RAIN provides a step by step structure to recondition thoughts, provide self validation, and improve self esteem. RAIN also allows clients to develop emotional control and resilience that can be applied to restructuring unhealthy habits or improving relationships.
The ever growing and developing field of neuroscience and therapeutic techniques continue to grow and provide strategies and understandings to the fields of therapy. However, the past continues to hold vital tools as well. The most exciting combination occurs when the past and present mix and we are left with time tested strategies that have current science and research backing them.
One of my favorite tools is the RAIN worksheet that I provide to all of my clients and have seen it help clients achieve goals that they had thought were unreachable. RAIN is based off of Buddhism mentality and scientific research that focuses on mindfulness as well as self exploration and development.
R – Recognize What is Happening
Recognize allows us to take a moment to label the emotions we are feeling. Instead of feeling overwhelming darkness and despair, I encourage my clients to recognize and label the specific emotions. For example, stating that you are feeling lonely and ashamed is more manageable than feeling overwhelmed and suffocating. Recognizing the emotion and labeling it allows us to have more understanding of what is it we are actually feeling.
Recognizing the emotion allows true self-validation. We are not minimizing or dismissing our emotions, we are recognizing them for the powerful experiences that they are and placing a name to the experience.
A – Allow Life to be Just as it is
Allowing is a challenge. Wanting to fix and correct is often second nature, and coming from a therapist who prides herself on helping others find solutions, allowing life to be as it is was a process. Allowing means to embrace the situation without judgement or shame. Allowing means to embrace ourselves with all of our faults and flaws with understanding that it is part of the human experience.
We allow the emotion to embrace us; we allow ourselves to experience being the emotion, but we do not hold onto it. We recognize what the emotion is and we allow ourselves the grace and recognize the need to express it. This allows self-validation: we do not suppress the emotion or shame ourselves for experiencing it. We have it and understand ourselves and why we are experiencing it.
I – Investigate Inner Experiences with Kindness
Investigating allows us to recognize our triggers and and give ourselves compassion and love. How many of us experience an emotion and our first reaction is to suppress or ignore? I encourage my clients to embrace the emotion and understand what caused it. Using coping skills to immediately relax and refocus is often necessary, but when we were able to investigate and truly understand ourselves it allows an opportunity for growth and peace that should not be overlooked.
We know the emotion, we have allowed ourselves to experience it and now we investigate and understand why we have had it. This process allows us to validate ourselves in a way that is essential to health and happiness.
I encourage my clients to investigate all possible sources, for example “Have I been resting enough?”, “Is my body trying to tell me something?”, “Am I in an uncomfortable situation that I’m not sure how to get out of?”, “What are my emotions telling me?” We investigate all possible triggers and allow ourselves to explore emotions and recognize them as warning signs.
Investigating not only allows us to understand what is the source that is causing the emotional expression but also allows us to dig even deeper. When people are struggling with the way someone has spoken to them, not only do we need to explore how that relationship may be affecting them, but we also need to explore what is in themselves that is being triggered.
N – Non-Identification
Non identification is a challenging step, but without a doubt the most rewarding.
This is a step is where we recognize our emotions and our experiences, but we do not identify them as who we are. As humans, we have emotions and they do determine parts of our experiences, but they are not who we choose to be.
Who we are is not our emotions.
We are not defined by our emotions. We are defined by our conscious acts and efforts.
Through this step, we not only allow ourselves the compassion to be more than our emotions but we also allow ourselves to have control over how we choose to express our emotions.
Often times emotions can feel overwhelming and sometimes, impossible to control; however, using the RAIN model we understand that learning to control and express emotions in a healthy way is achievable in time. Connect with me to learn how the RAIN model can help you.
Perspectives Therapy Services is a multi-site mental and relationship health practice with clinic locations in Brighton, Lansing, Highland, Fenton and New Hudson, Michigan. Our clinical teams include experienced, compassionate and creative therapists with backgrounds in psychology, marriage and family therapy, professional counseling, and social work. Our practice prides itself on providing extraordinary care. We offer a customized matching process to prospective clients whereby an intake specialist carefully assesses which of our providers would be the very best fit for the incoming client. We treat a wide range of concerns that impact a person's mental health including depression, anxiety, relationship problems, grief, low self-worth, life transitions, and childhood and adolescent difficulties.