Have you ever been confused and overwhelmed by a sudden and enormous barrage of confusing emotions that you were not able to know what they were or what emotions you were feeling?  If this weird feeling sounds familiar or you can recall in your memory that happening sometime in the recent past, then you know how difficult and confusing it can sometimes be to make an attempt understand the emotions that you were feeling.  Yet recognizing and identifying your own emotions is perhaps the first and most important step towards dealing with your emotions in a variety of healthful ways you will learn about later.  The next time you get experience a strong emotion similar to the one just described above, pause briefly to reflect on your feelings about your behavior.  Then, try to follow the following steps.

  • Name or try to identify the emotion you were feeling.  You must be wary, however, because some of your other emotions, such as anger, can easily mask the other true emotions you were looking for, such as fear, guilt, and shame.
  • Try to determine what event or occurrence triggered the emotion you experienced.  Try to pinpoint the exact source of your feeling.  Was it a physical response or was it a mental reaction.  It may be ver difficult to isolate the right cause from everything else that is happening at that same time.
  • Think back to the past times that you seemed to feel the same way.  What similarities can you draw or connect between these different situations?  Are there any important differences you can recall or was it triggered by the same emotion?

By stopping and reflecting on the feelings you experienced, you will be able to both learn more about your personality and your typical response to a certain event or occurrence.  By knowing which types or events cause you to have a flare-up of emotions, you can try to control yourself by re-enacting the event and restraining your emotions from breaking loose.  With practice, recognizing your emotions will become more automatic and simple for you and you will gain a better sense of self-control.  Over time, you will begin to see patterns in your reactions and emotional responses.  Still however, there will always be times when many intense fellings cloud your thinking ability to sort things out.  When this happens, use the steps shown above to calm down and control yourself.  The end result of meditating on your uncontrolled actions and how to gain more self-control will be a deeper understanding of the situation and of your personality.