The Power of NOT Reacting – How to Control Your Emotions
Do you have a temper and get worked up over the smallest things? If so, you need to learn how to control your emotions. In a world full of stressful situations, it can be easy to get caught up in all the chaos. But, by being mindful of your emotions and learning to keep them in check, you can take back control of your life and make positive changes for the future.
Identify Your Emotional Triggers
Identifying your emotional triggers is the first step to controlling your emotions. Emotional triggers are things that make you feel angry or upset. They can be anything from certain people, memories and places, to specific words and even smells. We all have different triggers, so this requires some self-reflection and introspection. But knowing what triggers your emotions will help you manage them more effectively instead of lashing out in anger.
Take A Few Deep Breaths
Whenever you find yourself becoming overly agitated, take a minute to breathe and calm yourself so that you don’t react in a way you’ll regret later. Breathing is one of the most effective ways to calm down quickly when you’re angry, upset, or frustrated. This can be especially useful if you’re feeling overwhelmed by stress. Taking three to four deep breaths soothes your nervous system and reduces stress, which in turn helps you relax and feel more in charge of your emotions.
Don’t Bottle Up Strong Feelings
You may think that bottling up your feelings will make them go away, but this is not true. When it comes to controlling your emotions, the key here is regulation, not repression. Regulating your emotions means acknowledging that you have strong feelings and knowing how to best deal with them in a healthy way, like talking about them or writing them down. Repressing your emotions means avoiding or ignoring what you feel and pretending that you don’t care about something, when deep down you really do. This can cause a buildup of negative feelings and lead to aggression later on, down the road.
Use I-Statements Instead of You-Statements
When you’re triggered, your emotions might be storming inside you, but know that your choice of words can either help improve the situation, or make things worse. When someone says or does something you don’t like, it’s easy to say things like “You always do this” or “You never listen. “But using such statements will likely just provoke anger and defensiveness from the other person.So, instead of putting blame on someone for your emotions, take responsibility and acknowledge how you feel. For example, rather than saying, “You are always late!” say, “I feel upset when you are late because it makes me worry about your safety. “This keeps it focused on how you feel instead of making judgments about the other person’s behavior.
Don’t Raise Your Voice
Raising your voice is a sign of losing control. When you get angry, it’s natural to want to express your feelings and thoughts in the loudest way possible, but this doesn’t do anything more than escalate a situation. Conversely, your words will have more power when you use a calm and assertive tone. You may even be able to persuade someone who disagrees with you, if your argument is backed by facts and logic. Maintaining your composure helps both parties feel respected and improves communication, making it easier to resolve conflicts.
Avoid Making Assumptions
Assuming things about other people’s behavior or intentions without being entirely sure of them, can lead to some pretty explosive moments. Assumptions are dangerous because they are based on incomplete information. If you make an assumption and overreact based on that, the other person may feel attacked and start overreacting too. So next time someone says or does something you disagree with or don’t understand, don’t jump to conclusions. Instead, ask questions to clarify what they mean before forming an opinion about their comment or action. This will allow them to explain themselves more clearly so that you can both fully understand one another’s position and move forward constructively.
When you feel like your emotions are getting the best of you, you may get carried away by them, instead of staying rational about what’s happening around you. This is especially true when dealing with a difficult situation involving another person. But if you want to control your emotions when things get heated, then being able to empathize with others is extremely important. And this requires you to imagine yourself in their shoes and see the situation from their perspective! As hard as it may be at times, you need to keep in mind that everyone has problems and issues.They might be having a bad day or some kind of challenge in their personal life. Look, you may not always agree with someone’s behavior or opinions, but having empathy for them will allow you to respond more appropriately.
Take A Time Out
If you’ve tried everything and are still struggling to keep your emotions in check, take a timeout. It’s an effective strategy for preventing overreaction and resolving conflict. It gives you the opportunity to calm down to think about what you want to say. Or how you want to say it and return with a clearer head. This is particularly helpful if the other person makes you feel hurt or defensive. Taking a few minutes alone can help defuse some of the tension before returning and engaging in constructive dialogue. Remember, when you don’t react, you leave space to respond. You can always choose your attitude and the way you process information. Even if someone else is trying to provoke a reaction from you. You control your emotions and how they affect your actions. This means that if someone tries to get under your skin. It’s ultimately up to you whether or not that incident will spark an emotional reaction in you!