Below are categories of positive rumination, with examples. Scan them, if you wish, and come closer to the ones you’re most drawn to or need the most help with. Use all of these categories with an intention of self-soothing. Notice that you actually know how to soothe yourself and you’re able to soothe yourself.
DO NOT make feeling better a requirement for sticking with self-soothing. Do it for its own sake. Do it because it’s more likely to eventually calm you and make you hopeful and clear and able to act--while going back to negative ruminations or self-attack is likely to make you feel worse and get stuck where you don’t want to be. Cultivate kind, self-supporting rumination for the sake of not abandoning yourself. Do it as practice. Do it to be kind; to vote for life, healing, evolution; to come closer to love.
Connecting to magic: Notice signs and symbols; review synchronicity, echoes, repetition. Let yourself be wowed by the gorgeous timing or aligned meetings you didn’t orchestrate. Make much of how life keeps surprising you. Revel in the wonder of super-cool stuff and creatures and facts—amazing stuff is actually REAL on this planet. Let the beauty of it all touch you. Laugh at absurd happenings and interconnections. Be fascinated and amazed by how the parts of your life and people in it are woven together by an intelligence greater than you—an intelligence that’s interesting and loving and has a fabulous sense of humor.
Trusting in or experimenting with a friendly Universe: This is a human experience, not something personal. I’m willing to be a human being having this human experience. This is not punishment—I don’t live in a punitive Universe. I don’t need to understand why this is happening; I need to get present and meet it well. I can believe I’m guided and have all the support I need. I can watch for all that’s revealed along the way and trust the journey. I can believe I [anyone, a group, the planet] will gain from going through this.
Lemonade-making (subset of friendly U above): [First one’s from Byron Katie:] I’ve been spared. Whatever or whoever falls away no longer belongs in my life to support my current level of healing and evolution. There will be lessons in this I can’t see yet; perhaps I can name one now—some likely or obvious one. Nothing is going wrong here (besides that I’m not getting what I wanted when and how I wanted it). This is a great opportunity to practice what I’ve been wanting to practice. I’m building some muscles right now, and muscles are appealing. This is a chance to trust life, to show up for what’s actually happening, to value open and shut doors equally as part of my ongoing guidance. This is an opportunity to draw and hold boundaries. There’s no problem with what’s happening. (Note the latter is true even if people are hurting or dying—not to deny death or suffering but to accept anything as part of human life on planet earth, and to believe in an evolutionary thrust operative even it looks like it’s going backward.)
Looking for all that supports you: Start simple and get basic. I have food, water, air, a roof overhead, ground underfoot. My mattress supports me; this pillow supports me; the couch supports me. This land supports me. The beauty of this place supports me. My love of this mission supports me. I have a working phone, and there are 3 people I could text or call if I wanted to; if I left them a message they’d receive it in right time with caring. I can see one thing I could do right now that would make me feel better physically or emotionally; I can see one thing to do that would support me to feel better inhabiting my space. Certain people occupying certain roles in my life support me. I can think of one thing to try or think about differently that I want to practice and/or that has served me before. Someone kind is nearby or has been recently. Strangers have helped me or could. The unexpected could happen, and I’m open. I can remember a specific time the unexpected did happen. I’m not lacking support just because I hurt. I’m not lacking support just because I don’t know what to do or can’t see into the future. I’m not lacking support just because I’ve made mistakes or think I’m making one now. Actually, I do have all I need right now.
Cultivating the belief that you’re fine as you are: There’s nothing wrong with me. Whatever I’m feeling is okay. There’s nothing to fix. Source sees me as an entirely valid and beautiful being on an entirely valid and beautiful journey. I’d like to see myself as Source sees me. I’d like to see myself through lenses of love and compassion and ease and forgiveness. I think I can get better at that; in fact, I already have. All will be revealed as I go and I’m okay right now. I’ve been here before and I didn’t get stuck here. It’s okay to be a work in progress—that’s in fact all that’s possible. It’s okay to be exactly where I am now on my path at this moment in time—and because it’s impermanent, it will yield to something else. What if there’s nothing to fault myself for? If I’m in a shame spiral or self-reproach, the thing to correct is the shame or the reproach; I don’t need to be corrected; I am not a problem. If I’m not acting right now or if I keep putting that off, maybe it’s not time for it. Maybe I’m working up to it. Maybe I’d work up to it better being kind to myself. I’m fine.
