What is Emotional Regulation?
Emotional regulation is a term used to describe a person’s ability to manage emotional experiences. Most people can easily regulate their emotions as necessary throughout the day, but there are some among us that lack the ability to separate their emotions from their thoughts and actions. Overcoming emotional instability may involve learning new behaviors such as rethinking difficult situations to reduce anger or anxiety, hiding sadness or fear, or focusing on reasons to feel happy or calm.
Emotions are an everyday part of life. Most of us feel happy if we win something, and sad if we lose out. We miss our loved ones and can get angry or express disappointment when someone lets us down. While we deal with these emotions naturally, some people have more volatile feelings and may experience more profound joy and deeper sadness. These peaks and valleys impact their lives and the people around them.
Individuals who experience intense emotions may find themselves calm one moment and then loud and angry the next. Their rapidly changing emotions causes them to do and say things they regret. Over time their anger can permanently damage relationships and hurt their credibility.
Why am I always so emotional?
Some individuals are genetically predisposed to rapid changes of emotion, and some simply never learned good emotional regulation. In other cases, people lose control when they experience triggers for negative situations that happened in their past. There can also be physical changes that cause a person to lose control of their emotions, such as exhaustion or a drop in blood sugar.
Emotional dysregulation refers to poorly regulated emotional responses that are not within a range of typically accepted emotional reactions.
Dysregulation can also refer to significant mood swings, significant changes in mood, or emotional lability. It can involve many emotions, including sadness, anger, irritability, and frustration.