One of the things I’ve been dealing with a lot lately is anger. As in, I’m some degree of angry 100% of the time. It’s something I need to bring up with my therapist next time I see her, but in the meantime, I’ve had to find some ways to deal with it.
So I put together a list of all the coping skills I use (and a few I’ve tried that don’t work for me) when I’m trying to calm down.
- Coloring. When I was in the psych ward, my friend Sarah brought me one of those adult coloring books. Adult coloring books have gotten really popular lately, and some people (like me) find it very relaxing to color in all the tiny little shapes in those intricate designs.
- Guided meditations. I tried one of these after going through a unit on Buddhism in one of my classes, and they’re actually really awesome (plus, you can find a lot of them on YouTube). This one is my favorite, and there’s a huge collection of them here.
- Warm bath/shower. Personally, this doesn’t work very well for me, but some people swear by it.
- Candles. Watching the tiny flame can be soothing. (Or could make you want to burn something, so be careful.)
- Music. There’s all sorts of stuff on YouTube that’s great for just laying back and listening to, and a slower tempo can physically lower your heart rate and calm you down. This one is my favorite (violin and cello), this one is nice if you like piano, and this one has water sounds with it.
- PMR (Progressive Muscle Relaxation). I plan to do a whole post (or maybe a video?) about this, but it’s a way to relax your muscles. Basically you start at your head and work your way down your body, tensing groups of muscles and then relaxing them.
- Aggressively _____. Especially when I’m angry, I get in a mood where I aggressively organize my bedroom. Or sometimes I aggressively cook. Doing an ordinary thing with a little more force than usual (as long as it’s not something like polishing the china) can help work out some of your negative emotions.
- Vent. Send 52 angry texts to a friend, drive to your bestie’s house and tell them how worked up you’re feeling, tell your life story to the next random person who asks how you are. (Okay, maybe don’t do that.) And if you don’t have anyone to talk to, feel free to shoot me a long, rant-y email. I promise I’ll read it and respond.
What would you add to the list?
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