Updated: Feb 11
Wow this is full on! I don't know what I'm doing one week to the next. Can I see clients? Do we have an income? Is my daughter going to school? There is so much uncertainty and being a therapist, I like to be consistent and do what I said I was going to do; only I can't! This brings up feelings of letting people down which I find hard to tolerate. Plus friends and family are stressed and anxious. Despite all that I'm noticing that I feel Ok (most of the time).
I have three simple survival strategies; feel all feelings, limit media exposure and do something everyday that feels good. Feeling feelings of course is easier said than done. But can be a simple practise of taking a few breaths (can you hear yourself breathing? that's a good indicator that you are in touch with your breath). Ask yourself 'what am I feeling?' Clock the sensations in your body. Repeat the sentence 'I accept this feeling of .........'. Do this for 2 minutes or half an hour. The more and the more often the better. Aim for once a day at least.
Limit media exposure. I notice the news makes me anxious so I decide on a boundary e.g TV news once a week, no facebook, no news app on my phone. Turns out I receive all the 'news' that is relevant and useful to me via other people in my life. When I need to, I go on government or the BACP website to check out key information about guidelines but other than that zero! At first it felt a bit naughty and irresponsible, but this was just a symptom of detoxing from an old habit of being news addicted.
Do something you love everyday. What (healthy) activity soothes your nervous system? Carl Jung said the goal of life was wholeness (not happiness - who has that all the time anyway?) and that painting mandalas was a way to dial up an unconscious memory or image of wholeness. He got his clients to paint them and painted them himself. I gave it a go and really enjoyed it. It's actually very simple if you follow instructions (plenty online) and you don't need to be an artist to enjoy drawing one. Here's one of mine. But whatever makes you feel good in mind and body, do that!