Ready to stop upsetting those you love and feeling overwhelmed?

Ready to stop upsetting those you love and feeling overwhelmed?

Most people who end up an emotionally intense adolescent and adult experienced instability, adverse childhood experiences, or trauma as a child.

For example, a 2017 study carried out by Italian researchers found that 80% of people diagnosed with borderline personality disorder experienced trauma.

But then some people who experienced trauma don’t end up with emotional dysregulation. So it’s thought that being emotionally intense is a combination of environment and genetics. If you are, for example, born with a sensitive personality, you are more likely to have emotional dysregulation if you epxerience childhood trauma.

1.Use it in a productive way.

Like anything, emotional intensity has a positive and negative side. Many people with intensity issues, for example, are also creative, sensory, and sympathetic to the suffering of others. Instead of focusing your intensity on your relationships, find a positive outlet, such as volunteering, making art, or joining a cause.

2. Get your emotions out by yourself.

The problem comes when we take our emotions out on others, or use others in our obsession with exploring our emotional states.

The secret when dealing with emotions, as put by an NHS-produced pamphlet on emotional intensity, is to, “wait awhile before responding”.

Try things like free-form journalling, expressive dance, singing, or drawing out your feelings. Or heck, a punchbag in the garage, if that is what works. The NHS also suggests punching a pillow.

3. Remove lifestyle choices that make things worse.

Hangovers make the best of us grumpy. If you have emotional dysregulation, things that affect your moods like binge drinking are best avoided. As are recreational drugs, unhealthy eating and bingeing, and not sleeping enough. Instead, up your self-care. Eat well and exercise.

You can also choose what situations you put yourself in, and who you spend time with. A 2018 study at the University of Sheffield looked at how ‘situation selection’ improves moods in those that suffer from emotional intensity. It found that purposely taking time to consciously create your schedule around situations and company that won’t upset you did lead to less depression and greater wellbeing.

4. Learn mindfulness.

Mindfulness means being fully in the present instead of controlled by your thoughts, and it is something that certain forms of therapy use to help emotional dyregulation and borderline personality disorder. You can learn it yourself in a day. Try our free ‘Guide to Mindfulness‘.

5. Seek support.

Therapy can absolutely help with emotional intensity, and can mean you relate to others in healthier ways that leave you less lonely. And there are certain kinds of therapy designed just to help with this issue – see our article, “Therapies that Work for Borderline Personality Disorder“.

We connect you with London’s top counselling psychologists and psychotherapists. Not in the city? Use our booking site to find registered therapists across the UK and online therapists you can talk to from anywhere.

Hi ! Just read this article and it’s so relevant to my relationship. My girlfriend recently asked my help in helping her with better emotional regulation, and to stabilize her intensity a lot more. She’s seeing a therapist and doing the work. What advice would you give to the partner of the emotionally intense person ?

Hi Alan, great to hear she is seeing a therapist. We would advice that you don’t feel responsible for stabilising her. Working together is one thing, it’s important to support each other and find new LoveFort granskning av datingsidan ways of communicating, but be wary of feeling it’s your job. Also note we said support each other. She also has to respect any need you have for space and to take care of yourself. Because we don’t end up in a relationship with someone with emotional intensity if we don’t have our own matching issues. That could be a matching addiction to drama or to being put down, or a childhood where we never received the attention we needed, or never felt special. Ideally you’d seek therapy yourself, to learn how to stand your ground if/when your partner takes our her intensity on you. We aren’t saying that there are only negatives. People with unstable personality disorder can be remarkably loving, understanding, and fun when they aren’t ‘peaking’. We are saying that a good relationship allows both people time to work on their issues. Make sure you make time for yours, too. Best, HT.

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