I came across this image on Twitter while in Wise Pilot mode. Yes! This is the next step for me: developing the Soothing System.
I reckon that I, and many people of my generation, simply skipped developing a fully functioning soothing system. I understand that this factor may be the base for some personality disorders (eg BPD, or EUPD) – someone described how in childhood we develop a rainbow of coping traits, and that someone with a PD simply wasn’t able to develop one of the colours, because of trauma or ACEs. With autism as part of my mix, it is not surprising that a) I still need to learn about self-soothing and thus b) addiction, anxiety and depression have been issues arising across my life.
Doing TRE at the weekend kicked up a lot of hidden trauma. I need to keep clearing and soothing and self-caring. I believe the above-pictured 3 systems model may be the heart of Compassion Focussed Therapy which I’ve heard a little bit about. I’ll find out more in due course.
In the meantime, in the path towards developing that Soothing system, I’ve decided to set up a new ‘self-social-prescribing’ system for myself.
I’ve recently started with reviewing my daily MEDS – my new daily tracker is really good and I’m enjoying using it. Here:
Next I plan to work out my weekly, monthly, quarterly and annual self-social-prescribing patterns.
On top of this, I’m recommitting to working externally (ie interfacing with people for work) only 12-6pm. I may even put it in my email footer. Why? To offset Compassion Fatigue from my intense mental health orientated work. To have free, time for self-care, writing, qigong, exercise, business marketing, website development… I tend to allow my attention to be ‘hijacked’ by the calls of others – not their fault – but I need to set clear boundaries if I am do avoid burnout.
I wonder if G and I can work simultaneously on developing soothing systems. That would be so good.
Let me look up CFT….
Beautiful work. Powerful self-kindness.
I remember that self-compassion meditation with K Neff?? was so good…
Self-soothing is perfect. Gently does it. Softly we go. Some of this is simply about finding ways to settle into the kind of stillness into which your higher wisdom can enter and make itself at home. You have a wise persona waiting in the wings – remember that Wise Pilot of your last post? She’s waiting to take centre-stage. She needs you to settle your emotional body, and shift into a high mind gear. This means shifting from the ‘unsure’, emotional, yes/no, on/off, doubting (and classically self-doubting) state state in to the ‘knowing’, assured, unfazed, clear-seeing state.
My goodness. I could do with a slice of that stuff. Ok. I’m on it with the self-soothing business. Hang fire. Mrs Doubt-fire incoming.
I am soothing my self
PS. Just bought the workbook based on Paul Gilbert’s Compassion Focussed Therapy work: