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Learning how to control your emotions is an essential skill that can be learned.
Emotions are various forms of feelings, positive or negative, that results in physical or psychological changes which affect our thoughts and actions.
Psychology emotion is often a personality mood. It is our body’s response to the happenings around our environment. Therefore, the ability to control your emotions increases your emotional intelligence and improves your interaction with people.
Our emotions tend to escalate to a point where we find it difficult to control. I remember breaking a mug due to over-excitement because of a gift from my father.
Irrespective of the nature of your emotions, if you cannot learn to regulate them, it may lead to dire consequences.
These methods can help you in your learning.
1. To Control Your Emotions, First Identify How You Feel
Identifying your emotions requires you to do two things:
First, it requires you to monitor your emotions in a given situation. An example of such is how you feel during an argument.
Are you cool-headed or got tempered during an argument? Knowing what emotions you feel during a particular time can help you to control your emotion during that period.
Lastly, this helps you to monitor what emotions you are prone to. Often, we hear people say things like “I easily get angry”, “I am easily irritated”.
Understanding what emotions you’re quick to exhibit is one step in learning how to manage and control your emotions.
2. Question Your Emotion
Taking a moment to question why you are feeling a certain way can help to control your emotions.
A roommate of mine was prone to anger every time he returned from the school market. He’d shout and argue, then throw a tantrum.
To help him manage his emotion, we would first identify his primary emotion – anger. Then we question why he was always angry when he came back from the market. It turned out that his annoyance was a response to the outrageous hike in the prices of goods in the market.
When you’re feeling a surge of emotion, you can take some seconds to question why you’re feeling such a rush. It could be a gift from someone or the death of someone. Whatever is the reason for such emotions, taking a moment to question the perspective of your emotions can help you regulate how you’d act.
3. Intend To Control Your Emotions; Not Repressing Them
You cannot control your emotions by repressing them. We repress emotions because we want to avoid feeling their effects.
Usually, repressed emotions are negative emotions such as pain, sadness, and anger. While repressing such emotions might give you temporary satisfaction, in the long run, it can have dire effects.
Imagine you have a bag and you need to fill it with clothes. The more clothes you fill it with, the less space it has. If you keep stuffing the bag with clothes, it’ll eventually damage the bag.
Our body is like a bag. When we repress our emotions, we’re filling our bodies with negativity. If you do not address these emotions adequately, with time, they can hurt your health.
Rather than repressing your emotions, you should practice expressing your emotions with regulation. When you feel sad, it is okay to cry. When you feel angry, it is okay to punch your pillows.
Whenever you feel the urge to repress your emotions, remember, expression with regulation is what you should rather do.
4. Expression Helps To Control Your Emotions
Our emotions are best expressed through our actions. When you cannot control your emotions, it translates to uncontrolled actions.
The 10 seconds rule state that before we take any action, we should take a deep breath; count to ten, during which we’re analyzing our actions before taking them.
The death of a loved one can cause immense pain and sadness which can lead to the urge to hurt yourself.
To implement the 10 seconds rule, before you carry on the act to hurt yourself, pause for 10 seconds and rethink your actions.
What are the repercussions of my actions? Is it good or bad?
5. Consider Mild Expressions
Since our emotions are expressed through actions, rather than indulge in negative actions, you should consider being kind to yourself.
From the example above, the alternative to hurting yourself includes talking to a loved one, seeing a therapist, or taking a break from social activities.
Another example is how you relate in the workspace environment. You have a colleague who is bad at meeting up with deadlines, leaving you with more work.
While it is natural to get angry and express it through harsh words, there are better alternatives to that. You could find out why such a person is always late on reports, give a friendly reminder in subsequent scenarios or report to HR.
6. Journaling Helps To Control Your Emotional Journey
Keeping a journal to document your moods can help control your emotions.
Journaling involves documenting your emotional experiences as they come, negatively or positively. Just like you’d keep a diary that has a summary of your daily activities, a mood-journal can help keep track of what emotions you frequent and how well you control them.
Writing down your daily experience can help identify your quickest emotions. It also helps in identifying better ways to work through an emotional phase.
For example, if you feel extremely sad about an event, you can write about it. Note why you feel sad about it and three (3) better ways you would think to respond next time.
This way, if such a situation should reoccur, you’re already prepared because you have written alternative actions.
7. Visit A Therapist To Help You Control Your Emotions
Seeking professional help is recommended when you begin to notice a high emotional imbalance.
Our emotions are influenced by our environment. An unhealthy environment cannot foster the development of healthy emotions. In this scenario, no matter how much effort you put into controlling your emotions, you’ll always find yourself responding negatively.
In this case, it is better to see the help of a health therapist. Therapists are professional personnel trained to help people identify health issues and provide support.
Some emotional trauma could stem from family-related issues to financial burdens.
A therapist identifies the root cause of your emotional imbalance and provides support, sometimes medications, to help you manage your emotions.
Although Rome was not built in a day, they’d spent hours of work laying bricks. Thus, to achieve a high level of emotional intelligence, you need to practice the art of controlling your emotions persistently. The keyword is practicing constantly.
Considering that we interact with people every day, we must learn how to manage our emotions.
Building high emotional intelligence improves your self-confidence and how you’re perceived by others. It is one big step into being a better you.
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