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Old 03-27-2014, 03:40 PM   #1
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Default Emotional coping techniques

Hello beautiful people

I have a question about a psychological problem that I'm facing right now. Basically I've given up all of my harmful behaviors that ultimately hurt me in the long run. I feel overwhelmed right now. I'm tired, stressed, and I just can't cope with my life as it is at this moment. I feel trapped. All of my coping behaviors, the stuff in my tool box that I've used in the past are bad- binge eating, purging, drinking, drugging, cutting, self-abuse, pulling my hair out, etc. I'm trying not to use those as ways to cope anymore, but now I just feel trapped. I have uncomfortable feelings and I just don't know what to do. I want to avoid pain, frustration, anger, etc. but I don't know what to do. Has anybody else felt this way? Do you have a healthy way of coping?

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Old 03-27-2014, 03:44 PM   #2
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Reaching out is a good start

Meditate. Doesn't have to be fancy, but focus on your breathing and clear your mind.

Every time I get really overwhelmed and I want to reach for a bad thing, I do this for a few minutes, or if I can, I drop what I'm doing and go play with my nephews. They remind me WHY I'm doing this and all the "cant's" just disappear.
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Old 03-27-2014, 04:24 PM   #3
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It is hard and I have never found a fool proof answer.

Sometimes it helps me to get out even if it's just to run errands or go to a movie or do something to focus your mind and not be alone but not really with anybody either.

A nap sometimes helps, too. If am often tired when that feeling overtakes me.

Recently instead of meditating I have tried what the article I read called hovering which is rather giving yourself an out of body opportunity to look at yourself with a nurturing eye and instead of judging make nurturing suggestions. It sounds whacky but it actually helped me several times.

Hoping you can find peace through it it will get better if you can push through.

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Old 03-27-2014, 05:02 PM   #4
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I'm sorry you're having these feelings, it stinks.

I second meditation/visualization as an option -- and I do zendoodle/zentangle when I find I can't quite quiet my mind enough to really meditate. Also exercise like walking -- something rhythmic but not overly stressful.

Music, alot of music. I've even used the karaoke videos on Youtube as a distraction/comfort -- singing some of my favorite songs without the lead vocal in place is so much harder than I thought it would be, and focusing on singing is very distracting and soothing at the same time.

Movies and books -- I've actually said to myself ,"you can binge on all the books and movies you want!".

Hope you find some relief and peace soon, sending you positive thoughts!
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Old 03-27-2014, 05:30 PM   #5
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Find an addictive Facebook or iPhone game (Royal Story, Ninja Love). And read. And get into a series on Netflix. And coffee. Coloring (The Adult Coloring Book). Puzzle. Renaissance Festivals. Comicons. Holistic Healing Centers. The Spa. We used to go to the local shelter and hang out in the Cat Room. Have a "round" of regular places you go once a day/twice/three times a week.

Everyone needs to have one vice, one guilty pleasure, even if it's just driving around the neighborhood, wasting gas.

Go back to your childhood. What did you do when no one was watching?

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Old 03-27-2014, 05:38 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Inkrid View Post
Find an addictive Facebook or iPhone game (Royal Story, Ninja Love). And read. And get into a series on Netflix. And coffee. Coloring (The Adult Coloring Book). Puzzle. Renaissance Festivals. Comicons. Holistic Healing Centers. The Spa. We used to go to the local shelter and hang out in the Cat Room. Have a "round" of regular places you go once a day/twice/three times a week.

Everyone needs to have one vice, one guilty pleasure, even if it's just driving around the neighborhood, wasting gas.

Go back to your childhood. What did you do when no one was watching?
This is a really really good suggestion....I need to get back to that. When no one was watching, I was outside, alone, thinking...And to this day, getting lost in my thoughts is one of my favorite places to be. I'm very much an "in my head" person anyhow....I did alot of writing as a child too, and reading, and I'm trying to get back into reading also.

As to the OP, I find that sleep is the best cure for alot of my issues...And cleaning. I clean when I'm stressed....When my niece ran away all the time when she lived with me, I think I had a spotless house LOL.
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Old 03-27-2014, 06:12 PM   #7
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I suffer from anxiety disorder & depression so I have been there. More often then not I am there lol. I am not as good as I would like to be yet but I am much better then I was.

When I am having a panic attack getting myself to calm down can sometimes be very difficult.

Meditation & prayer helped me alot. Meditation, focusing my breathing & yoga is all great for calming me down.

Long walks are so helpful for me too. I love to just turn up my favorite songs and dance. Music is my therapy lol

I loved the idea someone mentioned about cleaning. I find my mind just automatically starts to work stuff out when I am doing a good house cleaning.
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Old 03-27-2014, 08:55 PM   #8
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I can relate to you on some of those destructive behaviors. Been there and I am working through it now. Things that help me...candy crush (adds nothing to your life but good when you need to distract yourself), taking walks even if it is just 10 minutes, I took up a hobby-refurnishing furniture but this could be anything really, and I found a good therapist. The last one is really what has helped me most because I would have spent the rest of my life just trying to manage self-inflicted anxiety. And not all therapists are created equal. I've been to a few that were not helpful in the long-run and my current counselor I've been going to for a while and I've made huge changes in my life.

Not sure if this applies to you but I've had problems with being able to release emotion. I would go for 8 months or a year without crying however, I was binging or binging/purging to block it all out. This is just my experience.

I second the above poster that suggested meditation. There are a lot of good ideas from previous posters.
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Old 03-27-2014, 09:32 PM   #9
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All your coping mechanisms are unhealthy. I run. Good for the body and mind.

