5 Tips for Coping with Overwhelming Emotions

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I’ve just returned from a holiday with my 2 daughters in Mexico which was glorious…but as you know when you’ve been away things pile up. I’ve been home for 2 days and have been running around trying to catch up again. It’s bloody exhausting and my emotions have been running wild! I know…of all the things I could have to complain about, this is pretty light. I recognize that and I’m not actually complaining, just attempting to lay out the fact that I’ve been a bit harried over the past few days.

The kids went to school yesterday which was a blessing! I work from home running a marketing agency so the silence allowed me to catch up but when I received a text from my daughter asking if her friend could come for a playdate after school I was inclined to say NO because I was still in the harried state of mind and knew 1 more child would add to it.

Thankfully I took a wee moment to breathe deep and recognize that I was off-kilter…I’m the 1st Mom to say YES to playdates usually because frankly the added child was a distraction and they will all occupy each other. Man I almost typed NO and missed the boat on that one!

This tends to be my inclination…I’m a knee-jerk kinda gal. I will often look back and wonder what the heck I was thinking with my decisions and realize they have been based upon my emotion in the moment. I’ve been in recovery from alcoholism for 6 years now and this is a character trait I’ve acknowledged and try to be aware of so that I can change it.

Last night I did…I said yes to the playdate and the girls had a great time together. There was laughter and smiles as they played inside and outside in the Spring weather. I was able to make 2 homemade meals for the week and relish their happiness.

This is change. Simple, lovely and yet so easy for me to miss when I fall prey to my emotions.

Tips for Coping With Emotions

  1. Be Aware! The key for me is to be aware of how I’m feeling. Throughout the day I take inventory of how I feel.
  2. Fix it! When I’m feeling irritable I do my best to rectify it. If I’m stressed, I step away (literally or figuratively) from that which is the stressors and go for a brisk walk, dance to a song or meditate. If I’m hungry…I eat something healthy and if I’m tired I rest for 10 minutes. I take time to clear my head and settle my emotions, then return with a refreshed attitude. I have to remember that Emotions aren’t Facts and that I may be stuck in an emotion which is causing my perspective to be skewed.
  3. Ask myself what I can do about a situation. This is important! If something is on my mind I need to look at the situation in black and white terms, removing my emotions. Can I positively affect change right then and there? If I can I do…if not I have to accept that for the moment and put it out of my mind knowing God is in control of it all.
  4. Be where my hands are. When I can’t change a situation that is bothering me…I keep my thoughts right where my hands are. The worst thing I can do is get caught up in my inner-thoughts and get lost in my own head. If I have work tasks to do, I keep my thoughts there. It can be as little as cleaning a bathroom to occupy myself or helping someone with something else. The point is to avoid sitting in negative thoughts.
  5. Let it go. Sometimes there really is nothing we can do about that which is bothering us. We can’t control people, places or things and this is truly awful to deal with. Rather than trying to fight that, I’ve learned that by letting it go my state of being is much better. In the ends what is meant to be will be…that may sound like a pat saying but it’s true. No matter how badly I may want to fight to be “right” if I let it go my actions will speak loudly.

As I drove this lovely girl home yesterday I noticed a glorious sunset. I just can’t resist a good photo so I pulled over at a stop sign and snapped a bunch of photos on my phone.

I was certain I got a fabulous shot of the sun reflecting off of the clouds and yet when I opened the photos they were all like this one.

aa coin sunset emotions

That is my coin from my 12 Step meetings. It was given to me at my 1st meeting,  I’ve held it dear since.

Last night God wanted me to focus on my sobriety above the beauty of the sunset…I find this a reminder that I don’t always focus on what is right in front of me and I would have missed this wonderful evening if I’d have fallen prey to my emotions.

Comments

  1. Christina says

    Thanks, Just what was needed for me this morning. I’m glad I stumbled upon your blog.

    Christina

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