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DBT - Distress Tolerance Skills.

Distress Tolerance.

The ability to tolerate distress is a really important skill. People who cannot do so usually become 'distressed that they are distressed' - a 'second arrow' after the initial emotion which spirals into even worse feelings. 


Being able to tolerate distress is a great skill to have as it lets you deal with your current emotion and try and reduce it, or just tolerate it until it calms down by itself.

STOP Skills:

Stop: When you notice your distress/emotion getting to a high level, then Stop what you are doing.

Take a step back: remove yourself from the situation, take a moment, step outside, etc. say “can I have a minute please”.

Observe what is going on: non-judgementally and mindfully, see different perspectives, if you can’t see another perspective then take more time.

Proceed Effectively: when you are calm, access ‘wise mind’ dialectical state of thinking.


Mindful breathing exercise: counting breaths.

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