How can I learn better coping skills to manage my emotions?

I sometimes stress every little detail and make problems out of things that aren’t that big of a deal, often overreacting in anger or sadness. I take these emotions out on my partner at times and want to stop this behavior
Asked by TNG

Hello. I am sorry that you are having a hard time with managing your emotions but I am glad that you are reaching out for help and suggestions. My name is Bertha Mendoza-Rivera and I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker.

Congratulations on taking a great first step by asking this question. I feel that there is no wrong answer to your question but instead many different ways to manage ones emotions and our reactions to situations depending on the situation and what the emotions are (anger vs sadness).

Learning different coping skills can help you tolerate, minimize and deal with stressful situations and also help you feel better not just emotionally but also physically. One thing that I have found to be helpful is changing the way you respond to or think about a certain situation or problem. For example, reframing it and looking at the situation from another perspective. This gives you a chance to look at the whole picture instead of staying focused on one detail.

Taking time for yourself is also a great opportunity to really think about everything without interruption. Have you tried deep breathing? Often when facing a difficult situation or stressor, deep breathing can really help you refocus. I have also heard great things about meditation as it can produce a deep state of relaxation and a calm mind.

Journaling is also a great way to cope with certain stressors and sort through different emotions. Talking about these difficulties with your partner can also be beneficial and you can work together to better understand each other.

One thing that I never recommend is to avoid your problems or bottle up your feelings because they will not go away if you avoid them and they can possibly get worse.  It does not appear that it is something that you are doing, which is great.

I feel that therapy would be a great way to explore the suggestions I have listed and many more coping skills that we can come up with together. I would be happy to speak with you. Please feel free to click on my profile and check out my availability to schedule a session.