Emotional Crisis Skills and Strategy (Infographic)

Emotional Crisis Skills and Strategy (Infographic)

A.C.C.E.P.T.S

How to get through difficult situations and difficult emotions, using a memorable acronym.

Who doesn’t love an acronym?!

emotional regulation skills infograpic

Emotional Crisis Skills and Strategy

When it all becomes too much,

it helps to be armed with the skills and strategies to regulate your emotions.

 

Activities

Keep Busy. Think ahead and plan for stressful events

by putting together a list of activities you like to do

can be so helpful in the moment of distress.

 

Contributing

Keep your mind off yourself and the situation. Volunteer,

help a friend move or fix their resume, it feels good

to help another.

 

Could Be Worse

And it always could be worse. Sometimes comparing

your current stressors to worse stressors is very

sobering and enlightening.

 

Emotions

Immerse yourself in another emotion than what you feel

when your distressed. If you’re sad, see a funny movie.

See a scary movie. Watch your favorite go-to sitcom.

 

Pushing Away

Try as hard as you can to push the situation out of your

mind. Imagine the situation is an object, and imagine

yourself putting the “object” in an imaginary box, and put the box in an imaginary closet.

 

Thoughts

Distract yourself with other thoughts, fill your mind with

counting all the white cars you see, or all the daffodils outside,

concentrate on breathing and count your steady breaths. If you lose count, start over.

 

What do you do to regulate your emotions during an emotional buildup?

Do you know what you’re actually feeling?

Do you know what you’re actually feeling?

What Feelings Are Actually Underneath?

I struggle with Depression and Trichotillomania.

I have for many years. Twenty actually.

 

It took probably a solid ten years to come to terms with and accept depression and trichotillomania as a part of me, qualities that make me different.

 

Yes, I suffer sometimes, and feel boundless despair.

Yes, I pull my eyelashes and my eyebrows.

But I am an exceptional being, not in spite of,

But in addition to my adversaries.

 

Probably ten years ago, I started up with a new therapist.

I had a halting reality viewpoint change when I realized

I did not have to a victim to my brain,

I could make changes to work towards changing my circumstances.

I decided I didn’t want to hurt anymore.

I knew it would be incredibly hard.

But I had a choice. Feel like sad shit, or make a change

and do something about it.

 

Very early in this process, it became exceedingly clear

I was unaware of my feelings. I did not get it.

I didn’t understand the connection between emotions and what

I was actually feeling. I had sad and mad, and the connection within was lost on me.

 

No clue. I struggled with this for a fair amount of time, until all the sudden,

I connected my emotions and feelings and what that felt like in what part of my body.

 

I still get chills to how mindblowing that felt. What a revelation.

Feelings. Emotions. A whole entire spectrum.

 

Once I learned that whole “feeling feelings” thing,

I became much more aware of pulling my eyelashes and my eyebrows.

 

I was so blocked off from my own physical and existential self,

it was incredible that I missed all of these complexities.

 

I realized, that if I grappled with the concept of actually feeling feelings, well, I sure would imagine other people would have that difficulty as well.

 

In honor of this wonderful month,

Mental Health Awareness of 2016, the wonderful people over

At Mental Health America have put together a worksheet

to specifically identify what is really happening in our minds and bodies.

What is really going on in there? I can assure you.

This is not a delicate process. It may be frustrating.

But unlocking the blocked off disconnected feelings to

emotions is life changing. Take a look over the worksheet.

 

Grapple with it. At least consider the feelings that are listed.

There are so many. I only had two.

Which are your default feelings?

 

More helpful information can be found on Mental Health America.

 

Depression Feels Like

Depression Feels Like

What does Depression feel like?

 

Depression is the most beautiful day,

sun beaming with the most perfect of blue-hued sky,

staring out the window, with shuddering body racking tears,

mourning despite the perceived happiness of the exquisiteness of the day.

That’s what depression feels like.

 

Depression is emptiness, an emptiness that engulfs your innermost core.

