Feelings are reactions to things we go through and the situations we’re in. When things aren’t good at home, for example if someone is abusive, you might have lots of different feelings – such as feeling sad, scared, angry, guilty – or you might not be sure how you feel. Everyone feels something a bit different. There are no “right” or “wrong” feelings.
Do you know what makes you feel a certain way? Do you feel angry or sad? What happened right before you started feeling that way? This is probably what caused you to feel this way.
Noticing how your body feels when you’re feeling a certain way is a good way to learning how to deal cope. Listen to your body – it ‘talks’ to you – it gives you signals that let you know how you’re feeling. Reading these signals allows you to react appropriately to how you’re feeling.
It can be difficult sometimes to know how to deal with what you are feeling. It’s really important to remember that you can’t always control your feelings, but you can choose what you do about them. For example, when you feel angry with someone, you could hit them, shout at them, or just walk away.
Part of learning how to deal with your feelings is sorting out what your choices are. Hurting someone else or hurting yourself is never a good response to feelings! There are always other solutions and other ways of expressing your feelings.
Next time you feel angry or sad, or another way that you don’t like, try to do something positive like:
• Take a deep breath and count to ten
• Talk to someone about your worries
• Find an empty space (a field, an empty room) and shout as loud as you can
• Write down how you are feeling, maybe in a diary
• If you’re upset with someone, you can write them a letter – you don’t have to give it to them if you don’t want to
• Draw a picture
• Make a list of things that make you happy
• Play a game
• Do some sport or exercise
• Sing or dance to your favourite tunes
• Take a walk
• Bake a cake
• Read a book
• Hang out with a friend
• Phone or text a friend
• Listen to some music or play a musical instrument
• Take drugs
• Drink alcohol
• Stop eating
• Binge eat
• Harm yourself
• Skip school
• Run away
• Destroy property/things
• Take out your feelings on others by being violence or abusive
You might think these things will make you feel better. They might help shut out your feelings for a while, but they won’t solve the problem and will probably make you feel even worse. You could also hurt yourself or someone else.