1.4.5: Rapid Reset Activities Handout for Families

Updated: Oct 20

Access a fully illustrated version of the Rapid Reset Activities.


Edited and Expanded from “Reconnect for Resilience” training with MAHEC March 21 & 22, 2019:

Resources for Resilience™ -- https://resourcesforresilience.com/


Here is a video reading of the following material.

Rapid Reset Activities

Rapid Reset activities include anything that brings neutral or positive body-felt awareness into the present moment to engage the Calm/Connect circuit when someone is stressed. This takes us out of either the over-energy of urgency (as with Fight or Flight)… or with the energy-shut-down of Collapse.

Examples include: grounding, pushing up against a wall, walking, doing heavy work (pushing, pulling, lifting, digging, sweeping), taking a sip (water is often the best), singing or toning or humming, orienting to your surroundings (looking all around, noticing what’s there, counting colors, noticing the space, etc.), tapping side to side (bilateral stimulation).

 

Ground

There are many ways to ground.

Notice sensations of support and safety when you:

sit,

stand,

lie down,

lean onto a desk,

lean against a wall,

or… when you walk.

Pay attention to the sensations inside your feet, legs, arms, or whole torso.

Notice how a chair or wall or desk can support your legs, your back, your arms and torso.

Notice how your feet can feel pressure as you stand on the ground.

Can you also sense the ground supporting you?

 

Take a Sip

Notice the physical feelings that go with drinking something.

Pay attention to the sensations of what you are drinking and how it feels on the inside:

in your mouth,

in your throat, and…

as it goes down to your stomach.

Take your time.

What do you notice?

Where do you notice positive or neutral physical feelings?

What do you notice now about your breathing, heart rate, or muscle tension?

 

Push against a Wall

Bring your attention to the sensations of pushing:

the bottom of your feet on the ground,

the pressure on your body touching the wall,

the big muscles in your arms, shoulders, legs, or whole torso.

Take your time.

What do you notice?

Where do you notice positive or neutral physical feelings?

What do you notice now about your breathing, heart rate, or muscle tension?

 

Walk Around the Room or Outside

Bring your attention to the sensations of walking – for example:

the contact of the bottom of your feet on the ground,

the pressure on your feet or legs with each step,

the muscles in your legs,

the sense of balance at your center of gravity (near your navel),

your whole body’s sense of balance.

Take your time.

What do you notice?

Where do you notice positive or neutral physical feelings?

What do you notice now about your breathing, heart rate, or muscle tension?

 

Sing, Tone, or Hum

Notice the physical sensations you have when you sing, tone, or hum – for example:

the sensations of your face and mouth,

your breathing,

any vibrations of throat or chest or your whole torso.

Take your time.

What do you notice?

Where do you notice positive or neutral physical feelings?

What do you notice now about your breathing, heart rate, or muscle tension?

 

Do Some Heavy Work

Bring your attention:

to the sensations that come with lifting, pulling, or pushing something heavy,

to the sensations that come with sweeping the floor or raking leaves,

to the sensations that come with shoveling snow or digging a hole in the ground,

to the sense of pressure in your arms, shoulders, legs or your whole torso.

Take your time.

What do you notice?

Where do you notice positive or neutral physical feelings?

What do you notice now about your breathing, heart rate, or muscle tension?

 

Orient

Look around the room, or wherever you are, and notice what’s there.

You may notice people or things, the floor or ground, the ceiling or sky.

You can notice the door (or direction) you came from.

You can notice a door (or direction) you might leave by.

What else might you notice?

Especially notice anything pleasing or interesting (whether big and obvious - or small and not noticed by most people). What catches your attention?

Where in your body do you begin to notice positive or neutral physical feelings?

What do you notice now about your breathing, heart rate, or muscle tension?

 

Orient pt. 2

Name six colors you see… whether you are inside or outside.

--- or ---

Have someone call out a color… such as “Yellow!” and…

in a relaxed way, breathing easily, and taking your time…

take a minute (or a long 20 seconds) for everyone to look around and…

give a nod or a smile to “Yellow”… wherever it is quietly present around you.

Where in your body do you begin to notice positive or neutral physical feelings?

What do you notice now about your breathing, heart rate, or muscle tension?

 

Tap Side-to-side

Cross your arms over your heart with your fingers touching the sides of your upper chest… Or touching the muscles in your upper arms.

Tap first on one side, then the other.

Go back and forth, tapping at whatever speed feels good,

for as long as you want. 20 seconds? A minute? Four minutes?

You can combine this with all sorts of things like… singing, leaning against a wall, looking for “Yellow”, or feeling a breeze blowing over your arms.

Where do you notice positive or neutral physical feelings?

What do you notice now about your breathing, heart rate, or muscle tension?

 
We can rewire our stressed-out survival brain using Rapid Resets.
See below…

Rewiring Is Possible

By intentionally exploring neutral or positive body-felt sensations during times of stress (or when recalling a stressful event) the brain builds new neural pathways around the memory trace / reactive pattern.

“What fires together gets wired together”

New positive memory + old negative memory = rewiring

Every time we learn something our brain changes.


We Anchor the Change we feel by being with it for at least 20 Seconds…

Soak in the shift, breath easily, with relaxed focus, for at least 20 seconds…

Practice, practice, practice!


#RapidResets

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