 

Depression is a panic, looking around,

seeing people closest to you, but being isolated by walls of anguish.

 

Depression is an adversary.

 

Depression inhabits the darkest vulnerability,

shadows and a sense of mourning.

 

 

depression feels like

 

 

Depression and Trichotillomania.

What does depression feel like when you add trichotillomania to the mix?

 

I have fought both for as long back as I can remember.

I don’t even know what life would be like without them both.

Sometimes one of the two fades,

sometimes they both hail my every conceivable function.

 

But. I am a willed by the uniqueness in each of my adversaries.

You are different with the caveat I too face,

for all the same reasons we struggle,

it is for those reasons we are amazing.

 

There is something behind fighting an innermost adversary

that wills a golden light from within, it is special. It is infectious.

 

With all the fighting, you are truly monumentally conditioned.

 

Stunningly Different, with an unmatched strength.

 

I believe in you. Do you believe in you?

6 Habit Apps to Motivate A Pull-Free You

6 Habit Apps to Motivate A Pull-Free You

6 Habit Tracking Apps to Discourage Habitual Pulling

Trichotillomania is hard to categorize. In some ways it’s habitual, at least it is for me in certain situations, but in other ways it’s clearly neurologically or physiological based. There is a great deal of talk around being Pull Free. Many forums are dedicated to this talk around being pull free, buddy systems established for accountability, and everyone has a different system that works best for them. Many trich sufferers have a great deal of success with keeping track of Pull Free success with Apps, which I think is an awesome use of technology. But there are quite a few habit apps. 

Here are 6 Habit Tracking Apps that you could use to help you keep pull free.

  1. Quit That! Track How Long Since You Stopped. Quit That! Is a really cool habit tracker that will encourage you not to pull and also show you how many days/minutes since you last pulled. This definitely could be awesome for some lash or brow pullers, or it might just as definitely not work for others. It’s really going to depend on how you are triggered and what keeps you focused on motivation.
  2. Way of Life- The Ultimate Habit Maker and Breaker. This habit app is really quick and simple to use and it has the most positive reviews hands down. The all time review count is at 2,872 FIVE star reviews, and 134 of the current most recent updated version.
  3. Productive- Habit Tracker- Daily Routine and Reminders.   A very robust habit tracking tool. Also offers a gamut of productivity features for an extra oomph. People seem to really love this app, with almost 2000 total reviews, ALL five stars! This version has 408 five star reviews.
  4. Momentum Habit Tracker. Specifically designed for the ios systems. This app for habit tracking is minimalistic. It is simple in both design and interface. It syncs with your calendar. Personally, it’s not my bag (I need something a little bit more aesthetic to really encourage me to use, but this is very simple and for some people simple trumps aesthetics)
  5. Habit Streaks: Create Good Habits, Break Bad Ones.  This habit tracking app is simple, but it uses a very visual tracking system. A calendar shows gold stars where you were good and didn’t pull, and a good streak of gold stars unlocks a different theme which is also aesthetic and gratifying. Nice little app for positive reinforcement.

Habster – Habit Tracker and Daily Goal Reminders.  Not only is the little Habster logo adorable, but this habit app has so many tools for both habit tracking and productivity. It shows an interactive calendar, easy to identify visual habit streaks, and provides interesting productivity and habit statistics.

 

So, tell me. Have you tried a habit tracking app? Comment below, I want to know! (ew that rhymed, I didn’t plan that).

5 way better activities for when you want to pull

5 way better activities for when you want to pull

Do you pull your lashes when you’re reading in bed?

Do you pull your brows when you’re watching a movie or TV?

Personally, I am the absolute worst when I am reading or watching TV. It’s so easy to slip into a comfort of being unaware until you realize your hands are being fresh! (slaps hands.At that point, you may realize that you’re pulling but at that point it’s too late, and you don’t even care that it’s happening, and therein lies the cycle of self-shame. Let’s get out of the cycle of self-shame.

