Break Glass List

Today I’m working through my Break Glass list, a tool that has helped me deal with some almost-overwhelming anxiety the past few weeks. I learned about this mental health tool a few months ago from my BFF Jonobie who in turn learned it from her therapist.

A Break Glass list is simply a list of things that help ground you physically or mentally. Things that, were we not overwhelmed and just a bit down, we might do anyway. But when our systems are overloaded it’s hard for us to think of those simple things which is why we have this list made in advance. Then when we’re feeling overwhelmed we only need to remember one thing:

In case of emergency, break glass.

I keep my list in a Google Keep document that I can readily access from my phone or computer whenever I need it. Here’s my list, which is very me and likely not useful to you as-is but might give you some ideas:

  • Listen to Working Girl soundtrack
  • Close your eyes and take deep breaths
  • Text Jonobie or Jeena
  • Stretch
  • Drink water
  • Eat something
  • Step away from the computer / phone
  • Go get a Sonic cherry coke

The trick is making this list in advance so you have it when you need it.

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I'm a gay geek living in Seattle, WA.

4 thoughts on “Break Glass List”

  1. I just saw this today because last week I was mostly staying away from the computer too! :)

    My list looks like so, in no particular order – in case that helps others:

    o Listen to “Binaural Beats: Focus” or my “Pensive” list on Spotify

    o [For feeling overwhelmed on a project] Write down in sentences the answers to the following questions: “What’s causing me to freeze?” “What am I confused about?” “What do I know and understand”? “Do I have a task for things I know and understand in my to do list?” “Can those be done, delegated, or reprioritized?” “Can i ask someone for help?”

    o Go get a cup of peach tea.

    o Mask up, go out, and get coffee from Someplace Out.

    o Go play Animal Crossing for a short time.

    o Work a bit on embroidery.

    o Is there someone I can talk to about this? [List of people to reach out to, including Casey. :) ]

    o Shower! It’s fine if you’ve already done it today. You can do it again.

    Liked by 1 person

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