By Susanna Sweeney, MSC, MBACP, CHT
Mind power techniques for mastering your emotions will enable you to navigate emotional challenges effectively so that you will be free to focus on what is important to you in your life, including your long term goals.
This article is written as a comprehensive guide. It includes practical exercises which, taken together, form a free course that will help you become the master of your emotions.
I will teach you nine powerful mind power techniques for mastering your emotions. All are tried and tested from many years of client work. I am giving them to you for free here because I believe everyone should know these simple mind power techniques so that they can become more empowered.
Working through this guide step by step and putting the techniques in practice will help you to change your life as you become better and better at understanding and mastering your emotions.
I recommend you bookmark this page now so that you can come back to it again and again as you are working through the exercises and implementing changes.
This article also includes two free mind power techniques PDF files- two printables that you can stick on your fridge or put into your journal where you can view them daily.
Mastering your emotions is one of the most difficult challenges in personal work.
Often, emotions contain valuable information for you that can help you navigate areas like decision making and relationship building very effectively as you become a master at perceiving and making sense of your emotions.
However, there is another side to emotions. Emotions don't always tell you the absolute truth. This is particularly true when you are dealing with very intense negative emotions such as anger and fear.
You will have had experiences where your emotions were so intense that they dominated your reality for the period of time you felt them. This intensity can come on so fast that it is hard to stay grounded in the face of it. When intense, emotions feel very real. Often, they can be all consuming- and then we assume that what we feel is 100 percent real. Read on to find out why this is not so.
Typically we assume that our emotions were triggered by outside events. But this is not always the whole story.
This version of events misses a crucial part of the picture- our underlying subconscious mind programming, which- more often than not, forms the lens through which we perceive the world around us.
In other words, where we typically attribute our emotions to an external trigger (boss or wife in this example) they are often largely determined by an internal trigger (past experience). This internal trigger often makes emotions particularly intense.
Because the two types of triggers, internal and external, are so hard to separate and identify- dealing with emotions is very hard and quite difficult. When we miss the point that the intensity of our emotions can lie to us, we are likely to let our emotions run the show.
This is where mind power techniques for mastering your emotions come in.
The current take in the scientific community is that yes, your emotions involve your brain.
Think about it: when you view events happening in the present through the lens of internal triggers that are shaped by your subconscious memories (as described above) what actually happens is that the emotion you then feel is produced by your subconscious mind. The origin of the emotion is in your mind.
You might not remember the internal trigger consciously, but your subconscious mind does- and the intensity of the emotional charge is determined by how deeply the past event affected you- more so than by what is actually happening in the present.
Therefore, my mind power techniques include techniques that target emotions right at the source in order to create change.
A few milliseconds after the emotion is triggered you will start noticing the emotional charge. This is usually perceived in the body rather than the brain. Therefore, my mind power techniques extend to working with emotions in the body. It all gets at the same thing- bringing you on the road to mastering your emotions.
Overall, my mind power techniques draw on a variety of approaches including psychotherapy, body work, hypnotherapy, EFT and more which I have accumulated in my many years of working in the field. These techniques are tried and tested and I use them in my client work- as well as for my own personal work- so please be assured that these techniques work. If you follow the steps laid out, they will work for you, too.
My mind power techniques for mastering emotions cannot work without these ground rules.
I suggest you make a commitment to yourself now to adhere to these four ground rules before you move on.
(This is the section not to skip!)
I have written a comprehensive article on what you must do first when you intend on mastering your mind power.
As well as the items mentioned in that article, essential self care for efficient brain functioning includes avoiding recreational drugs, being conscious of your alcohol intake, eating a balanced, healthy diet, limiting caffeine intake, taking the right supplements for your brain as well as getting exercise and adequate amounts of sleep.
Furthermore, emotional self care includes getting more control in life, for example by removing yourself from any abusive situations you may be exposed to. It also includes getting regular relaxation, for example through mindfulness practice, yoga, or hypnosis and meditation.
Using your notebook or phone app, take about ten minutes where you will be undisturbed.
Get completely honest with yourself about self care.
Going through the self care items in the section above, which are critical items in your life?
Are there any other items that are not on featured here which you know are a self care issue for you?
Getting self care in place first is like building a foundation for a house. Of course you know that you cannot build a house without a foundation- it will collapse.
