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An emotional roller-coaster

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AS we cross the one-month mark of the Movement Control Order (MCO), many of us would probably have undergone a series of emotional roller-coasters.

One minute you’re excited; the next, you’re irritated, and this is followed by a feeling of concern for the future. This emotional ride will continue especially if we don’t have any strategy to control it.

The Collin Dictionary defines emotional roller-coaster as “a situation or experience that alternates between making you feel excited, exhilarated, or happy and making you feel sad, disappointed or desperate.”

We would likely experience this sort of thing, for example, watching a tense football game. It can also happen in a rocky relationship. In a nutshell, it happens mostly during uncertain situations.

We’re in one now. And possibly for a few more weeks to come. The uncertainty can wreak havoc in our otherwise healthy emotional state. It can happen to anyone, our children included.

As parents, we’re responsible for managing the situation, not just for ourselves but also for our family.

The good news is there are many ways to do so. Begin with reviewing our daily activities to fill the time.

Do we engage in television series binge-watching? Some series can seriously affect our outlook of life. What about the constant barrage of news? Do we read them rationally? Or do we get upset at every little event in the world?

Our children have their challenges too. They may be presented with several school tasks during this period. They may not be able to connect with their best friends. They may struggle to understand and follow the online lessons.

Excessive time spent on gadgets may also disrupt their daily routine, including bedtime hours. Sleeping at irregular hours can quickly affect their mood. A friend of mine complained that his teenage daughter has this problem.

NEUTRALISING THE SITUATION

Whatever the cause, we must do something to neutralise the situation. Therapists and psychologists have shared tips on social media on how to control our emotions during the MCO period.

Let me share my personal experience: I can be feeling very happy and laughing at jokes, and then suddenly feel angry when I read about those who’ve violated the MCO rules. This is followed by a feeling of anxiety about my job.

So, I’ve learnt to read the news rationally. I even pick and choose what I want to read. At the same time, I try to remain cool and calm. I also constantly remind myself to be grateful with what I already have, and only focus on things that I can control.

So far, doing this has helped calm my nerves. I also apply the same to my teenage son who’d been struggling with his schoolwork. I asked him to create a practical schedule which includes down time as well. He’s more relaxed and in control now.

Continue to do these and more to attain some balance during this MCO period. Look at the big picture and understand that this too shall pass.

In the meantime, stay positive and don’t stray too far into the uncertain future.

Meditate and pray, as well as help those in dire needs. One day, we’ll remember this period with a smile, knowing that we were able to control our emotions during this challenging time.


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