Learning how to control your emotions in a relationship is a hard skill to learn. And unfortunately, it’s also a lesson that usually only life and time can teach. In today’s world, many people are not able to cope or process their feelings in a healthy manner.
For some people who have experienced traumas or have been hurt by other people, emotional scars can make controlling emotions even more difficult. Other people may be suffering from anxiety or depression. But there is hope, and with time and active practice of dealing with your emotional responses, you absolutely can improve the control of your emotions.
- 1 Why Learn Emotional Management?
- 1.1 1. Remember emotions are temporary states of being
- 1.2 2. People give the energy that they receive
- 1.3 3. Take a deep breath, hold, and release
- 1.4 4. Take a step back from intense situations for a moment
- 1.5 5. Don’t repress your emotions
- 1.6 6. Learn how to identify your emotions specifically
- 1.7 7. Once you’ve identified what you’re feeling, figure out why
- 1.8 8. Do not berate yourself for feeling the way you feel
- 1.9 9. Allow yourself to fully feel your emotions
- 1.10 10. Try to keep your stress to a minimum
- 1.11 11. Find a healthy outlet for your feelings
- 1.12 12. Resolve the issue
- 1.13 13. Talk to a doctor
- 2 Anger Is Normal and Healthy
- 3 FAQs
- 4 Conclusion
Why Learn Emotional Management?
If you have a tendency to overreact, burst out into hysterical tears, hyperventilate, scream and yell, or have otherwise erratic reactions when experiencing an intense emotional response: chances are you have poor control over your emotions.
And when you don’t have good control over that, things like a relationship, friendships tend to suffer. Even a professional relationship can be curtailed by poor emotional responses. So keep reading for some tips on how to make your emotions manageable.
1. Remember emotions are temporary states of being
Even if you experience a particular emotion often, you have to remember that emotions and thoughts are temporary. Try to transform negative thought processes, instead of thinking: “I am so depressed,” say to yourself: “I feel depressed at this moment. Why? And how do I fix it?”
Negative thoughts reinforce negative feelings, if you catch yourself thinking doomed, remember that this will pass, and you can proactively work on lifting yourself up and getting to the root of the problem.
2. People give the energy that they receive
Something that most people tend to overlook is that when dealing with other people, we match the energy we are given in behavior. For example, when speaking to someone else in a raised voice, generally the other person will respond with either a matched or louder voice.
One of the first things customer service phone representatives are taught at ADT Security is conversation and voice control. If a customer yells at you, talk back in a calm and respectful manner, and generally, people are easier to de-escalate. If you notice, most arguments with other people escalate quickly, as each person responds to what they are given.
3. Take a deep breath, hold, and release
Personally, I can relate if you hate it when people tell you to ‘take a deep breath.” However, if you’re in a situation where an emotional outburst or response is inappropriate, a deep breath allows you to regain your composure – even if it’s just to get somewhere private.
While maintaining composure to be able to communicate (or avoid embarrassing yourself and your partner), taking a breath is sometimes unavoidable.
Breathing exercises are often practiced in meditation, martial arts, and any practice where focus, control, and concentration are required. Inhaling in deep through your nose, holding for a few seconds, and exhaling out of the mouth is the proper way to do the ‘deep breathing’ exercises.
This technique helps quell the temper, soothe anxiety, and even gets the blood flowing to decrease depression.
4. Take a step back from intense situations for a moment
Sometimes you need to take a step back from situations. As a human being, you’re going to have moments when you lose your cool. It happens. But the important thing to remember is to not stay in that escalated situation. When you are losing it you will say and do things you regret.
If you and the person you love have a habit of escalating to screaming and yelling at each other, are distracted from the main problem, and are too stuck on reacting to each other’s negative thoughts then nothing is going to get resolved. If you are too hot and bothered to control your reaction, then it’s time to take a break and get some space and distance.
5. Don’t repress your emotions
The biggest misunderstanding for many people is that they think that repressing and suppressing their emotions is controlling them. This could not be further from the truth. When dampening down your emotions can cause lasting subliminal damage to your body and mind.
Your feelings are important, and even if you have to step back from them for a moment, you should always be able to express how you feel when it’s appropriate. Just remember that learning how to control your emotions in a relationship does not mean invalidating and suppressing your emotions.
6. Learn how to identify your emotions specifically
Specifying your emotions helps you begin understanding how to control your emotions. If you don’t take the time to be specific with what you’re feeling, how are you going to understand and manage what you are feeling? Thinking to yourself, or saying out loud to someone: “I am upset,” doesn’t help narrow down the problem.
If you are upset, what kind of upset are you? Are you angry, frustrated, disappointed, or something else? Pinpoint exactly what type of upset you are with a purpose so that you can continue recovering from feeling this emotion.
7. Once you’ve identified what you’re feeling, figure out why
Once you have figured out exactly what you are feeling, it’s going to be easier to convert these emotions and thoughts so that you can communicate them. Until you are able to clearly figure out what has triggered these emotional responses, your relationship could suffer if you find yourself unable to communicate clearly about your feelings.
8. Do not berate yourself for feeling the way you feel
A common mistake in emotion management is feelings of guilt for feeling the way you feel when you are upset. A lot of people dumb down their responses as, ‘overreacting,’ or feel obligated to forgive or repress an issue they are having with someone in their relationships.
Many women who deal with this feeling of remorse are women. Unfortunately, there are a lot of people who use this and make a habit of invalidating other people's feelings.
That is not okay. Your emotional responses are valid – it's how you react that matters.
