lisa zarcone
Author of The Unspoken Truth

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Lets Embrace our Journey's together 

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Coping Skills 101 - Back To The Basics

There are so many ways to approach this subject.   In today’s High Tec world many elaborate ideas are introduced all the time.  Let’s make it bigger and better! 

I ask this simple question is BIGGER really better?

I will answer for myself and that is “NO”.   When I look at myself during times of anxiety and struggle some of my rational thinking goes right out the door.   It is replaced with impulsive urges to lash out in anger or feel like I cannot even take in a breath.  I am sure many of you reading this will understand exactly what I am saying.   You want instant satisfaction and those impulses go into over-drive.   What is going to feed my soul and make me feel better, empowered or satisfied!

When your insides feel so wound up and your shaking from the inside out some type of big flashy gimmick is not going to do the trick!  I will tell you a few things that truly do help during these times of trouble and they are mostly FREE!  NOW – that is not a word that you hear very often, right?

When you start to feel that negative energy building up do something simple by replacing it with a positive thought.  Turning a negative into a positive.  This is something you should practice daily even if you are not feeling emotionally out of control. We all live with daily stress and this simple technique helps keep our minds grounded.

Also, when you have that pent-up feeling, change your environment.  Go outside breathe in the fresh air. Close your eyes for a few moments and really take it all in.  Then listen to the sounds and connect with them as the sun hits your face.  That Vitamin D helps more than you can possibly imagine.   If you able to, take a quick walk!  Connect with nature, flowers, trees whatever makes you shift your minds focus.   On days that I cannot get out, I simply walk around my yard and I look at everything that I have built up.  The gardens, flowers, bird houses/feeders as these are things that I enjoy viewing.   I even look at my house and see the changes that have happened over the years, all the upgrades.   I remind myself that these are all positive things that I have done to engage in my surroundings.   If you do not live in a house, you can do this where ever your home life is!  

Take some time for yourself to just sit in the moment, as you may listen to some music as you are enjoying a glass of your favorite beverage hot or cold, whatever makes you feel comfort.   I love to sit with my coffee in the morning quietly as I hold the cup to my chest and I let the steam and aroma glide up my nose as I take in that smell and warmth. I feel instant gratification being in that moment just for me as I set the tone to start my day.   Again, this can be done at any time throughout the day.   TAKE YOUR MOMENT!!!

For those of you who have that screaming passion inside your mind wanting to EXPLODE – writing may be your ticket to balance.   Keep a journal handy always and when you are feeling stressed write something down.  It can be anything a word, quote or a few sentences describing your feelings and as you write you are releasing that negative energy giving it to the journal as you ground yourself once again.  Now you can move forward until you feel the urge to do it again!

If you feel the need to repeat the same steps until you are calm, then do so, there is no limit as long as you are making your way through the day!

Later go back to your journal and examine your words.  Try to make peace with them and then move on.   Writing is a wonderful outlet to cope with the many things you may have going on in your life.  You can also turn your words and thoughts into poetry.     I find writing for me is so therapeutic and I am always amazed what comes to the surface and why?   Its almost like a guessing game for the soul.   This technique also connects you to your inner most thoughts and feelings helping you to understand what is truly going on with you.

For the extremely creative people art therapy is a wonderful outlet to release the anxiety.  You can draw, sketch, paint, doodle or even color.

I have offered simple coloring books to people in times of need, and it is amazing once the mind shifts and focuses on the colors and pictures, the anxiety level drops.  You can even feel it as the person struggling starts to relax the body and the movements become more flowing instead of tight and intense.

REMEMBER - nothing needs to be professional while trying any of these ideas and coping methods, as they are basic ways to calm the mind, body and spirit.

If you are the type of person who can clear your mind yoga and mediation may be the way to go.    It took me a long time to learn how to meditate properly as my mind goes a million miles a minute most of the time, but when I can sit, do a little bit of deep breathing, close my eyes as I take in the sounds around me; the amazing amount of calmness that washing over me is exhilarating!    

I also write myself notes of encouragement.   I leave them around so when I am struggling I read them out loud to myself as I am reminded that I am OK!   These notes can be inspiring, encouraging, simple thought provoking suggestions or a happy smiley face 😊.  What ever you feel will best get your attention go with that!  

For people who are religious prayer seems to help!  This is not for everyone and I am not suggesting that you pick up a religion just because.  What I am saying is prayer has the same effect as meditation, and when you are focused on those words and thoughts it puts you in another mode.

It is amazing what we can do for ourselves if we put in the time and effort.  Our lives are always on overdrive and of course we generally as a population put ourselves last.    It does not have to be that way.  As you are going about your busy day you can incorporate most of these ideas that I am suggesting.  It is all in the mindset.     You can do it, I know you can because I do it!    I have faith that you can get there too!

Now if your anxiety, depression, stress becomes too much to handle I always suggest seeking outside help when needed.  No need to feel embarrassed to ask for help or seek counseling.   We all need support from time to time, and its OK to reach out.  I encourage you to do that as well.  Find positive avenues to be able to express yourself and lighten the load.

I hope you can find some peace and harmony in your world, and when things feel tight and constricted embrace a few new methods to cope and self-sooth.      Remember positive thinking and doing is a big part of finding balance in your life.

Embrace The Journey.

God Bless,

Lisa Zarcone

Author/Advocate/Public Speaker/Blogger/Inspirationist

The Unspoken Truth A Memoir

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