5 Steps to Cope with Suicide and Suicidal Thoughts

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Suicide is an issue that has become even more important to discuss now than ever before. More young people deal with suicidal thoughts alone and are unable to seek help out of fear that their mental health issues will be dismissed as an overreaction or attention-seeking.

Having suicidal thought is not a character defect, it doesn’t also mean you are going crazy. You only find yourself in a situation that puts you through more pain than you can cope with at this point, and it affects your mental health. But with some time and necessary support, you can overcome the thought of suicide.

Different emotional distress can cause one to feel suicidal. The reasons for this pain differ from one person to another, and everyone may have a unique way of coping with it. Although, one common reason a person would think or feel suicidal, is being unable to think of other possible solutions for the problem, due to the intense emotional pain they currently experience and may find it challenging to seek help and support.

However, it would help to know that suicidal thought like any other problem can be sorted out, and considering to put an end to your life is not the only available option to solve your problem. If you give yourself a little more time and seek necessary support, you can also get through this phase of life.

Whenever you start having suicidal thoughts, or you worry you may likely get these thoughts again, here are some tips that could help you cope with this phase.

5 Tips for coping with the thought of suicide

1. Remove yourself from places of potential harm

Areas of potential danger can trigger the thought of suicide; these thoughts could hit hard when you are surrounded by objects that could facilitate suicidal action. Whenever you get these thoughts, move away from such areas first before you consider making any decisions.

If you worry that you may likely have these thoughts again, get rid of any harmful objects in your surrounding such as knives, firearms or dangerous medications. You could ask a friend or family member to help keep them away from you.

Also avoid activities such as driving, swimming or standing on a high platform, drinking and taking pills whenever you start thinking suicidal.

2. Take a Breather

Once you start feeling overwhelmed by your thoughts, slowing your breath would help to slow the rate at which your heartbeats, and at the same time supplies more oxygen to your brain. This also enables you to take a short break and shifts your attention away from your suicidal thoughts.

Take a deep inhale and slowly exhales to regain stable breathing. Do this with a four seconds interval, and repeat the process till your breathing is stable.

3. Regain focus

Once you can catch your breath and regain a stable breath, Close your eyes for a few seconds and try to visualize positive things such as your favourite life experiences or a loving moment you had with a loved one. You can also imagine yourself to be in a safe and blissful place.

Sometimes, staying focus on breathing while visualizing, can also help. You can count your breath and visualize the numbers you’re counting.

Furthermore, try to relax your muscles. Often when people feel overwhelmed, their muscles tighten up without them realizing it, their jaws may flex, and their fist remains stiff for a while. If you notice your muscles are tightening, try to focus on relaxing your muscles.

Doing these things would help reduce the pressure and make you may feel relaxed enough to regain focus.

4. Reach out for help

If you’ve employed the above techniques and you still feel that intense urge to take your life, you should consider reaching out to people. When you surround yourself with people you care about, there are fewer chances of you being isolated or begin to think of suicide as a quick fix.

You can also tell people you trust about your situation. This way they’ll get to pay you more attention and would try to help you recover. Furthermore, you should also consider seeking professional help; you could reach out to a therapist or a medical doctor if there is a need for medical care. 

5. Consider other options to help solve your problem

When you are able to pull through the overwhelming phase of your thoughts, begin to consider other approaches to solve your current situation. If you cannot think of anything, you could ask a more advanced person for advice, or consult a counsellor.

Always remember that there are other possible ways to solve your problem, and committing suicide is not the best option. If you are a Christian, don’t hesitate to seek God in his word and through prayers, also consider reaching out to ministers in your church for assistance.

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