Let's start caring for your emotions!
Tune in and join me as I chat about how to understand and manage your emotions.
I'm an emotional health mentor, edu-preneur and coach who loves teaching you how to understand, manage and embrace your emotions.
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Recently, I went through a hard time. And as you probably know, it can be really difficult to manage emotions when things aren’t going your way. So today I want to share with you 4 tips to manage emotions during hard times.
This Christmas, my seasonal depression was worse than I remember it being in a long time. After getting some bad news and being pretty homesick, the short winter days were really getting to me.
But I’ve learned that it’s during the hard times that it’s most important to manage my emotions. Here are some of the ways I’ve found to do that.
When I’m going through hard times, it can be very tempting to drop all of my routines. But that’s the stuff that keeps me afloat!
While I do go super easy on myself about my routines, I do my best to also stick with them as much as I can when times are tough.
Personally, my favorite ways of keeping in touch with myself are journaling, meditation and therapy.
Writing a few pages in my journal each morning always helps clear my head. So, it’s something I prioritize. Even if it’s just three or four times a week, whatever I can manage is what I do.
Also, I highly value the power of meditation. It helps me stay in touch with myself and understand my emotions.
While I don’t always do both meditation and journaling every single morning, I make my best effort to do at least one of them when I’m going through a rough patch.
Finally, I make time to go to therapy and keep talking to a professional about the things I’m going through. While my therapist can’t fix my problems for me, she helps me see new avenues and possibilities for managing my emotions.
Just before Christmas when I got that bad news I mentioned above, I went through an array of emotions. Anger, sadness, fear, confusion, despair, blame and more.
But the thing is, is that when it’s a really tough time, you can’t just process your emotions in one go. It’s a slow process with complicated layers. And it takes time.
So, one day you might spend time processing your anger then feel a lot better. But then the next day, you feel sadness that needs to be addressed. Another day the anger comes back, and so on.
Keep coming back to them. I understand that it’s not easy and life is complicated.
And it won’t be a simple process. But the best thing to do is stay dedicated to your emotions because now is when you’re going to need to be strong for yourself more than ever.
Another thing I find really helpful when times are tough is knowingly unplugging from my emotions.
Since I tend to overanalyze how I feel and obsess about solving all my problems ASAP, it can really drain me. And when I’m already in a dark time, this behavior doesn’t help me. So I choose ways to unplug.
For instance, when I was bummed, I would play the Sims or watch TV and force myself not to obsess about my issues.
I’m not saying I would do this all day every day. I would recommend doing it for maybe for an hour or two, but not endlessly. Otherwise, I personally find that dark feelings get overpowering if I don’t move my body for too long of a time.
Whatever helps you unplug from reality, make sure to do that with the intention that you’ll deal with anything you have to deal with later, including your emotions. Just give yourself permission to take breaks.
Next, one of the things that helps me during tough times is looking for lessons I could learn from my situation.
However, I know that this can be hard or impossible, especially when things are out of your control.
But I personally find a lot of comfort when I’m able to see how I can learn from the challenges I’m experiencing.
For example, after my bad news I realized that I had become very complacent in my life and this event really woke me up to take action to have the life I want, that it wasn’t anyone else’s job.
A few questions you could ask yourself are:
On the other hand, in certain situations you just have to see them through. There might be zero lessons to be learned in that moment. Perhaps down the road after this time has passed, you’ll learn something or have some insight.
But learning a lesson isn’t a reason that we go through hard things. Personally, I don’t believe we’re “supposed” to struggle to learn lessons. So, sometimes you just skip this step and keep trying to live life the best way you can.
We’ve all gone through hard times and it can be really overwhelming. And our emotional reaction to the situation on top of everything can be too much to handle. But if you take small bite sized approaches to processing your emotions, it will help get you through the rough patches.
How do you manage your emotions through life’s challenges? Tell me in the comments below.
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