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  • Writer's pictureRoxanna Rawson

Tools to Activate Your Parasympathetic Response

  • Cuddle up with a fluffy pet or stuffed animal

  • Use the diving reflex (face in cold water for 30 seconds)

  • Choose happy or self celebratory activities that help you feel calm and safe

  • Jiggle to your favourite music (if you are very weak, you can do this lying down)

  • Take a hot bath

  • Go on a mini walk round the garden and find some lovely flowers to smell/gaze at

  • Take your inner child on playdates... skip a little, pick daisies, dance in the living room, do a puzzle, make a drawing or finger painting

  • Doing math sums (engage the pre-frontal cortex)

​Physical Distraction of calming sensations can also be helpful. Here are some you can use (you can also invent your own):​

  • Move head side to side slowly, noticing everything your eyes see as you move

  • Arm sweep, stroke one arm from tips of fingers to shoulder with the opposite hand

  • Look at your toes wiggling!

  • Cross over thumbs on chest. Lift one thumb up slowly then the other. Focus on the sensations

  • Close one eye and look across at your nose, do the same on the other side

Invent your own :-)

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