiencing homelessness and be rough sleepers, and at the end of 2022, 96.2% of all prisoners were men.
  • NHS England’s Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) states that in 2019/20 it recorded 65% of women,   compared to 35% of men, were referred to psychological services.

These statistics highlight the need to change society’s perception of men seeking therapy.

Why Some Men Struggle to Seek Help: Understanding the Barriers of Therapy for Men

Let’s consider WHY some men find it difficult to seek therapy.

Societal Gender Norms
Society has thoughts about how men should be – “strong, self-reliant, assertive, powerful”. These expectations can make it more challenging for men to reach out for support and instead mask or suppress any symptoms that suggest they are not coping.

Shame
If a man has adopted unhealthy coping strategies, there may be guilt, shame, or self-disgust, making sharing this with another person even more difficult. However, reaching out for help is a sign of strength and courage, and in therapy, you can learn how to work through any shame attached to what is going on for you.

Stigma
One significant roadblock that prevents men from seeking therapy is the stigma around mental health issues. As a society, we have the power to change this. It takes courage, but only when men talk about their mental health and talk about reaching out for therapy or other support will it become normalised. After all, you go to the gym to work on your physical health; working on your mental health is the same!

Fear of Vulnerability
What would it look like to reveal a side of yourself that isn’t always confident, courageous, and strong? Vulnerability is sharing your thoughts, emotions, feelings, and experiences with another person. It is like removing your armour and allowing another person to see your authentic self, your softer side. Allowing yourself to be vulnerable with those closest to you can deepen and strengthen relationships.

Finding a Therapist
The gender of a therapist is not important; you must find a therapist you feel safe and comfortable with. I work with many men in my therapy practice, and I recommend that you check if a therapist is comfortable working with male-related issues.

Let’s Now Discuss the Advantages of Therapy for Men

Therapy offers men a safe space to openly discuss their concerns and express themselves freely without fear of rejection.

In therapy, men can learn how to practice healthy coping strategies such as emotional regulation, meditation, grounding exercises, journalling, assertive communication, and implementing boundaries.

A therapist allows men the space to manage past issues that may impact their lives today.

Alternatively, some men prefer to focus on what is happening for them in the here and now rather than revisit past experiences. What you would like to gain from therapy is something you can talk through during a discovery call as you want to ensure that a therapist works in a way that you will find most helpful.

  • Being a Good Example

By going to therapy, you convey to others, including your friends and family, that taking care of your mental health is FINE.

Being open and honest about seeking help could inspire others to adopt your outlook and encourage the growth of a society where discussing emotions can be done more freely.

  • Strengthening Relationships

Effectively managing emotions can help build healthy and fulfilling relationships.

People tend to have closer relationships with their loved ones, members of their families, and close friends when they are aware of their own emotions and can empathise with others.

  • Improves Job Performance

The workplace is known to be a place that can be challenging when one is already struggling with their mental health. Therapy can help reduce work-related stress and anxiety, improve job performance, and it can help with enhancing communication and teamwork skills.

When To Seek Therapy

If you have any of the following symptoms, it may be a good idea to consider therapy:

  • Been more easily irritated than usual.
  • Experienced bursts of anger or aggression.
  • Felt sad or down.
  • Felt overwhelmed or under much pressure.
  • Unexpectedly gained or lost weight.
  • Started drinking or using drugs more frequently than before.
  • Been relying on alcohol or drugs to cope with a challenging situation.
  • Lost interest in activities you used to enjoy.
  • Struggled to concentrate at work, school, or home.
  • Had more headaches or days of feeling generally unwell.
  • Sleeping too much or too little.
  • Felt tired even after a whole night’s sleep.

There’s no reason to feel ashamed of your symptoms; you’re never alone. Many men believe discussing their difficulties won’t help, but this is untrue. Book a free discovery call today.

6 Facts About Rapid Transformational Therapy (RTT)

It could be that you have decided to work on an issue that you have been struggling with for sometime, or you might be in the early stages of researching the many different therapies that are available.

The truth is when searching online for therapy it can be a bit of a therapy minefield! There are so many different modalities of therapy and it is important that you find the therapy that best suits your needs and preferences.

Let us look at RTT.

What To Think About When You Are Considering RTT

As a Counsellor and RTT Hypnotherapist my advice is to think about what you would like to achieve from therapy. Questions you can explore are; is it important for you to discover how and when you acquired the issue, would you like fast results, and are you prepared to be invested in the process?

