Being stronger than your emotions isn’t something you are born with. It requires resilience which demands that you intentionally train your mind to be stronger than your emotions. Intentionality is the key point here.
There are many cases when emotion got the better part of a person. That is why the most stupid actions are sponsored by emotion. Remember the craziest thing you have done and trace it down to its root which is your emotions.
This shows that emotion isn’t a trusted source of making a decision. Hence the reason why you need to train your mind to rule over your emotions.
What Does It Mean To Train Your Mind To Be Stronger Than Your Emotions?
Actions executed based on emotions such as anger or frustration have been detrimental and regretted by their victims. So, what is an emotion?
An emotion is a feeling such as happiness, love, fear, anger, or hatred, which can be caused by the situation that you are in or the people you are with.
From the above definition, it’s established that emotions depend on your feelings which are controlled by people around you or the present situation. This means that you have very little control over your emotions. That is why making a decision based on how you are currently feeling (happy/sad) could turn out bad.
If you can’t make all decisions based on your feelings, what else is stronger than your emotions?
Your mind is that part of you that enables you to think and experience the world around you. It is a set of faculties that includes imagination, will, memory, and sensation. Here, you have higher control over what you think and how you experience the world.
Unfortunately, many people aren’t aware of the power of their minds. Or should I say, they are yet to harness that part of their being.
The mind is so powerful that it can turn a horrible situation into something great. It can also help to avert oneself from making a wrong decision. This is why it’s pertinent to train your mind to be stronger than your emotions.
Remember that an emotional decision is founded on feelings but that of the mind is based on either facts or past experiences. In decision-making, the mind uses the faculty of thought (to think), analyzes the situations, weighs the pros and cons, and back the final decision with facts.
That is why it is important to harness the full potential of your mind. You can achieve this by training your mind to take the first stance over your emotion. The first step to achieving this is not letting your emotions control you.
How Do You Control Your Emotions?
Controlling your emotions isn’t the absence of these emotions. It simply means the ability to manage it and not allow it to go overboard.
Sometimes, managing emotions have been confused to mean suppressing/repressing your emotions. Suppressing/repressing your emotions means sweeping your feelings under the rug. It also implies acting as if the feeling doesn’t exist.
Managing emotions isn’t any of the above scenarios. Rather it means acknowledging the existence of these feelings but consciously choosing to take another route and not dwell there.
Here are three tips to help you control your emotions:
1. Always Know There is an Alternative
In times when you are overwhelmed with an emotion such as anger, it feels like the only option is to vent your anger on a person or thing. In such situations, remember to take a few breaths and then repeatedly tell yourself that there is always an alternative other than violence.
Remind yourself that your present feeling was based on circumstances around you and you have little control over that but you can have the ball in your court if you choose to react differently.
2. Rely on Your Strength During Difficult Situations
During situations whereby you hit rock bottom and you are experiencing an emotion such as frustration, endeavor to rely on your strength. Your strength in this case is the positive thoughts and feelings you have about yourself.
Talk yourself into relying on positive emotions. This might seem different during such situations but it’s possible. You can start by intentionally making yourself happy by buying a special treat for yourself.
Also, the feeling of happiness improves your mental health and makes you stronger. Thus, that emotional state helps you see reasons to forge ahead and how to make your life better.
3. Reflect on Your Past Experiences
Reflection on past events is also a way of controlling your emotions. However, past experiences here are times when you overcome a difficult emotional situation. The lessons learned from the previous experience will certainly aid you in not making the same mistake.
During this reflective period, ask yourself questions like is there something I could do better than the previous time? Did I handle the situation perfectly? Or was there an emotional outburst before I got hold of myself?
The answers to these reflective questions will point out the root of that feeling and how you let people/circumstances get to you.
How Do You Not Let People Get To You?
The truth about the above question is that you only get what you are allowed. It is just like when an uninvited guest comes knocking on your door. He/she will only gain entrance if you allow it.
Also, know that you have a choice on how to interpret people’s opinions or actions towards you. Although you might not have total control over how people act or talk, you certainly have the power to analyze these things.
Whatever they said isn’t so important. What is important is how you absorb the information.
Thus, when you are confronted with situations where people’s actions get to you, just remember the uninvited guests – if you allow it then it gets to you.
