Emotions? What are emotions?
Emotions are important indicators of what is going on around us. They help protect us by alerting us that something may be unsafe. Since we have different experiences we tend to express our emotions differently. They are not right or wrong. Some of the ways we react in response to our emotions is what may have negative consequences so it is important to allow ourselves to feel our emotions but be able to regulate them as they happen.
What does it mean to regulate your emotions? Emotional regulation is the ability to recognize, manage, and respond to your emotions.
Many of us were not taught how to regulate our emotions if we were taught to feel our emotions at all. Society has a way of telling us to put our emotions aside or stuff them deep down inside us. This may work up until a point where something that seems very minor sends us over the edge causing an eruption much like a volcano to occur. Life happens and we all experience each emotion on the scale. There is no escaping it, however, there are ways to manage your emotions and not let them manage you. If you feel like you need that extra assistance or guidance, book a session with a therapist and they will be happy to help.
How do I regulate my emotions? There are a variety of strategies that can help you regulate your emotions. We just have to find the strategies that work best for you. Some of the strategies that we can utilize are identifying and reducing our triggers, tune into physical symptoms that may be adding to the emotion (hunger, exhaustion, etc), engage in positive self-talk, pause and take a moment before responding, look for positives to help balance out the negatives, and seek out a therapist to assist you in your journey. These are just a few suggestions that you can try when you are feeling a negative emotion and need a tool to assist you in bringing yourself back to a calm state.
Contributed by Tara Trickler