Around the 20th anniversary of September 11th, it’s natural to feel a flood of emotions. I’ll admit that even as a clinical psychologist, the feelings for an intense event like this can be overwhelming. 

To cope at times like this, I turn to a strategy that blends perspectives from my yoga background as well as my psychology training in a system I call C.A.R.E. —which stands for consider, act, reflect, and ease. It’s designed to promote awareness of feelings, and help identify appropriate, healthy action.

Intense, powerful emotions often arise when we feel injustice or other trauma has occurred. Taking appropriate action often helps soothe our emotions, by creating a sense of reassurance that we are not helpless, and that our choices can make a difference to ourselves as well as others. The C.A.R.E. system is applicable to any situation where something shocking has happened, but I’ll use September 11th as the example here.