Tag Archives: emotion regulation

Anxiety/Fear Observing and Describing Emotions Worksheet

7 Dec


Observing and Describing Emotions

Name: __Marci__________________         Date:___12/6/15___________

Primary Emotions: ____Anxiety/fear____________________  Intensity (0-100)_85

Prompting Event (for emotion, who, what, where, when): Seemed to come out of nowhere.  When I got into my car after studying with 20 somethings friend.  Maybe because I didn’t study as long as I had planned to.  I didn’t say something I was planning on saying.  And I don’t feel very comfortable about the quiz or presentation tomorrow.

Interpretation (beliefs, assumptions, and appraisals on the situation) You’re a failure.  You never end up doing what you plan to. You’re going to screw up this quiz and presentation.  Not going to get an A in Linguistics.  Look like a fool.  Can’t express yourself in relationships.

Body changes and sensing: Stomach hurting, dry mouth, tingling feeling in head

Body Language (facial expression, posture, gestures): Nothing really

Action Urges (what did I feel like doing, what did I want to say):


Self harm.  Knock myself out w/meds.  Try to get someone to reassure me

What I said or did in the situation: Tell myself it’s okay.  Read an article to distract.  Remember my agreements and expectations.  Going to look to wellness book for comfort.  Try to be nice to myself.

After effects (secondary emotions, memories, thoughts, state of mind, behavior):  Guilt.  More anxiety/fear now about transferring.  Remembering arguement a couple weeks ago.  Remembering times in the past I had been soothes and longing for that.

Function of emotion: ___???_____________________________________________________

Other possible interpretations: Worry is normal but it’s not the end of the world.  “Your reality is the same, it’s just your persception that’s changed.  It can change back.  He’s not going to abandon you and neither am I.”-Case Manager

New Intensity (0-100) _75__

Intensity after reading Wellness Book (0-100)  40


Observing and Describing Emotions

Name: ______________________________         Date:_______________________

Primary Emotions: ____________________________________  Intensity (0-100)______

Prompting Event (for emotion, who, what, where, when): __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Interpretation (beliefs, assumptions, and appraisals on the situation) _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Body changes and sensing: ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Body Language (facial expression, posture, gestures):


Action Urges (what did I feel like doing, what did I want to say):


What I said or did in the situation: __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

After effects (secondary emotions, memories, thoughts, state of mind, behavior):  __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Function of emotion: ____________________________________________________________

Other possible interpretations: __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


New Intensity (0-100) _______

Graduated from Year Long DBT Class

11 Nov

Yesterday I finished my last class of my DBT year long program. I got a certificate from them as well as my sister (in case Kaiser didn’t do anything).

What I learned most was that my interpersonal skills aren’t that great because of problems regulating emotion and tolerating distress. This was helpful to know since I feel confident in those two skill sets.

DBT: Option Analysis

3 Nov

Options for Responding to Any Problem Situation

  1. Solve the problem.
  • Use my skills to solve the problem
  • Leave and come back to the situation later

2.  Change my reaction to the problem.

  • Challenge my interpretation of events
  • Put problem in a new context (wise mind)
  • Can I re-frame this as a problem that I can solve?

3.  Cope better with my reaction to the problem

  • Use distress tolerance and emotion regulation skills
  • Radically accept my reaction

4.  Stay Miserable


Option Analysis Worksheet

Another quick way to remember is CALM




(Be) Miserable

31 Days of Lists Challenge: Day 30

15 Oct

31 days of list challenge

Day 30: Things I’m looking forward to

  • My Halloween party (10/30)
  • Going to see Madea on da run (10/16)
  • Scrapbook Expo (10/17)
  • High school friend’s husbands birthday (10/17)
  • Halloween (10/31)
  • Music festival with 20 somethings friend (10/24)
  • My birthday (11/12)
  • Everclear Concert  (11/20)
  • Christmas (12/25)

BPD Extreme Emotions

25 Jun

I sort of thought I had my emotions more controlled than it turns out I do.  During periods of depression my moods only fluctuate from extremely depressed to apathetic depression.  After my long depressive episode last year I felt a couple months of true stability.  Then life started happening and my emotions got all over the place again.  I could give you an exact reason why for each and every change though they may have seemed minor to anybody else.

