Posted in Did you know?

Coping with difficult emotions


So many people at some point in their lives, whether young or old are confronted with challenging experiences that force them to face, feel, live and suffer through difficult emotions. I hear many youths in my work who share such strife and make no mistake on the severity of their pain!   They HURT!

It is so easy to say, “Aw, they’re young, what have they got to worry about?” or “They are of the cyber generation and know not what work is.” Oh, yeah?! I beg to differ.

Again, we (as a society) tend to generalize, label…and there’s that word again….Stigmatize. Youths are not less or more…they ARE human beings that have not been on this planet as long as adults. So What? They are living in a world that we, YOU, adults have created…so I  beg you,  could we be more open-minded…please!

I hear from youths who struggle with screw ups they endured at the hands of  situation often  caused  by other youths yes,  but  mostly by ADULTS…

So let’s all try to put our heads together…young and old and figure out a way to release some of the pain. It may not heal but it could offer some respite…some relief for a little while. You know the lapse between counselling sessions, doctor’s appointments, group therapy, psychiatric evaluations and appointments as well.  What I’m talking about are COPING strategies “tween times” and eventually to enable YOU to manage YOU and YOUR emotions just a bit better.

 What do some of you do that works to unleash intense emotions that sometimes paralyze you?

–  What has worked to finally get you out of bed in the morning, in the afternoon, or just to get up and have a few bites to eat?

–  Share here what has worked even if briefly, it is still a reprieve, right?

–  Do you mediate?

–  What is your mantra?

–  Do you exercise? Please tell me what physical activity that does not demand too much dexterity..{hey, that rhymes!!!} I would love to learn more physical activities but yes, I daresay, I am maladroit. I love to dance and have no care what I look like because I am OLDer now and would care less. So for me, dancing to my favourite music can release the youthful and happy spirit in me. I just let the music fill my ears, my head, my mind, my heart and soul and magically my body responds in jerks, and swings, and steps and sways…but oh, how it feels great anyway. {YaY! another rhyme…I’m on a roll today!}

–  Another thing that helps to relieve pent up emotions that I have discovered is Writing!  I used to journal and that helps too; I’ve ascribed a name to my journal.  This way she seems more like a caring friend/listener and  I call my friend,  Emily. She listens, does not judge, she embraces my words and I feel unburdened after our little chats.

So what do you do to release the endorphin, that amazing natural chemical that makes you  smile …even if just a little smile…or that the frown has disappeared just for a little while.

–  Do you draw?

–  Do you paint?

–  Do you take a glob of clay (sculpting) and pound the hell out of it, releasing some rage?

–  What works for you?

–  Do you listen to music? Play an instrument?  Or perhaps you sing?  Please share here what works for you.

I have tried some chanting and dancing a few steps I saw on APTN … the Aboriginal instructor was showing us  how the simple steps of dancing at a Pow Wow are actually good for cardio and a great way to exercise and tone the body.  Who would have thought that? We Caucasians have soooo much to learn!!

I heard many years ago, somewhere, that some Aboriginals recommend that you cry every night before going to sleep. Now don’t quote me…I heard it somewhere in the 1970’s and surely I missed important directions in that saying. However, I, as a woman, and a person who cries easily, find that shedding those tears DO make me feel better. It release a lot of pent up emotions that sometimes I never realized were there.

–        Massage therapy can help…A few months ago I went for a massage and at one point, one part of my body reacted to the pressure and touch and a burst of tears  gushed out…my massotherapist, in the Ange Gardien, was not alarmed by this as he knew too well, that it was simply a release of tension in some of those “knots” in my body.

Last week I overheard on the radio a scientist discovering that in the tears of a women who was upset compared to the tears of a woman cutting an onion differed greatly in the chemicals within said tears.  The emotional tears had many neurotransmitters…so science has finally caught up with the wisdom of First Nations People…That actually makes me smile…my goofy smile, that is.

Self-talk and trying to manage the thoughts racing through your mind is certainly another way but oh so challenging! (More on this CBT – Cognitive Behaviour Therapy another day).

I often use the same exercise with people either on the phones, in a group session, with children, teens and adults alike…it does seem to work.  However YOU have to find what works best for you.

In the past few months I have used a combination of mindfulness & breathing to relax along with a guided imagery exercise.  Even when I respond to a web post on-line, I will share the exercise so youths can give it a try.  N.B: it only works if you praise at least twice a day for several weeks and when something does upset you…it may help to bring you to a place where you can, at least , function.

CAUTION: Do not practice this exercise operate heavy machinery or drive.

So what has worked for you?

Here is something I just wrote that explains what writing does for me as a person working in the helping profession:

“I met an angel the other night536036_486906314701932_586303520_n
She freed my soul of misery
She helped unburden, thus feel light
No longer do I feel despair
of souls who talk to me most nights
Of broken hearts beyond repair.
the angel freed me of the pain
Now I can sleep again tonight.
Now I can sleep again tonight.”