2007- 230 lbs to 160 lbs after baby #1 Boy
2010- 220 lbs to 145 lbs after baby #2 Boy
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Baby #4 - It's a Girl! born 3-19-15

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Old 03-27-2014, 09:50 PM   #10
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I also suggest meditation, there's an app called Take10 that's 10 minutes a day for 10 days, it's been longer than 10 days, but I still just do it, it's mostly about concentrating on your breathing, and letting thoughts go by, not engaging them, it's ok to just let them wander off... I practice doing it at bedtime when I'm having trouble getting to sleep.

I love to read, maybe something light, or something about someone inspiring, even a magazine.

I like the idea of adult coloring books, I was thinking of some kind of craft also, I see there's a scarf you can crochet without a crochet hook, you do it by hand, you could pick up a little kit, like counted cross stitch, gives you a nice feeling to make something. Maybe check out an AC Moore's or Michael's craft store, just walk around, there's a bunch of different things, jewelry making, painting, wood crafts, yarn crafts, candle making, etc. see if something interests you.

best of luck to you

Did I mention going for a walk, or light exercise like stretching or yoga...
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Last edited by kelijpa : 03-27-2014 at 09:51 PM.
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Old 03-28-2014, 03:13 AM   #11
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I am brand new to this forum but I discovered an author, Y V Chawla who has an understanding of our mind that changed my life. You say you don't know what to do with your uncomfortable feelings. I didn't either until I followed his advice. Don't do anything about those uncomfortable feelings. Our minds are always seeking comfort, security & certainty. We try to explain, blame & complain our uncomfortable feelings away and it doesn't work. You must not go to your thoughts to solve any psychological problems. It sounds weird but I have been fighting overeating (and other compulsions) for 50 years. I lived in a sea of despair and guilt. I will give you an example of what I mean. As trivial as it may seem, I would go into a rage internally when I did household chores. My mind complained about how my husband didn't help me, how I wasn't mentally strong enough to just get the job done, how boring the job was, how completely inadequate I was (blah, blah, blah!). You can imagine how much I procrastinated because I knew the negative self talk would start as soon I started a chore. So this is what I did following Mr Chawla's advice. When I started feeling the anger inside me, I stopped and acknowledged how angry I was. I really felt the anger. When my mind started to go into the story about how & why I was angry...I stopped & felt the anger again. Then I acknowledged how programmed (conditioned) my mind is, saying something like "you sure don't like it when people don't do what you want them to do!" Believe it or not, our uncomfortable feelings are just as important as the comfortable ones. Mr Chawla says we can't treat displeasure or discomfort as alien. When you don't react to disturbances (meaning no complaining, explaining & blaming), those terrible feelings will be absorbed by the mind. And I'm living proof. I would say my guilt has dissolved by 95%. I no longer am plagued by negative thoughts. I no longer wake up with a sense of dread. I haven't overeaten in 3 months & my body seems to let me know when and what to eat. Do you know what a relief it is to not have to figure out your psychological problems? It is mind blowing. Now I understand why a whole year of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy never worked for me. It was all about changing your thoughts. Mr Chawla has a website, books & videos on Youtube. He says we humans are similar psychologically, but physically separate. Which is good news, because if his "understanding" works for me, maybe it will work for you. I haven't touched on all his mind insights, but they are powerful & I really hope you will at least give his "understanding" a try. And if you think this will never work, look to your mind and ask "is this just a conditioned (programmed) thought?" Our minds are really convincing. Take care & good luck. KK
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Old 03-28-2014, 03:28 AM   #12
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If you and I had the answers to your question we would make a **** of a lot of money.
I think you've done the hardest part by identifying them. One day at a time is how I cope on a bad patch. Not much help to you at all I know but its all I've got. Also, the more we fret and worry and try to change, the more we fall into that downward spiral of self loathing. Ride the storm as best you can and be kind to yourself, you are worth it
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Old 03-28-2014, 03:58 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by GlamourGirl827 View Post
All your coping mechanisms are unhealthy. I run. Good for the body and mind.
A little condescending don't you think? If I ran every time I wanted to eat I would need knee replacements in two years.
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Old 03-28-2014, 04:38 AM   #14
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My two tips

1. For immediate relief, call a telephone counsellor but otherwise have a counsellor to see every week and worth with them.

2. Get involved with the buddhists. They will teach you how to sit with your feelings. I'm not saying its easy but at least it will give you a program to follow and if you've got a community around where you live, some place to be where people maybe nicer. You will need someone to teach you. Learning from a book is not ideal though it helps in addition to classes/teacher etc. There is a secular online website called the secular buddhist association that has online group for meditating together. I don't know if its still running but its worth checking out. They are a good resource for lots of other places around and anything buddhist.

I would add you are spoiled for choice over where you live.

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Old 03-28-2014, 06:38 AM   #15
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For me, I sit with them and lean into them. You realize that they change and move and dissipate.
I also try to separate out the physical sensations (what does the stress/anxiety feel like in my body? where is it?), the feelings, and the thoughts (what is my brain telling me about these physical sensations and feelings?)
There is a great workbook - The Mindfulness And Acceptance Workbook for Anxiety that I found to be life savings. Basically, the goal is not to "feel better" but to "get better at feeling."

I remember once I was in the midst of horrendous anxiety and I had the thought "i can't handle this." And then I wondered - what does that mean? does that mean I'm going to explode into tiny pieces? am I going to run down the street screaming and tearing my hair out? what does "not handling" look like? It was very helpful to look at my thoughts with a critical eye, because I realized I could handle it. And that even if everything wasn't ok right then, I was ok.
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