Ever thought of using a Dropbox to help with anxiety, worry or fear? Before you all rush off to your laptops and sign up for this service - although who wouldn’t want a place to stash a gazillion photos, doc, videos and files and have instant access? - I’m not referring to the technical Dropbox. I’m talking about a physical one – a jar, shoebox, or even an envelope, where you can drop off your worries.
I know some of my friends use a gratitude jar. To use this, they jot down anything they are grateful for during that day or week. The idea is to empty the jar at the end of the year and have a host of happy and grateful memories to remind yourself of how blessed you are.
The drop off box works in a similar way. Had a bad day? Jot down why it was bad, who upset you and how you feel about it. Screw up the piece of paper and drop it in the jar. Add every worry, fear or anxious thought you have into it.
At the end of each month - or week if it’s been a tough one - take great pleasure in emptying the contents into your rubbish bin, or recycling bag. If you are feeling especially snarly – you can burn it!
When my marriage ended, I wrote my ex-husband a long letter explaining how all the things he had done to me had made me feel. I poured everything I had held in over seven years onto the page. No-one other than me ever read it. I burnt it in my chiminea as soon as I’d finished writing, and I watched the sheets of paper disappear in a puff of smoke and ash, along with my anxiety. This ‘stuff’ had been eating away at me for years, and I was so relieved to be able to drop it off and feel weightless again.
N.B.: Please adhere to fire safety if you choose to burn your paper – you don’t want to ADD to your stress and anxiety by burning down your house or injuring yourself.
At the moment I am in limbo with an undiagnosed health issue, this is causing me to feel anxious and frustrated, and it was the main reason for creating my Dropbox. When I explained to my children what I was doing, my daughter grabbed the notebook, scribbled a little note and dropped it in the jar. ‘That’s great,’ she said, ‘I had a REALLY bad day at school, and now I feel much better.’
Have a go at getting creative and make your own Dropbox, or use an old Tupperware box, an envelope or a shoe box – whatever you have to hand will work.
For my Dropbox, I used an empty coffee jar and soaked off the label. I then decopatched the outside to make it look bright and cheerful (after all, it’s a good thing to release your stress). I tied a bow on the top because I have brief moments of being a girly girl and then it was ready to go.
Here’s to a stress-free life, an anxiety-free zone and a reason to have more BBQ’s this summer – got to love the hot coals after the food is cooked, great for burning your negative thoughts!
How do you release your stress and anxiety? Share it with us in the comments below.