Creating Calm is easier than you think, honest!

Calm, calm, did someone say calm…….. where?? Ok, ok joking aside, but it’s hardly surprising if we were in search of some sort of calm during the day!

Here’s 5 tips to Create a Sense of Calm

1. Get Clear on Your Fears

Write down all the things that you are anxious/scared/angry/frustrated/unsure about. Now split these into two lists: Things I can Control, and Things I Can’t Control.

Once you have your lists, rate each item on a scale of 0-10 where 0 is ‘I’ve totally got this’ and 10 is ‘this is catastrophic.’ The scoring alone can bring a sense of perspective.

Get Clear on Your Fears

2. Scenario Plan

Take your ‘Things I can control list’ and go through each thing you’ve written down, are you ‘What if’ ing? Rather than let this drive you bonkers, start taking positive, logical action – Scenario Plan.

Work out the practicalities of your ‘worst case’ scenarios. So if you’re thinking ‘What if I don’t get paid for six months?’ sit down and work on a financial plan. Cutting down spending by reducing outgoings, cancelling subscriptions or taking payment holidays. What will you save during lockdown by not travelling, grabbing takeout coffees, eating out and socialising? What financial help is available to you externally? Logically tackling the problem will bring down the score on the catastrophe scale and help you feel like you have more control.

3. Breathe

You might be rolling your eyes at this one but consider giving it a go, it’s my favourite tip. When you are experiencing chaos, you perceive a threat to your wellbeing and your body elicits an emotional response called fight/flight/freeze. This puts your whole system under stress and increases the amount of cortisol in the body. To bring about calm and to prevent this response you need to send a signal to your brain that ‘all is well’ even if your thoughts are telling you it’s not.

Breathing techniques create these signals very effectively. Take a deep, deep breath in through your nose for the count of four. Hold the breath for four. Slowly release for the count of 11. Pause briefly and repeat several times. To maintain the ‘all is well’ signal to your brain, repeat this exercise throughout the day.

4. Go For a Walk

The relationship between calm and walking is well documented. When we walk, calming neurotransmitters known as endorphins are released. Studies show that a walk of 20-30 mins can have the same calming effect as a mild tranquilliser.

Release those endorphins

5. Remember What Is Normal

At times of uncertainty and change it’s easy to get consumed by everything that you need to do differently and to lose sight of the things that haven’t changed. Recognising the things that have stayed the same, the things you recognise as normal, will anchor you to the familiar and bring down the levels of anxiety you feel.

Ultimately, whilst the current situation we are experiencing is tough, unfamiliar and at times unbelievably scary, know that IT WILL PASS, and we will learn some very valuable lessons as a result.

Namaste

S x

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