The Stress Box, Part I

When I’m really anxious, I find it difficult to remember that there are activities I can do that will make me feel better and help pass the time. I also find it difficult to remember what those activities are or pick one or two to do. I learned about stress boxes when I was participating in a group session at the hospital and I think its a good way to help with anxiety or other unpleasant emotions.

The concept is very simple: write down things you enjoy and put them in a box. When you’re stressed out, you can go into the box, pull out a random piece of paper and on it will be a suggestion for what you can do.

In my case, I wanted my box to look distinct and a little whimsical:

And inside are the ideas:

Here are the ideas I have in my stress box. Maybe you will find some of them useful:

– Write a letter,

– Read a book,

– Electronics,

– Talk to someone,

– Journal,

– Cook something,

– Learn to draw,

– Motorcycle maintenance,

– Go for a walk,

– Learn something new,

– Watch a movie,

– Make bread,

– Exercise,

– Look at stuff with microscope,

– Watch the lightning (if applicable),

– Sit outside,

– Meditate,

– Practice grounding exercises,

– Write something – a story, blog post, poetry, anything,

– Listen to music,

– Play some bass guitar,

– Do some welding,

– Play a game,

– Fix something around the house,

– Go out, close eyes, and listen to the birds, and

– Clean something.

It’s really important to keep yourself occupied while dealing with mental illness. If you set up something like a stress box ahead of time, it can help out a lot when your mind is blank and you can’t think of anything to do.

Stay Safe!

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