Practical Tips to Deal with Emotions
16 practical tips to deal with emotions by Sherry Marshall (BSc. Sociology; Masters Social Work; Masters Soc Ecology, Process Oriented Psychology)
- If you feel ‘out of balance’ over time, see your GP, get medical and psychological help.
- Talk with a ‘natural therapies’ practitioner for complementary treatment to chemical medication.
- Walk outside or go out and sit in Nature, by the sea or even a back garden. Being in Nature helps depression. Nature helps you let go and access something bigger than yourself.
- Access websites eg Beyond Blue or Black Dog for depression, anxiety clinics etc. Get as much information as you can and also realise that thousands of people are having similar experiences. You are not alone.
- Get support from a family member or friend(s). Do not become too isolated or scared to tell someone how you are feeling. If you are having suicidal thoughts or severe depression, take it seriously and get professional psychological help quickly. There is always a ‘way through’ what you are experiencing, even if you feel hopeless and in pain. You have lost access to other parts of yourself that can support you internally.
- Know what your triggers are and either avoid the triggers where possible or have a plan of action of what helps you, when triggered.
- Know and make a list of what already works for you when you have strong feelings.
- Exercise. It releases ‘good chemicals’ in the brain and makes us feel better.
- Do inner work to find out more about the mood and ‘catch’ the little signals that indicate a small change in how you are feeling to allow you to change the mood.
- Be aware of your habitual patterns. Recognise your own particular knack of how you get yourself into an emotional state. And how you stay stuck and remain there. Develop skills to change the ‘stuckness.’
- Remember that the feelings will change, either they go away or are less intense. All feelings are impermanent. ‘Most things will pass’. See a GP if it doesn’t.
- Recognise and acknowledge fluidity of feelings. Even from hour to hour, if we are aware, there are subtle and more obvious changes all the time. Eg. We cry and then later, we may be laughing.
- Ask yourself, ‘what is the pay-off’ of this particular emotion. Eg. If we are in overwhelm or a low mood, it gives permission to ‘take it easy’, not to be busy or keep pushing ourselves. If we have self pity, ‘poor me’, the pay-off can be that we receive support and sympathy.
- Often problems trigger past memories, either in childhood or the history of our relationships. Realise it is not usually what happens that is the problem, but how we react to it. Don’t get stuck in the memory. Come back to the now, and deal with what is happening now. Separate out the past to the present.
- Thich Nhat Hanh says, when awareness is the companion to the anger. Anger is the compost for the flowers. Everything, including emotions can be recycled!!! “…we see that the flower already exists in the compost and the compost already exists in the flower. It only takes 2 weeks for the flower to decompose. The gardener doesn’t look at the rotting, smelling compost and feel sad or disgusted. Same with Anger Use the breath to calm yourself. Meditate or do yoga.”
- If you are feeling angry, take time out, go for a fast walk, hit a punching bag in a gym to let the anger out or hit pillows or cushions. Don’t hurt yourself or others though!
If you would like to make an appointment to consult with Sherry Marshall, in Manly or Sydney City, please email her on
Sherrymarshall9@aol.com or phone 04111 55091