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Emotions & Control

Learning about our control tendencies to enhance our emotional intelligence 


"the ability to manage one's impulses, emotions, and behaviors to achieve long-term goals."

If you struggle with emotions, you aren't alone. Many of us find understanding and managing emotions an impossible task. Sometimes it can feel easier to just not deal with them at all, which is why many of decide to suppress or downplay them. However, what you may have learned is that no matter how great you are at pushing away your emotions, they always come back to bite you in the end. So why not just learn how to finally deal with them?

One way to do this is to learn about our emotional experiences and how we cope. For example, some of us use control as a way to manage life's unpredictable nature. Others, however, may play into their urges and impulses in order to deal with their distress. These styles of coping are what we call "control tendencies," with the latter being "overcontrolled tendency" and the former being "under controlled tendencies". 

Our control tendencies can be thought of as lying on a spectrum, with optimal
control, or the ideal balance of how we respond to our emotions, lying somewhere
in the middle between undercontrol and overcontrol.

While we can exhibit traits of both undercontrol and overcontrol, most people tend to
lean more towards one end of the spectrum. In the sections below, explore the
descriptions of both overcontrol and undercontrol. After you have familiarized
yourself with each, feel free to take the quiz at the bottom of the page to discover
your self-control tendencies and what this means for your healing journey.
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