Weekly resource post #1: Mood tracking

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You may have missed it, but I’ve launched the SelfCare Backpack shop! There are a pack of resources there for pay what you want (use the code scb2020 to get the digital only ones for FREE and the physical copies for half price). Each week I’m going to do to a bit of an introduction to one of the resources to give you a sneak peak of what to expect :)

First up: the mood tracker!

I find tracking my mood really useful. Firstly, taking 30sec or 1min or however long, every day to check in with my self is golden. Just a quick moment of ‘how am I doing today?’ is a kindness, just like when you check in with a friend. Be your own friend and check in with yourself.

We don’t stay in touch with how we’re feeling often, especially when we’re not feeling great, it’s easier to avoid and ignore and push through than to stop and engage with our feelings. This is doubly true when we’re stuck in a situation that’s causing us distress (like, say, a global health crisis and a resulting lockdown).

I find being curious and open about my feelings, but not necessarily doing anything about them useful for becoming aware and in touch with my feelings.

My anxiety comes from trauma, and so avoid avoid avoid was my mantra and an unhealthy coping mechanism, for the longest time. I didn’t really know how to be aware of my feelings in a way that didn’t make my anxiety worse.

For me, I had to start with just tracking and acknowledging. This can help with a bunch of things like seeing what makes you feel better, and maybe trying to incorporate more of that into your routine, tracking fluctuations over time, or using this as a basis for a discussion with a health professional

Be careful when starting out, be curious, don’t worry about what the feelings mean if you can help it. Just acknowledge, allow the feeling to exist, and note it down.

You can also note down anything else you want to track: exercise, water drank, if spoke to someone that day and as always, if you feel that it’s not helpful to do this, or you need more formalised support to do so, please step back or reach out for assistance if you can (I know it’s a lot harder in the current climate! any good resources for remote therapy about?)

We’re all different, and it’s possible that this won’t resonate with you, but if you’re just starting out this whole self care/feelings thing, this is a concrete way of seeing how you feel, and what affects your mood. This can form a starting point for making positive changes.

Note: this assumes you’re in a safe place to do this. If you know you’re not going to be safe doing this, or feel like it won’t be helpful overall, take a step back and come back later (or don’t). Looking after yourself is paramount.