If you have answered YES to the above questions you may be interested in RTT. RTT is a powerful therapy that utilises the power of the mind to provide outstanding results.

RTT is an emerging non-invasive therapeutic option. RTT combines the principles of Psychotherapy, Hypnotherapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), and Neuro-linguistic Programming (NLP).

This phenomenal therapy rewires the neural pathways of your brain, replacing outdated beliefs and negative behaviours that are causing the problems you are experiencing today. The life changing transformation begins as new healthy beliefs are formed

1. RTT is a Multi-Award Winning Therapy

Marisa Peer, world-renowned therapist, author, and international speaker spent 30 years developing and polishing RTT to get outstanding results. Marisa has been awarded multiple awards for her work including Best British Therapist in Men’s Health Magazine, and multiple Stevie Gold awards. Read more.

2. RTT helps with Psychological and Physical Issues

RTT has been generating impressive results worldwide. It has helped people struggling with a range of issues, from mild to severe in between 1 to 3 sessions with outstanding results.

  • Depression
  • Stress
  • AnxietyPhysical Pain
  • IBS
  • Sleep Issues
  • Fertility Problems
  • Confidence
  • Weight Management
  • Procrastination
  • Phobias
  • Addictions

3. RTT works with the Conscious and Sub-Conscious Mind

The RTT Method is not purely theoretical, as it involves a lot of practical working too. The foundation of RTT is to address the deep-rooted issues that are in the subconscious mind. RTT is more than just positive reinforcement. It focuses on the background of negative beliefs and behaviours.

RTT addresses the how, when, and why of the unhelpful beliefs,
RTT utilizes the leading scientific principles of neuroplasticity. This further enables the creation of new neural pathways. Read More.

RTT changes perceptions at a subconscious level. Think of positive suggestions as seeds which are planted in the subconscious mind. Those then allow positive, healthy beliefs to grow and flourish.

4. RTT and Science

Hypnosis is the foundation of RTT. The relaxing feeling you experience during hypnosis is your nervous system becoming quiet. It induces a calm state of mind, so the conscious and unconscious minds can communicate.

CBT will help you make sense of the problems you experiencing by assisting you to think of changes you can make to handle a situation. NLP works at a deeper level by changing the problematic patterns which might not be on the surface, but are underlying. This contributes in preventing the problems from appearing again.

Physical and emotional health are intimately interlinked, this connection is known as the mind-body connection. The body and the mind are not two different entities. Your chemistry and biology impact your mood and emotions.

You are most probably familiar with the feeling of your stomach in knots when you were stressed, or it can feel similar when you are excited. That’s the practical demonstration of mind-body connection!

5. RTT uses Regression to Quickly get to the Root Cause

The most significant difference between regular therapies and RTT is that the former deals with the conscious mind, whilst the latter works with the unconscious mind.

RTT discovers the origin of the beliefs that has led to the problem that is holding you back, and reframes the beliefs permanently. During an RTT session you can identify and let go of the problem and move forward with positive beliefs which can be life-changing.

6. RTT is a well Respected and Endorsed Therapy

RTT was meticulously developed, and has won multiple awards and honors.

Licensed RTT therapists have observed their clients overcome serious issues like past trauma, sleep issues, weight management, procrastination, and issues related to ADHD such as social anxiety and depression. RTT has helped people struggling with intrusive thoughts by breaking the negative cycle they get stuck in, and moving on faster and more effectively.

Check out the other organisations that have accredited RTT;

  • General Hypnotherapy Register
  • The National and International Council of Psychotherapists
  • The American Board of Hypnotherapy
  • The Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council
  • The International Institute of Complementary Therapists
  • The International Association of Complementary Therapists

Wrapping It All Up

If you are interested in how RTT can help with the issue that is keeping you stuck book a free discovery call here.

The Benefits of Therapy when Diagnosed with ADHD in Adulthood: The Psychological Impact

ADHD in adulthood

After years of struggling with symptoms such as time management issues, procrastination, low motivation, or problems with concentration, you’ve finally got an answer: it’s Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), but what now?

But isn’t ADHD only diagnosed in children?

Nope!

There has long been an association between ADHD and children who were disruptive in class, mainly boys. However, many adults with ADHD were the quieter children in the class who appeared to be ‘good’ students. Read more.

Being diagnosed or recognising, you have the symptoms of ADHD in adulthood can be a confusing and overwhelming experience. Many people diagnosed later in life can struggle to accept their diagnosis and how it impacts their life.

