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Crescendo Offline
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Lightbulb How I Deal With Flashbacks - January 29th 2010, 06:57 AM

My List Of How To Deal With Flashbacks:
I G.R.C. -Ground myself in the present moment, Relax, Cope.

Grounding myself in the present moment:
1) With Temperature
-Put my face in ice water as long as I can
- Melt Ice in my hands
2) With Focusing My Attention
-Listen to a song and focus on just one of the instruments
- pick out all red objects in the room
- play the alphabet game (list a singer/movie/book/disease/place/animal/food for every letter of the alphabet)
3) With Sensations-
- play with clay or make goo out of cornstarch and water
- feel rice/beads/beans in your hands
- Stomp my feet
- clap my hands as hard as I can
- snap a rubber band on my wrist
- stand on my tippy toes as long as you possibly can
- put liquid glue on your hand, let it dry, peel it off
- finger paint
- do 100 jumping jacks
4) With Other Senses-
- Smell a strong scent such as chopped onion or raw fish
- pop a balloon
- blast music
- eat something very sour or bitter or salty


1) With Activities You Self Soothed With While Little
- Coloring
- sucking your thumb
- drinking warm milk
- cuddling with a blanket and soft toy

2) Using Your Senses-
- Drink tea
- put on a good smelling lotion
- rub a smooth stone
- wear comfortable clothes
-take a bubble bath
- Watch a candle burn
- look at the sky
- listen to soothing music
- go in a bakery and smell the fresh baked goods
-go into a garden or florist and smell the flowers

3) With Encouragement / Prayer
- Say a prayer
- Say an encouraging statement such as
* "This too shall pass and I am strong enough to make it through"
* "You've come so far! You can continue to make effective decisions."

4) With Breathing Exercises
-square breathing
take very slow deep breaths. inhale for two counts, then exhale for two counts. as you count inhale one two, exhale one two picture a side of a blue square forming (or any other calming color) for each count in your mind. so each inhale is two sides of a square, and each exhale istwo sides, creating a full square.

-breath counting
Gently close your eyes and take a few deep breaths. Then let the breath come naturally without trying to influence it. Ideally it will be quiet and slow, but depth and rhythm may vary. To begin the exercise, count "one" to yourself as you exhale. The next time you exhale, count "two," and so on up to "five." Then begin a new cycle, counting ' "one" on the next exhalation. Never count higher than "five," and count only when you exhale. You will know your attention has wandered when you find yourself up to "eight," "12," even "19."

5) With Imagery / Visualization
-Picture yourself in a calming and safe place such as at the beach, in a forest, or as a green leaf soaking up the sun on a tree. (you can find some guided imagery
podcasts for free online) Describe the place using all your senses.
- Picture yourself coping effectively with the flashback (not harming yourself or anyone else.)
- Erasing Stress- Visualize what is making you anxious or fearful. As you do this you might see a specific person, an actual place, or simply shapes and colors. Where do you see this stressful picture? Is it below you, to the side, in front of you? How does it look? Is it big or little, dark or light, or does it have a specific color? Imagine that a large eraser, like the kind used to erase chalk marks, has just floated into your hand. Actually feel and see the eraser in your hand. Take the eraser and begin to rub it over the area where the stressful picture is located. As the eraser rubs out the stressful picture it fades, shrinks, and finally disappears. When you can no longer see the stressful picture, simply continue to focus on your deep breathing for another minute, inhaling and exhaling slowly and deeply.

6) With Progressive Muscle Relaxation-
-Lie on your back in a comfortable position. Allow your arms to rest at your sides, palms down, on the surface next to you. Inhale and exhale slowly and deeply. Clench your hands into fists and hold them tightly for 15 seconds. As you do this, relax the rest of your body. Visualize your fists contracting, becoming tighter and tighter.Then let your hands relax. On relaxing, see a golden light flowing into the entire body, making all your muscles soft and pliable. Now, tense and relax the following parts of your body in this order: face, shoulders, back, stomach, pelvis, legs, feet, and toes. Hold each part tensed for 15 seconds and then relax your body for 30 seconds before going on to the next part. Finish the exercise by shaking your hands and imagining the remaining tension flowing out of your fingertips.

1) By Expressing Yourself
- write
- draw
- paint
-play an instrument
-make a collage
- do photography
2) By Making Yourself Feel In Control
-write a letter to the flashback telling it you are stronger than it
- imagine yourself entering into your flashback and being able to fight off your attacker and get away safely
3) By Turning Your Day Back Around
- turn on upbeat music and dance
- go back to what you were doing before the flashback
- do something nice for yourself
- read the comics
- watch a funny movie
-Doing a random act of kindness for someone

When the patient's body has betrayed them,
and all the sciencewe have to offer has failed them,
when worst-case scenario comes true,
clinging to hope is all we've got left.
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Re: How I Deal With Flashbacks - January 31st 2010, 11:42 PM

Those are good ways of dealing with flashbacks. I'll try some of them, when I have another one. Thanks.

"Think of your life as a book, move forward, close one chapter and open another." Unknown

We give each other strength to make it through the darkness." Silverstein

‎"Life is the art of drawing without an eraser." John W. Gardner

"It is never too late to be what you might have been." George Eliot

Every human life is worth the same, and worth saving." J.K. Rowling
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Re: How I Deal With Flashbacks - February 1st 2010, 12:06 AM

Thank you for this list.

If the world is a cold place
Make it your business to start some fires

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Re: How I Deal With Flashbacks - February 4th 2010, 03:53 AM

Hey Megan,

I'm actually really glad you posted this, it's really helpful. Thanks for posting,and stay strong.

She whispered to her own reflection "I will be strong."

"I am not what has happened to me.I am what I have chosen to become."- Carl Jung

"If ye harm none, do as ye wish."

Sometimes things just happen.

Smile through the tears.

PM me

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