Moody and Irritable friends and loved ones can be a big cause of concern. One of my acquaintances had asked me about coping with mood swings of people who are close to us or related in some way. I thought will take this issue at two levels-coping with mood swings of self and coping with mood swings of others. In twenty four hours people have been known to go through greatest and lowest of feelings. Emotions are not easy to manage like friends on Face book. People have different moods for different moments. Sometimes very sane people can behave very insanely. Emotions have their basis partly in the moment and partly in the more or less stable entity that we call as an individual's personality. Personality is again an outcome of nature (genetics) and nurture (environment). Disturbing nature and/or nurture issues have their implications of the emotional personality of the person. Mature adults follow an unconscious emotional rule called delayed or deferred gratification. Delayed gratification is an ability to wait in order to obtain something that is highly desired or wanted. Kids and Children have an impulse for instant gratification. As children become adults, and they are taught with love, come to understand a good impulse control is necessary for enjoying normal lives. Moody ones generally tend to express their emotions and reactions easily and not wait for another right moment. Strange but true that some impatient, aggressive people are more terrified of themselves than they are of others. Such people at times, are shocked at themselves and also scare others with their violent actions or behaviours. What to do at times, if we are to be in company of such.
Mild mood swings are correctable without therapeutic help, which we will be discussing here. Very interesting observations that we tend to ignore in our daily lives that has huge impact on physical as well as emotional health are Sleep and food. Yes it is that simple. Mild mood swings can be easily controllable by actively engaging in an exercise schedule, positive auto suggestions (suggestions to self), and reading inspiring true stories. IF one can manage satisfaction from these two areas, which look simple; yet difficult to achieve, one can be in control, largely. Everyone has a different set of hours for experiencing that blissful, content sleep. Most of us have issues with food and dinner table moods are common. Couples and families, who have busy lives throughout the day, meet up at homely sweet dinner and things go sour. Food issues could be very irritating for anyone, ranging from cooking style, quantity, variety or flavour etc. Food issues are not small issues, mend it and MIND IT. Resolve and make a flexible timetable for two weeks at least, in advance as to what will on the table. Planning should be backed by stocking things required to execute that timetable.
Coping with Mood swings of Self
1. Sleep Well. If mood swings trouble you, you should be the first one to manage your sleep more than your career. Rethink if there is something that can be changed in your life for catching up on the sleep that you feel missed out. Once again the trick is to plan your day and work your day. It is not easy but one should always have a sleep plan for working days and holidays. Make a plan for kids, so that they are getting full sleep and not irritable while waking them up for school. So in order to make a sleep plan, one will have to consider all things like how much television, gaming, studying, friends, parties etc.
2. Food it up. Negotiate with family and everyone gets to eat what they want once in a week or something like that. That way the nutrition is also taken care on other days when fun food dominates the other. Of course, we are living a life and we cannot enjoy life in strict regimentation. Relaxing on your schedules once in a while is okay but I have problem with following the plan once in a while.
3. Recollect past Guilt. It is good to remember feelings of regret and guilt, so that the unwanted actions are not repeated. If your mood swings angered your colleagues, family, friends, then it is time to work out. Some people do feel guilty after a bad show by them. So next time you are an unpredictable mood, just recollect how guilty you were in your past when you could not just hold yourself together.
4. Abstain from speaking and touching anything (living, nonliving) while you in your bad phase. Just stay away from everyone and do not touch things in your surroundings that you may feel like throwing. Walking or a quick shower may help a lot.
5. Do not be ashamed. Do not drive. Do not take decisions in bad phase. Do not blame others (parenting, boss, spouse, kids, and situations).We are not born perfect. But we can learn and start afresh and it is possible. But please make an attempt to make others happy. On one’s last bed, one will never regret not spending more time at office but will definitely feel that one should have loved their near and dear ones. You Are OK. But please start it NOW.
Coping with Mood swings of Others
1. Sleep and Food. No food, bad mood is totally true especially for people in their middle ages. Please ensure if possible that this person is sleeping well and eating food on time. If meals are not had on time it may lead to a condition of lowering blood sugar that may also trigger irritable emotions. If one has made sure that the reasons for the irritable emotions is not as silly or simple as this, then move on to next level of coping.
2. Escape to safety. Protect Kids. When you are facing someone who is violent in their bad phase, it is not such a good idea to talk. Seek and involve other people and it may curtail the bad behaviour in most instances. Escaping in this situation is not the same as escaping a situation without facing it. Unless it is war or duty calls, it is better to safe than sorry. It is very important that kids do not see role models who are not practicing the delayed gratification rule and are bent on venting their emotions instantly. Any repeated behaviours of extreme violence and extreme apology, not acceptable as normal. Any such repeated behaviours may need therapy and/or legal recourse.
3. Speak, at a later moment. But remember, Do Not nag. Extreme mood swings have everything in excess, the anger, the aggression and the regret and the apology. Because work places do not tolerate such swings, the most obvious victims are mostly family or friends. If the mood swings are a big problem to the survival of a relationship, it has to be discussed in the family. In India, two people mean, not just two people. Let it be known. Believe your wise counsel and make your feelings known to others clearly.
4. Introduce such people to the goodness of culture, physical workout, religious outings or reading of self help books. If affordable and possible, a vacation to a serene or religious place, rather than an exciting happening place should be visited along with the person and new way of thinking should be decided then at the vacation Life is short, a 100 years may feel like a few moments and if it bad even a few moments will be difficult to pass by. So do encash time being happy and making others happy. It is no point losing temper over family for some less worthwhile work. No time to be moody. We have this one great beautiful life. Keep it simple. Enjoy, Live, Laugh, Forgive and Love.