I find it hard to control my emotions sometimes. In stressful situations like funerals, or saying goodbye to people. I tend to get very emotional and more so than others around me. I am quite sensitive to things and not depressed. I would just like to know how to control my emotions better. Thank you for your help!
Person's Gender: Female
Person's Age: 32
I try to take deep breaths which helps a bit to calm me down. I also find it helpful to distract my mind a bit as I can think about the thing that is upsetting me too much and get consumed by those thoughts.
Seeking expert counseling is a sign of strength. A personal relationship with a caring professional is proven clinically effective.Dear Friend, I do understand that you wish to control your emotions, or at least the public demonstration of those emotions. They make you feel that you appear vulnerable and weak.Before I offer any suggestions, let me say that there is nothing wrong with being a sensitive person. It reveals that you have emotional intelligence, and truly care about others' feelings. You are highly empathetic, but you wish to have a thicker skin. In addition to trying to control your emotions, you must learn to embrace your gift of sensitive because it makes you an exceptional person.Perhaps you are also sensitive to criticism or being treated in a manner that you consider rude. In this case, it is best to avoid these individuals and situations, as they are irritants and triggers to your over-reactions.You live in the UK where the "stiff upper lip" and suppressing emotions is also a cultural value, and you would probably blend in more in a place where demonstrating emotion does not have such a cultural prohibition against showing emotionality. Consider that this trait may actually be considered as one of your endearing qualities.Nevertheless, you still want to have some techniques for keeping the lid on your feelings, then I have several suggestions.Consider first, that scientific studies have shown that 1 out of 6 people are considers "highly sensitive persons" or HSPs. They have an inborn trait of high psychological sensitivity (the psychiatrist Carl Jung called it innate sensitiveness) that allows them to process sensory data much more profoundly than others because of an actual difference in their nervous systems. This trait is seen as positive and is considered to the opposite of a high risk taker who does not think through possible consequences. An HSP can also be a high sensation seeker but not take risks.HSPs are usually better survivors (this trait is found in the animal world as well, and not just in humans), and are more intelligent than the average person (or animal).Check out this website:http://www.sensitiveperson.com/index.htmlThere is a long list of tips for daily living designed for the HSP, written by Dr. Ted Zeff, PhD (Psychology) who specializes in the Highly Sensitive Person, and has authored several excellent books of the subject.. Rather than summarize it, you can read it in its entirety at this link:http://www.drtedzeff.com/tips/coping/Now, how do you turn off the faucets? You must, of course, understand and accept yourself and your emotionality as a value. That accomplished, you will have less tendency to emotionality, because it makes you anxious and the anxiety, in a highly emotional states, makes it harder to stop reacting openly with tears.You are on the right track, taking deep breaths - the deeper the better. This is the same way that we can control anxiety attacks. The deep breathing and loss of control are related and cannot readily co-exist. That is why we have trouble catching our breath when we are sobbing, and why we cannot sob when we are taking deep breaths. I do not like the frequent use of medications, but sometimes we can use a circuit breaker to help us in critical situations where we want to maintain our composure (grief, separation anxiety, and so on). It is at times like this when having anti-anxiety medication of the benzodiazepine class, on an AS NEEDED BASIS, can calm us and keep us from breaking down. The weakest of these medications if diazepam (Valium), popularized in song (Mother's Little Helper) by the Rolling Stones, back in 1968, around the time when they first came out. Also in this class are lorazepam (Ativan) and alprazolam (Xanax). The brand names (capital letters) may not be know to your physician, but the generic names (small letters) will be known.Your doctor might want to give you something else to take regularly, but I do not recommend this. You want a circuit-breaker, not to be habituated to a daily drug. Finally, if you cannot get a grip on this, then some counselling sessions to help you reframe your thoughts (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) would be very helpful.I hope that I have given you some useful information. If you wish to get back to me with more information, please hit the reply button. Do not hit the ratings of one or two stars as this puts negative feedback on my permanent record according to JustAnswer's new rating system (yes, even "helped a little" slams me). I am concerned with this new system because I do this for a living. Thank you so much.I wish you the best in finding the relief and healing that you are seeking.Warm regards,Elliott Sewell, LPCC, NCC, CCMHC
Licensed, National Certified; college prof;35 yr experience