10 Self Harm Alternatives

As of today, I'm one year self-harm free!! To celebrate this, I thought I'd list 10 self-harm alternatives to hopefully help some other people who are still struggling. If just one person can be helped, then I feel like my self-harm period won't be just a sad, destructive part of my life anymore. It'll be something that I've experienced, but that I've used to help someone else. That's my aim, anyway. I know that there are several different forms of self-harm, not just cutting, and I feel that almost all of the options listed can be used as alternatives for all of the different kinds.

1. Browse the 'positive' and 'recovery' tags on Pinterest, Tumblr and Instagram.
2. Grab a hair brush (and possibly some detangling spray if you need it) and brush your hair until it's practically silk. I find brushing my hair really calming and relaxing, and it gives me something to do with my hands.
3. Get yourself a Wreck This Journal and do a few pages. Alternatively, look up WTJ pages on Google and recreate them at home on blank paper.
4. Put your hair up and have a cold shower. Try not to get your hair wet though! And also use a nice shower gel to make the experience a little more comforting.
5. Create a distraction box. It could be any box of any size - I find a shoe box works well. Fill it with all kinds of lovely things - books, teddies, your favourite snacks, a nice candle, photos and a cozy pair of socks. Whenever you feel upset or angry or alone, pull out your distraction box and use whatever's inside. You could also decorate the outside of it with glitter, paints and pictures!
6. Rub a nice scented body lotion into the area that you want to hurt.
7. Scribble aggressively on a piece of paper.
8. Using a lip liner/biro pen, draw a pretty pattern or simply some lines where you want to harm. Concentrate on it as hard as you can. For each line you draw, acknowledge that that's one less cut you could have made.
9. Write down every horrible thought & feeling you're experiencing, then rip up the paper into tiny pieces. Throw it in the dustbin.
10. Research safer alternatives to self-harm online. Ice cubes and rubber bands are ones I've personally been recommended.
I hope that this post is helpful to someone! If you want to ask me any questions or just want to talk, then you can email me at laurenpiperx@yahoo.co.uk. Please also know that recovery from self-harm is possible (I'm living proof) and that there are places you can get help.
Some other blog posts of mine that may help:
Websites & Phone Numbers that offer advice and support on the issues including Anorexia, Self-Harm and Depression:
Samaritans: offers confidential and non-judgemental support 24/7 via their phonelines, available to residents of the UK. Helpline: 0845 790 9090. Website: www.samaritans.org
B-eat: the leading UK charity for people with eating disorders. Helpline: 0845 634 1414. Website: www.b-eat.co.uk
Mind: offers support and information to anyone with any mental health problem, including anxiety, depression, bulimia and anorexia. www.mind.org.uk


  1. This is such a lovely, important post Lauren. Definitely one I'll share.

  2. I am so glad to hear that you have gone a whole year without self harming, its a real achievement well done! These tips are so good! :)


  3. This is a genius post, and I'm sure you will help a lot of people with these ideas! One year is great, well done you! (:

    1. Oh also, looking up WTJ pages and recreating them is such a good idea XD

    2. Thank you so much! & oh I know, I can't believe I've never thought of it before! x

  4. This is such an inspiring post, Lauren. Well done for a whole year :) Daniela xo danielascribbles.co.uk

  5. I know I'm a little late but congratulations on being 'clean' for a year and, I'm presuming, over a year now. As a recovering self harmed myself I know how hard it is and these tips are great. I do some of these myself if I ever get the impulse to do it again.


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