How to know how to manage your emotions: 15 steps (with pictures)

How to know how to manage your emotions: 15 steps (with pictures)
How to know how to manage your emotions: 15 steps (with pictures)

Everyone has emotions. Some emotions are easy to deal with, such as joy or happiness. Others are more difficult like fear, anger or sadness. Whether you are dealing with anger, depression or frustration, it is important to have the skills to deal with the emotions that trouble you in the long term as well as in the short term.


Method 1 of 2: Deal with complicated emotions in the moment

Deal With Your Emotions Step 1

Step 1. Identify the emotion you are feeling

It is harder than you think to identify the particular emotion you are feeling. If you're struggling, start with the four basic categories of emotions: anxiety, sadness, anger, or happiness. By simply identifying what you are feeling, you can begin to take action to make those emotions go away while you resolve the cause. Although these emotions can vary in intensity, most of them fall into the following categories.

  • Anxiety often takes the form of questions that begin with "what if". What if they don't like me? What if I am not accepted?
  • Sadness tends to occur when you focus on things that cannot be changed, such as death or loss.
  • Anger is the response to an attack, for example on your values.
  • Happiness is a positive thought that usually revolves around a gain, such as a compliment from a friend or the promise of a promotion at work.
Deal With Your Emotions Step 2

Step 2. Try breathing relaxation techniques

You will be able to deal with a difficult emotion by taking action in the moment. You can manage an emotional response by focusing on something you can control, such as your breathing. Research has shown that breathing control practice has a positive impact on the stress response or "fight or flight" response.

  • For example, a simple technique is to count to five while inhaling, hold your breath for a count of five, and exhale for a count again to five. Concentrate on each part of the breath.
  • You can also focus on your breathing by deflating a balloon. Inflate a balloon and watch it as it deflates.
Deal With Your Emotions Step 3

Step 3. Try a self-calming technique

Another way to focus on something other than the difficult emotion is self-calming techniques. The five senses technique is a specific example that helps you improve your state of mind. Sit in a comfortable position and focus on your breathing. Then isolate each of your five senses and spend about a minute focusing on one specific sensation at a time.

  • Hearing. What sounds do you hear around you? Focus on external sounds eg cars, talking people, birds. Also focus on internal sounds, such as your breathing or digestion. As you focus on your hearing, do you notice things that you haven't noticed before?
  • The smell. What do you smell? Is there food near you? Flowers in the garden? You might notice smells you haven't noticed before, such as paper in a notebook in front of you. Try to close your eyes. Sometimes this helps decrease visual distractions.
  • View. What do you see ? Notice details like colors, patterns, shapes and textures. Observe the variations in shade that you had not noticed before on everyday objects.
  • Taste. What do you feel ? Even if you don't have food in your mouth, you can still taste it. Observe the aftertaste left by your last drink or meal. Run your tongue over your teeth and cheeks to become aware of more subtle tastes.
  • Touch. How do you feel without moving from your chair? Feel the clothes against your skin, the chair against your body, and the floor against your feet. Feel the texture of your clothes and the chair with your fingers and focus on it.
Deal With Your Emotions Step 4

Step 4. Try progressive muscle relaxation

Progressive muscle relaxation is a type of stress management technique that involves contracting and relaxing different groups of muscles. This technique can help you become more aware of physical sensations in your body. Try to start at your toes, then isolate different muscle groups in the body as you work your way up towards your head.

  • Tense each muscle group for five seconds, then spend the next thirty seconds relaxing them slowly.
  • You can use your imagination to help you with this exercise. For example, when it comes to facial muscles, imagine eating a lemon to contract them and then imagine eating something sweet to relax them.
Deal With Your Emotions Step 5

Step 5. Try meditation or prayer

Meditation has been proven to help improve positive emotions, satisfaction, health, and happiness. In addition, it helps reduce anxiety, stress and depression. There are different types of meditation, but its main purpose is to calm the mind.

For example, start by getting into a comfortable position. Focus on just one thing, such as the flame of a candle, a word you repeat, or the beads on a rosary. As you concentrate, let your mind wander. Let these thoughts come and bring your thought back to your point of focus. It might sound simple, but it's hard to focus your mind. Don't be disappointed if you can't focus your mind for more than a few minutes at first

Deal With Your Emotions Step 6

Step 6. Try to dismiss negative thoughts

Some people find it helpful to write down negative emotions as they challenge them. A physical gesture, such as throwing in the trash a crumpled piece of paper that you wrote the negative thought on, can also help you dismiss it. Although symbolic, associating a controllable physical action with a negative emotion can be helpful.

