Saturday, November 07, 2009

Battening Down the Hatches

It occurs to me that others might find it useful to know how I get ready to tackle difficult “stuff.” How do I batten down the hatches, so to speak? In no particular order....

1) Stock the pantry and refrigerator with healthy food. No alcohol or sugary stuff. I want my body to be able to handle the stress and I know that what I eat (or don't!) will impact my emotions, too.

2) Make a mental note to wear only clothes that make me feel good.

3) Get into a pattern of daily exercise—preferably including time out in the sun.

4) Pull out my list of things that make me happy/smile/laugh and make sure I'm doing/having at least 3 every day NO MATTER WHAT.

5) Make a list of blessings in my life—how my life is good NOW.

6) Make a list of what I like about myself—why I like who I am NOW.

7) Make sure my support network is in place and that we'll laugh together, too.

8) Make sure I know clearly why I matter, who needs me and why. Make sure I know why no matter what comes up, I have a reason to figure it out and keep moving forward—that letting go and/or hurting myself is not an option.

9) Begin to tease at the edges of my emotions. Toss out possibilities of what it might be that I need to look at until I get a “bingo”--a sense of resonance that says: This is it!

10) Imagine talking to the child I was and asking her what's going on—always reassuring her that NOW I am safe, NOW my life is good, NOW I have the wisdom and experience to process whatever it is that once terrified me so badly that I had to bury it like this.

11) Remind myself that whatever surfaces it is not the event itself that matters but rather the messages I took in about myself and the world and people around me because of it.

12) I will remember to laugh and count my blessings EVERY DAY as a reminder that NOW I am safe and NOW I am and can be happy.

What do you do to “batten down the hatches” to protect and prepare yourself when you know you're about to look at something difficult?

Sending blessings and safe and gentle (((((hugs)))))),


Anonymous said...

Hi, April Optimist -

For me, I make a list of all the things I feel obligated to do -- and review them to see if I really need to do them (or do I need to do them NOW) . . . that helps me get clear on my priorities.

I really like your suggestions! Very practical -- and effective!

- Marie (Coming Out of the Trees)

Ethereal Highway said...

I really like #10 on your list. I also stock the pantry, but it's because I get a little scared that I might come so unglued that I won't be able to go to the store. (That happened to me before. It was very bad.) I also make checklists of the things I must do to keep my present life on track. I keep the checklists on my clipboard and I consult it throughout the day. It keeps me from getting totally lost in the ugly stuff. Last, but certainly not least, I warn my husband that something is coming so he won't wonder and also so he can help keep things normal for our family.

Colleen said...

Love your list. Especially 5, 7 and 10. I really have to give myself pep talks. I need to pray a lot too! Thanks and blessings!

Woundedgenius said...

brilliant stuff - love it :)

Paul from Mind Parts said...

Very helpful! While there are times when you must batten down the hatches, I try not to. But I equate battening down the hatches with avoidance and denial. Your list is obviously not that. So, bravo for you!

jumpinginpuddles said...

see this is a for me list rather than i should do because it will make people like me list

Marj aka Thriver said...

I especially like #8 We matter! Yeah! I usually am pretty good at #2 and #3-- those snuggly, comfy clothes and getting out to get some fresh air and sunshine.

This post is fabulous! Do you think you could submit it real quick to THE BLOG CARNIVAL AGAINST CHILD ABUSE in the healing & therapy section? I'm hosting it at my own blog this month in honor of Thursday being World Day for the Prevention of Child Abuse. The deadline is midnight tonight, but if you're late, don't worry. I'll still get your post in. I'd appreciate it greatly! I appreciate YOU! :) (((((April))))))

Marj aka Thriver said...

Got your submission. Wow, you're fast. You rock!

April_optimist said...

Thank you everyone. I love that some of you has your own lists you make. The more we take care of ourselves, the more we are able to face what needs to be face and processed and let go. Thank you, all of you, for posting here.

Mary333 said...

Thank you, I loved your list. It was a good reminder for me of how much I have to be thankful for :) I saw your name on someone elses site in the comment section and decided to come over and have a look. Glad I did!

April_optimist said...


Glad you came by, too!