Often, getting these self care items in place first, will resolve a good chunk of the perceived problem. For example, high caffeine intake and lack of sleep can cause someone to feel excessive anger. Reducing caffeine and catching up with sleep will very likely reduce the emotional charge and will make dealing with the anger (for example with the help of anger hypnosis) much easier.
In order to work with emotions, the first skill you need to develop is to identify and describe them. The first of my mind power techniques will help you to grasp this concept.
Take out a notebook and pen, or use your favorite notes app.
Set aside five to ten minutes where you will be undisturbed.
Think back over your last week.
Make a note of incidents where you know you felt emotions.
Often, your emotions can be a valuable source of information. Your intuition, for example, may communicate in the form of emotions. You may not know in your intellect that a particular situation or person is not good for you, but your emotions may be crying out.
This exercise will teach you to appreciate your emotions and to identify the positive they are bringing into your life.
Make your journal or notes app your best friend while working towards mastering your emotions. Set aside five to ten minutes a day when you are undisturbed.
Take note of your emotions as you notice them, not attempting to change them at all.
You have now made friends with your emotions, are able to identify and describe them better. You now understand how each emotion can be felt on a body sensation level, are becoming comfortable with naming body sensations as they arise, and you have learned to pinpoint how your emotions often communicate useful information to you.
You are now ready for some more complex mind power techniques.
If you experience very intense emotions you will need to reduce high emotional charge before being able to work with them. Reducing the emotional charge is probably the most critical and also the most difficult mind power technique to learn.
In order to be able to do this you have to first of all accept that your emotions are not always right- or, at minimum that their intensity can be out of proportion. If you find this hard, please re-read the piece in the introduction on how emotion will lie to you.
Once you have understood and accepted that emotions will lie to you, you have to learn two even more difficult steps.
The following exercises will help you to develop the required self awareness around emotions as well as teach you tools you can use to reduce high emotional charge.
This exercise will help you to identify your own particular patterns of emotional override.
Set aside five to ten minutes every day and use your journal or notes app.
Now you have learned to identify your emotions, to appreciate the positive qualities they are bringing into your life, and you have started to get to know some of your triggers that send you into emotional override.
This next section will teach you ways to get excessive emotional charge under control.
Why is it important to bring the emotional charge under control? Good question.
You are much better off taking some time out first to get the emotional charge under control.
The crucial thing here that I want you to understand is that there is no need to be afraid of intense emotions as such. emotions will always run their course. They arise, become stronger, then eventually peak and later abate.
There is always a beginning, a middle and an end to this process. Sometimes, holding this knowledge in the back of your mind can be enough to help you trust that the emotion will settle down before too long.
Other times, you may need a little bit more help.
What follows are two mind power techniques that are designed to help you contain and reduce emotional charge. After you have practiced these for a while you can use them in situations where you experience intense negative emotions to contain your feelings and to reduce the charge to bring it to a point where you can process the emotion safely.
Over the next few days, try out each of the following two techniques for managing your emotional charge. See how each one works for you. Then, integrate at least one of them into your daily practice. I promise it will be worth the effort.
Here is an excellent self help tool I have been teaching clients for a few years now- finger holds.
These finger holds are part of a set of techniques taught by the international self help organisation Capacitar. Find them here, along with other easy-to-learn skills taken from similar systems of alternative medicine and therapies.
Try out these finger holds first before you rely on them in highly charged emotional states. You can use them while settling in bed at night before you go to sleep. Independent of how you are feeling, hold every finger and work your way through the fingers two or three times. Notice how your body sensations change as you do that.
A second very useful skill that will help keep emotional charge under control is to track emotions in the body.
Using the skills you developed in Exercise #1 where you learned to identify emotions in the body, you simply focus on the sensations you identify. You keep track of them as they become bigger or smaller, change in nature or stay the same for some time.
Tracking emotions as body sensations only will take attention away from the highly charged thoughts attached to the heightened emotional state.
By removing attention from emotions and thoughts while you are in this state, you are actually taking control of your mind. You are consciously choosing to disregard the thoughts that you know will lead to further emotional override and possible overwhelm. Instead, you are tracking the state on the neutral ground of body sensations where the intensity becomes much more bearable.
Developing this skill will take some practice. Consciously try it out next time you feel some emotional charge. It works for any emotion and can be particularly useful for anxiety self help when working to ward off a panic attack, and for depression self help when feeling overwhelmed with negative emotions.
