Author: Diana Gordon, Psy.D.
In parts one and two of our crisis survival series, we introduced the ACCEPTS, self-soothing, and TIPPs skills. Today we will review one more Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) skill, IMPROVE the moment, that can be helpful when you are experiencing powerful emotions.
When you are in a moment of crisis, it can be really difficult to problem solve or to think rationally. Sometimes when we are experiencing powerful emotions, we need to first calm down and get through the moment before we can move into problem solving. IMPROVE the moment is an acronym you can use to think about ways to make yourself feel better quickly. You might not be able to do much about the thing that is causing you to feel distressed, but you can change your emotional response to it and start to feel better. Once you are feeling calmer and more grounded, you can then apply your other skills.
Diana Gordon, Psy.D., Kari Kagan Psy.D., and Katie Leoni, Psy.D.
Drs. Gordon, Kagan, and Leoni practice psychotherapy in downtown San Francisco and Oakland. Their areas of expertise include anxiety, sleep, stress, depression, and addiction. They blog about these topics to provide research-based information about common problems and strategies to help manage them.