Ways to Calm Your Character

By Amara SuraShakta

Your character has managed to get him or herself into some serious trouble. They know they must calm down to proceed. What are some quick ways to calm down? And how does your character react?

  • Walk away- Maybe your character knows what triggers them and can excuse themselves from the conversation or situation
  • Look away – Maybe your character will close their eyes, let their world gently disappear for a moment (or two) in order to escape or reestablish their focus, inner calm

I imagined myself at

  • Breathe – We just wouldn’t make it without oxygen. Maybe your character just needs a deep breath to clear out the toxins from their body. Maybe your character doesn’t handle stress well. Deep, slow and controlled breathing to calm down. Shallow, quick breaths from chest when panic takes over.

I inhaled a slowly, counting to four

I exhaled through pinched lips

I took three normal breaths / I took three normal breaths before losing control

I held her breath until he left

  • Stall – Maybe your character needs a quick sip of water, a distraction of some sort before proceeding on. Maybe your character stalls by taking a second to label the emotion they are feeling. This can be done silently or aloud.

I am overwhelmed

You are angering me

  • Physical – Maybe your character just needs to move their muscles, get the blood flowing. Perhaps your character engages in a special fidget that calms them. Vary posture, focus on movement.

I rolled my shoulders and tried to relax

I ran my finger through my skirt, twisting the cloth

I chanted my calming phrase over and over, repeating the words to prevent distractions from entering my thoughts

  • Combination

I exhaled slowly then looked away