For as long as I can remember I have struggled to manage my emotions. Everything will be fine one moment, and then out of the blue something will go wrong. I will start to feel a deep sense of injustice with things and people around me.
Often before I know what is happening I have done or said something rash and upset those who are close to me. I really want to stop living like this. But I just don’t know how to. I went to see my GP and was given an SSRI medication, but I don’t think that has done much for it. What do I do next?Anonymous client
Is it time you had a clinical audit for your mental health?
We tend not to know how to begin to change things that we are unhappy about. We may not want to, but we tend to put up with things. We live by routines and so may miss opportunities to try to change the way we live and the way we feel about our lives.
In this respect, our mental health is not very different from any part of our lives. We may sense there are problems but we don’t tend to know where to begin to change them. Or we may have tried and not got far and so feel too discouraged to try again.
It is possible to get a better understanding of your psychological issues.
How do you understand your personality?
I think an area that can be very confusing and possibly misleading is the subject of psychological diagnosis. It is not uncommon for people to be given diagnoses, but it is not always clear how helpful those diagnoses are.
One of the ways that I have come to understand mental health is through trying to understand how emotionally stable a person feels? We can move away from the often rather obscure and technical language of psychological diagnosis and instead use more ordinary human language.
It is possible to think of your mental health in terms of a continually sliding scale that moves from: ‘happy/at ease’ to ‘unhappy/anxious’.
How stable are your emotions?
It is often easier to grasp a sense of the way our emotions become unstable than it is to understand a psychiatric diagnosis.
We can start by trying to assess the degree to which you manage to maintain psychological stability on an ongoing basis.
If we grasp the patterns of how your moods tend to slip from you, we can then start to build up a useful and practical picture of your emotional and psychological health and stability.
Typically, people who struggle with emotional instability have done so for a very long time, for most of their lives. The work of Laing and Esterson was particularly helpful in revealing that deep-rooted psychological problems don’t just suddenly appear in an individual’s life, they develop over time.
Often we lose perspective on what has happened to us, on what our emotions relate to. A confidential psychotherapy session can help you to clarify what has happened to you and help us develop a better understanding of why you feel the way you do. When you have that information you can make changes.
My research has shown me that people are not born with these kinds of psychological problems, they acquire them, generally through problems they encountered in their early lives.
Medication is unlikely to help
When there are issues involving emotional instability medication will probably not do very much for the problem.
How long have you suffered from emotional instability?
It is entirely possible to learn more about what caused your emotional instability, about what happened to you. About the history of why and how you acquired these problems.
When we find a way to piece our stories together, to understand how our different states of mind fit together, then we start to develop the capacity to be able to have more control over them. We start to learn how to maintain emotional stability for ourselves. To my mind, there are no magic wands, but we can learn to manage our psychological moods on an ongoing basis.
Perhaps it would be helpful to have a clinical audit.
I have twenty years of experience of working with people, many of whom have struggled to understand why they feel the way they do. People who have needed to address their experience of emotional instability.
Giving yourself the chance to speak in a confidential setting may prove helpful, it may be the beginning of starting to work out how to do something that may make you feel better about yourself.
It may give you the chance to develop new and important insights into yourself. This in turn may help you to develop greater confidence and emotional stability.
Contact me to arrange a free telephone consultation to discuss how my approach might help you.
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