Sensory Boxes are a great tool for when you’re feeling anxious or stressed out. Each item in the box can represent each sense, to help you feel grounded and focused on something other than the worry you might be feeling.
But what if you’re in a situation where you don’t have access to these tools, or you’re too busy to create your own sensory box?
I’ve complied a list of alternatives that you might find helpful; or you can take inspiration from and develop into your own coping strategies.
Find some solace inside a book.
It doesn’t matter what type of book it is; as long as it’s something enjoyable to you. If you have a spare moment, engage yourself in reading about your favourite topics (I’m partial to a bit of history) or lose yourself in a novel. It will allow you to focus on something else for a short while, and help to clear your thoughts. This can been done on public transport, during a lunch break, or just before bed.
Eat a tasty snack.
This is a simple yet comforting thing you can do, you can take a snack with you if you’re heading to somewhere you feel anxious about as a pick me up. If you tend to not be able to eat when feeling anxious, your favourite drink is a nice alternative.
Hold something comforting.
An easily portable, nice feeling item is good to carry around with you. It could be a pebble, a smooth piece of quartz, a soft square of material…anything you enjoy the touch of. If you tend to become restless and fidgety during times of worry you can focus your nervous energy onto the item you hold in your hands. As someone who tends to pick their skin, I’ve found holding my paintbrushes and smoothing the bristles on my hand to be really helpful.
Watch something nostalgic.
Watch a movie or cartoon that you used to love. Generally, kids movies make for super chill and easy viewing. I recently watched the original sleeping beauty and loved it, and as a fairly cynical individual who doesn’t usually enjoy kids films, re-watching an old favourite helped to ease some anxiety.
Get a plant pal.
You can pick up some really nice, yet cheap plants at the supermarket. Not only does tending to a plant make you feel nice for nurturing something; it can help your bedroom feel brighter too. It doesn’t take a lot of you time up if you buy one that requires minimal watering, and if you get a plant like basil or mint you can benefit by how great they smell AND use them as ingredients.
These small tips won’t magically make the stresses of life disappear forever (sadly) but they can aid you for a short time in moments where you’re feeling overwhelmed. Let us know what you think; and add to the conversation with tips of your own that might benefit others.