Crisis situations aren’t very common for me these days but once upon a time this was a regular occurrence. The most important thing I learned during that time is that I need a plan, I need to know what to do when crisis does strike. These are the things I do to try get back to myself during those times.
Tell someone – when shit has hit the fan, when Anxiety Brain is in control the worst thing I can do is keep it to myself. Sometimes, having someone who can think logically in that moment, on my side is enough and even when it’s not at least someone knows and can keep an eye on me.
Listen to something that calms me down – I like music whether I’m in crisis or not and I listen to music every day but there are particular songs that are helpful when I’m in crisis. A lot of these are from the record Vessel by Twenty One Pilots such as Trees, Holding on to You and Car Radio.
Remind myself that I will be back in control eventually – If I am in crisis Anxiety Brain is in control, not me. There are several phrases I repeat to myself to remind myself that I will be in control again: ‘This feeling won’t last forever’, ‘I own this’, etc. After all, no matter how bad it’s gotten in the past I made it through, I am proof that it will end eventually.
Attempt to watch tv or read a book – Something light and fluffy here, no horrors or thrillers. This is an attempt at distraction. I might read the same page twelve times or watch an entire show without being very aware of what just happened in it but it doesn’t matter. The goal here is to get out of my head for a bit, to break the cycle of unhelpful thoughts.
Tell someone! – This is important enough to be stated twice. For me this really is the best thing I can do and if I can’t find someone I can speak to IRL then I’ll head online to find a friend or a community to talk to and help me feel less alone. As far as the internet goes, I’ve found Reddit, Instagram and Twitter to be the best places to find support and like minded people at any time of the day or night but be careful with the amount of personal information you share!
What not to do:
For me there are a couple of things that definitely don’t help when I’m in crisis – not telling someone, being entirely alone, forcing myself to do something that is causing me major anxiety at that particular moment, drinking alcohol, staying up all night. For me, these things will make my anxiety worse and it’s just as important to be able to recognise that, as it is to be able to recognise the things that help.
How do you deal with crisis? Do you have any tips or things that are best avoided? Let me know!
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