9. Allow yourself to fully feel your emotions
One major problem is people tend to avoid feeling their emotions to the fullest. Intense emotional reactions, even happy or positive ones, can even manifest physical reactions in your body.
Rapid heartbeat, accelerated or trouble breathing, shaking, they even can mess with your vision, blood flow, and thought process. They give out large doses of hormones, and hormones are what balance our physical and mental health.
While this may be uncomfortable, and you may have to step back from the situation for a moment to control your temper, it is a vital part of controlling your emotions. If you don’t allow yourself to feel these things, you’ll never be able to fully ‘detox’ your feelings.
10. Try to keep your stress to a minimum
While most people don’t walk around being stressed out on purpose, continuous or sudden large amounts of stress can cause even the most grounded people to have issues managing their emotions. Therefore one of the most important things is to have a healthy work-life balance.
If your relationships are the cause of a lot of stress, most likely you’re not going to have the best control over your behavior. Chances are, a lot of your emotions are secondary feelings from the source of your stress.
11. Find a healthy outlet for your feelings
Everybody needs a therapeutic outlet, a way to destress and detox. For me personally, gardening helps me relax and let go of my stress. Cleaning helps me calm down when I am angry. And painting or other art projects lift me up when I am feeling blue.
Other people go running or meditate. The point is, find something that helps you distance yourself and let go of those negative feelings.
12. Resolve the issue
This one is obvious, but it’s also easier said than done. Resolving issues is never easy, and sometimes the solution could even be ending the relationship itself. Finding the source of your emotional outbursts is vital so that you can move forward from repetitious arguments or outbursts.
If the past has affected your present, then seek therapy or other help to resolve it, if it’s unclear communication in your relationship, talk to your partner about it and get help with it.
It doesn’t really matter what the cause of the emotional damage is, there’s always a reason why you have felt this way – and whether the solution is a simple conversation with someone or major action, there is always an answer.
13. Talk to a doctor
If you are able to step back from your problems and analyze your feelings and get to the root of the problem you will be able to fix whatever it is.
But if you realize there is nothing in your life or relationship to cause you to have such intense emotional reactions, and natural emotional management steps aren’t working for you then it’s time to consider an unpleasant possibility: there could be something wrong.
Whether it be a hormone imbalance, an underlying health condition, or maybe a mental illness you didn't know you had, a doctor can get to the bottom of what is going on. Sometimes medication can be a big boon.
While antidepressants and anti-anxieties tend to have a bad rep, for some people they are vital for a normal functioning life. And there is nothing wrong with that. Sometimes, we just need a little help.
It’s not really any different than a diabetic taking metformin to control their blood sugar. The only difference is that it helps you feel happier, more balanced, and have more control over your life. While it is not for everyone, for some it is the difference between a healthy happy relationship and a toxic one.
Anger Is Normal and Healthy
It’s important to remember in today’s world that emotions are a part of us. They drive us, tell us what to do, and even sometimes help us survive. Having emotions is a vital part of living, so it’s important to accept and feel your emotions, even if they are uncomfortable.
It’s okay to get angry. Everyone has a right to be angry – however, it’s how you manage and control your anger or angry responses that make a difference. And if you catch yourself being angry at lots of little things all the time, maybe talk to a doctor or a therapist for help.
There could be medical reasons for your incessant unhappiness; something as simple as a vitamin deficiency could cause major mood swings. Your doctor may be able to find the answers for you.
When in escalated situations it’s important to consciously remember to think before you speak. Speaking out of anger and frustration can cause lasting damage, so it’s important to remember to process your emotions in healthy ways. Sometimes stepping away from the situation for a little bit helps to reign in those intense initial reactions to strong emotions.
In all honesty, nobody can control your emotions. Sometimes you can’t even control your emotions, right? However, someone can manipulate them by their actions and words. And unfortunately, there are more people out there who enjoy taking advantage of their control over your mood.
These people are generally toxic. You can learn to identify toxic, abusive, or manipulative people by various warning signs, and steer clear of them for personal relationships as best as you can.
Anger is a secondary emotion. When you experience anger, it usually is directly related to the emotion you were having before the anger set in. Love can certainly be a trigger for someone to feel angry – if the person is feeling betrayed, shocked, or hurt right before. Love can actually intensify feelings of anger. However, anger itself is not a sign of love.
If the romance has faded away, it’s not impossible to get them back. If both parties work on themselves, have strong, open, and honest communication, and work on consciously reigning in your emotions, it is absolutely possible to control your emotional outbursts and get your relationship back on track.
Major mood swings could be a sign there could be an underlying health condition. Thyroid imbalances, amongst many other health issues, can cause excessive anxiety, depression, and even anger.
Mental health problems can cause these issues as well. If you are struggling with your mood, mention it to your doctor so that they can get you help, medication, or find the underlying reason for your problems.
Remember to acknowledge all of your emotions, even the negative ones. And if you need help with it, you’re definitely not alone in that aspect. I myself have gone to therapy for intense depression and mood swings – and with active practice, I have been able to feel more like myself.
With time, consistency, and practice you too will be able to manage your emotions in healthier ways, to keep your relationships on track.
When you can take responsibility for your negative emotions and responses, you can prevent senseless arguing and stress. We hope you enjoyed this article, and hope you share it with all your friends!
As hopeless romantic I struggled tremendously in my love life. After many years of searching, trial & error, and countless failed relationships, I finally found my Mr. Right. It wasn't an easy road, but one that has taught me an incredible amount about the workings of relationships between men and women, and this is what I hope to share through my writing on this blog.