Reframing Negative Emotions When Life Throws You A Curve

Help When Life Throws You A Curve

by Alana Pietrantuono, LMSW

When a loved one falls seriously ill, family members are faced with an unexpected turn of events, one that likely alters the plans they had spent their entire lives constructing. Accepting these changes is a challenge for anyone — they can leave you feeling as though your life has come to a screeching halt.

Joyce, a 35-year-old nurse, was on the verge of purchasing her first home. She had worked hard for many years and finally saved enough money to realize the dream of owning her own place. But when the health of her father, Charles, a 74-year-old Parkinson’s sufferer, took a turn for the worse, Joyce was forced to put her plans of home ownership on hold.

You see, Joyce had been her dad’s primary caregiver ever since her stepmother, Janet, passed away two years before, and it became clear to her that some serious sacrifices would have to be made in order to help her dad. She felt she had two choices: she could either quit her job and move in with her father to take care of him full-time, or continue working and spend the money she had saved for her condo to pay for his around-the-clock care at home. Charles would not consider moving to a nursing home, as he insisted he was still grieving the loss of wife and didn’t want to leave the house where he and Janet had lived together.

Joyce, for her part, was utterly destroyed by the loss of her home-owning dream. And while she felt guilty about this overwhelming emotion, she still couldn’t deny feeling angry and cheated. “I never thought that this is what my life would become,” she said at our first meeting. “I can’t even cope! But I can’t imagine leaving my father either. I would be a terrible daughter.”

Unable to reconcile these feelings, Joyce decided to enter into individual counseling in the hope of finding support and, ultimately, arriving at a place of acceptance. To start, she worked on acknowledging how she felt, allowing herself to honor her emotions about the disappointing turn of events, including her dad’s declining health and its effect on her life plans. We then began to work on the intensity of her feelings. Deeply negative emotions can be destructive — they were clearly not helpful for Joyce or her father in this instance. So she imagined less intense versions of how she felt: instead of anger and burning guilt, she tried to couch her emotions in sorrow and remorse.

Our thoughts tend to impact our feelings in such a way that our behavior will follow suit. If you think about it, someone who is angry will surely behave in a different fashion than someone who is sorrowful. By changing your emotional framework, you can change the way you feel, and, in turn, change the way you interact with the world at large and the people you love.

I am here to tell you that controlled responses to changing circumstances begin with you. Holding onto intense emotions will only magnify them further. What we choose to focus on becomes amplified in our mind’s eye. By reframing our emotions, we have the opportunity to respond in a way that is healthier and more conducive to moving forward.

The power for unconditional acceptance lies within you. Consider developing a self-affirming mantra that suits you. Joyce adopted this phrase — I can control the way I respond to the things I have no control over — as her mantra, which helped her move forward as her dad’s full-time caregiver.

Life is filled with unpredictable twists and turns. Even through the most difficult, unbearable adversities, as impossible as they may seem, we are still able to live a life that is fulfilling, and even joyful, when we choose to respond from a position of healthy thinking.

Lessons to be learned from Joyce’s experience:

  • Acknowledge that you don’t have to like your situation, but you can choose to see things from a healthier perspective.
  • You don’t have to deny negative feelings, but don’t let them grow and putrefy. It’s the intensity of negative emotions that can get in the way of moving forward and living an actualized and joyful life.
  • Try to reframe destructive emotions into “healthier negatives.” For example, instead of anxious, be concerned. Instead of fearful, be wary.
  • Mantras can keep you grounded. Find one that works for you. Write it down and refer to it any time you feel you need a reminder.
  • Seek the support of group or individual therapy. Secretive feelings can fester just like negative emotions. Getting your troubled emotions out in the open makes them far less scary and dangerous.

 

Alana R. Pietrantuono, LMSW, is a clinician with Family Centers, serving Greenwich, Stamford, Darien, New Canaan, CT, and Westchester County, NY. Family Centers is a United Way, New Canaan Community Foundation and Community Fund of Darien partner agency that offers counseling and support programs for children, adults and families. For more information, call 203-869-4848 or visit www.familycenters.org.

