So, you have mood swings? You're not alone. In fact, over 20 million American adults have been diagnosed with mood disorders. This article isn't a suggesting serious disorders should not be properly diagnosed and addressed by a doctor, but rather it is a comprehensive guide of how to deal with emotional hiccups and how to prevent further stress, suffering and aggravation based on my own personal experience. Again, this is not to be taken as medical advice.
Now that we've got that out of the way, let's start by defining why we have emotions. Emotions is our brains way of telling us we need some sort of change for our body. These can be both positive or negative emotions we are feeling, regardless they're both saying change is needed. The key here is to recognize the emotions as soon as they come up. To do this, we're going to need to take some time and practice and really focus on ourselves during the day. This is what is meant by being "present minded."
As humans, we have the option of being conscience in one of three states at a given time; past; present and future. Thinking in the past consist of memories and problems that are no longer worth worrying about and reflecting on previous decisions. The future is our way of planning, and quite often, stressing about future success. Both have their purpose in strategic planning, but more often than not we would like to be present minded. In the present, we have way more advantages to dealing with our day-to-day lives.
For example; in the present state of mind we are allowed to actively step back from a situation and observe ourselves in real time. Have you ever been in a situation where you say something stupid around friends or family and then beat yourself up over it later? This is because you weren't fully present minded. Perhaps you were in a fight and "said something you didn't really mean." This is your emotions taking hold and doing whatever they can to hurt the other person.
By staying present minded we are allowed to step back from the situation and reflect in real time. Suppose you get in a heated debate with a fellow hot head during a stand still traffic jam. It begins to escalate until you're both screaming at each other, shaking your fist and blowing steam out of your ears.
Mental Monitor: You're really fired up right now, but is this argument really going anywhere? Is there any need to keep yelling at this man or are you both so fired that it's no longer about gaining anything. Is this just a way to blow off steam or prove to somebody that "you're right?" I'm going to roll my window up and not let this bother me.
This may sound a little over simplistic, but I swear that once you start becoming aware of these emotional signals you're a lot more likely to act accordingly. Consider this your starting point. The only way to do this is to check in with yourself throughout the day. The best time is when you're interacting with other people, but whenever ANY emotion comes up, try and monitor and survey what you're feeling and why. If you're upset, figure if your actions are going to help or hinder you. Learn to put your ego aside and approach the world in a more assertive manner. I'm sure you'll find the changes you will make for yourself will be both substantial and satisfying.