Mara McGraw, MSW - Relational Mindfulness for individuals, couples & moresomes

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TIP skills to interrupt intense emotions

TIP skills help down regulate intense emotions. During a highly dysregulated state the executive functions of the brain (thinking, reasoning and problem solving) become inaccessible. The brain does this to protect you with a "fight-flight-freeze" response. However, in most present day situations, we've outgrown the need for that response and are more in need of reasoning skills. TIP skills help get the brain unstuck from this automatic response and access your wise-mind (a blend of reasoning and emotions). This video is an excellent tutorial of this set of skills. 

-activate the "dive response" with a very cold, short shower or dunking your head upside down (up to, but not including, your nose) in an ice bath
CAUTION: this shouldn't be used by those with a heart condition 
Increased heart rate
-running or jumping jacks in place, sit ups, bike ride or other intense physical activity
CAUTION: this shouldn't be used by those with medically indicated exercise restrictions, including those with a binge-purge-restrict eating disorder 
Paced breathing or Progressive muscle relaxation 
-breath in slowly for the count of 5, breath out slower for the count of 7
-tense and relax muscle groups: hands, shoulders, face, stomach, legs, etc. 

As with any skills that indicates a physical response, please seek the advise of your physician before use. 

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