How to Handle Toxic Emotions
From anger to guilt to shame and self-loathing, toxic emotions can take a toll on your self-confidence and recovery. And since you can’t just switch them off, you’ll need to find ways to deal with and express these emotions without resorting to old self-destructive patterns. Practice is key and so is self-love. Your first step: Remember that loving yourself means accepting yourself, negative emotions and all.
Here are a few more practical steps to help prevent toxic emotions from getting in the way of lasting sobriety:
Name your emotion. The moment a toxic emotion pops in your mind, write down what it is and where you feel it in your body, say experts. For example: “guilt in my stomach,” or “anger in my chest.” This will help slow down your mind and give you time to understand and then release these emotions.
Ask the right questions. By questioning your emotions, you’re taking the power back. Sit in a quiet spot and ask yourself:
- What triggered my emotion?
- Did it bring back old memories?
- Why did I react the way I did?
- Is this your usual pattern of reaction?
- Does feeling this way help support me and my recovery?
Practice controlled breathing. Concentrating on your breath can be a powerful tool to help prevent your mind from becoming consumed by guilt, self-doubt or shame, for example. Try it: Breathe in the toxic emotion and breathe out a positive one.
Get creative. Think of your emotions as a color or shape and draw it on paper. This simple activity can calm you down and help you face your toxic emotion in a healthy way. The best part: You don’t need to be a good artist to make it work for you.
Holistic Healing at Synergy
We are highly regarded in the addiction treatment community for our ability to help heal the body, mind, and spirit, which are all impacted by the disease of addiction. To this end, we offer our clients a variety of holistic therapies. To learn more about our treatment center and our approach to addiction recovery, call today: 888-267-8070.