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3 Steps: Managing Your Emotions to Feel More in Control



Do you sometimes feel like certain situations really influence your emotional state? Do you find yourself ignoring your negative feelings/emotions, and convincing yourself all is good and hoping those feelings go away?


It's striking how unresolved conflicts and suppressed emotions have a disastrous effect on our health and wellbeing. To avoid making the same mistakes as so many people, keep reading for actionable ways to gain real control.


First, you may wonder what problems may be associated with ignoring or suppressing your negative emotions. Well, if you don't do anything to deal with your negative emotions, they will most likely manifest in physical form as symptoms, physical pains and/or serious illness. No word of a lie.

For a long time, we were led to believe that our body and our mind were two separate entities. This is no longer the case. Reams of research now confirms that everything you think and everything you don't resolve emotionally can affect you deeply, down to your every cell. This depth can even make you sick and cause chronic illnesses and other ailments. Bruce Lipton Ph.D., a former medical school professor and research scientist, wrote a book, called Biology of Belief , which describes this process. When you experience symptoms, your body is telling you that something is wrong!


For example…

  • Did you know that a urinary tract infection is usually caused by frustration kept to yourself? (you’re pissed off about something) What irony! It is the result of a repressed excess of bitterness, resentment or anger!

  • Did you know that tension or pain in your shoulders indicates that you might be too eager to please, be there for others (instead of yourself) and that you carry the weight and responsibility for the happiness and well-being of others… on your shoulders?

Too often we choose to ignore our fear, anger, sadness and guilt, for fear that these feelings will be too painful and difficult to deal with. However, our body cannot help but feel emotions. Part of being human is having emotions positive and negative, we just need to learn to feel them as they rise and then, let them go, let them pass. But many of us get caught in the adrenaline and cortisol streaming through our body and we dramatize it with thought. We start thinking about what makes us emotional and then we might go off repeating the same thoughts, escalating or continuing the internal thoughts or outside complaining.

So back to basics. We need to learn to allow our emotions to be expressed, shake it off (avoid suppression) and when calm, reflect on what got you triggered in the first place, and take action if needed. Here’s a greater explanation of these three steps.


Step 1: Express your emotion - Emotions are energy-in-motion. As humans we experience all kinds of emotions. Turns out that laughter and excitement are more fun to experience than anger and sadness. Who knew?! Ha! However, they must be expressed and not suppressed if you want to remain sane and healthy. Just like a duck that has a conflict with another duck, it shakes off the excess energy as it ruffles its feathers and collects itself before going on with its day. As humans, we could go and punch a pillow (or punching bag) for 1 min or go yell our frustrations out loud (preferably somewhere you won’t scare anybody).

Step 2: Breathe and oxygenate your brain - When we are in fight or flight mode (an activated sympathetic nervous system), our hormones take over and create an environment for you to defend yourself. Great if you are under attack, but if it’s the printer that is jammed once again, then it’s just not worth it! It’s not worth keeping the cortisol circulating and creating damaging effects on your body. So breathe. Belly Breathing is my favorite. Deep inhale, expand your belly forward and exhale bring belly back towards the spine. Do this for 90 seconds.


Step 3: Reflect and take action if needed - Let’s get into some productive thinking. What caused the emotion? If dealing with physical symptoms, what might be the cause of that ailment? Did someone take advantage of you? Are you feeling deep grief and not seeking any help? Do you have a really unhealthy relationship in your life that you are staying in? Reflection is part of living life and the gateway to choosing what’s best for you. If you are living unpleasant emotions and experiences, perhaps your choices need to be different. At times, we need to take action and change things when negative emotions or symptoms show up. Reflect and take action if needed.


If you want to increase your self-awareness and get insights on why you may be having a physical symptom (pain, illness, ailment) here’s an excellent resource “The Encyclopedia of Ailments and Diseases” by Jacques Martel. I use it regularly with my clients and it has been very helpful.


So let’s avoid falling into the trap of overthinking or over analyzing our emotions, and set them free. Setting ourselves free from pain, ailments and suffering to live a healthy and fulfilling life!


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