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Mindfulness, self-regulation, and grounding strategies

March 31, 2020

Download these resources

Mindfulness and meditation apps

Headspace offers users guided meditations and is currently offering free support.

Download headspace

Calm offers users guided meditations, soothing music, and bedtime stories.

Download Calm

Smiling Mind offers guided meditations and mindfulness activities.

Download Smiling Mind

Self-regulation strategies

Take a moment to breathe.

Take slow deep breaths in through your nose and out through your mouth. Doing this can help your brain and body come back to baseline when hyper-aroused (e.g. feeling overwhelmed or anxious) to a feeling of neutral and/or calm.

Complete a body scan.

Get in a comfortable position and do a mental scan of your body from head to toe and identify where you are holding tension.
Once you identify this try and release the tension by breathing into it and relax your body completely.

Create your own safe space.

Set up a physical space you can go to when you need some time to yourself. Try to put things in this space that make you feel at peace (e.g. blankets, calming music, inspirational quotes). If you cannot set up a physical safe space try and visualize a mental safe
space that brings you feelings of comfort (e.g. beach, forest, stream). When you are feeling overwhelmed try and visualize this place.

Grounding strategies

You can use your five senses to help relax yourself during stressful moments. Try the following five exercises to help you become aware of your surroundings and ground yourself:

Acknowledge five things you can see.

You can also pick a colour and only name things that colour

Identify four things you can touch.

For example: ground under your feet, blanket, desk.

Become aware of three sounds that you can hear.

Try and focus on sounds you can hear outside of your body.

Notice two things you can smell.

You can also choose to smell scents that comfort you (for example: lavender, vanilla).

Recognize one thing you can taste.

For example, toothpaste, coffee. If you don't taste something, name your favourite taste.

By Rebecca Fisico