Is there something that makes you happy and picks you up even when you’re feeling at your lowest?
It might be a song or a movie, it might be a person you talk to, or a particular happy memory (like a really good holiday you had, or something you achieved when you were younger), or it might even be some activity you do, like a sport, or a hobby, like baking.
Think about why these things make you happy. Do you feel a connection with the lyrics in a song? Is it something that you’ve practised hard to be good at? Is it because you know you can always talk to one person in particular, and they just get you? Once you know what it is about something that makes you feel better, then you can look for more things that do the same.
What are you good at? Don’t be afraid to give yourself credit for the things you’re the best at. Take some time to think about and write down the things that you can do like no-one else can. Everyone’s got something that makes them unique. Even if it’s not something obvious, you might be a best friend to someone, or do really well in certain school subjects.
Or maybe there’s even something that you want to be good at. There’s a reason why you want to be good at it, and that motivates you to practise and get better at it. So if you can find a motivation to overcome self-harm, then there’s a reason for you to practise coping in better ways, or get into a better headspace.
When you’re feeling like life is beating you, and you’re self-harming to try and cope with it, it might help you to remind yourself of what you’re good at, or what makes you happy, or what motivates you.
It can be hard to stop yourself from self-harming and calm yourself down when you’re feeling that low. But if you can take 5 minutes to remind yourself of the stuff that motivates you, and makes you happy, then it help
This is where we’re big fans of “The Box of Stuff” (such an imaginative title..) – a box you can fill with stuff that can help & motivate you.
The things that make you smile when you think about them. The things that you can connect with. Happy memories.
People who are there for you and make you feel good about yourself. The things you’re good at. The things you enjoy doing. The things you want to be good at.
The stuff you put in there could be photos, a mixtape full of your favourite songs, a letter from a friend or a parent, it could be something you’ve drawn or created, a notebook filled with thoughts and scribbles, a diary, or even a way that you’ve avoided self-harming in the past, like elastic bands or red pens.
It’s 100% up to you what you put in there, because ultimately, it’s 100% for you. The best part is: there’s no right or thing to fill this box with. It’s unique to you.
Take a look through this box whenever you feel the urge to self-harm. Remind yourself how much you’ve got going for you, and why you want to get better. Then use that to help fuel you as you try to beat self-harm.