3 Questions to Help You Ground Yourself
Oct 09, 2019
If you have PTSD, nothing can be more frightening and exhausting than the constant vigilance of anticipating the next stressful event, whether that be a panic attack, flashback, etc. The stress of it can literally cause you adverse physical symptoms.
Because this can become so debilitating, here are some questions you can use to "check in" with yourself in order to keep you grounded in the moment.
Where am I?
So simple right? This question is great because it forces your mind to use your sense of sight to see where you are. Are you still in the middle of the trauma or are you at the grocery store?
What is going on around me?
Using the rest of your senses, you can then tune into exactly what is happening. Did that car just backfire or was that an enemy shooting at me? Look around and watch what is happening. Listen to the sounds around you. Are they normal everyday sounds? Experience the current physical feelings on your body. Sometimes it's helpful to feel your feet on the ground or set your attention on the feeling of your clothes on your body.
Doing such things can help to get you out of your own mind.
Am I safe? Yes or No?
This last question is the most important one, and should only be asked after considering the first two. Additionally, it is important that a simple yes or no be answered, because, if left open, it can potentially lead to overthinking. This question is the final nail in the coffin to your stress. When you have to answer "yes I am safe", then you are in a better position to be able to use your coping skills or emotional regulation skills to help you calm down.
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