So what do we do when we find ourselves in moments we REALLY don't want to be in.
Those where we are experiencing feelings we are not comfortable with, where are skin is crawling, the negative self talk about how much you can't stand this are getting louder, the clock just literally slowed down, why is this happening to me, why is this not over yet!
You know those moments, we all go through them.
Here is a great DBT skill that is (you guessed it) another acronym. The IMPROVE skill is a "crisis" survival skill that is pulled out a lot by my clients and myself .
Imagery- Dust off your imagination and use it to get through it. Imagine being in your happy place, or something funny happening in the moment you are in, or how amazing you will feel when this becomes a memory!
Meaning- It is annoying how often I use this one. There is meaning in all that happens to us if we look for it. What is this experience trying to teach you about yourself or life? WE all learn from our mistakes, some of us take a few more oops' until we get it, AND we get there eventually (no judgment!).
Prayer- Take a moment and pray for strength, serenity, patience, whatever you need to get through the moment. It can be a religious prayer or a mindful meditative moment. Prayer comes in many forms, don't get hung up on a word here.
Relaxation- Take a break! Do something that will be relaxing in the moment. How about some square breathing, or counting your breaths, a big stretch, neck roll, a mindfulness break noticing what is around you, grounding yourself with counting backwards or colors in the room.
One thing in the moment- Do one thing at a time and in the moment you are in. If you are in class or watching your kids 700th practice find something to focus on and dive in!
Vacation- This is most of my clients fav by far! Take a break and come back. If you can't physically get up and take a lap around the building then do it mentally. Imagine you are in your most relaxing destination and get lost. Don't forget to come back though.
Encouragement- Be your own cheerleader, we all need one! Tell yourself it is almost done, this too shall pass (my fav), you got this, how much better your will be when this is history ... I think you get it.
In order for the IMPROVE the moment skills to work, it isn't necessary to do all of these in succession.
Simply here are 7 ideas and all you need is 1 to work.
Best of luck improving your moments.