Emotional Regulation

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What is Emotional Regulation?

The ability to exert some measure of control over one’s emotions is referred to as emotional regulation. We frequently experience feelings that are so strong that we feel powerless to stop them, which might cause us to act in ways that are emotionally motivated. We enter our emotional mind when we begin to feel emotionally reactive to something, whether it be a circumstance, our ideas, feelings, or perceptions. Our decisions, actions, and/or thoughts start to be influenced by our emotions rather than logic or reason as we go deeper into our emotional mind and further away from our logical (also known as: sensible or reasonable) mind. Our emotions may become even more intense as a result of this.
According to research, it’s critical to recognise our emotions as well as our logical thinking in order to make decisions with a WISE MIND. When we stay in our smart mind, this is when we perform at our best. Our ability to make intelligent decisions is compromised when our emotions are not in check, which can have an effect on our decision-making and subsequent thoughts or sentiments. The intelligent mind, which is the best state of mind, is highlighted in the image that follows.

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Who can learn emotional regulation?

Anyone can learn to regulate their emotions no matter what age!
As children are still beginning to understand their emotions and frequently lack the vocabulary or comprehension of adults to be able to explain how they are feeling, emotional dysregulation is frequently noticed in youngsters. We may sometimes assume that kids are “acting out,” but frequently, their actions are the result of heightened emotions that they are unable to express verbally. Their actions serve as a form of communication! Children are therefore taught the same abilities as those listed below in order to regulate their emotions, but in simpler terms and with different examples to make them more understandable. It is crucial for parents to practise emotional regulation skills in the family setting and to recognise that their children may be experiencing strong emotions but may not be able to express them. As a result, helping children understand their emotions can be a useful first step in teaching them to regulate.
Many adults, even older ones, might exhibit emotional dysregulation for a variety of reasons. Each person has their own unique experience, but the key to learning to control our emotions is understanding our own unique experience with them.

How to regulate emotions

The first crucial step in controlling our emotions is to BE MINDFUL.
We must be vigilant and conscious of when we are starting to feel emotional in order to control our emotions. Each person may experience this differently, yet we frequently give subtle signs. When an illustration, you might feel your stomach turn and your pulse rate increase as you enter a bustling shopping centre. These are indications that our emotions are intensifying. When we are aware, we can control our emotions by using techniques and instruments for emotional management. Deep breathing, grounding, visualising, and awareness are examples of these abilities. The effectiveness and relevance of abilities, however, might differ from person to person; what is effective for one person may not be effective for another.
Recognizing the circumstances that make you more emotionally reactive is a necessary component of mindfulness. It’s normal if you discover that visiting a crowded shopping centre causes your emotions to spike. Knowing helps us become more conscious of our reactions and can educate us to start controlling our emotions when we are going to enter a situation that we are aware would cause an emotional reaction in us.
We can also apply emotional regulation techniques while our emotions are already highly charged. These are referred to as distress tolerance abilities, which build on emotional regulation skills to help us reduce the strength of our emotions so that we can regain our sensible mind. It may take some practice to learn to control our emotions, especially if we are accustomed to having stronger emotional reactions and making decisions as a result. Our bodies and minds, however, are always adjusting and able to pick up new talents.It requires perseverance and the knowledge that we are developing the ability to regulate our emotions in order to return to and remain in the wise mind and make more thoughtful, well-balanced decisions that are influenced by both emotion and reasoning.
Contact our clinic to schedule an appointment with one of our knowledgeable psychologists if you think you might benefit from assistance with learning to control your emotions.

Authored by Jasmine Mourad

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