The emotional episodes in the last week have been the extremest in at least 2 years maybe more.  Also I haven’t been able to assign each episode to a specific trigger.  Yesterday with my case manager we just talked about grief and change; well mostly I cried and she mentioned those things.  Also, when I get on these rolls all the changes that are up and coming hit me at once, but at the same time I’d say they’re always looming so I wouldn’t call it a trigger.  Anyways, I’m still confused as to what is setting these off.

I had an appointment with the therapist today, she seemed more personable which was odd for me.  She’s usually very ‘blank slate.’  We talked about trying to be in wise mind with all these changes that are coming up and the growth I want.  Maybe to write them down so when I get those episodes I can look at it, though I’ll probably be too irrational and emotional.  But at least it’s a suggestion.  I’ll have to look at my other emotion regulation and distress tolerance skills.

As with BPD, I’m flying high today and nothing is wrong with the world other than my eyes still burning from all the crying yesterday.

DBT: Opposite Action

9 Jun

Changing emotions by acting opposite to the current emotion.  One of my favorite DBT skills under the Emotion Regulation Module and this weeks homework.  I mostly use opposite action with fear (anxiety) and sadness/depression.  Maybe I’ll work on unjustified guilt this week….



  • Do what you are afraid of doing… over and over and over.
  • Approach events. places, tasks, activities, or people you are afraid of.
  • Do things to give yourself a sense of control and mastery.
  • When overwhelmed, make a list of small tasks or steps you can do.  Do the first thing on the list.

Guilt or Shame

(when it is justified and fits your wise mind values)

  • Repair the transgression.
  • Say you’re sorry.  Apologize
  • Make things better.  Do something nice for the person you offended (or for someone else if that is not possible)
  • Commit to avoiding the mistake in the future.
  • Accept the consequences gracefully, then let it go.

Guilt or Shame

(when it is not justified and the emotion doesn’t fit with your wise mind)  Some people get confused by this one an example would be if saying no makes you feel guilty or asking for your needs to be met.  Those are not justified guilt or shame feelings.

  • Do what makes you feel guilty or ashamed… over and over and over.
  • Approach, don’t avoid.

Sadness or Depression

  • Get active.  Approach, don’t avoid.
  • Do things that make you feel competent and self confident.


  • Gently avoid the person with who you are angry, rather than attacking.
  • Avoid thinking about him or her rather than ruminating.
  • Do something nice rather than mean or attacking.

DBT: Positive Planet Journal

9 Jun

So this weeks DBT homework was to work on a positive planner journal. You are suppose to make a statement and then list evidence to back it up. The statement of course is meant to be positive. Here’s mine.  Would love to hear anything you think I should add.

Evidence that: I’m important

  1. Certain people would miss me if I was gone.
  2. Gibby would be home alone a lot, without me.
  3. Tobias counts on me for McDoubles
  4. My sister says I’ve shaped her life in a way she can’t explain.
  5. My case manager says she’s always glad to see me on the schedule
  6. 20 somethings friend says he can share fun experience and human feelings with me.
  7. I make other people feel better.
  8. By making people cards
  9. By listening and not judging.
  10. By cheering them up and giving good advice.
  11. I help my family be on time.
  12. I share knowledge and insight, that people wouldn’t have without me.
  13. I promote acceptance (Mental health and LGBT)
  14. Over 800 people read my blog.

Having a crappy day but using DBT skills

3 Jun

Yesterday was crappy and it rolled over to today.  I woke up not wanting to get out of bed, so I didn’t.  I laid in bed drifting in and out of consciousness till my mom told me to get up at 11 and take my pills.  I did and promptly went and laid back down.  After writing my last blog and laying there for awhile, my thoughts started bothering me again and then my weight.  I vowed not to go out to lunch today and I didn’t.  I’m thinking about talking to my case manager about the issues this morning, but ashamed again.  I was really happy when I got a comment on my blog saying here is a smile for you.  I decided to use opposite action (an emotion regulation skill) and willingness over willfulness (a distress tolerance skill).  I feel proud of myself for getting up and using skills despite the way I was feeling.  I just wish someone else would recognize it, that would make me feel much better and more confident.  I have some plans tonight and that is helping.  I don’t think it’s fair I have to do so much work to try and feel decent.  I was thinking and most the people I admire have had difficulties in their life, I find it really hard to admire someone who has had an easy life, even if they have accomplished great things.

