The team of therapists at our Roswell, GA practice is passionate. They offer realistic, tangible tips for bettering your mental health. Due to our gathered experience of treating folks struggling with life circumstances and/or mental health issues, we have quite the toolkit! In particular, one of our favorite tools is called Please Master. It comes from Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT).
What is Emotional Regulation?
DBT is a type of therapy that focuses on increasing emotional regulation. When one has emotional dysregulation, one may have trouble managing their emotional responses. Their anger may seem out of control or their happiness may seem over the top. For example, think about a time when you hadn’t eaten in a few hours and you’d been running errands. By the time you got home, you were likely exhausted and hungry (or even hangry). And if a housemate or family member tried to ask you a question, there’s a high chance you snapped at them. You knew at that moment that your response wasn’t appropriate. But, your brain and body were so worn out that you didn’t have the tools to respond in a different way.
The body responds to life stress in a similar way. When you’re in a rough patch or have been dealing with anxiety, depression, or trauma, the body and mind can get off-center. This is when emotional dysregulation may arise. DBT’s goal is to get the mind and body synched up again so that emotional responses can be more manageable. The tip I’m sharing with you today is rooted in helping you come back to your center. This way, you can and regulate your emotions again.
DBT Therapy Skill: Please Master
PL – In this acronym, the P and L are grouped together.
This is to remind you to “Treat Physical ILness.” This is the first step of this tool because we have to start at baseline. Do you have any physical illnesses or ailments that have not been tended to? If so, let’s get those addressed. Hopefully getting you back to optimal physical health can get you back on track.
Often, we forget the huge impact that food and drink play on our emotional and mental health. If you’re experiencing emotional dysregulation, your body can be thrown off its natural hunger cues. So, to meet this part of the exercise, eat something nutritious. The nutrients in a well-balanced meal can replenish your energy. Thus, helping you get to a more balanced mental state.
A – Our next letter in the acronym stands for “Avoid Mood-Altering Drugs.”
If you are using mind or mood-altering substances, it can be hard to regulate emotions. Substances often fall into “downers” and “uppers,” or depressants and stimulants. If we are attempting to get you regulated, we don’t want any extra factors to play a role in your mental or emotional state. We want to get you back to baseline.
S – Now, we’ll discuss the “Balanced Sleep” part of this tool.
Emotional dysregulation can make you sleep more or less than your body needs. If you’re unsure what your ideal amount of sleep is, you can try different things. You may only need about six hours to be awake and alert. Or, you may be one of those people who needs at least eight hours to be functioning at full capacity. Your body is unique, and finding ways to regulate your emotions can take time.
E – Our last letter of the acronym comes from “Exercise.”
It is vital for your body to get some movement each day. Even if that’s only a walk around your apartment. When you exercise, endorphins (or the “feel-good chemicals”) get released into the brain. So, move your body in whatever way feels good for you! It is an essential piece of coming back to and maintaining emotional regulation.
Master – A word in itself, the last piece of this tool speaks to “Building Mastery.”
The goal is to do one thing each day that makes you feel proud of yourself or brings you joy. Engaging in activities that help us feel happy and accomplished improves our self-esteem and releases those feel-good chemicals, too. If you can’t think of anything to “build mastery” at right now, that just means it’s time to find something!
DBT Therapy at Wellview Counseling
Our DBT therapists like recommending this skill because it gets to the basics of wellness. It reminds us to pause, then to get back on track in taking care of our needs. This tool can be used as a check-in gauge with yourself, too. If you’ve been feeling overwhelmed, drained, or burnt out, check-in using “Please Master.”
Have you been meeting all the needs of the “Please” acronym? If so, have you been engaging in “Building Mastery?” If all these boxes get checked off, it may be time to seek some outside support. And if that’s the case for you, our team of compassionate therapists is ready to welcome you with open arms.
Begin DBT Therapy in Roswell, GA
Mastering this DBT skill is much easier said than done. And it may be that you are looking for more support than this one skill. If you found this post helpful but are ready to dig deeper into improving your mental health, we’d love to help. Our team of caring therapists is happy and ready to offer you support. No matter what aspect of the skill you would like help mastering, our Roswell, GA-based therapy practice is here. To start your therapy journey, please follow these simple steps:
Other Services Offered With Wellview Counseling
DBT therapy isn’t the only service offered at our Roswell, GA-based counseling practice. Our therapists and counselors offer anxiety treatment, depression counseling, trauma and PTSD treatment, chronic illness counseling, and therapy for postpartum anxiety and depression. In addition, we also offer child counseling and play therapy (including support for trauma in children), individual counseling, teen counseling, young adult counseling, and family counseling. Contact us to learn more about our social groups for kids, and online therapy services!