What to do When the Storm of Emotions hits

Jan 30, 2010 by

When I made the choice to start feeling my way through life instead of running away from my problems I had no idea what I was getting myself into.  Most days are filled with wide-eyed wonder at how many colors there are in the world.  Some days are an absolute shit storm of overwhelming emotions.

Allow me to paint you a picture:

Morning has arrived and a plant has a beautiful flower that blooms with the sunlight.  Throughout the day clouds begin to form in the sunny sky.  They turn dark and more ominous.  As it gets darker, the flower curls up, anticipating the onslaught of wind and rain.  It takes action to protect itself so that it will be able to bloom again tomorrow.

Now, there are a variety of endings that can be created here.  What usually happens for you?  Take note of how you saw it end.  That’s something trying to get your attention.

Some days the hail comes and crushes the flower.  Some days it turns out to be a slight shower that actually nourishes the plant and the flower.  Maybe it’s somewhere in the middle.  In the end the plant will survive.

So how do you deal with the storm coming your way?  Take care of yourself.  Honor your feelings, wherever they are.  Acknowledge them and find a way to care for them.  They are telling you something.  Figure out what you need to see.

Remember: it’s possible that your head is messing with you.  You could be addicted to having chaos in your life and you could be creating drama to satisfy this craving!  How does that sit with you?

At the first sign of a cloud (bad feeling):

  • Take a few minutes to take a few deep breaths
  • Practice positive self talk – say things like ~ It’s going to be ok ~ this is just a little bump ~you’re doing good
  • Say a prayer or an affirmation

When it keeps raining:

  • Take a step back to look at the situation – is it real or am I making it up?
  • Take a walk or small break
  • Call a friend ~ use this as a chance to find some shelter from your storm

When the hail is falling and the thunder is cracking:

  • Sit.  Sleep.  Exercise.
  • Stop what you’re doing and practice some massive self care.
  • Go to a movie, sporting event, golf range, Peter Piper (to play games)

Whether you’re a newbie at feeling or you’re a seasoned pro, the important thing to remember is to keep it from getting too overwhelming.  Panic mode is a giant trigger and will sabotage your progress.  Feel your feelings, but don’t let them crush you.  Protect yourself so your flower can bloom again tomorrow.  You are a magnificent human being who has so many wonderful things to contribute to the world.  We need to see you bloom!

What are the things that work well for you?  Would you please share them in a comment below? We’d love to hear about them!

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  1. Rog

    Those are very powerful and true thoughts, Thank you so much. I listen to Music really really loud, or go people watching.

    • Kim Pottle


      You are welcome! Thanks to you for the compliments and tips! I have tried your suggestions in the past month and they worked for me too! I especially loved listening to uplifting music (a few of my favorites are India Arie and Collette Baron-Reid). It energized me and reminded me that the clouds can clear.


  2. Wade Jensen

    I’ll be honest the emotions that I feel day to day were the cause of my addiction, then once I hit about 16 months sober I realized they could help me stay sober. I just thought how much harder would dealing with this be drunk or even worse hung over. I find the idea of seeing the world around me to be a great way to relax as it always felt like I had blinders on waiting for the next “relief”.

    • Kim Pottle


      Your words are powerful! I remember that sinking feeling I had as I was almost out of money and leaving the casino filled with dread. Life is so much easier to handle when I’m not in that place!

      As I like to say, you are living Numb No More!


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