Skip to main content
Updated date:

Your Emotional First Aid Kit – Keep it Handy


An NLP Coach, writer, meditator, and Nature lover I am interested and like to write on a variety of topics.


Dark mood. Feeling blue and black inside. Angry. Hurt. Glum. Deeply sad.

If this is how you feel at times, fret not.

The best of people go through these states. It is absolutely natural and perfectly normal. What matters is how one handles these states and how soon one manages to come of these states.

Some of us seem to handle it with far more ease than others. But that again is all right. Because this is thankfully, not an inborn skill. We can all learn and get better.

Now this dark mood can be attributed to countless reasons like:

- Something didn’t quite turn out the way you wanted in a relationship.

- Unrequited love

- Failure in a relationship

- Caught in a toxic relationship

- Love break-up, betrayal,

- Feeling undervalued by people you love

- Unwarranted criticism

- Friendship turning sour

- Didn’t get that coveted raise/promotion

- Failure in an exam

- Rejection

- Failure in exam

- General feelings of dejection

Of course, it is a build-up happening over time and the proverbial final straw on the camel’s back does it.

On one particularly bad day, your mood spirals out of


Understood differently, it is figuratively like there is a

dark space in our head where the negativity goes on accumulating unless you have a method to deal with it regularly.

There are a variety of manifestations of these dark moods. A few are

- Sulk and go into a shell

- Violence, verbal and physical, on self or others

- Irritation

- Deep sadness

- Lack of interest in food, socializing

- Hysteria

- Uncontrollable crying

This dark mood can sometimes be so overwhelming, that in a spur of the moment, people can do some really nasty things to themselves or others. They sometimes take extreme decisions, even suicide. Once out of these dark states people regret many of the decisions taken.

Unresourceful / Resourceful States

There is a term that perfectly fits it. It is called ‘unresourceful state’ in the Neuro Linguistic Programme (NLP) parlance. In this unresourceful state, it literally is like, you are cut off from those very emotions that can help you come out of these states – understanding, patience, love, forgiveness et all.

To elaborate a bit, when depressed or angry or deeply hurt with someone, we completely forget all the good times we had, beautiful memories, moments. We forget that there have other days when we were depressed and came out successfully and things worked out well after that. Life goes on. Time heals.

Once back in a resourceful state, we re-establish access to our higher states. We regain Understanding, strength, courage, perspective and more importantly sanity. And the best part of us is back in control. All is well!

Coping Mechanisms

There are very many ways of coping with such moods. Some talk it out, some write it out, yet others use prayer as a means to cope. Art, music, and dance also help many. Here, I highlight one coping mechanism. It is short term. It will salvage the situation.

The Emotional First Aid kit can come to the rescue in such moments and help take the steam off. The word first-aid brings images of bandages, Dettol, gauze strip, and all those other medical items that are extremely useful in administering urgent medical help for a physical injury. Similarly, the Emotional First Aid Kit helps to firefight with your negative emotions.

It is especially useful when you don't feel like talking to anybody or you don't have access to the people you are comfortable sharing private details with.

But remember it is a short-term solution. A long-term solution would involve meeting a therapist, psychiatrist, or a qualified therapist.

Emotional First Aid Kit

The emotional first aid kit has all the essentials to deal with your emotional hurts and upheavals.

  1. Your favorite photos of you with your loved ones- parents, children, partner, Guru, Mentor, anybody you idolize or means a lot to you.
  2. Your favorite quotes.
  3. A book of poems/movie CD/ inspirational books that gave you immense joy, strength, or gratitude or simply made you laugh.
  4. Letters/cards/words of appreciation that you received from your loved ones/ friends/ anybody who mattered.
  5. Your favorite essential oil.
  6. This is another favorite of mine- the last time you faced a similar bad, upsetting time after the storm was over and peace was restored pen it all down. Keep this carefully in the box. This is the map that will help you traverse out of the danger zone and reach the safety zone.
  7. Some paints, brushes, and art material.
  8. Some plain sheets of paper where you take out all the feelings.

Anything else that you like. A friend of mine has a book of crosswords handy.

This is what my Emotional First Aid Kit  looks like!

This is what my Emotional First Aid Kit looks like!