For some people, an adulthood diagnosis of ADHD can come as a relief. However, there can be some intense emotions when reflecting on life’s difficulties and recognising that undiagnosed ADHD has played a part.

The good news is that if you are an adult who has recently been diagnosed with ADHD, resources can help you cope with the diagnosis to enable you to lead a fulfilling life.

Common Psychological Effects Of Adult ADHD

As you may have experienced, being diagnosed with ADHD in adulthood can present various psychological effects. The most common include anxiety and depression.

Another common psychological effect that comes along with adult ADHD is low self-esteem or feelings of inadequacy. This could be due to issues such as finding it difficult to meet deadlines, understand instructions in the workplace, or finding it difficult to be on time for appointments. Of course, the symptoms are not the same for everyone.

People Living With ADHD May Feel Anxious or Depressed

An adulthood diagnosis of ADHD can feel like a heavy burden; it might be that you think the difficulties you are experiencing will be lifetime struggles. However, a diagnosis means you can begin navigating life around the symptoms rather than feeling like you are constantly fighting against them. As you learn more about ADHD, it’s essential to remember that everyone has different needs and experiences and their journey in understanding and accepting their diagnosis.

You’ve Been Diagnosed, Now What?

While receiving a diagnosis later in life can be extremely helpful, it doesn’t improve the symptoms. However, recognising that many of the symptoms you have been struggling with for years are associated with ADHD can be helpful alone.

A diagnosis can help as you may feel less alone; many ADHD support groups out there can be helpful for some people.

It is common to have mixed emotions following an adulthood diagnosis of ADHD. It can be helpful to talk this through during therapy. Therapy can also help with techniques and strategies to make life easier.

Stigma and Shame

For many people, being diagnosed with any condition can be a source of shame or embarrassment. This sense of shame can lead to feelings of isolation and loneliness, which can further exacerbate the symptoms of ADHD.

Recognising that these feelings are normal and that you are not alone in your experience is essential. There are plenty of online resources available for adults with ADHD which can provide much-needed support during tough times.

Self-Esteem

Another common issue faced by those diagnosed with ADHD is low self-esteem. People who have struggled for extended periods may feel worthless or inadequate compared to their peers.

The key here is to practice self-compassion and remind yourself that having an ADHD diagnosis does not make you any less capable than anyone else; it simply means that you need different strategies to help you succeed in life.

Learning how to set realistic goals and take steps towards achieving them can be incredibly empowering and help boost your self-esteem over time.

The Benefits of Therapy for Adults With ADHD;

1. Provides a Safe Space

Therapy provides a safe space where adults with ADHD can openly discuss their diagnosis without fear of judgment.

2. Tips and Strategies

A therapist can provide helpful tips and strategies which will help to manage the symptoms of ADHD helpfully.

Therapy can help explore and manage thoughts, emotions, and behaviours often accompanying an ADHD diagnosis. For example, impulsivity, difficulty focusing, hyperactivity, anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, and problems with time management.

3. Structure and Routine

In addition to providing coping mechanisms for dealing with the emotional impact of an ADHD diagnosis, therapy can also help create structure in one’s life by assisting people to set achievable goals and prioritise tasks.

This structure helps provide much-needed stability when faced with everyday challenges associated with having ADHD.

4. Manageing triggers

Adults with ADHD can learn how to recognise triggers that exacerbate their symptoms so they can better plan for them in advance.

5. Comfort and Connection

Last but not least, therapy provides a sense of comfort which is invaluable when navigating the psychological impact of being diagnosed later in life.

People recently diagnosed often feel isolated due to not having anyone else in their lives who has gone through similar experiences or understands what they are going through.

Having an outside party willing to listen without bias or judgment provides much-needed support and comfort during this difficult time.

Wrapping it all up

Therapy can help you build the skills necessary to manage ADHD effectively so that you can lead a whole and happy life despite your diagnosis.

It may be helpful to seek professional help if you’re struggling emotionally after your diagnosis; don’t hesitate to reach out book a free discovery call here.

Top 10 Benefits of Daily Journalling

How Journalling Can Be The Ultimate Source of Self Care

When you were a teenager, chances are you had a diary. Kept hidden under your pillow, your diary was your catch-all for fears, worries, changes, and plans.

As we grow older, many of us stop journalling. One day we set our pen down for the last time, only to spend our adult lives stuffing our thoughts deep within us. Research has proven that journalling has enormous benefits for mental health.

