How to control your emotions

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Emotions are a huge part of our lives. Every day, we experience situations that can trigger the feeling of happiness, excitement, love, or bitterness.

If uncontrolled, positive and negative emotions can negatively impact not just a moment of our lives but years and even decades.

Research has shown that those who have mastered how to react to situations by controlling their feelings make lesser mistakes and lead a more fulfilled life than others.

Moreover, John Goal, a clinical therapist says moderation is the key when it comes to how we feel during intense situations.

Therefore to help you respond logically to your daily challenges, and lead a more satisfying life, read the following tips on how to control your emotions:

1. Identify Your Feeling

The first step to being in charge of your emotions is figuring out how you truly feel. This is because some emotions may cover others, say guilt may be covered by outrage or bitterness.

However, by being honest about how you feel, you can effectively control the effect of that emotion.

2. Learn the Reason for Your Emotions

Sometimes, you may feel a certain way but you don’t know why. However, for every emotion, there’s a reason behind it.

Instead of thinking that you woke up on the wrong side of the bed, take time to ponder on why you feel the emotion that you feel. 

Ask yourself, did anything bad happen yesterday, did I read something upsetting, did someone talk badly at me?

Just a few minutes of wondering will help you find the answers and feeling less burdened.

3. Find a Remedy

It’s not enough to know the reason behind the negative emotion you’re experiencing, go further by finding a solution to keep it under control.

Paula Norway, a therapist, says “usually, it’s our mindset that continues to make us feel bad over a negative situation. Instead of focusing on the worse in a circumstance, look at your situation more positively.”

For instance, if you’re dealing with depression, you may find out that the reason for such emotion is unemployment. Instead of seeing unemployment as a negative situation, change your mindset to be solution-focused.

This means rather than complaining, you find solutions to your unemployment by applying for jobs in better locations even if it means you’ll list your home for sale to change locations, or enroll in valuable courses.

This strategy will help assuage your feelings.

4. Choose Your Reaction

“How about you flip the card and say, yes, I’m angry, yes, I’m anxious but I’m not going to allow all of these to make me react a certain way,” says Paula.

This means that rather than your usual response to anger by cussing or breaking items, you can choose to inhale and exhale instead.

It’s only a matter of choice. While it may not be easy, striving to do this constantly will help you normalize reacting to negative emotions positively.

5. Reorganize Your Thinking

Feelings, good or bad, affect our thinking. Therefore to deal with situations realistically, you must learn to separate your emotions from reality.

Take for instance, when in a bad mood and you’re about to receive a call, instead of expecting an awful announcement, choose to wait for what the caller is about to say than making bad guesses.

Similarly, if in a happy mood and a call comes in, listen before expecting something good. This will help prevent disappointment.

Moreover, when attending a gathering, don’t see yourself as the inferior person everyone would avoid, rather encourage yourself on how you would find a friend, say “I’ll go out of my way to network with other attendees, and make the most of my stay in the program.”

This is a helpful way of thinking that’ll help to keep you relaxed.

6. Lighten Your Mood

It’s very easy to remain in a sad state when you’re not happy. However, when you want to control your emotions, do things that’ll help you feel good so you don’t keep on feeding your negative emotion.

Take a stroll to clear your feelings, converse with a loved one about something positive, meditate and dance while listening to cool music.

7. Find a Positive Outlet

Upon influencing your emotion, learn to discharge it healthily as it’s dangerous to suppress them or pretend like those feelings don’t exist.

For instance, use phone chat lines to talk to a friend who may give you another logical perspective on the situation or provide a solution you didn’t envision. Other healthy methods of expressing your feelings include meditation.

The body scan meditation is also more essential to help you recognize your emotions. Therefore, perform this type of meditation to hinder pressure accumulation.

Similarly, use the progressive muscle relaxation exercise to relax by lessening muscle tension, back, and neck distress, and exhaustion. This exercise is particularly helpful for eradicating physiological tension triggered by negative thoughts. 

You can participate in aggressive workouts such as kickboxing or martial arts. However, ensure to keep the exercises fun or change them if they stir more stress and anxiety. Other exercises that may serve as positive outlets include bike riding, cycling, and climbing.

8. Document Your Emotions

Writing is therapeutic, hence, by writing about your feelings you may be communicating with yourself thereby leading to many discoveries or epiphanies about your emotions.

Keep records of your emotions and pen them down as they occur. Explain what brought about the feeling you’re experiencing and the reaction that you gave. If you were able to handle your emotions record them in your journal to help you differentiate what’s working from what’s not. That way, you can do better next time.

9. Exhale and Inhale

Breathing exercise is always a good practice when feeling deep emotions such as happiness or anger. It’ll help you refrain from responding to your emotions irrationally.

When taking a deep breath, you may recite soothing words to help calm your nerves; it could be, I’m fine, I’m in control, and I’ll stay calm.

Repeating these affirmative words is a good way to manage your emotions successfully.

10. Practice Forgiveness

Do you know that forgiveness helps reduce blood pressure, lessen anxiety, enhance confidence and improve sleep?

Forgiveness is simply a conscious and voluntary decision to alter your emotions and behavior about an offense and those who may have caused the same whether or not they merit your forgiveness. 

While it may not be easy, forgiveness helps to get over resentment and being venomous.

By recognizing that you’re practicing forgiveness for your growth and sanity and not for the offender, you can be encouraged to separate yourself from any toxic emotion every day. 

Also, learn to forgive yourself. This way you can stop self-blame and anger for your shortcomings. Realize that you’re human and can have flaws. This will help you to stop beating up yourself.

11. Have a Break

When having a heated emotion learn to take a break from it by creating a distraction for yourself or leaving the environment you are in when you feel that emotion.

It doesn’t mean you are running away from reality, it’s just a way of ensuring you don’t act based on your emotions and that it doesn’t overwhelm you.

Endeavor to practice these tips on how to control your emotion as it’ll help you live a more healthy life. It’s normal if you feel distracted sometimes, however, never give up on managing your emotions.

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