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09 February 2009 @ 04:14 pm
emotion regulation;  
::EMOTION REGULATION::
Goals of Emotion Regulation Training

Emotion regulation skills are used to help with heightened emotional sensitivity and reactivity, ongoing problems with depression, anxiety, anger or anger expression.

::UNDERSTAND::
EMOTIONS YOU EXPERIENCE
- Identify (observe and describe) emotion.
- Understand what emotions do for you.

::REDUCE::
EMOTIONAL VULNERABILITY
- Decrease negative vulnerability (vulnerability to emotion mind.)
- Increase positive emotions.

::DECREASE::
EMOTIONAL SUFFERING
- Let go of painful emotions through mindfulness
- Change painful emotions through opposite action


EMOTION REGULATION HANDOUT 2
Myths about Emotions

1. There is a right way to feel in every situation.
CHALLENGE: (example: There is not a correct way to feel in any situation. I feel how I feel for acceptable reasons)

2. Letting others know that I am feeling bad is a weakness.
CHALLENGE:

3. Negative feelings are bad and destructive.
CHALLENGE:

4. Being emotional means being out of control.
CHALLENGE:

5. Some emotions are really stupid.
CHALLENGE:

6. All painful emotions are a result of a bad attitude.
CHALLENGE:

7. Painful emotions are not really important and should be ignored.
CHALLENGE:


EMOTION REGULATION HANDOUT 3
Ways to Describe Emotions

::LOVE WORDS::
Love, adoration, affection, arousal, attraction, caring, charmed, compassion, desire, enchantment, fondness, infatuation, kindness, liking, longing, lust, passion, sentimentality, sympathy, tenderness, warm.
Other:

Prompting Events for Feeling Love
A person offers or gives you something you want, need or desire.
A person does things you want or need the person to do.
You spend a lot of time with a person.
You share a special experience together with a person.
You have exceptionally good communication with a person.
Other:

Interpretations That Prompt Feelings of Love
Believing that a person loves, needs, or appreciates you.
Thinking a person is physically attractive.
Judging a person’s personality as wonderful, pleasing, or attractive.
Believing that a person can be counted on, will always be there for you.
Other:

Experiencing the Emotions of Love
When with someone or thinking about someone:
Feeling excited and full of energy.
Feeling heartbeat.
Feeling and acting self-confident.
Feeling invulnerable.
Feeling happy, joyful, or exuberant.
Feeling warm, trusting, and secure.
Feeling relaxed and calm.
Wanting the best for a person.
Wanting to give things to a person.
Wanting to see and spend time with a person.
Wanting to spend your life with a person.
Wanting physical closeness or sex.
Wanting closeness.

Expressing and Acting on Love
Saying “I love you.”
Expressing positive feelings to a person,
Eye contact, mutual gaze.
Touching, petting, hugging, holding, cuddling.
Smiling.
Sharing time and experiences with someone.
Doing things that the other person wants or needs.
Other:

Aftereffects of Love
Only being able to see a person’s positive side.
Feeling forgetful or distracted; daydreaming.
Feeling openness and trust.
Remembering other times and people you have loved.
Remembering other people who have loved you.
Remembering and imagining other positive events.
Other:

Other popular emotions to describe (in this pattern) include: joy, anger, sadness, fear, and shame. You can think of other words like boredom, apathy, surprise, curiosity, etc. and use this model to analyze your emotions.


EMOTION REGULATION HANDOUT 4
What Good are Emotions?

EMOTIONS COMMUNICATE TO (AND INFLUENCE) OTHERS.
- Facial expressions are a hard-wired part of emotions. In primitive societies and among animals, facial expressions communicate like words. Even in modern societies, facial expressions communicate faster than words.
- When it is important to us to communicate to others, or send them a message, it can be very hard for us to change our emotions.
- Whether we intend it or not, the communication of emotions influences others.

EMOTIONS ORGANIZE AND MOTIVATE ACTION.
- Emotions motivate our behavior. The action urge connected to specific emotions is often “hard wired.” Emotions prepare us for action.
- Emotions save time in getting us to act in important situations. We don’t have to think everything through.
- Strong emotions help us overcome obstacles – in our mind and in the environment.

EMOTIONS CAN BE SELF-VALIDATING
- Our emotional reactions to other people and to events can give us information about the situation. Emotions can be signals or alarms that something is happening.
- When this is carried to an extreme, emotions are treated as facts: “If I feel incompetent, I am.” “If I get depressed when left alone, I shouldn’t be left alone.” “If I feel right about something, it is right.” “If I’m afraid, it is threatening.” “I love him, so he must be OK.”


EMOTION REGULATION HANDOUT 5
Reducing Vulnerability to Negative Emotions: How to Stay Out of Emotion Mind

A way to remember these skills is to remember the term “PLEASE MASTER.”

Treat PhysicaL illness
Balance Eating
Avoid mood-Altering drugs
Balance Sleep
Get Exercise
Build MASTERy

1. Treat physicaL illness: Take care of your body. See a doctor when necessary. Take prescribed medication.

2. Balance Eating: Don’t eat too much or too little. Stay away from foods that make you feel overly emotional.

3. Avoid mood-Altering drugs: Stay of non-prescribed drugs, including alcohol

4. Balance Sleep: Try to get the amount of sleep that helps you feel good. Keep to a sleep program if you are having difficulty sleeping.

5. Get Exercise: Do some sort of exercise every day; try to build up to 20 minutes of vigorous exercise.

6. Build MASTERy: Try to do one thing a day to make yourself feel competent and in control.


EMOTION REGULATION HANDOUT 6
Steps for Increasing Positive Emotions

BUILD POSITIVE EXPERIENCES
SHORT TERM: Do pleasant things that are possible now.
- Increase pleasant events that prompt positive emotions.
- Do ONE THING each day from the Adult Pleasant Events Schedule (next handout).

