• Welcome! It’s great to see you.

    If you'd like to talk with people who know what it's like

    Our forum members are people, maybe like yourself, who experience mental health difficulties or who have had them at some point in their life.

When Feeling Distressed - Post Your Ideas for Soothing



Feb 28, 2010
Hi Folks,

When someone is feeling like their skin is crawling, or is feeling anxiety, it feels Awful- and usually a big part of that distress is felt in the Body. Its a circular chain... mind is suffering- its felt in the body- which is now suffering- which increases the distress felt in the mind- which increases the bad feelings in the body...

A common strategy is to pick one or more of the senses, Taste, Smell, Hearing, Sight, Touch and find something to sooth that sense. As a small amount of pleasure enters the body it helps to break the mind/body distress chain.

If you have suggestions regarding one or more of the 5 senses please post them. Your idea may very well help someone feel much calmer.

Here's mine: Touch- Draw a hot bath. Dim the lights (light a candle or use a night light, etc.). Relax in the bath- adding hot water as it cools off. Using a cup, scoop up some water evey few minutes and pour it onto an exposed part of your body and concentrate on how good it feels. Tell yourself out loud, "My body is feeling much calmer".

Ideas? Taste, Smell, Hearing, Sight, Touch



Well-known member
Nov 24, 2009
Well when I feel down, I eat :( Like right now it's 00:49 and I'm eating a whole packet of popcorn.. I don't know if that's relevant x
getting better

getting better

Active member
Feb 28, 2010
Behind you...BOO!!!
Mine are both pretty obvious but for the sense of smell light scented candles. In fact you could use Bills bath idea at the same time. Personally I find lavendar and rose the most calming. Getting a waft of scent every so often is very uplifting..and the mood the flickering candle makes is very relaxing too.
I also sometimes wear my very best perfume if I'm feeling down. It usually reminds me of going out and the good times I've had.


Well-known member
Jan 28, 2010
Hi Bill,

I like the idea of picking one of the senses, that's a new way of thinking about it for me - I haven't got a bath at my flat sadly (I love lying in hot bath), just a shower, but that always perks me up (touch I guess, and with nice smelling shower gel - smell). I like aromatherapy oils in a burner (ginger is a favourite of mine, also lavender, ylang ylang, and citrusy ones, and others), and/or incense ('nitiraj original' is a favourite). I love subdued light, also candles, and Christmas lights (all year) - v relaxing - sight.

I've been listening to music a lot of late - can be soothing music, but sometimes something angry or powerful music to resonate with something powerful under the anxiety (hearing). And I switch off rather with telly - hearing & sight I suppose.

I find myself going for comfort food too - especially cheese and bread, nuts, and for a bottle of beer or a glass of wine, but these are mixed blessings - getting drunk too much and getting fat aren't such good things in the end!

anyway, thanks for the idea of breaking the cycle this way!
Last edited:


Nov 13, 2009
Ive never thought of it like that:

I get anxiety, it feels like a weight on my chest, like my skin has been pulled off and I have been punched. It hurts, then the fluttering in my chest, like lots of horrible little flying beatles with sharp piercing wings.....I digress.

I tend to give up on trying to get rid of the sensations all together, I curl up in my computer chair, sit with a hot water bottle against my chest, hold onto it tightly. It does help.

But I think what does seem to help (aside from talking to someone which is my no.1 thing for helping, but not always possible at 1,2,3..am) is to try to get the feelings outside of my body. I write stuff down, draw things, make collages, try in any way possible to corner the feeling and take an external point of view at it, thinking "how to I express this to someone who knows nothing on a piece of paper" and let go. It doesn't take away the feeling, it does give me something to do. It doesn't mean they don't al, come slithering back once I stop, but it does buy me time. Possibly a few hours.

I also find that doing something to get outside of my own head helps. Trying to focus on something that is not my own feelings. Try to do something that takes alot of concerntration. Knitting, stitching, anything that takes alot of focus, even some forms of exercise (group stuff). Again this doesn't really work at 3am when you've no longer any energy to do any of that and so to fight, but if you did get an energy surge it can help to give you some time. Not a cure by any means, but a small breath of air.
Similar threads
Thread starter Title Forum Replies Date
M I'm feeling lost Depression Forum 1
P Numb Emotions and Not Feeling Love Because of Depression Depression Forum 4
J Feeling worse now than a few years ago Depression Forum 4
L Depressed and Feeling Inadequate to My Loved Ones Depression Forum 4
Z Feeling like everything is empty Depression Forum 2
L Feeling alone and hopeless Depression Forum 8
RadioHush feeling good for the first time in a while :) Depression Forum 4
H Feeling hopeless Depression Forum 8
J Need some help I'm feeling very depressed the moment and just do not feel good Depression Forum 4
apple2003 tw: suicidal, feeling like a burden, out of control Depression Forum 9
I Feeling so depressed and fed up Depression Forum 8
C Feeling very suicidal today Depression Forum 14
S Feeling stupid Depression Forum 1
J Feeling dodgy Depression Forum 5
R Feeling Empty and Down Depression Forum 4
dovah1024 Feeling Empty Depression Forum 8
R Feeling of inadequacy and can no longer enjoy things. Depression Forum 5
R Feeling lower every day from all I've been through Depression Forum 14
S Feeling depressed and disconnected Depression Forum 9
L Feeling confused about my head. Depression Forum 20
F Feeling stuck in everything... Depression Forum 1
Fireflies201 Feeling defeated and stuck Depression Forum 13
R Not feeling connected Depression Forum 18
M Feeling numb, yet ready to explode. Depression Forum 5
Q Feeling as if my feelings are all in my head Depression Forum 2
PurpleBlue A thread for anyone feeling like crap tonight Depression Forum 7
dontknowwhattodowithoutyou What do you do when feeling lonely Depression Forum 4
R Feeling bleak when everything is going well Depression Forum 4
M Feeling hurt/sad/frustrated Depression Forum 4
N Slept at last but now feeling bad Depression Forum 6
S Feeling drained & hopeless Depression Forum 5
O feeling like a horrible person... Depression Forum 2
A I'm just feeling numb Depression Forum 5
B Feeling helpless Depression Forum 95
G guilty for feeling ok Depression Forum 11
Faith198 Feeling like I’m stuck like this forever Depression Forum 4
G Feeling empty Depression Forum 24
R Feeling a little all over the place Depression Forum 1
manicmonday Feeling like the worst mum in the world Depression Forum 13
L Would like some advice about feeling detached recently Depression Forum 1
S Depression? Period. Not feeling good any others get these symptoms Depression Forum 4
Y Feeling really lonely sice covid started Depression Forum 7
J Bi-polar alcoholic mother is imploding, my relationship with my wife is very difficult. Feeling very overwhelmed. Depression Forum 4
fluffydogs Feeling insecure because of my bf's ex. Depression Forum 5
R Feeling down lately Depression Forum 4
I Terrified of going into work (feeling physically sick) Depression Forum 4
T Feeling really suicidal Depression Forum 9
L Tired Of Feeling Like This Depression Forum 15
Carol1952 I am feeling so confused and depressed Depression Forum 8

Similar threads