The human mind is hardwired to dwell on the negative, and with so much adversity in the world today, there’s no shortage of things to worry about.
Some of the ways we try to deal with these negative emotions actually end up making things worse. In doing so, we unintentionally make the original situation much worse. Susan Zinn, a psychologist in Santa Monica, California, says, “we have to think about how to replace them with a higher-value coping skill” instead of giving in to these irrational habits.
In this article, we will discuss some of the most typical ways in which people’s irritability is exacerbated by their own lack of coping mechanisms, as well as some strategies that can be used in their place.
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Refusing to Eat when one is Physically Hungry
To put it simply, hanger exists. Blood sugar drops cause a surge in cortisol, the stress hormone.
Canadian author, psychologist, and trauma recovery expert Heather Kent remarked that low energy makes people “irritable, lethargic, sluggish, and annoyed.” There is less tolerance for things among us.
She went on to say that it can add to the irritation since it can interfere with your capacity to focus and, thus, your performance.
If you find it difficult to remember when you were last hungry, setting an alarm for every few hours can help, as can including meal breaks into your day as you would meetings.
Watching Hours and Hours of Emotionally Draining Television Every Night
You know you shouldn’t be watching your Favourite binge-worthy crime series right before night, yet that’s when you always find yourself watching it.
While some of us find these broadcasts completely unobtrusive, for others, watching them might leave us feeling irritated or even melancholy long after we’ve stopped watching. This is especially troublesome at night, as it might prevent one from getting restful sleep.
Staying up late and watching TV makes us realise, “Oh, crap, I have to get up in five hours,” as Kent put it. More often than I’d like, that occurs. If we aren’t getting enough rest, you’ll be cranky the next day.
To combat this, keep the intensely emotional shows for a gloomy Saturday and pick instead for something more relaxing to watch before bed.
Being a Shut-in all Day
Daylight hours can pass quickly, even when you’re busy, so it’s easy to forget about them. This boring routine may be irritating if you’ve reached the end of the day or several days without leaving the house.
In order to facilitate a more pleasant morning routine and lower levels of irritability, Zinn recommended a tool supported by scientific research. Take a step outside and expose yourself to natural light within the first half an hour of your day.
Moreover, she recommended waiting a couple of hours before consuming coffee in the morning. Caffeine being a stimulant, you may be giving yourself anxiety or restlessness before you even begin. Instead, rise and shine for some vitamin D before starting your day and grabbing a cup of joe.
Constantly Checking Your Phone for New Notifications
According to Zinn, the average individual checks their phone close to fifty times each day, and it takes about twenty minutes to regain concentration after being distracted by a phone.
According to Nevada Mental Health doctor Timothy Jeider, this can cause issues with time management and a general sense of being overburdened, both of which can contribute to irritation.
To paraphrase what he said: “After we’ve gone down the rabbit hole, we blame ourselves for becoming sidetracked and squandering time, which frustrates us, undermines our attention and productivity, so we seek out a distraction from frustration, and the cycle of mini-frustrations repeats, building on the last.”
Moving your phone to another room is the simplest (and hardest) approach, as stated by Zinn. Aside from hiding notifications behind a passcode, you can activate the phone’s “do not disturb” mode.
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The doomscroll is a fact of life in the age of social media. Kent argued that the mental health of the general public was being severely compromised by the prevalence of fake news, conspiracy theories, and alarmist reporting about potential pandemics.
We’re prone to being addicted to the constant stream of bad news about the epidemic, she added, and it’s making people more irritable, aggressive, and angry.
The television or radio you have on in the background can also be a source of emotionally draining news in addition to your phone. We might be inundated with it on platforms like Instagram Stories or TikTok.
Reduce your news intake to once or twice a day to mitigate the harmful impacts. Kent suggests limiting one’s news intake to first thing in the morning and last thing at night.