Winter Somatic Support Guide

Shorter days, dwindling sunlight, and for many of us, the bitter cold—we can all agree that winter is here and it sucks. This season also marks routine festivities that aren’t always festive for those who find the holidays stressful, traumatic, or full of grief. There are many guides out there geared toward help people prepare for the holidays, so I created a resource dedicated to post-holiday grief and the remainder of winter. Below you’ll find a list of links to my all-time favorite somatic tools that support the body, strengthen coping skills, and aid in healing. They’re practical, affordable, and serve as wonderful additions to any coping or resilience building toolbox.

Ps. These also make wonderful gifts for others, especially if they could use a little more support.

Somatic Support Tools

Sensory Putty (Crazy Aaron’s is the best! I keep a tin at my desk and in my bag at all times.)

String Fidget

Acupressure Ring (Love these! Especially for discrete grounding in stressful situations.)

Teething Necklace (Great if you bite your nails, lips, or have other body-focused repetitive behaviors.)

Pop-up Infrared Sauna (I swear by this thing! It’s wonderful for my pain, inflammation, anxiety and fatigue.) + (Read this article about the amazing benefits of saunas.)

Weighted Blanket

Weighted Vest (It’s cheaper and easy to transport. I use my weighted vest when I need to ground, calm down, or if I feel dissociated. You can wear it anywhere, especially at your desk, on a walk, or while cooking dinner!)

Heated Blanket Wrap

Magnesium Lotion (I slather it morning and night. It helps with the negative effects of daily stress and improves my quality of sleep. It’s transdermal and works better for me than taking capsules.)

Dry Brush (Read this awesome article about the amazing benefits of dry brushing for dissociation.)

Acupressure Mat (I use mine daily and it’s been a game changer, especially when I’m feeling tense.)

Sand Bags (Great for grounding and anxiety.) 

Essential Oils (Paired wonderfully with the three aromatherapy items below!)

Essential Oil Diffusor (Love this one and it changes colors! Groovy.)

Aromatherapy Necklace

Aromatherapy Bracelet

Buddha Board

Heated Neck Wrap (Magical, especially if you sprinkle some essential oils on it.)

Body Pillow (This body pillow rules, especially if you get sad or lonely and need extra support.)

Cold Roller (I stick mine in the freezer and use it on my face / neck to activate my vagus nerve, ease triggers and tension.)

Light Therapy Lamp (Recommend if you have seasonal affective disorder.)

Exercise Ball (I use mine when I’m anxious, triggered, or need stimulation.)

Bath Salts (This bulk bag is a good bang for your buck and the salt is great quality!)

Bolster + Yoga Mat

Apps

Aloe Bud - Self-Care Companion (So wonderful! I use it daily.)

Headspace (Awesome!)

Calm (Great if you need help sleeping and don’t mind being guided.)

Supportive Books + Tools

The Art of Ritual: Creating and Performing Ceremonies for Growth and Change  (Great for seasonal shifts, holidays, and using ritual to cope.)

Accessing the Healing Power of the Vagus Nerve: Self-Help Exercises for Anxiety, Depression, Trauma, and Autism (Fantastic guide on engaging your vagus nerve—the longest cranial nerve in the body.)

The Complex PTSD Workbook: A Mind-Body Approach to Regaining Emotional Control and Becoming Whole (Wonderful for yourself and clients.)

Practice You: A Journal (A stunning, poetic, and supportive guided journal.)

Yoga for Emotional Trauma: Meditations and Practices for Healing Pain and Suffering (Trauma-Informed and nurturing.)

Supplements

B Complex (B vitamins are crucial for stress resilience and much more.)

Vitamin D (Liquid for better absorption, especially when we don’t get enough sunlight.)

Ashwagandha (For the adrenals!)

Lavela (A great clinically studied natural anti-anxiety aid, or simply put, lavender oil!)

Victoria Emanuela