The Function of Emotions 3/30 Depression and Anxiety Skills- Why Coping Skills Can Make it Worse
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Coping skills for emotions like anger, depression, anxiety focus on making bad feeling go away, on feeling better in the moment. But in the long run coping skills actually make us feel worse because when we suppress our emotions, when we try to make our emotions go away or just cope with emotions, in the long run we aren't honoring the function of emotions. If all we do is try to cope with emotions, we can't change and we can't solve our problems.
In this section, skill #2, we’re going to talk about how every emotion you experience serves a function- in their purest form, emotions like fear, sadness, joy, love, guilt, hurt, all serve important roles in our lives. You’re going to learn how to get better at feeling by listening to your innate wisdom, and you’re going to learn why coping skills don’t work in the long run.- And what to do instead.
You already have within you the inherent ability to resolve and manage your emotions, you have a deep knowledge inside of you that will guide you and help you work through thoughts and emotions with strength and integrity. The problem is that many of us have been taught that there are “good emotions” and “Bad emotions” and that gets in the way of us being able to listen to our emotions, and honor them. When we focus our energy on making “bad” feelings go away, we often lose track of who we want to be. When we choose to see emotions as functional, instead of just uncomfortable inconveniences, we use our emotions as a resource instead of seeing them as an obstacle.
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Therapy in a Nutshell, and the information provided by Emma McAdam, is solely intended for informational and entertainment purposes and is not a substitute for advice, diagnosis, or treatment regarding medical or mental health conditions. Although Emma McAdam is a licensed marriage and family therapist, the views expressed on this site or any related content should not be taken for medical or psychiatric advice. Always consult your physician before making any decisions related to your physical or mental health. If you are in crisis please contact the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at: https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/ or 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or your local emergency services. Copyright Therapy in a Nutshell, LLC ---- Music licensed from www.Bensound.com or Artlist.io Images from Freepik.com (premium license), Pixabay, or Wikimedia commons