© Cheryl-Lynn Roberts, July 16, 2013



A little bit about moi: I am a mom, a nana, a sister, a woman, a friend, a human being…a youth counsellor, Family Life Educator. I have been working in the helping profession for over 25 years and volunteered in various capacities from youths to seniors. Tournesol is my nom de plume for haiku and other Japanese form poetry here at Tournesoldansunjardin I hope you enjoy reading through my daily waka. I also have another blog "Stop the Stigma" where I may stand on my soapbox now and then and hope it will become a place to drop in and share or comment on issues important to you. In that vein this could be a great way to learn from each other. Namaste!

15 thoughts on “Coping with difficult emotions

  1. Brilliant blog, love how you cover society and how they (we?) Stigmatize due to looking at a person. Pre-judging or having an opinion based on, well nothing really.

    Gread read!


      1. Yeah you are, we are on the same page for sure…
        I get this a lot. I park in a disabled spit at a shop and I get a dirty look, I can’t help myself, and my Partner Dawn hates me for it, I say to them “Problem?” 9/10 I get a “What, sorry I wasn’t looking at you” – “OK, No worries” I say, Sometimes I get “You shouldn’t be parking there” Even though I have 2 disabled badges on my windscreen. This is where I school them “I walk over, I don’t care who they are and explain, well pretty much what is in this picture here:

        Once it ended up the person hit me. Silly man 🙂

        So yeah, the converted I am xx

        Shaun x


      2. Oh my you are too polite!! That man was a complete jerk! I was building up to writing about invisible disabilities. some people know at work but you know I never admitted even to myself when I was first diagnosed…it took 5 more specialists, living in another city and a good 15 years before I accepted the diagnosis and shared with few…I would get often “you don’t look in pain” or worse yet, “ah, that’s just a diagnosis doctors give when they don’t know hat ya got.” I do have problems with many doctors who don’t know how to treat it…yeah, I think I m about due to get back on a rant about this because it is so frustrating. I never saw a badge like that though. I belong to the Arthritic Society and never saw it before…I will check that out…it would be a nice Segway to start my post.



      3. Please use it for your blog and also put it up on your blog the same as I did on the right hand side. There are another few there…
        Interesting what you say, I was the EXACT same, I hid it from people for a LONG time, I did Football for 10 years with the pain, not till the last few years (Blogging did it) did I tell people. My Mum, Dad, really close family knew. But telling others was a battle. I got the exact same things you did “You look ok as well” and “Dr’s can be wrong” to which I now reply “I AM DISABLED AND SORE FFS” lol…

        And the man, I punched him in the lips..Dawn STILL hates me for doing it. But I was in the mood for a prick like that and in pain that day..

        If you ever get a second. Read my story..Please..
        They say there is a connection between childhood trauma and pain as an adult. I am part of a local NHS focus group..Let me know your thoughts please.. x


      4. Go to Dashboard, then Widgets
        Have 2 browsers open
        1 with the picture
        the other with Dashboard
        In Dashboard go to Appearance, “WIDGETS”
        It takes a few seconds to load, then a few things will appear on the right hand side of the page. Your Meta, etc where you sign in. In the middle you will see lots of things you can add. Look for “Image” Once you find it, left click and hold, and drag to the right where you want it. Then release where you want it. It will open and the “URL” bit is what you are looking at.
        Go back to the other browser page open. Right click the image and “Copy image URL” Go back to the Image area on other browser and paste in where it asks for “URL” Below there is a drop down menu, click it and centre it. In Caption you can write anything or leave it blank.
        At the bottom right of the open Image box, hit SAVE..

        I have told many how to do this and all have managed. Once you do it once, you will have all the stuff I have on my blog page on the right. You can add Awards, Pictures, See I have a youtube video player…

        Let me know how you get on..
        I am a trained PC Tech and WP helper..

        Shaun x


      5. Oh thank you, Shaun, I have my own techie Guru now as a friend. I am so lucky:) I am reading your blog right now…will get back to you …it’s 6am there now isn’t it? it’s 1:15am. here. cl


      6. Yeah 06:25am…Can’t sleep for pain..1:15am,,,
        Not Sleep?

        You Skype?
        if so add away shaunyg1973
        I speak to tons on there from here..
        I don’t bite and Audio only 🙂

        Let me know what your take on that blog is..I am always interested to know what people thing…The message is one of how my Partner saved me. But pain and childhood distress, they think there is a connection.



      7. What is Google hangout? lots of people talk about it, And Skype needs a lot of power to run, don’t blame ya.



      8. What I love about you Google. When you open a gmail account it alliws you a
        ll Google services
        so u automsyically get google + which is like facebook a.d google chat and google hang out = Skype. I like it because it’s one account all in one place


      9. Ahh ok.. Had a look, can see “Hangout” when I click “Shaun +” And I added a few people it suggested. How would I add you?
        If you can add me, it is just my name I use same as here.. and same picture I think


      10. Sleep well, and will save and send you an email so you can save..Check junk mail…Speak soon..


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