The Southeast is being plummeted by torrential rain, flooding, and powerful winds. Supercell thunderclouds that upgraded to tornadoes have already caused over 200 reported fatalities stretching from Arkansas to Alabama and millions of dollars in weather related property and infrastructure damages. Before these natural disasters hit, you should prepare yourself with a few mindful survival tools and your family for possible dangers, stress, and damages brought by these storms.
7 Mindful Survival Tools for Storm Stress
Review your homeowner policy and make a checklist
Take inventory of all your valuables including your electronics and be sure to jot down any serial numbers associated to your computers, gaming systems, and television.
Designate a “safe room” and practice evacuation procedures with your children
Consider a basement or a room without any windows for your safe room. If all your rooms have windows, select the bathroom (with a tub) as the final option. Create information cards with contact information of relatives or emergency contact information and tuck them in your children’s clothing. Laminate the cards in case they get wet.
Get it off your chest
Studies tell us that trying to keep too much information in your mind creates great anxiety and memory loss. Make a list of what you need to do or remember and put it in a day timer or PDA. This includes making emergency procedures and a list for emergency kits such as first aid, flash lights, batteries and blankets. Throw in an activity like cards or pen and paper for your family to do while waiting out the storm.
Discover a mini
When the storm hits, remain calm and focus on something else. Take several deep breaths and slowly repeat a one- to three-word affirmation with each breath. Your affirmations can include: “We are together” or “We are safe.” When you calm down, your children will emulate your energy level and remain calm as well.
Hold on to something
Put something you love, like a bead, stone or memento in your pocket, around your neck, or on your wrist. When you get overwhelmed or stressed out, stop, touch the memento, breathe, and say a word that comforts you. When you comfort yourself, you can then comfort others. You won’t believe how calming this practice is.
A concern and prayer box
When your family is together, use this time to connect with one another. Write down all of your thoughts and concerns. Positive or negative. Place your concerns into a small box or other available container. After everyone put their thoughts in the box, take them out one at a time and discuss as a family. Take your mind off the storm outside. Tangibly writing these overwhelming emotions allows you to vent and release them from your body and soul to a higher power.
Don’t forget your pets
If they are outside, bring them inside before the storm and be sure to keep them safe in your designated safe room as the storm hits. They can bring great comfort as you and your family bunker down during the storm.