Giving yourself a bit of credit: Consider and name things you’ve completed recently, things you feel good about, things you did well, things you’ve achieved, things you’ve understood more deeply, new insights or aha moments. Consider something recent you handled better than ever or interrupted or remembered earlier. I’ve come a long way. I’m doing better with this than I used to. I can think of things I’ve cleaned up or transformed that I wasn’t sure I could change or that I know human beings can go into denial about or get stuck in. I’m willing to look at myself. I’m willing to witness myself right now and to get kinder in the witnessing. What I’m feeling or believing now really better represents my younger self. You might imagine sitting with or holding that one now and giving them/her/him messages of love and reassurance; let them in on good things to come.
Expanding into “I’m amazing”: I actually like myself—I like my sensibilities and my preferences and my skills and my talents. I like how I look, how I use my body, how I feel things. I love how the Universal intelligence [love] [goodness] [life force] moves through me. I can think of things I’ve done that are really cool and kind of amazing. I love what I’m cultivating and moving toward right now. I can think of things I’ve lived through that made me a strong and kind of badass human being. I like some of my current life choices and experiences and ways of being that support and express my badassery. I can think of ways I’ve loved well and truly made choices for good. I love how I’m loving now. It just keeps getting better. I keep getting better. I’m amazing. I can think of things I’ve created or been part of or led that I truly value. I appreciate my values. I can think of things I’ve learned about or learned to do that I’m kind of in awe of. I like how I feel right now. I like who I am right now. [Last one’s from Louise Hay:] I love myself, I approve of myself.
Being here now: There’s nowhere else I need to be; there’s nothing else I should be doing. The Universe has got that right now and I don’t need to give it my attention. That’s their business, not mine—I release them to their life, I release myself to mine. Ah, in this exact moment, this is what I see (hear, taste, smell, feel). I don’t need to check on the future right now. I get to focus on the one task of the moment, not the outcome or other parts of the project. There’s nothing to asses or evaluate right now. If I’m stuck in something past, I’m the one holding on to it: the Universe and all of life has moved on. If someone else is stuck in a past we had together, I can leave them to it; it’s up to me to move on and cultivate my own presence here and now. I can feel the breath moving through me. Right now, I can connect to the felt, sensory experience of the breath. I feel that it feels good, it calms me, it brings me to the core of my being. The breath connects me to now and brings me to my body as it is now, as I inhabit it now. I’m willing to be here now.
Going general (from Abraham-Hicks): I don’t need to figure this out right now. I’ve (we’ve) gotten through similar or worse and I’m (we’re) wiser and more equipped for this. All will be revealed in right time. I’ll know what to do in the moment. This is all human stuff and life stuff—not personal to me. This is a normal human experience to go through and I’m willing to go through it. If I don’t know, I don’t need to know right now. It’ll all come out in the wash. I can pan out to eagle view and get out of stressful mouse-view. I can leave the details aside and keep my overall vision in view. I don’t need to understand where the money will come from—things get financed and my understanding of and relationship with money can keep changing. I have time—we all have time; there’s no shortage of time. I know how to prioritize. I just need to locate the next thing to do. I can aim roughly in the right direction and trust in my ability to course-correct. I can believe I’m guided even in the midst of uncertainty.
Soothing yourself could include bits from all the categories above, and if you can’t put a topic down, there’s nothing like going general (just above) to diffuse the stress of it. Mental self-soothing or self-talk that makes you feels better involves giving yourself a string of messages to remind yourself that nothing’s going wrong, that you’re equipped to meet what’s happening, that all is well, that you’re guided, that your needs are met and you’re safe, that everything and everyone are in the care of a greater intelligence than yours, that love prevails.
Love & blessings, Jaya