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Apps and Techniques

This page is for informational purposes only.  

Nothing included is an endorsement of the source. 

Possibly helpful apps:

Note: Some things to consider when using hotlines or mental health or/and wellness, apps or/and online services. 

• How do they protect my privacy?  Are there steps I can take to protect my privacy?

• Are they ethical in their practices?

• What is the benefit/cost/risk of using them?

PTSD Coach (https://mobile.va.gov/app/ptsd-coach): By the Veterans Administration, is for anyone experiencing Post Traumatic Stress, or wanting to know more to help someone else.

WYSA stress: Depression & anxiety therapy chatbot app (you can pick the free option)

Moving forward  (https://www.veterantraining.va.gov/movingforward/): By the Veterans Administration, is for anyone coping with stressful problems.

Woebot - Your Self-Care Expert  (https://woebothealth.com/): Helps with an array, everyday stresses and challenges, symptoms of depression and addiction. 

Mindfulness: Headspace, Insight Timer, Mindfulness Coach, 10% Happier

Other: Provider Resilience, ACT coach, Virtual Hope Box, Well Body Coach, CALMapp

Possible techniques:

NOTE: Not all techniques work for everyone.  And if one works one time, it might not work another time; and vice versa, it might not work, then work later.    

SBNRR Mindfulness Practice - This can be modified to your needs and time available:

Stop: Stop what you are doing, take the pause, give yourself space. If you need to, use verbal or internal mental cues to do this.

Breathe: Everyone is different.  For some, it is helpful to pay attention to your breath and take a moment to breathe in whatever way works for you. For others, you might need a different or combined approach, including skipping and going to Notice.  For anyone, you might need to try different approaches at different times. 

Notice: Notice what is going on in your body, behaviors, thoughts, emotions.  You are not judging yourself, just notice what is going on.

Reflect: Where is this coming from?  Why am I thinking/feeling this? Why am I doing this? Any other curious questions that help clarify the source.  Remember interaction of body, behaviors, thoughts, and emotions.

Respond: What is the best way to respond to this and move forward? Again, use whatever questions might help you.

Click here, to go to the "If you need help's" "Materials" tab, for an adapted/expanded version of the SBNRR practice on p5-6 of the PDF housed there. 

5-4-3-2-1 practice: In your mind, out loud, or written

  • 5 things I can see

  • 4 things I can touch

  • 3 things I can hear

  • 2 things I can smell

  • 1 thing I can taste

SOS Technique, developed by Julian Ford

  • Slow down - Slow down or stop; as needed connect to body and let mind clear.

  • Orient - Pay attention to where you are, what you are doing, who you are with, what’s important.

  • Self-check -  How stressed or calm you are in the moment and how in control or dysregulated you are.

30 second body scan meditation:

This 30-Second Exercise Can Reduce Your Anxiety Significantly (It’s True – We’ve Tried!) (https://youaligned.com/body-scan-meditation/)

  1. Get comfortable

  2. Find your breath

  3. Become the observer

  4. Notice even more

  5. Give yourself permission to relax

Mental – Physical – Soothing Grounding Healthline: 30 Grounding Techniques to Quiet Distressing Thoughts  (https://www.healthline.com/health/grounding-techniques)

A few examples:

Mental: List as many things in a category as you can. Alphabetically list a category. Do math/number exercises. Go through anchoring facts.

Physical: Touch something. Breathing exercise. Physical activity. Use your 5 senses.

Soothing: Think of a face/voice/thing/place that soothes you. Talk yourself kindly through it. List positive things.

Example other techniques:

- Thoughts: Check for values alignment. Check for accuracy.  Replace them.  Let go.  Think about or do something else. Make a plan. Express them/do something creative. Talk to someone.

- Do a blend of mindfulness and physical.  While stretching, walking, so on: What’s the closest/farthest sound I hear? What’s the closest/farthest thing I see? What’s the loudest/quietest sound? How relaxed/tense? So on.

- Physical and empty mind. Maybe focus on the movement or your breath as needed.

These stretches may be good for times like mini breaks: 4 Quick Stretches to Do If You’ve Been Sitting in the Car for Hours  (https://www.self.com/gallery/sos-stretch-long-car-ride)

- Physical and sing, talk nonsense, recite a poem, so on. 

- Relax physically and mentally. Slump, stretch out, curl up, let your mind empty, let your mind wander…

- Total stillness

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