Two-minute tip: H.A.L.T for your wellbeing

In these disruptive and stressful times it's incredibly important to take care of your mental health and wellbeing. Here's one quick tip I've got for you to try. H.A.L.T for your wellbeing.

It's quick, easy and effective. It's a tool used in step-recovery programmes and is aimed at increasing your self-awareness so that you can then proactively take a practical step to ease the cause of your suffering or low mood.

Now I know this can't solve the issues Coronavirus is giving us all but it can, by increasing your self-awareness, help you find small ways to improve how you're feeling in the moment. And that gives you the opportunity to empower yourself to make small positive changes. Don't forget, small steps lead to big journeys.

H.A.L.T. – am I hungry, angry, lonely or tired?

What it is:

The H.A.L.T. principle is a quick, easy and effective tool to have in your wellbeing and mental health toolkit.

When to use it:

Since I read about the H.A.L.T. principle a few months ago, I’ve used it in those times when I just think to myself, “I can’t take any more or cope with anything else” and each time I’ve used it, it’s helped me to get things back into perspective.

Now when I’m overwhelmed or out-of-sorts, I try to remind myself to take a breath and do H.A.L.T. to identify what’s the most pressing thing that’s wrong and then I focus on fixing it. Sometimes by taking one thing off the pressure-list it’s enough to reset my mindset.

What it stands for:

H = Hungry

A = Angry

L = Lonely

T = Tired

How it works:

H.A.L.T. is all about raising your self-awareness at times of peak stress or unhappiness. By identifying what’s making you feel a certain way and when you feel that way act to rectify it, you can break the negative cycle of overwhelming emotions. This means you can focus on fixing the problem and source of distress rather than being overwhelmed by the emotion. Helping you find balance and strength to tackle, well, pretty much everything else.

Now, use it:

The next time you feel yourself out of kilter, pressured or overwhelmed take a moment, just a single breath and say:

“H.A.L.T. – am I hungry, angry, lonely or tired?”

and be honest with yourself… whatever the answer is it’s ok

Then, be honest in your answer… (it’s ok, it’s only for you).

Once you’ve identified one or two things from the H.A.L.T. list – focus on fixing it.

For example, if you’re answer is “I’m hungry…” even if you’re feeling stressed and overwhelmed, trapped in buys-ness, take a second and stop. Prioritise your physical and mental health for a few minutes (you can eat as you go and if you make soup you only need to drink it). But, do eat something, it’ll help your body feel stronger and more able and it’ll mean that mentally one of the things causing you distress is removed – helping you regain your balance.

Don’t forget to H.A.L.T. the next time you feel overwhelmed!

That’s it for your two-minute tip.

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