A Safe Place for Cutters Blog

Managing Urges Part I Helping Others
June 1, 2009, 23:23
Filed under: Coping Skills, self-harm | Tags: , ,

Helping OthersUrges to hurt yourself generally come from feelings of  being upset, frustrated, depressed, lonely or angry.

A young woman P. S. in my *Facebook group , “A Safe Place for Cutters” came up with a number of excellant ideas for managing those difficult times when emotions seem out of control and the urge to hurt oneself is overwhelming.  I have divided her suggestions into the following categories:  Helping Others, Distraction, Releasing Anger, Channelling Emotions, Change the Moment, Spiritual, and Face the Problem.

Today I will focus Helping others or just being with people.

Feeling: Upset, Frustrated, Depressed, Lonely, Angry
Method: Cult Time!
Description: Why not come here? Helping people always makes me feel better, so let that work for you. Respond to some threads or look at the contest entries. Play the games and even message/comment someone who is online.

Feeling: Upset, Frustrated, Depressed, Lonely
Method: Myspace
Description: For those Myspacers out there, sign on! Visit your friend’s pages and look at their pictures. Leave them snazzy comments, too.

Feeling: Upset, Frustrated, Depressed, Lonely
Method: Awareness
Description: This is like the Cult Time! method because it involves helping people. But this time, work on raising awareness. Whether it’s for depression, SI, rape, or another issue that you’re interested in, get the word out! Myspace Bulletins, journal entries, blogs, whatever. Talk about what you love. People are drawn to passion–show them what you’re passionate about.

Feeling: Upset, Frustrated, Depressed, Lonely, Hurt
Method: Chit Chat
Description: Sign online and get on your favorite messenger. MSN, Yahoo, AIM, whatever. Strike up a conversation. Remember, distraction is key.

Feeling: Upset, Frustrated, Depressed, Lonely, Angry
Method: Watching You
Description: The next time you feel like doing something negative, take a picture of your friends or someone you care a lot about (for me, it would be a picture of my Papaw). Someone that you want to make proud. Now, put it in front of you. Can you still do it with that person watching you? Can you still cut or sneak out or get drunk? It’s harder than you may think.

Feeling: Upset, Frustrated, Depressed, Lonely
Method: Balloons
Description: I went to Bible School every year as a child. It was one week of wholesome fun. And toward the end, we would write down a little “God Bless You” note in a balloon and set them free. So this is a modified version of that. Write a little note, something you think another person could use hearing. Something positive or happy. Or you can just draw a silly picture on the balloon with a black marker. It’s up to you. Afterwards, set it free.

Feeling: Upset, Frustrated, Depressed, Lonely, Angry, Creative
Method: Create-a-Card
Description: Want to do something sweet for a friend? Then make them a card! When I was in highschool, a friend of mine was going through a break-up. So my friends and I made a “Ten Things We Love About Kyle” card. Nine of those reasons were silly or downright perverted (hey, we were young!) and the last one was serious. So make a card of your own for a friend, a sibling or a parent. It always feels nice to do something for someone you care about, right?

Feeling: Upset, Frustrated, Depressed, Lonely, Angry, Aggressive
Method: First to Last
Description: This is a method similar to writing your friend’s names on your arms. This time, take out some paper and write their names there. One name per sheet of paper (or one on the front and back if you want to conserve). Now decorate them. Alright, the next time you get an urge, you have to rip up those sheets of paper into a hundred shreds before you can act. Go ahead. Start tearing . . . if you can.
To A Life Worth Living,
Foresteen Forbes, Psy. D.

*If you would like to be a member of my Facebook group “A Safe Place for Cutters” please find me on Facebook and invite me to be your friend. Click here!


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