4 Steps and 5 Questions for Taking Control of Your Emotions

4 Steps and 5 Questions for Taking Control of Your Emotions

Cindy Fabico, MA, NCC, LMHC, LMFT

I talk to so many people who feel a sense of desperation and hopelessness on their path to emotional freedom. I feel so much hope for them.

The story generally goes something like this; “Cindy I started practicing and applying the tools you gave me and I was feeling so much better….and then X happened and I completely lost my shit!! Am I just broken or bad or a hopeless case?!”

My response; “it must be very frustrating to work so hard and do so much better and then lose your shit. Can we look a bit closer at this? What I heard you say is that you used the tools consistently and you felt better and then in ONE moment you lost your shit. Did I get that right? I would like you to consider that this shit loss was in fact a gift, an opportunity to learn more about you and how your nervous system has become attuned to protect you from threats.”

What generally follows is a conversation about why the tools, particularly meditation and self compassion, are so important for helping us notice the “threat” as data coming in through our nervous system as a bodily sensation. This is why therapists are always annoyingly asking clients “where and how do you feel that in your body”. Our purpose with this question is to teach you to become attuned to how your nervous system signals a threat, how to slow the process down (breathe & observe), mine the data, and come up with a RESPONSE that comes from our higher self. We absolutely can rewire our brain.

If you are interested in learning more about what I am discussing here I suggest you:

  1. Read the book “Buddha’s Brain, The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness”
  2. Start meditating for 10 minutes daily using an app such as Calm, Waking Up, Headspace, or Insight Timer
  3. Listen to the first 5 episodes of “The Adult Chair” podcast
  4. Begin a journal dedicated to answering these 5 questions at the end of each day:
    1. How did I manage my emotions today?
    2. If I did well, what helped?
    3. If I didn’t do well what got in the way?
    4. What can I learn from today’s experiences?
    5. What will I do tomorrow to make it better than today?

Friends there is so much hope for all of us. But it will require effort if you truly want to stop letting your emotions run the show and start seeing your emotions as signals to learn more about you.

Pro-tip: work with a therapist who can articulate how they will help you understand “why you act the way you do” and who offers tools such as books, podcasts, and activities to fast track your learning.

If are looking for help to get a handle in your busy reach visit our website https://www.lifeskillsresourcegroup.com/ or 407.355.7378 to schedule an appointment.

Cindy Fabico, MA, NCC, RYT200 Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist MT2724 Licensed Mental Health Counselor MH8555 Founder & CoOwner Life Skills Resource Group