Are your moods unpredictable, uncontrollable or consistently disproportionate to a situation? You may be experiencing excessive emotional distress due to unmanaged moods. The many challenges of today’s society seem to provoke mood swings for many people, which can debilitate relationships, careers and even physical health.
Mood swings are characterized by a drastic change in emotion from one side of the spectrum to the other. If at one moment you are contentedly going about your daily tasks, and the next moment you’re suddenly upset, irritated or hostile, then you may suffer from mood swings.
3 Steps to Manage Your Mood:
In order to change or manage your moods, you must first identify the moods you are experiencing. Be aware of negative thought patterns.
Try to release emotional tension. You may want to begin by taking inventory of what currently isn’t working in your life. Troubling relationships, health concerns or financial struggles could be contributing to your unmanaged moods.
Change your thoughts:
At the core of our deepest emotions are the beliefs that drive them.
You feel sad when you believe to have lost something, anger when you decide that an important goal is thwarted, and happy anticipation when you believe something good is coming your way.
By changing your thoughts you may not be able to change the situation but you can at least change the way you believe the situation is affecting you.
In cognitive reappraisal, you replace the thoughts that lead to unhappiness with thoughts that lead instead to joy or at least contentment.
People with social anxiety disorder may believe that they’ll make fools of themselves in front of others for their social gaffes. They can be helped to relax by interventions that help them recognize that people don’t judge them as harshly as they believe.
Generate A Positive Mood
Once you have better self-awareness and you know what triggers a negative emotional state, it’s time to focus on the next step.
And that is…Can I get a drum roll, please???
The next step is….
“Wow, dude. That’s a huge anticlimax.”
Do yourself a favor and don’t follow your first instinct. It’s almost always bad.
Sometimes I get nasty emails, comments, or tweets from people who don’t mean well.
This morning, I received an email from someone who called me a liar because he couldn’t download a free eBook from Amazon that I shared. It’s not my fault that he doesn’t know his way around Amazon. Calling me a liar because of that pisses me off.
My first response was to shrug it off. But then, I told him to fuck off (and if people write me back to judge my writing style, I tell them the same).
I admit it’s not a perfect response. But if I don’t respond, I get in a bad mood because I feel like I didn’t stand up for myself. I take my values seriously and protect them at all costs.
You see, our first reaction is always an emotional one. In this case, my first response was to ignore it.
However, I’m also not saying you should react to everything. All we need to do is take a few seconds and look at the stakes. Is your integrity or relationship at stake? Then, action is necessary.
Let’s say you start getting annoyed by your girlfriend or boyfriend. You can think:
“So if I get angry, she’ll get disappointed. Then, I will get even angrier since she can’t talk to me when I’m angry. So it’s best if I don’t allow my emotions to escalate.”
If you value your relationship, it’s better to not lash out—even if that makes you feel better at the moment.
Managing our mood is hard. And we don’t get this right on the first try. But if you give it time and keep practicing, you’ll be much more in control of what influences your mood.
But let’s say something happens that triggers a bad mood. What now?
Get the serotonin flowing. See the bigger picture. Set a goal for yourself to never be stuck in a bad mood for more than 10 minutes.
Soak in your own sorrow. Respond. Feel bad for yourself.
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