Coping Toolbox

My collection of various coping techniques.

What works is going to be different for everyone. Intended as a personal reference/source of inspiration.

Feel free to go ahead and build your own coping toolbox!

Slow Blinking

Slowly close eyes. Keep them closed for a moment before slowly opening them again. Repeat several times.

This should have a calming effect.

Check the Basics

Thirsty? Hungry? Sleepy? Been sitting still for long?

Address whichever of these apply.

Sweeping Meditation

Do a simple calming exercise first, like slow blinking or taking some deep breaths.

When troublesome thoughts occur, imagine sweeping them away with a broom. I like to imagine actually sweeping the floor in a tranquil imaginary location.

Physical Activity

Getting active can sometimes be an outlet for negative emotion. Go for a walk or a run, swim, dance, etc.

Engage the Senses

Smell something with an enjoyable scent, eat something with a nice taste, touch an object with a pleasant texture, etc.

Plan Activities

Write down activities to do to during the day. Plan with times or plan in the form of a to-do list.

Sparkly Animal Book

Actual title: You Can Do All Things (author: Kate Allan)

The book has chapters for different types of negative emotions, containing illustrations of encouraging sparkly animals. The end of each chapter suggests a few very simple actions to try.


Do something that will take up as much focus as possible, be that reading a story, playing a demanding game, listening to a podcast, etc.