However, here are for tips on how to not let people get to you:
1. Realise You Can’t Control Other People’s Actions
Just as people think differently so also do they act differently. And just as you don’t control what they think so also you can’t control their actions.
Knowing these salient points and bringing them to your consciousness will help you see reasons why people’s actions shouldn’t get to you.
Alongside consciously acknowledging this, you should know that some people love being a jerk. They actually don’t care if their words hurt you. For this set of people, you should create a defense mechanism.
2. Create a Defence Mechanism
Defense mechanisms are practices set up to help the mind cope with unpleasant thoughts, actions, and feelings. In this case, your defense mechanism is targeted toward individuals that threaten your mental peace.
Depending on how severe their relationship with you threatens your peace, you could choose to cut them off completely or keep them at arm’s length.
Another practice to consider is to clearly state and stand for your values. Never comprise your values for anyone.
3. Understand That Not All Opinion Matters
Everyone has an opinion about something. However, some people’s opinions aren’t based on credible facts but on hearsay. This hearsay information is actually biased and untrue.
Unfortunately, you can’t tell by just a look whose opinion is founded on fact or hearsay. For this reason, you should come up with the terms that not all opinion matters.
4. Work on Your Self-esteem
An underlying factor why people’s words get to you easily could be because of an inferiority complex. Simply put, an inferiority complex is the feeling that one is below everyone. Thus, you believe others’ definition of you more than yours.
A way to eliminate this is by working on your self-esteem, practicing positive affirmations, or seek for a counselor’s advice.
Ways To Train Your Mind To Be Stronger Than Your Emotions
Being that the mind has the ability for rational thought it is more reliable than your emotions. However, our emotions are what make us humans. They help us feel empathic toward our fellow humans.
But basing your every decision on emotions could be dangerous and for this reason, you need to decipher when to make a decision based on how you are feeling.
Here are five ways to train your mind to be stronger than your emotions:
1. Discover Your Self-identity
Self-identity simply means your perception of yourself. It brings to the fore the question “who am I?”. That is, how do you define yourself?
Your identity shouldn’t be something you merely believe. It should be your conviction. You should have a deep-rooted belief in your existence. Due to how firmly deep-rooted these perceptions are, ensure that your self-definitions are from a place of truth.
For instance, a discovered self-identity should look like this: “I am a spiritual being. I am filled with love, kindness, and light. Where ever I step in is illuminated with light because I am a shining light that can never go dim.”
Using this instance, you can see that such an individual mind has trained to believe that no matter the situation (probably a heartbreak or loss of a job), he/she is filled with love and light.
Also, ensure to remind yourself daily who you are before stepping out for the day.
2. Set Healthy Boundaries
It is quite unfortunate that boundaries have sometimes been misconstrued to mean being arrogant. Nevertheless, to keep your mental health sane healthy boundaries must be created and maintained.
Setting healthy boundaries informs people how you want to be treated and if they go against it there are consequences. Having a firm boundary principle drills your mind to fight/kick against anyone who tries to breach it.
Alongside this, learn to stand up and defend your boundaries. Be bold and unapologetic about it. Your mental peace matters.
3. Failures Are Learning Processes
Failures are the foundation of success. Without failures, success would be common because everyone would be successful.
In the process of training your to be stronger than your emotions, get ready to fail multiple times. Eventually, when you do, please don’t resort to going back to your former ways. Be resilient. We all make mistakes and failure shouldn’t be seen as a result but as a learning process.
Also, enrich your mind with content that will enhance its growth.
4. Practice Positive Affirmations
Positive affirmations serve as a blocking fence against negativity. When you practice this positive self-talk daily, you strengthen your mind to live in the consciousness of those words.
The benefit of this practice when done over time is that you will find yourself unconsciously kicking against negativity.
Interested in knowing more about positive affirmations, I wrote an article on that.
5. Build a Mindful Mindset
A mindful mindset means cultivating a mind that is attentive to the present moment. With a mindful mindset, you are aware of the present, that is how you are feeling, your thoughts, and everything that encompasses that moment.
A mindful mindset acknowledges these thoughts and feeling without judgment. After acknowledging these without judgment, you can focus on the situation thereby aiding you to make a rational decision.
It also helps you take things a step at a time.
Building a mindful mindset demands patience and consistent practice. Want to know more about this? Read my post on how to practice having a mindful mindset