Here we are ‘STAYING ALERT!’ and (yes still) in ‘Lockdown’ with all the stressors that this can bring!
It may help us if we remind ourselves that it’s Mental Health Awareness Week – 18-24th and we’d like to introduce you to ‘Compassion Focus Therapy’ which is a proven evidence based therapeutic approach that includes some simple exercises that we can use to help rebalance our mental and emotional states. This includes the following:
Building A Compassionate Image. This is to help you build up a compassionate image for yourself to work with and develop (you can have more than one if your wish, and they can change over time). Whatever image comes to mind, or you choose to work with. Please note that it is your creation and therefore your own personal ideal to represent what you would really like from feeling cared for and cared about.
However, in this practice it is important that you try to give your image certain qualities.
These will include:
Wisdom, Strength, Warmth and Non-Judgement
So in each box below think of these qualities (wisdom, strength, warmth and non-judgement) and imagine what they would look, sound or feel like.
If possible we begin by focusing on our breathing, finding our calming rhythm and making a half smile of our face.
Then we can let images emerge in the mind – as best you can – don’t try too hard and if nothing comes to the mind, or the mind wanders, just gently bring it back to the breathing and practice compassionately accepting.
Here are some questions that might help you build an image: would you want your caring/nurturing image to feel/look/seem old or young; male or female (or non-human looking e.g., an animal, sea or light). Would your ‘image’ have gone through similar experiences to you?
Would they be like a friend or even part of a team that welcomes you to belong? What colours and sounds are associated with the qualities of wisdom, strength, warmth and non-judgement. Remember your image brings true/real compassion to you and for you.
- More details the better – How would you like your ideal caring-compassionate image to look – visual qualities? • How would you like your ideal caring-compassionate image to sound (e.g., voice tone)? • What other sensory qualities can you give to it? • How would you like your ideal caring-compassionate image to relate to you? • How would like to relate to your ideal caring compassionate image?
Please remember that we are here for you – our Wellbeing Team are here to help – you can contact us on 07717316883 or 07468600903 and email us on [email protected] AND our helpline from 10.00-10.00 every day – 0800 144 8461.