So often in life when we are upset we turn to other people and things to deal with it and get us through.
Getting support from others is a wonderful thing but they cannot always be there when we need them or find the words we need to really soothe us.
Late in my pregnancy, I was given some brilliant advice that goes some way to solving this problem:
When the baby cries a lot and you are so weary, when it all feels hard - talk to your baby. Tell them what you need to hear in a soothing voice (even through the screams).
"Everything will be fine, not long now, sleep will come easily, you are doing so well, all is well".
Human bodies are designed to relax when they hear soothing voices.
The words you say to soothe your child are also words to soothe you.
Now my daughter is much older, but this still rings true for me.
When I tell her what we need to hear, it feels like the words are coming from the wisest part of me or from some broader loving universal embrace.
It feels like a warm bath washing over me.
I'm sharing this because you can use this trick anytime YOUR heart or spirit needs soothing.
Whisper to yourself or simply think of exactly what you need to hear.
For me it might be things like 'I know this is hard/frustrating, but you're doing so well and you'll be done soon'.
It's something we all desperately need - to be our own safe haven and greatest ally. When we aren't there for ourselves, things like our phones, food, work or being crazy busy come in to smother or numb the experience.
The simple truth is that we are always there, whereas others are not, and do not and really cannot know exactly what we need to hear to be soothed in our time of stress or sadness.
Only we know exactly what will hit the spot for us and press that healing, soothing button.
It might sound funny, but this can also be applied to good things. Sometimes people may not get why something is so exciting or such a big deal for you - but you do and can have your own celebration. (Incidentally, this also hits the reward centre for your brain, so you get a dopamine hit when you praise yourself - it feels good).
Lastly, when you know the words you need to hear, then you can help those close to you by telling them what soothes you. I've done this with my husband and it is really great for you both. Expecting people to be telepathic is not the recipe for a happy relationship!
So, try it out for yourself! Next time you are needing some support and loving words, soothe yourself with the words only you know and can share.
Hi, I'm Dr Lara Corr, life coach and researcher in work and wellbeing. I coach successful 30 and 40 somethings who want more fulfilling or bigger careers but doubt themselves and their options. I help them get out of their own way, find direction and go for what they really want.