Emotions can be complex, tricky, and difficult to understand – let alone manage! If you struggle to keep your emotions under control, you can bring more order to your life by developing some strategies to manage them more effectively.
Even if your emotions feel unwieldy and chaotic, you can use these tips to start bringing more order into your life and getting your emotions under control.
Tip 1: Allow yourself to physically walk away from a tough situation.
When you find yourself facing a particularly difficult situation, do not feel like you have to handle it right then – often, you do not need to make an immediate decision. Instead, if you determine that you can take a little time to step away, even if it is only for a couple minutes, allow yourself that cushion of time to explore your emotions before you try handling the situation. Taking some time to understand what you are feeling can stop you from making a rash, irreversible decision during a tough situation.
Tip 2: Actually let yourself feel and experience the emotions you are having.
Some emotions are rough; instead of dealing with them, some people may feel tempted to ignore or repress them. However, pretending like those emotions aren’t there isn’t an effective method for controlling them.
When you have big feelings, allow yourself to really explore those emotions. Take note of what you’re feeling, how you’re feeling, and why you’re feeling that way. Allowing some room for that discomfort will help you process and move through those emotions quicker.
Tip 3: When your emotions get too overwhelming to handle, have a plan to contact someone in your support system.
Know who makes up your support system and have a plan to get in touch with someone when your emotions become especially overwhelming. Sometimes, reaching out to a trusted friend or family member is the best method for getting big emotions in check. Someone who knows you and cares about you can help you navigate big, difficult feelings in a compassionate and understanding manner.
Tip 4: Consider talking to a counselor or therapist.
Unfortunately, going to therapy or counseling gets a bad rap – many people think that reaching out to a mental health professional for assistance with challenging emotions is a big sign of weakness. This is quite far from the truth!
If your emotions feel like they are always in control, talking to someone outside of your situation who can provide some grounding, an understanding ear, and some healthy coping strategies can be the ticket to relief. A good counselor or therapist can help you get to the bottom of challenging emotions once and for all.
Tip 5: Make sure you prioritize your self-care time on a regular basis.
Taking good care of yourself is another great way to stop allowing your emotions to control you. When you engage in self-care activities you really enjoy, you are giving yourself a much needed break from your greatest stressors.
Your self-care time is a lot like plugging your cell phone into a charging outlet – you use that time to recharge your own personal batteries, which can make tackling tough emotions a lot easier.
Tip 6: Take a moment to compare your emotional reactions to actual reality.
Often, big emotional reactions aren’t rooted in reality. You may feel anxious or stressed about something, and those feelings cause your emotions to reach extreme heights. When this happens, take a minute to compare what you’re feeling to reality.
You will likely realize that your emotions do not match the severity of what is actually going on – doing this often enough can help you manage your emotions when life causes them to flare.
Tip 7: Put your decision making on pause when you are experiencing a challenging feeling.
Big emotions and big decisions do not mix well. If you’re experiencing a particularly difficult emotional state, try to pause any decisions you need to make until you have successfully processed your emotions.
Making big decisions when you are feeling particularly emotional can influence your choices, and you do not want to make a potentially permanent or life-altering choice because of a temporary emotional state.
Tip 8: Get comfortable with feeling uncomfortable.
Emotions aren’t always fun or comfortable. A great way to stop letting those difficult emotions control you is to get more comfortable with feeling uncomfortable.
If you allow yourself to experience some emotional discomfort by exploring those feelings and getting to know them better, the process of working through them will become a lot easier. Though it isn’t fun to tackle big emotions, you can learn to process them more effectively.
Tip 9: Be as clear in your communication with others as you possibly can be.
Communicating your emotions and needs to other people is a big part of stopping your emotions from controlling your life. If you struggle to let others know how you are feeling, they may not understand why you are acting a certain way. Being clear about what you are experiencing – even if it is difficult to do so – can stop these emotions from controlling you and the state of your relationships with others.
Tip 10: Engage in activities that bring you happiness and joy.
Lastly, another great way to stop letting your emotions control you is to spend time regularly engaging in activities that bring you happiness and joy. Make sure you are prioritizing time in your schedule to do whatever it is you love to do – get outdoors more, squeeze in some exercise, have some silent reading time, paint a picture, or get a massage.
Whatever it is that brings you to a state of emotional contentment, make sure you’re getting lots of that time regularly in your everyday schedule. Taking time to focus on your happiness and joy is a great way to keep your emotions in check, even when you’re experiencing a particularly difficult situation.