Tags: ,



12 Responses to “Reframing Negative Emotions When Life Throws You A Curve”

  1. If you are a caregiver to a loved one, please read all of this. I was a caregiver to my Mom after she had Alzheimers Disease. It was the hardest thing I ever did in my life,

  2. vseledicut says:

    Охлаждают и принимают внутрь по полстакана трижды в день.
    салат заправка
    Травяные настои противопоказаны при вынашивании ребенка, в период лактации, при склонности к проявлению аллергий, хронических болезнях.Жиросжигающие обертывания.
    Во время похудения вес легко уходит в начале, а спустя некоторое время этот процесс замедляется.Особенно трудно избавиться от жировых отложений на животе и бедрах, так как там скапливается много жидкости.
    меню при эрозивном гастрите
    Чтобы справиться с этой проблемой, нужно использовать различные обертывания.Обертывания бывают 2 видов горячего и холодного.
    Горячее проводится с целью усиления обмена веществ, избавления от солей и отложений жира.Такие добавки, как красный перец, горчица и корица разогревают кожу, открывают поры и помогают полезным микроэлементам проникнуть в глубокие слои.

  3. LucilleSmicy says:

    In Care of Dad | Blog | Reframing Negative Emotions When Life Throws You A Curve

    Warning!
    лъжат клиентите
    sex
    porno
    child porno
    spam

    https://nani.bg – мошеници
    https://nani.bg – спамери
    https://nani.bg – лъжат клиентите
    https://nani.bg – sex
    https://nani.bg – porno

  4. omgomgTic says:

    Ссылка на ОМГ АМГ omgomgomg ОМГОМГ ОМГ ссылка – http://omgomgomgnxat4aagix67wnlqxmvqmbrz54iok4uawlbnjdmqb525cad.onion/ – OMGOMGOMG ОМГ ОМГ MOST ADVANCED DARKMARKET Вас приветствует обновленная и перспективная площадка всея русского даркнета. Новые быстро действенные сервера, видоизменённый для максимального удобства интерфейс, высочайший уровень безопасности. Новые магазины уже известных брендов, топовые товары уже знакомых вам веществ, моментальный обменник и куча других разнообразных функций ожидают клиентов площадки даркмаркетов OMG!OMG! уже сейчас! Заходи по ссылке и приобретай свои любимые товары по самым низким ценам во всем даркнете! Закрыли гидру? Заходи на новую площадку ОМГОМГ моментальные закладки мефедрон альфа купить москва спб саратов КАНАЛ В ТЕЛЕГРАМ TELEGRAM OMG! omgomgomg!

  5. poerreque says:

    https://newfasttadalafil.com/ – cialis online pharmacy Ggetch viagra sirve para durar mas Jcfssa Cialis https://newfasttadalafil.com/ – cialis generic Lfniui

  6. There was a bit of educated guessing involved as I didn’t have
    the engine with me and we could not work out the movement
    ratios from the drawings but managed to get it pretty much spot on. This sexy blonde is just one
    you need to realize your dirty work. Near are sufficiently of
    choices for bettors to content their need for
    gaming and receiving currency. In a conventional gaming
    house, players cannot play before or beyond stipulated hours.
    Games are obsessed with violence because
    players find it entertaining. The story gets a lot
    more complex than that of course, and there are some heart-jerking moments that really shake up the status quo.

    I saw Sex and Glory, Bounty Hunter, and there was an explanation of how to play the game.
    The description of the game and instructions were quite detailed, which is
    something I loved, it was engaging for me to stay on the page feeling
    curious about what happens after my next click.

    Visit my web blog; Teen pussy cum

  7. Belts says:

    Wow that was odd. I just wrote an extremely long comment
    but after I clicked submit my comment didn’t appear.

    Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that over again. Regardless, just wanted to say superb
    blog!

  8. Anthonygycle says:

    In Care of Dad | Blog | Reframing Negative Emotions When Life Throws You A Curve

    omgomg tor

    omgomgomg магазин: https://omgomginfo.xyz

  9. Kevinfuern says:

    https://www.vykupspb.ru/ – Выкуп авто битых авто марки Xpeng модели EuroVan, 1929 года выпуска, тип кузова спидстер с объемом двигателя 3510 коробка передач вариатор в Питере.

Leave a Reply