Therapy Skills Anyone Can Use
How therapy strategies can help with everyday situations.
May 28, 2020
Too many false pretenses about mental health exist to even be counted. Mental illness is fake. Therapy is just talking to someone else about your problems. Little do most people know, therapy can be applied to your life, even if you don’t have a mental illness. Dialectical Behavioral Therapy is a type of therapy that uses skills so people can learn how to effectively deal with everyday situations. Behavioral Therapy implies that it is a therapy based on the study of a person’s behavior, but dialectical is a more complicated concept. A dialectic is the theory that two things that are the same can coexist.
Easily, DBT can be broken into parts that can help you in different parts of your life. Mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotion regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness.
Stress balls are really helpful because tightening your muscles consciously can make them more relaxed when you release the tension
Matt Robbins agrees that “DBT has helped me retire my brain so I am able to deal with difficult situations in a healthy and constructive way”.
Compromise is fundamental when it comes to situations, even if you don’t agree with someone’s point of view. That includes taking the time to consider other people’s feelings. This long paragraph is barely scratching the surface of DBT and it may already seem extremely long and boring to some people, but even celebrities such as Selena Gomez can agree that it is worth the work.
A common example of something that causes stress would be tests and quizzes, which is unfortunately something that everyone has gone through in their lives. To set the mood, it is your free period before the test and if you don’t pass this, then you aren’t going to pass this class. Because you stayed up all last night, your vision is hazy and you are about to pass out.
The first thing you would want to do is cry, but the more effective thing to do is use the skill TIPP. TIPP stands for temperature, intense exercise, paced breathing, and progressive muscle relaxation. Naturally, running around the hallway would make you seem like a complete idiot, but after splashing cold water on your face, you feel more alert and relaxed. A tweet by Lili Reinhardt- the actress who most famously plays Betty from Riverdale- asks whether splashing cold water on your face is just in movies or does it actually calm you down.
The coldness of water can help you focus less on the stress and more about how cold the water is
Robert Glatter M.D. explained in an Elite Daily article that when people are anxious an instinctive system “triggers your body’s fight or flight mode, elevating your heart rate and blood pressure, and the point of splashing water on your face, he says, is to combat this reaction by lowering your heart rate” (Elite Daily).
That example shows only one of the 47 different skills to use in situations. According to a veteran DBT therapist, Margaret Horton, “DBT can be useful to anyone because although it was created for people with a borderline personality disorder, it was soon realized that the skills can be used in everyday life situations.” Unfortunately, DBT is not like waving a magic wand and suddenly be super chill in every situation. It requires a lot of work and ‘soul searching’, which is hard for everyone to do.