2020 is certainly one of the most tumultuous years in recent history. From a global pandemic to political unrest, a recession, and everything in between, the stressors seem to be all around us these days. Often, such stress can cause us to become overly emotional. After all, there’s so much uncertainty and bad news, how can you not be affected by it in some way?
“Overly emotional” simply means more emotional than your usual. You’re experiencing sadness or anger more often, and everything seems to cause you stress. There are a few reasons why you might be feeling this way, and we’re going to look at five of them.
Stress causes all kinds of emotions, and we’re no stranger to it in 2020. It started in January, when a simple “flu” from Wuhan, China began spreading across the globe. Now, in July, the pandemic has reached every corner of the world, and the US is struggling to recover. How could you not be stressed?
When you become stressed, it can lead to overwhelm, and when you’re overwhelmed, you can become more emotional. The way your body reacts to stress is simply a survival response; your heart races, your breath quickens, and the stress hormone cortisol courses through your veins. While the body is getting ready to act, the brain is struggling to make sense of the situation and come up with a solution.
There’s nothing wrong with being stressed out, but when you let stress get the best of you, it can derail your mental health. Practicing health stress management techniques can help you better control stress levels and react to stressors in a way that won’t break you down emotionally.
2. Lack of Sleep
“Why am I so emotional?” you ask, smashing down on the alarm clock after another sleepless night. You’ve woken up again feeling sad, on the verge of tears; and you just can’t figure out why. Let’s look at your sleep patterns for the last few weeks. On Tuesday, you stared at your phone until nearly 2:30 am when you had to be up at 6. On Thursday, you went out with the girls and stayed out too late, waking up with a hangover.
The point here is that lack of sleep can be the reason you’re so emotional. Just like the body, the mind requires energy to function properly, and without a quality sleep pattern, you can be suffering from an emotional imbalance.
Sleep is something we all neglect in one way or another. It’s difficult to maintain a sleep schedule in our modern world, but it’s so important to take your sleep seriously for the sake of your mental and physical health.
3. You Never Learned To Navigate Trauma and Adversity
Did you ever wonder why we’re not taught how to navigate life’s challenges? From the little things like paying bills, finding a career, and personal relationships to major challenges such as abuse or trauma, some people simply haven’t learned how to navigate life’s uncertainty. This can cause intense emotions, overwhelm, and uncertainty of the future.
Navigating trauma and adversity is something many people have to learn first hand. When something stressful or traumatic occurs, we have two choices: we can get bitter or we can get better. When we choose the path of bitterness, we carry untold emotional weight behind us; anger, sorrow, resentment…these emotions serve no purpose but to weigh us down.
Learning to handle adversity and trauma is a skill that everyone should learn. It’s different for every person, of course, but there are techniques that you can use regardless of where you are in life.
Depression is a condition that amplifies negative emotions. Sadness, anger, dread, and sorrow are all amplified by depression. Some people don’t even realize they’re depressed, even though depression affects millions worldwide. The condition can make things seem hopeless, and create an everlasting sense of existential dread that hangs over you like a cloud.
Some symptoms of depression include appetite changes, mood swings, hopelessness, loss of interest, self-isolation, and fatigue. If you’re experiencing these symptoms, it might be a good idea to take a closer look at what’s affecting you.
5. You’re Sensitive
Some people are just more sensitive to emotional triggers than others, and that’s ok! There’s nothing wrong with being sensitive about emotional events or experiences. It only becomes a problem when it starts affecting overall mood, outlook, performance, and drive.
When your emotions start to rule your life, it’s time to take action. Identify the triggers that make you feel emotional and focus on how you react to them. You can’t always control the way you feel about certain things, but you can change how you react. The way you react can make a huge difference!