How do you work on feeling safe?

arfie

MyPTSD Pro
as i nudge myself past doubts that my response will meet your standards. . .

i treat my own fears like a security system whose alarm goes off for stray cats as readily as it goes off for home invaders. i investigate each time that alarm goes off and trust myself to have investigated thoroughly before i reset the alarm and go back to whatever the alarm interrupted. when i first started using this technique, i spent more time investigating false alarms than living, but eventually the equation balanced.

but that is me and every case is unique. . .

gentle support while you find what works for you.
 

Defaultxlove

MyPTSD Pro
For me the answer is grounding. I've accidently froze my head with a cold shower just to get woken up out of the brain hijack.

For me thankfully, if I can find 2-4 pieces of evidence that support I am safe. I can calm down.

Idk if this helps. But I support you!
 

EveHarrington

MyPTSD Pro
as i nudge myself past doubts that my response will meet your standards. . .

i treat my own fears like a security system whose alarm goes off for stray cats as readily as it goes off for home invaders. i investigate each time that alarm goes off and trust myself to have investigated thoroughly before i reset the alarm and go back to whatever the alarm interrupted. when i first started using this technique, i spent more time investigating false alarms than living, but eventually the equation balanced.

but that is me and every case is unique. . .

gentle support while you find what works for you.

Anything that is a positive action working against it is welcome, ie pro-active, an action, as in a neutral action would be doing nothing and idk what a negative action would be, maybe embracing it and trying to enjoy that horrible feeling.
 

Freddyt

MyPTSD Pro
Being positive. I feel safe because I am safe. If it makes me feel negative then why? Do I need that in my life? Turn away from being negative, talking negative, listening to negative, negative media, and ruminating on negative.
I have had to let go of all the things that are beyond my control, and learned the difference between the things I wish I could control and the things I truly can control.
I have learned to embrace my "happy place" from EMDR and use it as an aid to relaxing. When I go there I can see, hear, smell, and feel that place.
I have learned to stop ruminating on the "what if's". Either it is or it isn't.
I have learned grounding. How to take in what is real around me and to believe in what is real, not imagined.
 

Sues

MyPTSD Pro
My therapist tells me to think about the difference between I feel safe and I am safe. If I don't feel safe, then I'm supposed to think about what triggered that feeling and if I can see the difference between that and telling myself that I am safe. It hasn't helped a lot yet, but a couple of times that I got really bad out in public, I told myself over and over in my head, "I am safe." It eventually helped a little because I got to the point where I was concentrating on saying those words rather than the feeling of not being safe. I hope this makes sense. It's hard for me to explain.
 

barefoot

Sponsor
A few quick things spring to mind for me:

1) looking for evidence that I am safe (or not unsafe/in danger)

2) Finding and practising things that help to calm my nervous system - things that stimulate the parasympathetic nervous system, so that I’m not in a constant state of fight or flight. Hard to feel safe if we spend a large chunk of our time in fight or flight.

3) Sorry, I can’t remember reading anywhere here whether you have/like animals. I have cats. And when I’m focused on them, I notice that I focus on keeping them safe. Which can still be a bit anxiety-making as sometimes I worry about that. But, on a positive note, if I’m focused on keeping them safe, I’m not focusing on feeling unsafe myself.

Take care.
 

coraxxx

Sponsor
I did struggle a lot to understand I wasn't feeling safe. Somehow over time I did desensitize myself to the very notion of fear and safety and reached the point of not understanding that I was in fact terrified and actually unsafe.

However in imminent threats situations the body does take over and does respond in a meaningful way. I saw a video of someone explaining they did bet on trusting their body for that instead of distrusting it, since anyway their state of anxiety was so high and permanent it was better to lower the guard and trust that if there was a real danger they'll do the right thing, so diminishing the need of being constantly on the watch out and working on how to relax.

I don't do happy places visualisations because they'll generally will make me sink into semi flashbacks or feeling very sad. I do try more to feel connected with my surroundings and examine all that I like about it or that is familiar and non triggering.

I try to focus on something else than myself or people, safe things such as animals, reading or a video game. Anything you like and has a good potential for being absorbed in it works well. Every time an anxious thought emanates, I do directly mentally talk to it and say "I understand where this is coming from, and it's all okay now. Look, here is a classmate, here is the road to home, here is the bed, here is the cat." I mentally describe what's around and reason the fear with gentle little tokens of safety.

If there is a point of incertitude, I do correct the spiral by mentally stating "Yes money is a worry but there will be food enough, still a roof over the head, and if it doesn't go okay I can do this and this and that and it will take a lot for it not to be alright. In last resort, there is plan B or C or Z."

Doing that kind of self talk can be rather cringe at first but the sort of internal interaction has worked very well so far. I try, when I speak, to keep the quietest intonation possible and keep a composure and have validating statements just as I would do with someone else telling me they're worried and trying to be called down. Sometimes, I eat a cake or do something comforting.

What has worked well for me is to be comforting, practical and rational because these are things that I do respond well to and I feel reassured by it. I guess everyone can adjust their self talk to attune to something that works well for themselves.

I also get to encourage myself and take some credit for small accomplishments, no matter how silly or small.

Hope this helps! All best and take care
 

Agita Kaput

Policy Enforcement
Sponsor
I was just recently asked to think about a place I felt safe. 🤔😳🤷‍♂️ Ok... imaginary? 🤔 I got nothin.

Only things that work for me are...
1.Runners high,
2. A wee bit high high 🪴...
3. Walace Rosenberg.

The first 2 are problematic.
#1 i find it so terrificly boring and unmotivatable unless #2 is in play,

#2 Immediately I notice how armored I was 2 minutes ago. I take an easy breath. I realize that Im in the right place, at the right time. But there seem to be consequences a few days later.😬

There is no other time when I feel safe, unless Im listening to Walkace Rosenberg reading his book Nonviolent Communication.
I listen to Rosenberg everytime I want to feel loved or believe there are good people in the world. His voice is like...
🤔
small waves crashing on a warm beach day? ... I suggest Audible.

Well... maybe 4. so cliche, but maybe the arms of a lover who is also a good friend. In this case, there may be some ennui but it is safe. The suffering of life is... ok. Sad, but ok. Wierd. Can you feel "scary-safe?" Is that a thing?

I'd like to experiment with all 4 at once but I am 60, divorced, poor, mentally unstable and realistic. Might have to settle for 3 out a four.

@Georgianne12
 

Givrali

MyPTSD Pro
Actually I notice when I feel safe than rather feeling unsafe because there is like 4 situations I actually feel safe. It always depends of someone else being present
 
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