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Your impulse is like a wave.

When you feel the impulse, remind yourself that the urge to harm yourself is like a wave. It feels very powerful at first, but if you’re able to ride it out, the urge will eventually fade.

Be gentle and kind towards yourself!

If you judge yourself, you’ll just increase your level of pain.

There are different ways to tolerate and cope with emotional pain that don’t have to involve injuring yourself.

Seek support

You should seek support from a:

By sharing what you’re going through, you let people know you need support. You don’t have to deal with this on your own.


They can help you identify:

Identify your triggers

It helps to identify what situations, thoughts and feelings trigger your urge to self-harm. By doing this you can come up with ways to avoid or manage these triggers in future.

Ways to identify these triggers are by:

Find ways to manage your intense emotions

Triggers are often events/experiences that are out of your control, so you can’t always prevent yourself from having emotional pain.  You CAN, however, control how you react to your intense emotions.

For example:

Express yourself –

Release – let your feelings out.

Strategies to express your emotional pain

Sometimes these coping strategies won’t feel like enough to express your emotional pain and suffering. That is why people still turn to self-harm. To minimise the physical harm, try these ideas:

Once the urge to self-harm is over

Engage in your coping strategies

Try to engage in your coping strategies and self-care activities on an ongoing basis – even if you’re not feeling the urge to self-harm. It’s important to make sure that you’re expressing yourself, releasing your emotions, self-soothing and relaxing regularly.l.

Create a safety plan

Create a safety plan for yourself, which outlines steps to take when you feel the urge to harm yourself. This could include.

Reach out for help

If you’re not already receiving professional assistance, try to access mental healthcare from a professional.