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How to make yourself a calming kit

There are lots of things going on at the moment, and you may be experiencing many changes.

You may be feeling worried or anxious, and that’s ok. But when these feelings become too big or overwhelming, you may want to use some strategies to help you feel calmer.

Some people find it helpful to have a kit they can go to for when they need to feel calm. These kits can be made from things you may already have in your home.

Below are some ideas on what you could put in your box to help you calm your senses. Remember, this is individual to you so feel free to include things that work for you and help you to build some self-care into your day:

Touch

Touch

Include something you like the feel of; this could be a nice hand cream, a fluffy blanket or cuddly toy.

You could have something you like to fidget and play with, like an elastic band or a fidget spinner.  It could also be something with texture, like a brush or a piece of scrunched up paper.

Sight

Maybe you could write down a positive quote, add a photo of a time when you felt happy or it could just be something that when you look at it brings back a happy memory.

Hearing

Include some headphones for you to listen to music or a mindfulness session so you can really focus on the sounds.  You could listen to a funny podcast, but remember only use one sense at a time!

Taste

Put something in your box that, when you taste it, makes you feel happy. This could be a small piece of chocolate or a sweet.

Eat it slowly, taking notice of your breathing. Focus only on what you are eating. It’s also useful to drink water, as sipping the water can calm your breathing and the cooling effects can help as a distraction.

Smell

This element of your calming kit is actually all about your breathing. Put something in your box to remind yourself to stop and breathe, as this can be one of the most powerful tools to help you feel calm.

Below is a guide on how to do this. Some people call this square breathing:

Imagine a square- it can be useful to draw a square that you could personalise and put in your box.

Imagine going up each side of the square

  1. Breathe in for 4 seconds
  2. Hold for 4 seconds
  3. Breathe out for 4 seconds
  4. Hold for 4 seconds

Square breathing

This will take practice, and you may not be able to do the full 4 seconds but don’t worry as practice makes perfect!

You can go to your calming kit as many times as you want during the day, helping you to relax and ease those feeling of anxiousness.

How to get help

If you have any more questions on this area or would like to speak to somebody about this topic, have a look at the links or search for your local services in the blue box below. Alternatively you can always contact your public health nurse.

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