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4 Ways to Care For Yourself While Undergoing Emotional Distress

Michelle Terese
Jan 25 · 6 min read
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Photo by Darius Bashar on Unsplash

Experiencing a period of emotional distress is not fun, period.

While unpleasant, it is, unfortunately, a part of the human experience and something we must embrace and accept on our path in life.

Whether your emotional distress is in the form of grief, anger, sadness, or a mixture of everything in between — this distress encourages us to step up our self-care. Because if we do so, our mental, emotional, and physical will thank us.

Whenever I go through an intense period of emotional distress, all my passion, projects, goals, and dreams come to a complete halt. All I can think about is how horrible I’m feeling, and it’s like the entire experience controls my whole being — preventing me from moving on.

I realize when I am being severely controlled by my anguish, I have a lot of self-work to do. I need to forge a path within to clear up all the intense negative feelings — in the way of turning muddy water into clean water.

So, if I do not actively work on clearing up my emotions, I cannot move forward with my life. I would be allowing myself to remain dragged down, almost as if hands from the underground pull me deeper and deeper into the worse of me. I can’t let these emotions drag me down and prevent me from reaching my fullest potential in this life.

Therefore, I found these 4 ways to be a point of support when I am emotionally at my worse:

1. Using Self-Forgiveness to Extract Solutions

An incredible tool that has become a life-saver for me through tumultuous times is self-forgiveness.

It’s mostly a significant act of self-love because you are releasing yourself from a past memory, mistake, and/or emotion that has caused you harm or affected you in a way you were not happy with.

By forGIVING yourself, you are giving yourself the opportunity to see deeper into the point. And from that depth — an insight, realization, or solution will come forward.

When it comes forward, it will be a groundbreaking experience because you will get to see what to face to move forward. You will be presented with a way to fundamentally change for the better of you, and start from a clean slate.

Using self-forgiveness within a self-honest starting point (meaning, you allow yourself to fully, courageously, unconditionally uncover what is within the emotions you are going through) is key to quantifying your healing.

You won’t “forget” what you did once you forgive yourself, but it will become a memory you can use a reference to learn from.

You don’t need to be defined by your past anymore — whatever you forgave, you gained something that you can use to heal and move on from.

I use these simple statements from the Desteni I Process when I forgive myself:

“I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to….”

“I forgive myself that I have not accepted and allowed myself to…”

These statements encourage me to take responsibility for my experience and help gain actualization of what I need to know to transform my emotional distress into inner strength and direction.

2. Take a Bach Remedy

Bach remedies are a safe, natural plant medicine that can help you in the most traumatic of times.

There are 38 remedies, each one for a different human emotion. When you take a treatment, it aligns with the emotional experience you are going through and acts as a bridge to help you overcome it.

When I went through a significant phase of insomnia coupled with panic attacks last year, the Honeysuckle remedy eased me into a soft slumber where I was able to get a good night’s rest. Then, after a professional setback, Star of Bethlehem brought me comfort.

Bach remedies are made with Brandy and flower essence. Generally, you place 4 drops of the medicine in a glass of water and sip throughout the day. You can also mix remedies if you are going through more than one issue, and it’s practically impossible to overdose on these medicines since the bottles are so small.

To purchase a Bach Remedy, make sure it’s in strict accordance with the methods of Dr. Bach in a 1:240 “stock” strength.

3. Make Yourself Feel Good — in a Healthy Way

When we’re in a bad place emotionally, we need to gain balance by making ourselves feel good. This is to empower us to realize we can be happy again.

So, distressing times call for a step up in the self-care regime. Take yourself to the movies, get a manicure, eat some chocolate, watch that Netflix show while cuddling in bed. Treat yourself in a way that is healthy and reminds you that you matter, and you are worthy of being here.

The Office (US version) is the show I binge watch when I’m going through a hard time. It is, to me, the funniest television show to date, and there’s something about the relatability of the characters and the idiocy of Michael Scott that always makes me laugh.

Laughter is known to be medicine for the soul — so watching a comedy to combat hard times is recommended.

Additionally, exercise has been proven to cure depression, and doing yoga can transcend trauma. Finding a hobby or class where you can move and get in touch with your body can help release stuck emotions, which can further support your recovery process.

Furthermore, viewing inspirational quotes and pictures that support your values and make you feel empowered is another way to make yourself feel good.

One of my favorite quotes I look at when I’m down is: “I will not stay quiet to make you comfortable” by anonymous. I’m all for women empowering themselves to use their voice for the greater good. So every time I read this quote, I get that fire back in my soul to continue speaking about issues I care about.

4. Research and Learn What You Are Going Through

When I got out of a relationship with a narcissist, I spent hours upon hours researching narcissistic abuse. I was so deep in suffering after being gaslighted, manipulated, and pressured to do things I didn’t want to. I had to do something about it, or I’d go insane.

Therefore, I did everything I could to learn about narcissistic abuse so I could prevent myself from running into a similar situation again.

Whenever we are going through an emotionally stressful time, it can be really supportive educating yourself on how to heal after what you have been through. Fortunately, there are numerous resources online and at libraries where you can read deeper into your points and find solutions for it.

Remember, what you are going through, someone else has or is going through it too. Maybe not in the same exact way, but similar context.

Chances are, you’re going to find countless stories and experiences from people like you. My suggestion is to find stories specifically with solutions to the issues because if you just read about the bad/negative stuff, you’re going to keep yourself locked there.

To break cycles of emotional distress and torment, we need to learn about how we got into these situations in the first place. That’s why educating ourselves on how to navigate painful experiences can really help.

In the depths of distress, lifting yourself — even if little — out of the darkness, will help you see the light, and hopefully, you will realize you can get through this.

Michelle Terese

Written by

Writer, wellness lover, and American living in Europe. hello@michelleterese.com

Michelle Terese

Written by

Writer, wellness lover, and American living in Europe. hello@michelleterese.com

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