by Wendy Monks-Janzen, Registered Psychologist (Prov)


Remembering Coping Strategies


Have you ever come to therapy, found some solutions that worked well—and later when you utilized them, forgot what they were? This forgetfulness is common. Remembering strategies when you are in heightened alertness or emotional states, is difficult at the best of times. 


One strategy that is effective for many, is tracking solutions. Having a dedicated book/journal/memo pad makes it easier to have all your strategies located in one place. This aids in finding strategies quickly and also recognizing the increasing toolbox of the wealth of coping strategies you are continuing to develop. 


For example, dedicated sections of your strategy book can increase success in improving your wellness effectively and efficiently. 


Potential sections could include:
*My basic needs (what assists me in nurturing my body and mind (i.e., drinking more water-leaving a water bottle out in sight)
*What helps me to feel safe and secure (i.e. Specific routines, spaces-creating a retreat space with comforting items)
*What reminds me I am loved and belong (i.e., relationships that provide energy)
*How to maintain confidence (i.e., having a list of specific examples when you excelled at feeling confident and what encouraged those feelings)
*When I need help from others (i.e. Signs that you notice, or what others may see, examples of how they can help you-checking in)
*What phrases do I need to hear (i.e. What you can say to yourself or have others say to you when you need some feedback/dialogue)
*List what is not helpful for you (i.e. Identifying triggers or specific behaviours or actions that make it more difficult to cope)
*How I know I am doing well (i.e. Noticing what is different-more social, making rational decisions, being on time)

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