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Methods for Gaining Self-Composure (My Top Chill Out Tips)

Many of us have difficulty controlling our responses in pressure-filled, stressful situations. Here are some helpful tips to help you find peace and calm even in the midst of madness! I like to call these my top “chill out” tips. Read on and let the calming begin…

Chill Out Tip #1: Slow, deep breaths can help you make a controlled response in pressured, tense situations. Take five deep breaths, holding each one to a count of five before releasing it. Clear your thoughts completely and repeat to yourself “I am relaxed” whenever a stressful thought tries to make it’s way in to your head.

Chill Out Tip #2: Count backwards. This is a way to gain time to think about how to best respond in a more effective manner. Silently and slowly count backwards at an even pace, from 20 to 1, when faced with a reactive, stressful situation. This helps us to “think before reacting” and works wonders for many of my anger management clients.

Chill Out Tip #3: Take a time out. That’s right…physically leave the location to give yourself some space. This can counter escalating feelings. If appropriate, tell those around you that you are feeling angry, need some time and make an agreement with the other person to come back in a specified period of time. Leave the situation and try to get into a clearer mode of thought before you reappear. During the time out, try to slow down your thinking and sort out exactly what caused you to feel angry. Think about what you want to happen. Remember to think about what the other person might feel or want.

Chill Out Tip #4:Pleasant Imagery. Imagine a pleasant or peaceful scene which has a calming effect. A popular one I work thought with clients is a beach scene. The sun is warm, there is a slight breeze and you can hear the lapping of the ocean waves. This type of imagery can help you feel calm in the midst of the madness.

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