There is no “right way” to journal. Journalling as an adult means releasing your thoughts and emotions onto paper. That’s it! You can let your pen flow while you write down whatever comes into your mind, draw pictures to express yourself, write down positive affirmations or list three things you have been grateful for on that particular day. Whatever works for you!

So, how can writing your ideas and feelings onto paper help you? We’ve created a list of the top 10 benefits journalling can have for your mental health and well-being.

1. Detoxes Your Mind

Many of us roll out of bed in the morning and immediately are bombarded with emails to check, kids to get to school, breakfast to make, and schedules to remember. With all this chaos, our emotions often get pushed to the wayside.

Journalling can help you detox your mind to think clearer and release any pent-up frustrations, stressors, confusion, or anxiety.

Journalling has been called a “mental windshield wiper”. It allows you to get out of your head and never think about those thoughts again.

2. Helps You Achieve Goals

When you journal about future goals, you’re creating an intentional mindset shift. Writing out and organising what you want in life can make it much easier to create a plan. Goal journalling can help you recognise the daily actions hindering you from making your dream life.

By laying out a roadmap for your goals through journalling, you’re less likely to give in to immediate satisfaction, knowing the delayed gratification is coming. In addition, journalling can keep you on track and focused, allowing you to crush your goals faster and without distraction.

3. Spot Negative Thoughts

Through journalling, we can go back and read through past entries to spot any recurring negative thoughts. By identifying our negative thinking patterns, we can consciously change them.

Our negative thinking patterns can run a constant loop in the background of our brains, so addressing them can be a crucial step in becoming more positive and hopeful for the future.

4. Can Help Identify Triggers

Journalling is a powerful tool when it comes to self-realisation. If you constantly find yourself in emotional turmoil, you may need to help understand precisely where it comes from. When you journal, you can identify any triggers in your daily life that negatively impact your mental health and then create a plan to change them.

For example, through writing, you may realise your mornings consistently end in stress and chaos. While you may have chalked this up to you “not being a morning person”, through journalling, you can spot ways to simplify your morning routine and create a happier start to your day.

5. Helps With Anxiety

For those struggling with anxiety, their brain is a never-ending worry machine. It’s widespread for someone with an anxiety disorder to dwell on anxious thoughts (‘ruminate’). It can be incredibly emotionally draining. When we journal, we rest our brains and allow the paper to soak up our worries, fears, and concerns.

Once our worries are out, we can look for alternatives to the problem. Often, when we get our anxious thoughts out, we realise how minimal they are.

Researchers have found that creative writing helps many psychological and physical symptoms.

6. Helps With Depression

When it comes to depression, journalling can look a bit different. Research has shown that someone with depression may benefit more from deeper-level journalling than recording daily life. An easy way to incorporate this is through gratitude journals.

By writing down a few things you’re thankful for daily, you can rewire your brain’s neural pathways and re-train your negative thoughts into more positive ones. In addition, journalling for depression is an effective way to spot triggers that may make your depression worse.

7. Increases Self Awareness

Whenever you do anything without being fully or wholly present, you’re operating through your subconscious. Think of your subconscious as your autopilot. You may see this on your drive to work. You’re breaking at stop signs and using your blinkers to make a turn. However, your mind may be on your fight with your partner the night before. Once you become more aware, you’ll realise how often you’re in this state.

Journalling allows us to be fully present with ourselves and our thoughts. This time spent with your thoughts may be the only time you let your conscience take over all day. This time spent in the present is a powerful state to be in for emotional healing.

8. Helps You Make Better Decisions

By increasing our self-awareness through journalling, we empower ourselves to make better decisions. Every time we journal, we remind ourselves that our choices today affect our future tomorrow. We can see this clearly as we go back and read through our past entries. You’re much more likely to make healthier decisions when conscious of your choices.

9. Allows Us To Reflect

While there is still some debate about this statement, some mental health professionals have argued that reading past writings is more beneficial than writing. We glimpse back in time when we read through our old entries. Quite literally isn’t possible any other way.

Journalling gives us a unique view of our old selves and allows us to see how we’ve grown, changed and healed over time. In addition, past journal entries can serve as a potent reminder not to return to old situations or relationships.

10. Gives Us Clarity

When our thoughts and emotions are constantly swirling around, we can unlikely think 100%. When we journal, we are writing down what matters to us the most. We prioritise our main worries, fears, goals, or emotions when we take the time to journal about them. This time helps give clarity on which issues at hand are most pressing to resolve or overcome. When we write our problems out onto paper, we may find we have had the answer to our questions within us all along.

