When Feeling Depressed & Angry Emotions Make Coping Difficult
Updated August 24, 2019
Reviewer Kelly L. Burns, MA, LPC, ATR-P
When feeling depressed or upset, sometimes we get so caught up in our feelings without really understanding why they cause us to feel a certain way. Sometimes the pain is too much to deal with and people try to move forward from them without analyzing them. Hence, it is why many struggle dealing with emotions from depression and anger. While these emotions are a part of life, it is okay to look further within yourself to understand why they cause you to hurt. It is a process that encourages personal growth and self-healing, and it makes it easier to confess your feelings to others that care.
Why it's hard to understand that your feelings do matter
Experiencing multiple feelings and emotions at the same time can be complex and difficult to understand for anyone. Sometimes you feel emotions that are hard to put into words, making it more challenging to express them. People may put too much focus on what others may think about them if they choose to be honest about their feelings, and yet many are not honest with themselves about what they are feeling because of self-denial. Some think it is pointless to talk about their feelings thinking it won't accomplish anything.
Many admit they don't explore their feelings in a deeper context. They think they are better off avoiding issues when it doesn't help to solve problems. It is hard to confront your feelings due to fear. Having low self-esteem may push your feelings to the back burner, thinking that feelings of others are more important. Some think they are not entitled to share their feelings or get support from others to get what they want.
Expressing your feelings requires being open to others with a willingness to share what you feel and by being receptive to others when they give feedback. A few admit they don't know how to assess their emotions because it wasn't something they were ever taught, encouraged, or thought was necessary. People go through life feeling emotions not knowing how they affect them from the inside out. Now, people may recognize they are feeling emotions but are not sure what to do with them.
Emotions experienced when depressed, angry act as roadblocks to dealing with your feelings. Sometimes they are overwhelming and seem like they are too much to comprehend. Your feelings matter because there are ways to help you understand them so you can manage your moods and emotions clearly while learning to effectively communicate them to others.
When you feel like someone else instead of yourself
Your feelings matter when they make you feel out of place. Sometimes people express emotions because they are hiding their true feelings. For example, a person may express anger but truly feel sad. It's difficult to concentrate on things you should be doing and some lose interest in doing favored activities or hanging out with others. It becomes an ongoing cycle not realizing how things made a person change on the inside, and then people blame themselves and feel angry wondering why they feel this way.
Making changes to help you cope includes making daily living situations easier to deal with to ease your emotions. For example, if you struggle feeling tired, learn mindfulness techniques, meditation, and other forms of exercise to encourage better sleep at night. Doing so also helps you feel like yourself and still be engaged in activities without feeling overwhelmed by your feelings.
When feeling at odds with yourself
Your feelings matter when experiencing frustration and feeling as if you've failed yourself. People may blame themselves when feeling weak or worthless due to depression and it grows into anger when we think such feelings should brush off. What you feel when depressed isn't your fault but remind yourself you are not to blame. When you're too hard on yourself you're more likely to hurt yourself emotionally. Consider being open about your thoughts to someone when you feel frustrated with yourself. You need to know from an outside perspective that despite how you feel, you are worthy.
Understand the truth behind your feelings
Your feelings matter because they deserve acknowledgment. To understand why your feelings matter, you should acknowledge how you feel by being honest with yourself first. People may not understand their feelings because they have misleading or distorted thinking about what they mean. Such views may prevent personal growth while making things more difficult to move forward from a situation in a productive and healthy manner.
Your feelings matter because they help you be true to yourself. Think about your feelings with logic and good reason. Sometimes depression and anxiety make people think about the worst-case scenario, when they may not be thinking about things truthfully. When you can be true to yourself, it makes it easier to be honest with others. Practice getting in touch with your feelings and make it a habit. It may encourage you to be willing and open about how your feelings affect you so you can communicate them more effectively with others.
Let your feelings tell their story
Your feelings matter because they are a part of a story that needs to be told. There are many situations and relationships in life that bring an assortment of feelings and emotions. But sharing the story surrounding your feelings is difficult for many, while being necessary, so you can move forward. Sometimes not sharing is part of the problem and getting caught up in the story makes it difficult to release your feelings. You gain an understanding of your emotional experiences when you let yourself feel your feelings. Letting the story go associated with your feelings removes the notion of feeling stuck. Allowing yourself to authentically feel your emotions brings a sense of strength and power, helping you to realize that what you are feeling is real and it matters.
So what about when you're depressed? Sometimes people experience feelings of sadness, confusion, or frustration without a reason why. Such feelings may force you to give up doing things you enjoy or alienate friends and family from you. You hurt when thinking about what could have happened because your feelings got in the way. Instead of focusing on the past, look to the future by setting goals and consider what you have learned about your feelings that are positive and negative. They will continue to tell a story, but moving forward you can dictate how it is told when being proactive in analyzing and controlling them.
Why you shouldn't ignore your feelings
Your feelings matter because they are emotional challenges we all face. The level of these challenges may vary from one person to the next, but it is a part of life we need to learn how to cope with productively, especially when dealing with depression, anger or anxiety. When you ignore what you are feeling it increases the risk of turning to unhealthy alternatives such as alcohol, drug abuse, or self-harm. While you may not have a tendency to do either of these actions, it gets easier to engage in unproductive activities such as binge-watching reruns or spending hours on social media as a way to block feelings.
Emotions create energy in the body with some forms creating tension and stress. Such actions mixed with anxiety and depression symptoms add additional strain to the body. As a result, physical issues such as headaches, insomnia, heart disease, and intestinal issues arise. People may not know this is happening because they are controlled by their emotions. Studies suggest your anxiety levels increase as the body experiences more emotional conflict. Parts of the body such as your intestines, lungs, and heart receive signals from the brain when certain emotions are triggered. It's like the process you experience during sadness that results in crying. You can feel better by learning emotional tools to help navigate your thoughts and feelings.
Understanding how to cope with your emotions
Your feelings matter because they deserve emotional support. Getting the support you need will help you learn how to deal with your feelings head on. Emotions are an important part of living and how they are managed affects our wellbeing. They affect relationships, decision-making, and how we view ourselves. Our feelings drive the way we produce, act, and respond to things in life. Exploring healthy ways to cope may naturally help your body heal from aches and pains.
Learning to deal with emotions while angry or depressed takes commitment and patience. There are so many things you can do to help yourself from counseling, group therapy, journal writing, and more. Struggling to understand conflicting feelings derives from patterns and habits of avoiding, blocking, or ignoring what you are feeling. For many, this has been an ongoing problem for an extended period of time, so it is important to be consistent with your efforts to confront and control your thoughts moving forward.
So why do your feelings matter when you feel sad or upset? Something has led to the feeling that is making you uncomfortable. The feeling may be overwhelming but it doesn't have to control how you choose to respond and be proactive. Your feelings are important because they give personal accounts about what you're experiencing in your life. They tell you what is going on from within but also encourage further investigation of yourself. When you admit to what you are feeling, you are making a connection that has meaning. Your feelings matter because they are not the problem but often lead to a solution as long as you are willing to release them instead of suppressing them.