At that point, you may realize that you’re pulling but at that point it’s too late, and you don’t even care that it’s happening, and therein lies the cycle of self-shame. Let’s get out of the cycle of self-shame. Because who likes shaming oneself? Well…that’s a entirely different post for another time ;).

Of course, there are the usual suspect advice for self-distraction like go for a jog, walk outside, call a friend, etc. But, even though these are totally viable options for a means of distraction, but let’s be serious, how many times have you rolled your eyes after hearing the same suggestions all the time?

 

Here are 5 Things to Do When You Feel the Urge to Pull

GET UP! GET UP GET UP! Take yourself OUT of the trance and GET UP! Jump up if you must to shock yourself out of the pulling position. GET UP!

 

 

Play with Makeup. This helps for two reasons. First, you are being mindful of feeling good about yourself, which will discourage the desire to pull. Second, it keeps all hands busy doing something fun, methodical, and it never gets old. Find a makeup artist you really like, there are many on YouTube, pull it up on the computer or iPad, and start having some fun with makeup play. I refer to it as “Playing with My Face”. Practice building a brow!

Some of my personal favorite Makeup Artists/Tutorials:

Carli Bybel

Chloe Morello

Chrisspy

Wayne Goss

Decoupage.  I like decoupage because of the level of involvement. There’s cutting up pages out of an old magazine or book, (I love scissor cutting through paper, so gratifying), and neatening up the cut outs, and the actual placement of the paper on whatever it is your recreating (vase, table, decorative platter) with the modge podge. Then the end result is so awesome, you created something beautiful with your hands.

Organizing Your Computer Folders. Because they get out of hand super quickly, and if you work from a computer, your day can be so much more well spent if your files are all well placed and easy to find. It reduces so much frustration. And it can also feel kind of fun in a file organizing kind of way.

Coloring. Painting. Art. But maybe you don’t even know you like these things so you’ve never invested in that particular hobby. So one of my best friends uses an app! She finds it so soothing, and it’s right on her phone. Sometimes the path of least resistance, like the convenience of instantly being able to distract your hands beats having to think about going to the store to obtain hobby supplies. The Colorfy App seems to be a fan favorite, and is available for both Android and Apple devices.

How to radically improve your life using radical acceptance

How to radically improve your life using radical acceptance

How can radical acceptance you improve your outlook on living with trichotillomania?

Trichotillomania is so much more than just the uncanny need to pull out hair.

Because, subsequent to the act of pulling itself, you experience such

range of emotion when living with trichotillomania.

You can go from feeling the initial urge, to the satisfaction of the pull,

then immediate guilt and shame.

So what is Radical Acceptance?

 

Radical Acceptance is a concept, or an outlook, heavily practiced in Dialectical Behavior Therapy.

heavily practiced in Dialectical Behavior Therapy.

 

The cycle of trichotillomania and the outpouring of many

different emotions can be so acute and overwhelming,

it’s often unimaginable to be outside of the physical act.

 

 

The fact of the matter is, whether you’re in control of your

urges and you just slip up a little bit,

or you are in the middle of a picking binge cycle,

the angrier you feel, the more the cycle seems to perpetuate.

 

You pulled. You become incredibly depressed and feel immense shame.

 

But feeling that deep dark hole of depression and sickeningly shameful

will certainly not change the fact that you pulled.

You’re only spending the time and energy wishing that you could change the fact that you pulled. 

 

So what does this “Radical Acceptance” stuff have to do with anything Lindsey?

 

Radical Acceptance is a process through which you start to change your outlook.

You acknowledge that you pulled. WITHOUT JUDGEMENT.

Granted, Radical Acceptance isn’t meant to be an excuse to rage out and pull without a care…

but giving yourself permission the self-harming thoughts that have come in result to pulling.

But acknowledging that you’re human, you pulled. Radical Acceptance is allowing yourself to move on,

freeing yourself from the emotional bind that comes with the pulling.

 

Please, let me know what experience you have living with trich and/or coping mechanisms

 

Additional Resources for more on Radical Acceptance:

DBT Self Help

Psych Central Article

 

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