Safe spaces and Mental Health
What does a safe space mean to you?
Many people have their own definition of what having a safe space means to them.
For most however, a safe space is where they don’t have to worry about being judged – where they can be unapologetically themselves and still feel understood and cared for. It is a place, be it physical or virtual, where people can go to relax and recharge.
In an often-intolerant world, creating a safe space to go to is incredibly important for maintaining good mental health. Whether it be in therapy, at home or at work, having a safe space in various areas of your life is vital.
It’s important to know that safety can feel different for everyone, especially in a situation where you’re vulnerable. Your safe space is defined by your emotions and experiences. What feels safe for you might not feel safe for another person.
If you suffer from social anxiety for example, what makes you feel safe enough to interact with friends and family? What about when you’re in a work meeting, does the room or the people who are in it make you feel safe?
There are a number of reasons why you should think about what a safe space looks and feels like for you, this will help you to define what your safe space is for you.
Here are a few things you could try to help you define your safe space;
Make Your Home a Sanctuary
Creating a physical space where you can really relax is very important, particularly if you’re an introvert. You can start by making your home into your own small sanctuary. Hang pictures of people you love, play some of your favorite music, do some cleaning and cook your favorite meal.
Visit a therapist or a Support Group
You may feel that what you’re going through cannot be understood by the average person such as a traumatic experience, therefore a therapist or a support group for those who share a common experience can be very effective.
Try Join an Exercise Class
Finding people who share the same likes and interests isn’t always easy but it is possible. Exercise groups, and in particular classes where the focus is not about competition like yoga, pilates, or even meditation, can be a great place to find others who want peaceful self-improvement.
Create A Regular Meet-Up
This one may be simpler than you realize: Imagine being surrounded by family and friends who care and support you, how about you ask them to get together more often? Just getting together with people who
make you feel happy can be replenishing and a great way to create greater emotional support in your life.
By Leah Ndegwa,
Chiromo Hospital Group