Above The Storm Clouds: Finding Calm in Challenging Times


Psychotherapist Samantha Steinmacher shared some simple tips with us.

By Samantha Friedrich Steinmacher, LPC

When we are in the midst of a storm, whether internal or all around us, it can be hard to imagine that there’s any place that is calm and comforting. But, if we rise above the storm clouds, we discover the calm, sunny skies that are always there. We can connect to this calm place at any time by using effective coping skills. Below, are some easy, practical tools that will work for adults and children.

Rainbow Walk

You can do this mindfulness activity whether you’re inside or outside, walking or sitting. Take a look all around you, and find the colors of the rainbow, in order. Notice something red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and violet. Keep going through the colors, in order, until you feel calmer and more centered. Color Walk: Alternatively, you can choose just one color, and notice all the things around you in that color.

4-7-8 Breathing

Take a deep, slow, easy breath in through your nose for a count of four. Hold your breath for a count of seven. Then exhale completely through your mouth, slow and easy, for a count of eight. Repeat three times. You are welcome to speed up the counting if you struggle to hold your breath, but maintain the 4-7-8 ratio.

Remember: “A wandering mind is an unhappy mind.”

If you notice your mind wandering to distressing thoughts, refocus your attention (without judgment or trying to control) on an activity that is engaging and positive. The more you practice refocusing and calming your mind, the better you’ll get at it.

Taking care of yourself is an essential step in caring for your loved ones.

Samantha Friedrich Steinmacher, LPC

Psychotherapist & Owner, South Cove Counseling, LLC


 Samantha’s practice focuses on assisting clients in creating full, rich, and meaningful lives and can provide distance therapy via telephone and video.