What is Emotion Regulation?

We all experience moments when our emotions control our actions. When this happens, we often regret the things we say or do and wish we had been able to keep our emotions in check. There are techniques—like meditation—that can allow you to do just that, along with various other benefits, like mood improvement and increased compassion and empathy.

Recent Posts on Emotion Regulation

How to Stop Worrying

The more we focus on distressing thoughts or worries, the worse we feel. And the worse we feel, the more we worry, and you know how the rest goes. Here are three strategies to interrupt that cycle.

Do you Try Too Hard?

Trying too hard: the kiss of death for relationships

The Problem of Phubbing

A recent study has shown that people who attend to their cell phones in the presence of their partner – or do what researchers call “phubbing” are less satisfied in their relationships. So, what should you do if you’re being phubbed? Or if you’re the phubber?

Seven Quick Ways to Stop Being Irritable

By Guy Winch Ph.D. on October 08, 2015 The Squeaky Wheel
Irritability is the carbon monoxide of emotional pollutants, but here's what you can do about it.

Meet the Free Online Tool that Assesses Your Depression Risk

Today is National Depression Screening Day, which means you can take a free online test to determine if you have any early warning signs of depression.

The Upward Spiral of Healthy Behaviors and Positive Emotions

A new study from Penn State found that people who reported more positive emotions were more likely to be physically active and have healthier habits. Which came first, the positive emotions or the healthy habits?

7 Surprising Ways Your Emotions Can Get the Best of You

Recognizing how your emotions influence the way you think and behave can prevent you from making these mistakes.

Not Going with the Flow

Discussion of the challenges inherent in having to acquire self-observing capacities for the late adolescent/young adult with bipolar disorder..

Does Mindfulness Really Make Us Resilient?

When Todd Sampson demonstrated that neuroplasticity could make his ordinary brain extraordinary, he forgot to mention that he had an amazing arsenal of supports helping him achieve his goals. Mindfulness practices may help us focus and regulate our emotions, but their ability to change our lives is vastly over-rated.

6 Surprising Benefits of Self-Compassion

Do you ever call yourself names or beat yourself up over the mistakes you make? If so, you might be missing out on the incredible benefits of self-compassion.

The Hidden Toll of Emotional Labor

Why your job, which involves no physical exertion, leaves you a puddle of Netflix-bingeing exhaustion at the end of it.

Emotional Capital

By Paul Thagard Ph.D. on September 30, 2015 Hot Thought
Emotional capital is the set of resources that enable people to use emotions effectively in their lives. It includes self-esteem, self-regulation, emotional energy, attachment, resilience, agreeableness, and optimism.

A Workover: A New College Grad Wants a Career in Advertising

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on September 30, 2015 How To Do Life
My exchange with a caller to my NPR-San Francisco radio program.

How Mindfulness Improves Your Brain and Relationships

Mindfulness is the process of paying attention, in an open, nonjudgmental way, to your experience. Recent statistical review which pooled data from 16 studies shows that mindfulness has effects on at least 8 different brain regions involved in brain integration and connectivity, sense of self, impulse control, stress and anxiety, and regulation of attention and emotion.

7 Ways to Deal With Negative Thoughts

With practice, you can replace negative thinking patterns with thoughts that actually help you. And that can make a huge difference in your day-to-day happiness.

Angry Young Feminists

By Karen L Smith MSS, LCSW on September 29, 2015 Full Living
Here is my current contribution the perennial debate about why some folks hate feminists and the concept of feminism. I am going to “blame” it on angry young feminists. Okay, I don’t really mean I am going to blame it on them, but I am going to speculate on how the period of waking up to sexism effects young women and the people around them.

The Science of Happiness, Well-Being and Twinkies

By Garth Sundem on September 29, 2015 Brain Trust
As you’re reading this, ask yourself one question: Are you happy? Okay, maybe just one more: Wouldn’t a Twinkie make you happier? The answer depends on how you define happiness.

The 3 Dimensions of Communication

By Marty Babits on September 29, 2015 The Middle Ground
The 3 dimensions of communication plus 6 tips to help you make the most of them.

The Good and Bad of Emotion Regulation Strategies

By Amie M. Gordon PhD on September 28, 2015 Between You and Me
Our emotional experiences weave the tale of our lives. We remember when we felt joy, gratitude, anger, fear, not that time when we felt oh-so-neutral. But sometimes we have to hold back our emotions. People use different strategies when they try to deal with their emotions, and these different strategies impact their feelings, well-being and even their close relationships.

How to Fight Better

Recent research suggests that how you start a fight is more important than how you end it.

Kids, Screens and Play: Solutions to a Common Problem

By Kenneth Barish Ph.D. on September 28, 2015 Pride and Joy
Recent research on kids and screens is alarming. Almost everyone now agrees that parents should establish rules and limits with regard to the amount of time kids spend in front of screens. It matters, however, how we do this.

The Sex Offender Next Door: Why Reintegration Helps

Ex-offenders are less likely to re-offend if there are people who will support their recovery.

Should We Beware of Sad Songs?

People expect that sad music will make them feel better by providing catharsis, the opportunity to work through sadness, or the knowledge that other people have also had similar feelings. But does it?

Must Feel TV

TV fans are addicted to the feelings we experience through our connections with the story world and its players.

Nurturing Awe in Kids

By Andy Tix Ph.D. on September 21, 2015 The Pursuit of Peace
Awe is an emotion that has the potential to unlock many other positive qualities in individuals. Parents and other adults have the potential to nurture awe in kids in several ways, as discussed in this article.

Fear Flying? Statistics Don't Help.

By Tom Bunn L.C.S.W. on September 20, 2015 Conquer Fear Of Flying
Forty million isn't personally meaningful. But, the number one hits home. It's personal. What did people on that flight feel? Maybe they got on expecting nothing bad would happen. These thoughts trigger the release of stress hormones and a cascade of feelings.

Thinking About “The Rationality of Rage”

In The New York Times, Matthew Hutson surveys some recent research pointing to the social benefits of anger. But might anger be too difficult to control to use strategically? Let's ask some philosophers what they think.

Remember Who You Love Even in the Worst fights: 8 Strategies

By Karen L Smith MSS, LCSW on September 19, 2015 Full Living
Fighting with our partner can bring out the absolute worst in us and them. We can change that. And as a reward, we will gain access to some of the core issues that are preventing us from living our life to the fullest.

Top 10 Lessons From Donald Trump's Body Language

Presidential hopeful, Donald Trump, is certainly a unique individual, with his own personal style (love it or hate it). Here is an analysis of the nonverbal cues that Trump commonly uses, and the possible effects they may have on others.

Promoting Flow

By Sandeep Gautam on September 15, 2015 The Fundamental Four
Self-regulatory focus of promotion and prevention lead to different associated emotions like joy-sadness and anxiety-contentment. An effort is made to link the same with the concept of flow as espoused by Mihaly.