We really do not like to feel emotions. Because you are human you go to great efforts to try to avoid negative and hurtful feelings. You work really hard to avoid sadness, anger, stress, and worry. Although coping is a great thing, there are times when feelings get really overwhelming. It is the intense emotions like anxiety, depression, stress, and anger that you try really hard to avoid feeling.
It is possible to learn how to control these intense emotions.
Here is why you want to learn to control these emotions.
Let’s be honest, bad stuff happens all the time.
If you have anxiety, depression, trauma, or an eating disorder your brain has a difficult time managing a natural upset. I have seen people go to very extreme measures to avoid emotions. People use drugs or alcohol, argue with loved ones, attempt self-harm, or worse suicide, binge on food and then purge the food, and restrict eating any foods at all. These behaviors cause you a lot more problems and only make your intense emotions worse.
You try harder to avoid emotions.
All the while the emotions are still there bubbling under the surface. We want to run away from upset. I get it – bad feelings suck. No one wants to feel depressed or anxious. These feelings are the worst. It is natural to want to avoid them and want to do something to fix them. However, it is clear that running and avoiding emotions is never the right thing to do. So here are a couple tips for facing your emotions head on and controlling them like the boss that you are.
Rather than run from your emotions, honor your emotions.
Let’s look at how you are the boss of the boardroom. You! You are the boss. But sitting at your board table is also your anxiety, your stress, your eating disorder, and your depression. These feelings have a lot to say. They are important in your decision making process. They greatly impact what you do. Rather than shame this, accept this. Having these emotions does not make you bad, having these emotions make you human. Accepting them will help you honor the emotions so that you can better deal with the upset.
Rather than shhhh your upset feelings, listen to them.
Acknowledge the upset. It is there for a reason. Yep you read that right. Your anxiety, depression, trauma, and even your eating disorder are there for a reason. It is there to protect you. It is telling you “hey Houston we have a problem here.” Allowing yourself to listen to why you are feeling upset and acknowledging what the upset is seeking will help you decide on to handle that emotion.
When you can listen and honor your feelings you gain power and control.
You can become the boss over your emotions. They are there, you cannot avoid the feelings, but you can manage them and tell them what to do. Remember you are the boss of you – what do you want your feelings to do for you?
This is not easy, but it is possible.
You can learn to love your body and love your life. You can learn to challenge disordered eating thinking and behaviors. You can learn to have confidence and self-acceptance. If you find you are having trouble with this, please ask for help. There is a lot of good support and help out there for you.
If you find this information helpful please share. This is a very complex issue that cannot be addressed in a 5 minute video, but feel free to ask questions and comment. Perhaps there is something I can help clarify for you.
Still not sure if you have an eating disorder? Here is a self-assessment, https://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/screening-tool. This quick tool is to help you determine if you have an eating disorder and if you should get help. Visit NationalEatingdisorder.org to find help and get more information.
Do you feel you struggle with an eating disorder? Call Dr. Stephanie and see how you can overcome the cycle.