One Tool to Instantly Lower Your Anxiety

One Tool to Instantly Lower Your Anxiety

Lowering Anxiety with a SASHET Check-In: Origins, Benefits, and Practice

In the fast-paced world we live in, anxiety has become a common experience for many. Finding effective ways to manage and reduce anxiety is crucial for maintaining mental health. One powerful tool that has gained popularity for its simplicity and effectiveness is the SASHET check-in. This technique, rooted in the principles of emotional intelligence, can help individuals gain insight into their emotions and foster a sense of calm and control.

The Origin of the SASHET Check-In

The SASHET check-in was developed by Dr. Daniel Siegel, a renowned psychiatrist and author known for his work in the field of interpersonal neurobiology. SASHET stands for Sad, Angry, Scared, Happy, Excited, Tender, representing a spectrum of core emotions that people commonly experience. Dr. Siegel introduced this tool as part of his broader effort to help individuals understand and regulate their emotions. By regularly checking in with these specific emotions, individuals can become more aware of their emotional states and better manage their responses to various situations.

Why SASHET Can Lower Anxiety

Anxiety often stems from unacknowledged or unprocessed emotions. When emotions are ignored or suppressed, they can build up and lead to heightened anxiety. The SASHET check-in helps by:

  1. Increasing Emotional Awareness: By consciously identifying and naming your emotions, you become more attuned to what you’re feeling. This awareness is the first step towards managing those emotions effectively.
  2. Promoting Emotional Regulation: Understanding your emotions allows you to respond to them in a healthier way, rather than reacting impulsively. This regulation reduces the intensity of anxiety.
  3. Providing a Structured Approach: The structured nature of the SASHET check-in offers a clear and simple method for self-reflection. This can be particularly comforting for those who feel overwhelmed by their emotions.
  4. Bring the Underlying Emotion to your Conscious Mind: The process of checking in with your emotions allows you to connect to your body and bring the emotion and the context of the emotion into your conscious mind. It being in the unconscious is what was contributing to your anxiety.
  5. Take Action on the Emotion: Now that you know the emotion and situation causing the anxiety you can take action or accept.

How to Do a SASHET Check-In with Yourself

Performing a SASHET check-in is a straightforward process that can be done anywhere and at any time. Before you get started, rate your anxiety on a scale of 1-10. Ok, now here’s a step-by-step guide to help you get started:

  1. Find a Quiet Space: Choose a place where you can sit quietly without distractions. This could be your bedroom, a quiet corner of your home, or even a peaceful outdoor setting.

  2. Take a Few Deep Breaths: Start by taking a few deep breaths to center yourself. Inhale slowly through your nose, hold for a few seconds, and exhale through your mouth. This helps to calm your mind and body.

  3. Identify Each Emotion: Go through each of the SASHET emotions one by one. Ask yourself if you are feeling Sad, Angry, Scared, Happy, Excited, or Tender. You don’t need to feel all of these emotions; just acknowledge the ones that are present.

  4. Name and Accept Your Emotions: For each emotion you identify, name it and accept it without judgment. For example, you might say to yourself, “I feel sad because I had a tough day at work,” or “I feel excited about my upcoming vacation.”

  5. Reflect on the Source: Once you’ve identified your emotions, take a moment to reflect on what might be causing them. Understanding the source can provide insights into how to address or manage these emotions.

  6. Journal Your Thoughts: If you find it helpful, write down your emotions and reflections in a journal. This can be a valuable way to track your emotional patterns over time and gain deeper insights.

  7. Take Action if Needed: If you identify strong emotions that need addressing, consider what actions you can take. This might involve talking to someone you trust, knocking out that project, having that tough conversation, preparing more, engaging in a relaxing activity, or seeking professional support if necessary.

  8. Rate Your Anxiety Level: On a scale of 1-10. Was there an improvement?

By incorporating the SASHET check-in into your routine, you can build greater emotional awareness and resilience, ultimately reducing anxiety and enhancing your overall well-being. This simple yet powerful practice offers a structured approach to understanding and managing your emotions, helping you navigate life’s challenges with greater ease and confidence.


Want more tools and a community of other fathers to help you conquer your anxiety? Join the online group of men becoming the fathers there are meant to be.

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