Change your thinking…..

Change your mood….change your behavior…..change your thinking.

Mood/emotions, behavior, and thinking are so interconnected that changing one changes the others.  I am always searching for more articles and websites explaining ways that might help with coping with PTSD.  I am learning more about emotions all the time.  I spent a good share of my life dodging and hiding from my emotions, all of them.  I was terrified by the depth of my rage, felt vulnerable expressing my love, and overwhelmed when my emotions flooded me with no clear understanding with what to do with the pesky things.  I learned from counseling that what I think can produce a physical reaction.  Things became very confusing for me when I learned that excitement and fear produced similar physical responses.  I learned that humans are a bubbling caldron of conflicting confusing emotions.  I was quite put out when my counselor urged me back into this sea of emotions.  I didn’t know how to swim.  I didn’t learn as a child to regulate anything I felt.  I hid.  I made it go away.  My mother told me to and I made them vanish….word of caution….banishing emotions does not process them….more like freezing a frog, when they thaw out they are alive and unchanged from when I froze them off.  Many sessions I spent exposing these frozen memories and bringing them to my full attention and learning how to recognize and process the emotions attached to those events.  No easy task.  I am thankful to a counselor that is gifted in allowing me to feel my feelings and teach me how to process them.

One of the key techniques in this process is emotion regulation…fancy term for mastering my emotions instead of my emotions mastering me.  Healing-from-Complex-Trauma shared the basics for emotion regulation.  I like the way she writes and I agree with what she says.  It is an excellent article and well worth perusing. My addition to this is start with small emotions in safe environments…..take time to work up to the biggies like rage.  Like any skill, it takes practice and doesn’t go well at first.  However, I continue to keep working on these self-regulating skills.

http://www.healingfromcomplextraumaandptsd.com/emotion-regulation

One term in the article that wasn’t defined in this article: DBT.

This is a short answer:

http://www.traumacenter.org/clients/DBT.php

This answer is quite a bit longer but much more thorough:

http://behavioraltech.org/resources/whatisdbt.cfm

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