All In All…

Journalling is a free, influential tool to empower growth and enable you to become more in tune with yourself and your feelings. As our world operates at a fast pace day in and day out, give yourself the gift of peace through journalling. It may be the only time you can sit with your thoughts all day and cultivate a life you’re excited to wake up to.

While journalling should be a daily practice, in time, you will find that it becomes easier and easier to prioritise as the benefits become crystal clear.

Self-help techniques such as journalling can significantly help your mental health. However, if you feel you would like more support, you can reach out for professional help by contacting Clear Haven Therapy for a free discovery call.

Grounding Techniques for Anxiety

Grounding Techniques that work!

Many of us live busy, hectic lives that can leave us stressed and filled with anxiety. It is important to find balance and take care of yourself in these busy moments. There are many simple way you’re able to do so is by grounding yourself.

Below, we discuss what grounding is, and the top six grounding techniques that you can start trying today!

What are Grounding Techniques?

Grounding is the intentional act of connecting back with yourself physically and mentally and with the space around you. The word grounding derives from connecting with the ground, or “earthing”, which has been proven to be beneficial for easing the symptoms of stress and anxiety. However, in therapy and coaching it is more about bringing awareness to the present moment which will ease psychological, and physical reactions which occur when in a situation that you perceive to be fearful or dangerous. Specific techniques, listed below, are a great place to begin with the practice of grounding.

5, 4, 3, 2, 1 Technique

Within the 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 technique, you’re able to bring awareness to the present moment, your senses, and your current surroundings by:

  • Naming 5 things you see in the room around you
  • Naming 4 things you feel within or around yourself
  • Naming 3 things you can hear in the present moment
  • Naming 2 things you can smell currently
  • Naming 1 thing you like or enjoy about yourself

Read more about the 5,4,3,2,1, technique here.

Self Sooth Box

Similar to how the 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 grounding technique is able to utilize, stimulate, and bring awareness to your senses, by creating a self-soothing box you’re able to create a go-to box full of sensory items to help ground you as needed. Enjoy creating your own box, and be sure to include things that interest and/or inspire you such as:

  • Affirmations or quotes that motivate and lift you up
  • Photos or items that bring back good, positive memories in your life
  • Items with different textures to touch such as soft fur, leather, or slime
  • Toys that allow you to relieve stress stitch as fidget spinners
  • Essential oils or aromatherapy scents to smell
  • Something sweet for you to taste
  • A journal if you enjoy writing or something musical if you’re inclined
  • Colouring books, mind games, or puzzles to help ease and clear your mind
  • Whatever it may be to help you soothe any stress and anxiety you can include in your personal box.

Grab and Describe an Object Close to You

If you don’t already have a self-soothing box, it’s okay! Grab the closest thing to you and start to describe it as if you were telling a friend on the phone about it, imagining they had no idea what it was. Detail the shape, texture, size, and colour. Then, if you continue you can describe other aspects of the object; does it open or close? What function does it best serve? What is it used for? Each of these will allow you to ground yourself instantaneously.

Play a Memory Game

To also ground yourself and release anxiety instantaneously, play a memory game. By asking yourself questions that require you to jog your memory you’re able to shift your awareness away from your current stresses, and onto a different topic, while relieving anxiety. Name major cities in your country, list places you’ve visited, or your top memories, you can even ask yourself to list off random categories of items or subjects, whatever you choose you’ll be bringing your anxiety levels down in the process.

Remember your Mantra

If your mind can’t possibly remember a bunch of items or places, start by just remembering your mantra. Create different “I am…” statements, about 3-5, and when you’re feeling stressed out or anxious and in need of grounding repeat them out loud multiple times to remember that this moment is only temporary.

Here are a few ideas for your mantras.

Focus on Breathing

If you have absolutely nothing else around you, you don’t want to use your mind, and you want to release anxiety you can focus on your breathing. Breathwork is something that you’re able to do anywhere at any time. Start by breathing in, holding, and breathing out for a consistent amount of time between 2-5 seconds and focus on counting in your head. Often simply by breathing, we are able to ground ourselves.

Research supports that breathing exercises can make us feel more comfortable and relaxed, and ease the symptoms of anxiety, depression and anger.

Wrap-Up

Although stress and anxiety tend to come through our busy lives, there are many grounding techniques that you’re able to implement to help ground you back into the moment. We don’t know when we may need to implement grounding into our routine so it’s encouraged to take note of all the above techniques and add them into your mental toolbox.

If you are struggling with your mental health and feel you would benefit from further help please book a free discovery call.

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