Deal With Your Emotions Step 7

Step 7. Use positive imagery

It might be easier to interrupt negative thoughts by replacing them with positive imagery. It can be even more useful if you fixate on a memory with a difficult emotional impact. Start with a picture of something positive or calm. It can be a memory or a place. Think about a time, situation, or place that made you feel calmer and happier.

  • Try to remember all the details of that memory or place. Focus on bringing your five senses to a positive place. What were the sounds, the smells, the sensations present?
  • Some people might find it easier to keep a photo in their wallet or purse to remember this positive moment.
Deal With Your Emotions Step 8

Step 8. Chat with a friend

Loneliness with sad or painful emotions can create an echo that forces you to focus on that emotion. If one of your friends is available, get in touch with him. Emotions, including happiness, are contagious. A little time with a positive friend may be all you need to find yourself relaxing.

Method 2 of 2: Learn to manage your emotions over the long term

Deal With Your Emotions Step 9

Step 1. Keep a journal

Many people find journals to be a great way to clarify and deal with difficult emotions. Sometimes the difficulty with an emotion is simply the inability to express it. Write down what happened, how you felt, and the duration and severity of the emotion. Even as you organize these thoughts in your journal, you will begin to process the emotion.

Deal With Your Emotions Step 10

Step 2. Identify the source of the difficult emotions

Once you start journaling your emotions, you might come to find patterns in your writing that weren't so obvious at first. Try to find the cause of each emotion. If you recognize any common causes, ask yourself what you can do to change them, either by eliminating the source or reducing its impact on you.

Deal With Your Emotions Step 11

Step 3. Challenge negative thoughts

People tend to despair because of difficult emotions and immediately cultivate negative thoughts around those emotions which are just not true. By isolating and challenging these thoughts, you can separate the reactions to the negative thoughts that often accompany difficult emotions. The process of questioning and correcting your own thoughts can take time and require patience. Start by asking yourself the following questions.

  • Is this thought true?
  • If you think it is true, what are the facts that support it?
  • What are your reactions to this negative thought?
  • What are the effects on your actions and behaviors that you might observe if you did not have this thought?
Deal With Your Emotions Step 12

Step 4. Use thought interruption techniques

Once you can easily challenge your negative thoughts, you can begin to recognize the patterns associated with them as well. This will allow you to simply interrupt negative thoughts and replace them with more positive or productive ones.

You can start the verbal interrupt, for example by telling yourself to stop thinking about it or even using a physical cue (for example a rubber band on your wrist that you snap when you recognize the negative thought). It will help you stop the thought by recognizing its presence

Deal With Your Emotions Step 13

Step 5. Sublimate your difficult emotions

Practice your hobbies during difficult emotional times. Using these feelings as an outlet for creative or artistic purposes is a process called sublimation. These difficult emotions take a lot of energy and you will be able to deal with them more productively by diverting that energy to projects, skills, or positive things.

Deal With Your Emotions Step 14

Step 6. Get help from your support system

Don't try to support the world on your shoulders. Talking to someone you feel comfortable with can help ease difficult emotions or negative thoughts in your head. She might even find solutions to your problem or a way to deal with those emotions that you haven't thought of. You will create more problems than you solve by hiding them. Seek support from good friends, relatives, family, or even a professional therapist if other methods don't work.

Deal With Your Emotions Step 15

Step 7. Talk to a professional

If the long-term stress of difficult emotions has only caused a feeling of withdrawal and torment, you should discuss this with a therapist or counselor. A professional may be able to offer you an alternative if your emotions are rooted in something that you would rather not share with your friends or family members. The therapist will listen attentively, the confidentiality of your visits will reassure you, he will offer you additional advice and tools to help you manage your emotions.

If your counselor thinks that the drugs might help you get through these emotions, they may prescribe them for you or refer you to a doctor who can prescribe them for you


  • Find a calming place in your home, such as the bedroom, study, or living room. Choose one with a calm atmosphere and a comfortable place to sit.
  • Leave your home regularly. Social interactions are one of the best ways to reduce the severity of difficult emotions.

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