I don’t know how many times I’ve heard people say this statement and I’ve said it myself more times that I can remember. I used to firmly believe that I was unable to do anything about my emotions or change the way I felt and I’ve discovered this is totally wrong. I was allowing my emotions to control me instead of taking control of my emotions. It was time to make some changes!
Actually, you can’t really help the way you feel, but you CAN learn to manage your emotions and work hard to change the way you react. When someone hurts you, you will likely feel angry or upset. When something takes too long, you will likely feel agitated or impatient. When you can’t do something easily, you will likely get frustrated. It is normal to feel these emotions but it is not healthy to respond in a negative way that could be damaging to others and yourself.
When you feel any emotion, you have the choice to respond automatically or you can stop yourself for a few seconds and quickly process a more positive way of dealing with the situation. This takes patience and practice but if you keep working at it, it will become a good habit. Always be consciously aware of how you are feeling and make sure you think before you react.
- First stop, take a deep breath, and don’t react immediately.
- Then do something that will help you calm down. Separate yourself from the person or situation as this will allow you to focus more clearly, take a walk, listen to some calming music or do an activity that you enjoy. Don’t give in to your negative emotions.
- Talk it out with yourself. Ask yourself why you are feeling this way. Is there an underlying issue that needs to be addressed such as depression, anxiety, work-overload, too many pressures?
- Determine what changes need to be made so when difficult situations arise, you can manage your emotions more effectively. How can you deal with things in a more positive way? Write down your thoughts and create a plan of action.
You can’t help the way you feel but you CAN help the way you react. React in positive way!