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Staying Calm During an Emergency Can Save Lives

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https://www.huffpost.com/entry/staying-calm-during-an-em_b_7749812

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Staying Calm During an Emergency Can Save Lives
Before we discuss what you can do to stay calm and focused in an emergency, let me tell you why it's important to stay calm and focused. When the body is under stress, it moves into survival mode, better known as the fight-or-flight syndrome.

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Reason for staying calm

When faced with an emergency, you are biologically created to be reactive and to behave in an emotional manner rather than a thoughtful manner.

It is important to have a plan to keep you calm...

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Technique #1

To reduce stress in the body and immediately relax:

Squeeze and release all the muscles in the body isometrically and simultaneously, three times.

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Technique #2

  • Breathe in to the count of three 
  • Hold to the count of three
  • Breathe out to the count of three
Repeat three times while telling yourself to relax.

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Technique #3

Close your eyes for one minute and focus your mind on some calming cue, for example, a place that you go to relax... a beach... the mountains... and hold that image three times to the count of thre...

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SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Sama Vritti or “Equal Breathing”

How it’s done:  Inhale for a count of 4, then exhale for a count of 4, all through the nose, which adds a natural resistance to the breath. Once you manage it, you can go up to a c...

Abdominal Breathing Technique

How it’s done: With one hand on the chest and the other on the belly, take a deep breath in through the nose, ensuring the diaphragm inflates with enough air to create a stretch in the lungs. The goal: 6 to 10 deep, slow breaths per minute for 10 minutes each day to experience immediate reductions to heart rate and blood pressure.

When it works best: Before an exam, or any stressful event.

Nadi Shodhana or “Alternate Nostril Breathing”

How it’s done: Starting in a comfortable meditative pose, hold the right thumb over the right nostril and inhale deeply through the left nostril. At the peak of inhalation, close off the left nostril with the ring finger, then exhale through the right nostril. Continue the pattern, inhaling through the right nostril, closing it off with the right thumb and exhaling through the left nostril.

When it works best: Crunch time, or whenever it’s time to focus or energize.

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Emotions During a Difficult Conversation

It’s hard not to get worked up emotionally when you’re in a tense conversation: a disagreement can feel like a threat.

But if your body goes into “fight or flight” mode,  ...

Breathe

When you start noticing yourself getting tense, try to focus on breathing (on feeling the air coming in and out of your lungs).

This will take your attention off the physical signs of panic and keep you centered.

Focus on your body

Sitting still when you’re having a difficult conversation can make the emotions build up rather than dissipate. 

Standing up and walking around helps to activate the thinking part of your brain.

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Crises Can Confuse Communication

Failing in communication can have a big impact during a crisis. Sometimes things that are transparent to one party may be interpreted differently by another. Therefore, choosing certain words ...

Talking vs Speaking

During a crisis, using the word "talk" to begin a conversation, "Can we talk about how you are?" often gets a negative response. The reason is that we place little value on "talk." Talk is cheap or meaningless. However, substituting the word with "speak", seems to have better results.

"Talk" is loaded with context that makes it fruitless in these scenarios, while the word "speak" is free from those associations.

Being Willing

The principles for a positive and constructive discussion are framing your conversation in positivity.

By framing conversations to focus on the positive, one can move a problem forward.

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Calm for the Holidays

A few quick ways to take holiday stress down, relax and invoke your calmer self:

  • Breathe deeply.
  • Exercise.
  • Diffuse charged conversations.

Deep Breathing

When your emotions run high, breathing speeds up, too. Slowing your breathing down relaxes tense muscles, bringing shoulders down from ears, calms roiling emotions, and helps disarm the hormonal cascade within the body that feeds anxiety.

Just five minutes of deep breathing can calm you effectively.

Move your body

Moving to do just about any exercise boosts your mood and manages your anxiety.

Just going for a walk can balance your emotions and provide positivity.

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Stress-busting techniques

  • Establish regular times for when you eat, sleep, read, exercise, grocery shop and so on. 
  • Look after your health, with healthy food, regular exercise and calm times ...

Make stress management fun

  • Sweat out your stress with a high intensity workout. Or do the opposite: completely wind down in a tai chi class.
  • Spend time with someone who makes you laugh. 
  • Grab some pencils and a colouring book. While you’re colouring in, you are slowing your thoughts and using your creativity.
  • Dance around the house to your favourite music.
  • Head outside for fresh air and a close encounter with the natural environment.
  • Turning off your screens and devices can help you switch off your thinking. On the flip side, watching a funny movie or talking to someone on Facetime can help you feel better too.
  • Eat a banana or a potato. These foods have potassium, which can improve your body’s energy and recovery.
  • Find a repetitive activity, such as knitting, wood carving or making jewellery. The simple act of repeating a skill with your hands can relieve stress.

4-7-8 Breathing

Created by Dr. Andrew Weil this is breathing exercise to help you relax: 
  1. First, let your lips part. Exhaling completely through your mouth.
  2. Next, close your lips, inhaling sil...

Shallow breathing

We loose the ability to breath deeply naturally as we age: deep breathing comes naturally to children, but we lose the ability because we’re in a constant state of fight-or-flight, low-level str...

Controlled breathing

... is the fastest, most effective way to trigger the relaxation response, enabling you to think more clearly and perform better under pressure.

Navy Seal tricks

The Navy SEALs use 2 breathing techniques that force the body into a more relaxed state when they’re in a high-pressure situation:

  • Tactical breathing
  • Box breathing.

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Daily interruptions

On average, we experience an interruption every 8 minutes or about 7 or 8 per hour. In an 8t-hour day, that is about 60 interruptions. The average interruption takes about 5 minutes, so that...

Myth of multitasking

We’re not actually multitasking; rather, we are switching rapidly between different activities.

Better concentration makes life easier and less stressful and we will be more productive. Practice concentration by finding things to do that specifically engage you for a period of time to the exclusion of everything else.

The ‘five more’ rule

... for learning to concentrate better:

Whenever you feel like quitting – just do five more – five more minutes, five more exercises, five more pages – which will extend your focus. 

The rule pushes you just beyond the point of frustration and helps build mental concentration.

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Slow down

Try not to react immediately, but be patient and gather as much information as possible.

If the problem will not matter a year from now, distance yourself somewhat from the situation to gain ...

Stay positive

When you are in a stressful situation, do not allow your mind to imagine the worst-case scenario. 

Focus your mind on something positive.

Never ask “what if?”

The "what if" line of questioning induces panic and lets you focus on imagined situations that escalate the problem.

Focus on the facts and work on a solution.

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