My moods are like a rollercoaster. How do I regain control?

Are you feeling like you are always moody?
Do you often wonder why you let your feelings get the better of you?

Many people experience fluctuations in their moods each day, but you should stop and reflect when your moods are taking over your life, your relationships, and making you feel out of control. We understand life can be challenging, and emotions are part of these challenges. However the great news is that there are ways to manage your intense emotions, and steer away from the extreme ups and downs that create that emotional rollercoaster.

Often when you’re upset, you may have trouble recognising your emotions; you lose perspective. When your low moods become extreme, you lose your care factor. Relationships can also be affected from your change in mood. At different times, they may revolve around hating or loving either yourself or those closest to you.

A sudden change in emotions can lead to confusion and bewilderment and we are often unsure how to handle this and may behave poorly such as yelling, hitting, breaking things, obsessively contacting people, drinking excessively or turning it inwards and harming ourselves in some way. Poor emotional regulation, can have some devastating outcomes if not dealt with.

How do I know if I have poor emotional regulation?

  • You are very sensitive to criticism, rejection and abandonment
  • You experience extreme emotions, more strongly and for longer periods of time than others around you
  • You have difficulty concentrating, completing work, or thinking about other things
  • There has been a series of conflictual or broken relationships, despite being quite an empathetic person
  • You often think your feelings are not important
  • Sometimes you have difficulty making sense of how you’re feeling
  • You become ashamed, embarrassed, or angry at yourself for the way you feel

Such intense emotions can really affect your work productivity, personal achievements, the ability to plan or think of other tasks and your overall motivation for life. Being so sensitive can also make relating to others a ‘minefield’, and if not managed can lead to suicidal feelings, as well as impulsive and addictive patterns.

So what can you do?

There are new approaches to managing these feelings and symptoms to teach you to manage your emotions better:

  • Focus on the present – concentrating on the here and now and working through what’s right in front of you enables you to feel less anxious or overwhelmed of what’s happening in the near future.
  • When your emotions start to build, stop yourself and think, ‘Are these thoughts helpful to the situation?’. Is there another way I could tackle this?
  • Consider both the positive and the negative consequences of your actions – What are the possible outcomes? Weigh them up before you react.

If you feel that your emotions have become overwhelming and you’re struggling to manage them, we are here to help.  Get some control back into your life!

Our goal is to help you pursue a life worth living by learning a set of strategies that help you manage your emotions more effectively. Please contact us to start creating the future you’ve always wanted.

Written by Greg Pankhurst - Senior Clinical Psychologist - www.creatingchange.net.au

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