How to Overcome Negative Emotions and Habits

Without much troubles as to the way you may have witnessed a lot of your relationships crashing down, simple ways on how to overcome negative emotions and habits both in your life and in your relationships will be boldly played out in simple language. It is important to note that no emotion, including a negative one, is inherently bad. It’s perfectly normal to feel these things in certain contexts or situations.

These emotions become problematic when they are persistent and interfere with your ability to live your life normally. Negative feelings are unpleasant and disruptive emotional reactions. They aren’t just unpleasant; they also make it hard to function in your normal daily life, and they interfere with your ability to accomplish goals.

Examples of Negative Emotions are:

  • Anger
  • Anxiety or fear
  • Apathy
  • Contempt, hate, or disgust
  • Jealousy
  • Insecurity
  • Regret
  • Guilt
  • Sadness, grief, or loneliness
  • Shame
  • Contentment
  • Embarrassment
  • Excitement
  • Pride
  • Relief
  • Satisfaction
  • Sensory Pleasure

How to Overcome Negative Emotions and Habits

Although many of us feel negative emotions which would later turn out to be negative habits from time to time, in some cases, these feelings and actions can be signs of mental health conditions such as depression or anxiety. In order to avoid the contingency of them affecting your daily life and relationships, it is pertinent that you learn how to overcome negative emotions and habits one after the other:

Mood Boosters

  • Read the story of someone you admire
  • Watch a funny YouTube video
  • Play with an animal
  • Watch a movie you loved when you were younger
  • Reorganize your room
  • Make a list of places you want to travel

Address Your Basic Needs

  • Eat a healthy snack.
  • Drink a glass of water.
  • Take a shower or bath.
  • Take a nap.

Process Feelings

  • Draw how you’re feeling.
  • Make a gratitude list.
  • Punch a pillow.
  • Scream.
  • Let yourself cry.
  • Rip paper into small pieces.
  • Vent. Venting is not the same as asking for help, it’s taking an opportunity to share your feelings out loud. We do this naturally when we talk with someone we can trust about whatever is upsetting us. You can also vent by writing a letter to the person who upset you. Keep the letter a couple of days and then tear it up. Stick to pen and paper—using social media when you are highly emotional can be tempting, but you might say something you regret.

Problem Solving

  • Make a list of solutions to problems – it can help to brainstorm with a friend of family member.
  • Make a list of your strengths. There are plenty of things about you that are awesome, no matter how down you are feeling at the moment.
  • If a person has upset you, talk with them directly. Fill in the blanks to this sentence – “I feel ______ when (this happens) because ______. Next time, could you please ________.” Example: “I feel left out when there is no room at the lunch table, because then I don’t have friends to talk to. Next time can you please save me a seat?”

Volunteering/Acts of Kindness

  • Do something nice for someone you know.
  • Help a stranger.
  • Volunteer your time.

Hobbies/Stress Relievers

  • Learn something new – there are tutorials for all kinds of hobbies online.
  • Create – try a craft project, color, paint, or draw. Invite a friend to join you for added fun.
  • Write – you could write a story, a poem, or an entry in a journal.
  • Get active – dancing, running, or playing a sport are some good ways to get moving.
  • Play a video game.
  • Get a plant and start a garden.

Relaxation Exercises

  • Practice belly breathing –put one hand on your stomach and start to inhale slowly. As you breathe in, imagine a balloon in your stomach filling up and continue to inhale until the balloon is very full. Put your other hand on your heart, feel your heartbeat, and hold your breath for 5 seconds. Now let your breath out slowly for 10 seconds – feel your belly flatten like a deflating balloon. Repeat this process 4 or 5 times and you should notice your heart beat slow down and your muscles relax.
  • Try progressive muscle relaxation –clench your toes for a count of 5, then relax them for a count of 5, then move to your calves, then your thighs, then your abs, then your arms, then your neck.
  • Play with Play-Doh.
  • Go for a walk – feel the ground under your feet and the air on your skin. Focus on your senses.
  • Find a guided meditation on YouTube.
  • Do yoga – you can find videos on demand using your tv or online.
  • Read a book.
  • Listen to music, a podcast, or an audiobook.
  • Unplug – turn off your phone, tablet, and/or computer for an hour or so.

Ask for Help

  • Text a friend.
  • Ask someone to just sit with you.
  • Call a family member.
  • Talk to an adult you trust.
  • Call a friend you haven’t talked to recently.

Negative Habits That Can Ooze Out of Negative Emotions

  • Ignoring Emotions

Ignoring feelings is not the healthiest way to deal with them. Generally speaking, it does not make them disappear, but can instead cause them to come out differently (so, you might yell at your child when you’re really upset about a situation at work).

Negative emotions signal that what you are doing in your life isn’t working. So when you ignore them, you can’t make any changes, and you continue to experience negative feelings.

  • Ruminating on Emotions

Rumination involves dwelling on anger, resentment, and other uncomfortable feelings. This amplifies negative emotions, but it also brings health consequences. So it’s essential to listen to your feelings and then take steps to let them go.

  • Withdrawal or Avoidance

When something is distressing, you might find yourself trying to avoid it so that you don’t have to experience those unpleasant emotions. If a person or situation causes you anxiety, for example, you might take steps to avoid those triggers. The problem is that avoidance coping makes negative emotions worse in the long run.

Read Also:

5 Habits You Can Start to Become Wealthy

  • Destructive or Risky Behaviors

If you don’t deal with the emotions you are feeling, they can cause problems with physical and emotional health. This is particularly true if you rely on risky behaviors such as substance use or self-harm to cope with distressing emotions.

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