LONG TERM: Make changes in your life so that positive events will occur more often. Build a “life worth living.”

Work toward goals: ACCUMULATE POSITIVES
- Make list of positive events you want.
- List small steps toward goals.
- Take first step.

ATTEND TO RELATIONSHIPS
- Repair old relationships.
- Reach out for new relationships.
- Work on current relationships.

AVOID AVOIDING. Avoid giving up

BE MINDFUL OF POSITIVE EXPERIENCES
- FOCUS attention on positive events that happen.
-REFOCUS when you mind wanders to the negative.

BE UNMINDFUL OF WORRIES
DISTRACT from:
Thinking about when the positive experiences WILL END.
Thinking about whether you DESERVE this positive experience.
Thinking about how much more might be EXPECTED of you now.


EMOTION REGULATION HANDOUT 7
Adult Pleasant Events Schedule

01. Soaking in the bathtub
02. Planning my career
03. Getting out of debt
04. Collecting things (coins, shells, etc)
05. Going on vacation
06. Thinking about how it will be when I finish school
07. Recycling old items
08. Going on a date
09. Relaxing
10. Going to a move in the middle of the week
11. Jogging, walking
12. Thinking I have done a full days’ work
13. Listening to music
14. Recalling past parties
15. Buying household gadgets
16. Lying in the sun
17. Planning a career change
18. Laughing
19. Thinking about m past trips
20. Listening to others
21. Reading magazines or newspapers
22. Hobbies
23. Spending an evening with good friends
24. Planning a day’s activities
25. Meeting new people
26. Remembering beautiful scenery
27. Saving money
28. Gambling
29. Going home from work
30. Eating
31. Practicing Karate, judo, yoga
32. Thinking about retirement
33. Repairing things around the house
34. Working on my car or bicycle
35. Remembering the words and deeds of loving people
36. Wearing sexy clothes
37. Having quiet evenings
38. Taking care of my plants
39. Buying, selling stock
40. Going swimming
41. Doodling
42. Exercising
43. Collecting old things
44. Going to a party
45. Thinking about buying things
46. Playing golf
47. Playing soccer
48. Flying kites
49. Having discussions with friends
50. Having family get-togethers
51. Riding a motorbike
52. Sex
53. Running track
54. Going camping
55. Singing around the house
56. Arranging flowers
57. Practicing religion (going to church, prayer groups, etc)
58. Losing weight
59. Going to the beach
60. Thinking I’m an OK person
61. A day with nothing to do
62. Having class reunions
63. Going skating
64. Working
65. Kissing
66. Watching TV
67. Photography
68. Flying a plane
69. Acting
70. Cleaning
71. Taking children places
72. Dancing to my favorite music
73. Dressing up and looking nice
74. Buying things for myself
75. Talking on the phone
76. Buying books
77. Debating
78. Thinking I’m a person who can cope
79. Going to museums
80. Getting a massage
81. Buying books
82. Going bowling
You can think of more for yourself. The complete list has 176 ideas. If you would like the complete list then please fill out the form on the first page with your request.


EMOTION REGULATION HANDOUT 8
Letting go of Emotional Suffering: Mindfulness of Your Current Emotion

OBSERVE YOUR EMOTION
- NOTE its presence
- Step BACK.
- Get UNSTUCK from the emotion.

EXPERIENCE YOUR EMOTION
- As a WAVE, coming and going.
- Try not to BLOCK emotion
- Try not to SUPPRESS emotion.
- Don’t try to GET RID of emotion.
- Don’t PUSH it away.
- Don’t try to KEEP emotion around.
- Don’t HOLD ON to it.
- Don’t amplify it.

REMEMBER: YOU ARE NOT YOUR EMOTION
- Do no necessarily ACT on emotion.
- Remember times when you have felt DIFFERENT.

PRACTICE LOVING YOUR EMOTION
- Don’t JUDGE your emotion.
- Practice WILLINGNESS.
- Radically ACCEPT your emotions.

EMOTION REGULATION HANDOUT 9
Changing Emotions by Acting Opposite to the Current Emotion

FEAR
- Do what you are afraid of doing…OVER AND OVER AND OVER.
- APPROACH events, places, tasks, and activities, people you are afraid of.
- Do things to give yourself a sense of CONTROL and MASTERY.
- When overwhelmed, make a list of small steps or tasks you can do. DO THE FIRST THING on the list.

GUILT OR SHAME
When Guilt of Shame is Justified ( Emotion fits your wise mind values):
- REPAIR the transgression
- Say you’re sorry. APOLOGIZE
- MAKE THINGS BETTER; do something nice for the person you offended (or for someone else if that is not possible).
- COMMIT to avoiding that mistake in the future.
- ACCEPT the consequences gracefully.
- Then LET IT GO.

When the Guilt or Shame is Unjustified ( Emotion does not fit your wise mind values):
- Do what makes you feel guilty or ashamed…OVER AND OVER AND OVER.
- Approach, don’t avoid.

SADENESS OR DEPRESSION
- Get ACTIVE. APPROACH. Don’t avoid.
- Do things that make you feel COMPETEND AND SELF-CONFIDENT.

ANGER
- Gently AVOID the person you are angry with, rather than attacking. Avoid thinking about him or her rather than ruminating.
- Do something NICE rather than mean or attacking.
- Imagine SYMPATHY AND EMPATHY for the other person rather than blame.