How to Deal with Fluctuating Emotions

Liesel Teversham

Liesel helps HSP introverts to embrace their sensitivity as a superpower, and overcome obstacles so they can thrive. She also works with clients to solve their health issues, and has authored 2 books. More here.

Published on 2023/10/23

“Hard times don’t create heroes. It is during the hard times
that the ‘hero’ within us is revealed.”

-Bob Riley

This article was written during the pandemic.
It felt appropriate to share again with some updates.

Our world is a strange and uncertain place. So much of our ‘normal’ has changed. There’s been talk about a VUCA world for years — Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity, Ambiguity.

We’re dealing with VUCA every day and we can clearly see it in the conversations on social media.

Volatile emotions are normal in these conditions

You may experience waves of emotions about the pandemic fall-out, economic and financial uncertainty, loadshedding in South Africa, the war in Ukraine, earthquakes and extreme weather, family or friends going through distress, loved ones with serious disease, climate change, and a zillion other things we have no control over.

One day you might feel completely fine and think you’re managing well, thank goodness… and the next day you might feel like you can’t see the point of anything anymore.

You may experience anxiety one day, calmness the next, and dread again the next.

A personal example of fluctuating emotions

In the first weeks of noticing that our entire world was changing in March 2020, I experienced tons of anxiety. I couldn’t always even name what it was about… it was just a general sense of dread and doom. Like many others, I started having trouble sleeping — a sure sign that my nervous system was not doing well.

I gradually worked my way through that by using EFT tapping for myself, and hosting and participating in EFT calls for others going through the same, plus loads of breathing and meditation exercises. Having honest conversations with good friends, and asking for hugs from my husband helped a lot too.

I stopped reading and listening to the news. Gradually I started feeling calmer and sleeping better. It was a huge relief.

Then one day, I had a very busy day with clients. I was exhausted by bedtime and looking forward to a great night’s rest.

I fell asleep and woke up within 10 minutes with a pounding heart and the feeling of dread. It just didn’t matter how much I tried to breathe, relax, and even tap… it wasn’t helping.

A helpful EFT recording saved me!

After 30 mins I remembered a recorded EFT tapping webinar that I still wanted to listen to. It was almost a relief to stop trying so hard to sleep. I got up, made calming Camomile tea, and tapped along with Steve Wells (an EFT mentor of mine) for one whole hour.

The difference I experienced after that hour was huge.

I was yawning, sighing and feeling much lighter and calmer. I went back to bed and had a few solid hours of deep sleep.

Yep, I was tired the next morning and needed a nap later. The beautiful thing was… I had something to turn to in the middle of the night. Something with no bad side-effects, that ‘turned down’ the stress and anxiety and allowed me to go back to bed and rest.

The point of this little story?

It’s okay that we experience different layers of stress through long stressful periods.

We don’t have to blame, criticize or judge ourselves with anything like “I should be handling it better than this!” or “I should be over the stress by now” or “Stop worrying, you can’t do anything about it!”

Those thoughts are counter-productive, and cause more stress, not less. It certainly has never stopped anyone from panicking. Ever.

It’s okay that we can’t always help ourselves. I needed the help of the recording to start tapping. It felt like it was just too much effort to ‘pull myself out of it’ to start tapping. I could watch a recording, and tap along with someone who was feeling resourceful and that was incredibly helpful.

It’s okay to need and ask for help. We’re not meant to carry heavy things alone.

It’s okay, especially if you’re a sensitive person, to need more emotional support than others. Really. It’s okay. Your nervous system picks up a lot that’s not yours.

It’s imperative though, that we do our inner work so we can let those emotions go, else they will drag us down and keep us feeling the dread and fear. That’s not a healthy or pleasant way to go through life.

I find it so important to have methods to turn to when I’m not managing difficult periods.

Four methods I particularly love and use a lot:

  • EFT (Tapping)
  • The Sedona Method
  • TAT (Tapas Accupressure Technique)
  • JSJ (Jin Shin Jyutsu, a Japanese healing method)

A Free Recording of an EFT workshop, so you can borrow the benefits

I offer free EFT workshops from time to time, similar to this one: An EFT Group Tapping for stress about the Ukraine war.

What are borrowing benefits, you ask? It’s the phenomenon that occurs when we tap along with others who have challenges, and our system calms down too. The issues don’t have to be the same for this to work. So you can start feeling calmer right now if you watch this recorded workshop, and tap along as if you were there.

To receive the workshops I offer in your inbox, become a subscriber below.

A question for you:

What do you find helpful to deal with long, stressful periods?


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