Having learned to identify your emotions in the body, to appreciate them, view them critically for exaggerated intensity and having also learned two skills that will help master excessive emotional charge- you are now ready to analyse your emotions further.
More often than not, every intense charge of negative emotions we experience as an adult, has its root somewhere in the distant past- in our subconscious mind programming.
The next exercise will help you to get curious about what is behind the emotional intensity you are experiencing.
Set aside a time slot once a week or so to reflect on each incident of high emotional intensity you experienced during the previous week.
How do you feel about each pattern now? Has your perspective changed?
If your perspective has not changed yet, repeat the exercise again in a few days, until you can see things from a distance with fresh eyes. Mastering this task of re-evaluation is the most difficult mind power technique to learn. Be patient with yourself- it may take time.
One of the biggest benefits of practicing mind power techniques for mastering your emotions is that mastering your emotions will free up your energy to move your life towards success.
This is how it works.
Have you ever experienced how beautifully things can flow when you are having a good day? It's just like that. When you smile at people, spread an energy of kindness and helpfulness, sooner or later, doors will start to open for you, and unprecedented opportunities will arise.
What can you do so you can get there faster?
Here are two mind power techniques to help you cultivate positive emotions to change your life for the better.
Often, when there are negative emotions around, these come with loaded negative fantasies. anger based fantasies may run you through what destruction you may cause if there were no social rules (such as damaging your supervisor's car), while fear or anxiety based fantasies will play visions of negative things that may happen to you (such as everyone turning against you).
A good way to deal with these negative visualizations is by overwriting them with positive imagery.
Take out your journal or use your notes app. Plan about 20 minutes for this.
Read through the instructions below, then close your eyes and visualize the imagery that is right for you at each step. Take notes in your journal describing every detail. You will then use these notes to learn the visualization by heart so you can bring yourself on this journey any time, at will.
Close your eyes and find a beautiful, safe place. This may be a place you know, or a place you invent. Go into as much detail as you can describing the place. Describe everything you see, all colours, features and so on. Describe any smells or sounds. Describe how being in this place makes you feel focusing on the positive emotions this place evokes in you.
After spending some time in this place looking around and enjoying the positive feelings you will notice a person or being approaching you. They are sending out positive energy and they come with positive intentions. Take detailed notes on how it feels to see them. Describe the person or being in detail and make notes in your notebook.
This being or person is your guide, or your higher self. As they come close, you will immediately feel supported by them. You will feel stronger. You can now tell them about the negative feelings you were experiencing. Take your time to describe your experience to them.
Then ask them if they have a message for you. Listen to the message carefully and write it down in your notebook. Thank the guide for the message. Recite this message back to yourself a few times. As you do, notice your emotions and body sensations, taking note of the contrast to what you were feeling before.
Use this visualization whenever you want to move away from negative emotions. With practice, you will be able to evoke positive feelings quickly. If there was a strong emotional charge, the negative emotion may not be gone altogether, but at least you will have something positive to contrast it to, and a message which may help you with the next steps.
As a body centered psychotherapist, working with movement is one of my favorite ways of achieving change. Movement is far under rated. It can open the door to previously untapped inner resources and clear your mind. I rate movement as a powerful mind power technique.
Here is a simple exercise to get your energy moving. Take about five minutes. Find a place where you will be undisturbed. Put on one of your favorite songs. Allow your body to move to the music in any way it wants. You don't have to perform. You don't have to dance in a way that looks good or pretty.
Instead, let your body dictate what movement happens first, second, third and so on. Just allow your body to find the way. You may find it wants to stretch. Allow it to stretch. You may find it wants to jump. Allow it to jump.
At the end of the song close your eyes and scan your body for sensations and emotions. Notice the difference to before the exercise. Take a note in your notebook. You can repeat this exercise as often as you like.
You now have a comprehensive guide to help you build mind power techniques for mastering you emotions. Please take your time working through the exercises. learning takes time- you will cut yourself short if you only practice them once or twice.
Come back here in a few days, read through the article and each exercise again, put in practice more of the exercises. Integrate them into your daily practice. When you take the time and do that-stand back and watch your life change for the better.
In the comments below let our community know how you are getting on.
Here is to your success and well being.
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