Here are some of the leading research-supported strategies for improving and maintaining physiological self-regulation. These activities can be helpful for anyone, and in particular can be helpful for those who are experiencing extra emotion around their trauma-focused therapy.
Yoga is an organized system of physical postures, breathing techniques, and meditation derived from Hindu traditions in Yoga. Medically-based, trauma-focused yoga therapy is studied and practiced within an evidenced-based framework that focuses on the increase in physiological and psychological health and well-being. However, there is no special reason to believe that the researched form of yoga is more beneficial than other types.
Mindfulness Meditation is a practice that involves acceptance through non-judgmental awareness of thoughts and feelings as they arise in experience. The practice involves techniques of breathing and posture that focus on the moment by moment awareness of feelings, thoughts, somatic sensations, and the environment around us.
Neurofeedback therapies work to train the brain to function in a calm resting state, which involves the regulation of emotion and the stress response. This is a gradual process that involves positive feedback strategies that focus on the efficiency of brain function in terms of regulatory processes.
Regular, vigorous sustained exercise for 30 minutes or longer can mediate the impact of various mental health conditions. From treating anxiety to mood enhancement to brain regulation, research is continuing to indicate that exercise can significantly aid in the recovery from mental health conditions.
Animal-assisted Therapy is based on the relationship network and process of relating between client, animal and therapist. The broad goals of animal-assisted therapy are to restore and maintain physical, cognitive and emotional functions of the client.
Journaling and expressive writing are forms and ways of processing the internal experience of events that have occurred in the past by bringing clarity to the emotional and cognitive content of the experience. Differentiating the components of the experience and re-integrating them within a grounded understanding of oneself in the present, is a way to re-narrate the experience and come to terms with the past event in a safe present context.