Self-soothing helps us in our lives. It helps us not be reactive or explosive/implosive. It helps us rewrite our scripts and begin doing things differently.

Firstly, Comfort Yourself. What we often do instead is rile ourselves up! We are hurting and we can make ourselves hurt even more – listening to sad music, telling our friends about all the negatives over and over. Instead we need to soothe those hurt feelings. Our self-talk really matters. Are we *telling* ourselves we can’t cope? Not helpful! Supportive and encouraging self-talk is what develops emotional robustness and self-esteem.

In the heat of the moment in relationships learning to take a time out and self-soothe is key.

Secondly, Reduce The Upset. When emotive we can be at the mercy of our triggered emotions. We catastrophise the future, we demonise our partners, we feel hopeless and despairing – and we believe it all. Feelings are not facts and we need to recognise thoughts and feelings to be transient and ever-changing.

Breathwork and calming ourselves help ground us in the present moment and reality.

CBT does the cognitive restructuring of taking things from extremes to more balanced perspectives.

Thirdly, Be True To Ourselves. Who do we want to be? And what do we need to do to be able to be that person? We can lose our value system and moral code in relationships so it’s important to stay connected to who we are. In our co-dependency we can also pretzel ourselves or be chameleon-like. This keeps us stressed and anxious.

Soothing ourselves with a clear idea of who we want to be can guide us in our behaviours and choices.

My fourth suggestion was Give Yourself The Gift Of Time. Our reactions are often top-level emotions and we don’t get to what lives several layers down, which are our fears, needs, wishes and dreams. Those are far more meaningful than our defensive retaliations. Being in tune with ourselves means going to our vulnerable places. We can do this by journalling, breathwork, going to therapy, by giving ourselves and our feelings time – so the truth of them can emerge.

Finally, I spoke about Restoring Resilience. We all want to be emotionally robust, and that means developing the skill of tolerating life’s challenges and difficulties without dysregulating or acting out. When going about life if we are easily triggered or reactive we are not especially robust. We are often in survival mode and defensive much of the time.

Learning to withstand the discomfort of emotional difficulty is very challenging however we *can* develop higher tolerance and become more resilient. This is the reward for self-soothing. We can manage ourselves and our emotions and behave with dignity and composure.

How To Self-Soothe

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