I have such a kit. When deeply angry or hurt and I open the kit, I feel distracted at first. The books I keep, change. At one time, it used to be P.G. Wodehouse and his Bertie and Wooster stories. Now I also have the Bhagavad Gita and metaphysical poetry. I also have a whole bunch of photos. I pen poems and immerse in some meaningless art. I also scribble angrily. Depending on how bad I am feeling, it takes me 10 min to an hour to get out of my foul mood. By the end, I am done with all the negativity. Of course, a day later, I reflect to see all the contributing factors and try to understand what I could have done differently.

A lot of others with whom I have shared it report positive outcomes as well.

It might not work for everybody but it is sure to help some. In some situations. On some days.

Give it a try and do post your opinions and comments below.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 sowspeaks


Ann Carr from SW England on October 15, 2020:

An interesting collection of ideas here. I like your emotional first aid box. Mindless scribble or doodles is a great one! Thank you for following me. I shall reciprocate.


sowspeaks (author) from Bengaluru on October 13, 2020:

Hi Peggy, thank you for that rather encouraging remark and I hope too that people find it useful and it helps at least a few deal with their dark hours when they are alone either physically or mentally. Thanks much and have a good day!

sowspeaks (author) from Bengaluru on September 27, 2020:

Hi Danny, doesn't that photo part remind of us all Indian movies where someone is planning to take his life and then he looks at the photo in his wallet and that leads to a change of heart.

Truly appreciate your constant support and encouragement.

sowspeaks (author) from Bengaluru on September 26, 2020:

Hi Lorna, Interesting to know that you ask your patients to keep a journal. That is such a wonderful tool. I love it myself, though I mostly journal when I undergo strong emotions , positive or negative.

Thanks for your consistent support and kind words. Much appreciated.

sowspeaks (author) from Bengaluru on September 25, 2020:

Hi Shibangi, really thrilled to read your remarks! I think we all possess some kind of a kit. This was just a way to compile and put everything in one place.

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on September 24, 2020:

Yes...that dark mood hits us all now & then.

Your article is interesting. It is hard to say what works the best.

Time...i guess.

Great write.

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on September 23, 2020:

This is interesting, useful and so helpful to anyone feeling in such moods. Informative, and makes me feel better to think of this kit in my home.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on September 22, 2020:

What a great idea to have an emotional first aid kit at the ready for those unsettling times we all experience. Writing things down, or keeping a journal is a technique that many psychologists recommend to their patients. Art therapy is also a good outlet. You have given people some tools to use, which is excellent.

sowspeaks (author) from Bengaluru on September 22, 2020:

Hi Chitrangadaji,

I always am grateful for your keen observations and valuable insights. Here again, I enjoyed knowing what you do to get out of your dark moods.

I confess that most of my writing used to be when I was upset. Words would just pour out on such occasions.

Delighted to know that you liked the title. Keep safe and stay well.

sowspeaks (author) from Bengaluru on September 22, 2020:

Hi Eric, it is always a pleasure to have you visit. And yes the office is always someplace that requires it. Have a great day!

Danny from India on September 22, 2020:

Sowrabha, you have listed some great tips for boosting the spirits. Hats off mam. I liked the Emotional first aid kit subsection. How true that keeping photos of loved ones creates good vibes

Lorna Lamon on September 22, 2020:

I love the idea of an emotional first-aid kit which is an excellent tool in helping to cope with various moods. You also mention writing these feelings down. I tend to ask people to keep a journal which is basically the same thing. Great article and wonderful concept.

Shibangi Das from Paradeep, Jagatsinghpur, Odisha on September 22, 2020:

Oh my god, ma'am, this is such a beautiful article! I didn't know that what I possessed was an emotional first-aid kit. Thanks for sharing!

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on September 22, 2020:

What an excellent article and I love the title. May be, we all do that, in times of stress, but you organised all the points nicely, for quick reference.

I do make use of the emotional first aid kit, many times. Writing in a diary, talking to my loved ones, praying and narrating everything silently to the ‘Supreme’, are some of my tools.

Well thought and well written. Thanks for sharing.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on September 21, 2020:

I think this is a dandy concept. I have a few places where I keep such things. My office is like one big one. My job is to use it it I reckon.

Related Articles