Do You Feel Emotionally Flooded?
Emotional flooding can be a very unique experience for each one of us. Here are some symptoms to help you identify emotional flooding-
· You feel it’s hard to focus as you try to process the experience and your brain feels overwhelmed.
· You feel stressed and anxious. You either shut down or withdraw as your brain heats up with activity.
· You have an internal war going on as you cope with the fight-or-flight response.
· You find it hard to recognize your emotions as you feel a rush of mixed feelings all at once.
· You feel light-headed, have tunnel vision and sweaty hands along with other physical symptoms.
Irrespective of the symptoms, emotional flooding for HSPs can be a devastating and uncomfortable experience that can last longer than we may want it to. Perhaps, this is why we need emotional regulation.
Dealing With Emotional Flooding For HSPs
Wondering how to deal with flooding? Relax. We’ve got you covered. Here are 7 effective strategies to help you decompress when you feel emotionally flooded.
#1 Excuse Yourself
If you feel overwhelmed or have a panic attack, calmly remove yourself from the scenario.
It is okay to excuse yourself for a few moments, collect your thoughts, calm yourself down and then go back, if and when you are ready. You can take a short break to the washroom, the cafeteria, the parking lot or any place you feel comfortable with. Take some time off. Call a family member or friend. Listen to some music. Do whatever that works for you. Understand that you have the option to leave, if you need to.
#2 Just Breathe
You may have heard this one before. But that’s because it IS the most effective and easiest panic and stress reduction technique available to us at any given time.
Breathing is the magic pill you need.
Simply calm yourself down, clear your mind for a moment and subtly concentrate on your breathing. Take slow deep breaths in and out. Count to 4 while inhaling, hold your breath for another count of 4, then exhale while counting to 4 again. This will slow down your heart rate and your mind will calm down. Trust me, it works!
#3 Start Counting
Yes, really. Just start counting. I know it sounds weird. But it helps. Count to 100. Count 10 things you can see, count 5 things you can touch, count 3 things you can hear. Count backwards from 50 to 1. Count anything that you can engage your mind in at that moment. This will help your brain to shift focus from being anxious and put it to work.
#4 Tap Your Body
Tapping is another excellent yet simple method to counter emotional flooding for HSPs. Gently tap different body parts like knees, thighs, arms, face or any other part that does not feel or look weird. However, you need to understand the difference between conscious tapping and fidgeting. Tapping allows your brain to get distracted from all the anxiety and refocus itself to a more logical action. Just give it a try and you will know how it can work wonders.