RESOURCE: DBT Ways to describe emotions- Sadness

30 May

Often times it is difficult to accurately articulate exactly what we are feeling.  Sometimes emotions mix or one will lead to another very quickly.  These lists are to help you identify clearer the description of sadness, prompting events, interpretations that prompt it, experiencing the emotion, expressing and acting on it as well as the after effects of it.  The bolded ones are things I really relate to.

Sadness Words:

  • Sadness
  • Agony
  • Alienation
  • Anguish
  • Crushed
  • Defeated
  • Dejection
  • Depression
  • Despair
  • Disappointment
  • Discontentment
  • Dismay
  • Displeasure
  • Distraught
  • Gloom
  • Glumness
  • Grief
  • Homesickness
  • Hopelessness
  • Hurt
  • Insecurity
  • Isolation
  • Loneliness
  • Melancholy
  • Misery
  • Neglect
  • Pity
  • Rejection
  • Sorrow
  • Suffering
  • Unhappiness
  • Woe

Prompting events for feeling sadness:

  • Things turn out badly
  • Getting what you don’t want
  • Not getting what you want and believe you need in life; thinking about what you have not gotten that you wanted or needed.
  • Not getting what you’ve worked for.
  • Things being worse than you expected
  • The death of someone you love, thinking about the deaths of people you love.
  • Losing a relationship, thinking about losses.
  • Being separated from someone you care for or value; thinking about how much you miss someone
  • Being rejected or excluded.
  • Being disapproved of or disliked; not being valued by people you care about.
  • Discovering that you are powerless or helpless.
  • Being with someone else who is sad, hurt, or in pain
  • Reading about other people’s problems or troubles in the world.

Interpretations that prompt feelings of sadness:

  • Believing that a separation from someone will last for a long time or will never end
  • Believing that you are worthless or not valuable
  • Believing that you will not get what you want or need in your life.
  • Hopeless beliefs

Experiencing the emotion of sadness:

  • Feeling tired, run-down, or low in energy
  • Feeling lethargic, listless; wanting to stay in bed all day
  • Feeling as if nothing is pleasurable anymore
  • Feeling a pain or hollowness in your chest or gut
  • Feeling empty
  • Crying, tears, whimpering
  • Feeling as if you can’t stop trying; feeling that if you ever start crying you will never be able to stop.
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Breathlessness
  • Dizziness

Expressing and acting on sadness:

  • Frowning, not smiling
  • Eyes drooping
  • Sitting or lying around; being inactive
  • Making slow, shuffling movements
  • A slumped, drooping posture
  • Withdrawing from social contact
  • Talking a little or not at all
  • Using a low, quiet, slow, or monotonous voice
  • Saying sad things
  • Giving up and no longer trying to improve.
  • Moping, brooding, or acting moody
  • Talking to someone about sadness

After-effects of sadness:

  • Feeling irritable, touchy, or grouchy
  • Having a negative outlook; thinking only about the negative side of things
  • Blaming or criticizing yourself
  • Remembering or imagining other times you were sad or other losses.
  • Hopeless Attitude
  • Not being able to remember happy things
  • Fainting spells
  • Nightmares
  • Insomnia
  • Appetite disturbance, indigestion
  • Yearning and searching for the thing lost
  • Depersonalization, dissociative experiences, numbness, or shock
  • Anger, shame, fear, or other negative emotions

Also in this series:

Ways to describe emotions- Anger

A day off

28 Feb

I have a pretty busy schedule lately which is nice because it doesn’t give me a lot of time to dwell on my feelings and thoughts.  Last night I got food poisoning, I was suppose to go to a volunteer training for my LGBT group but it was all day and at the point when it started I didn’t know if I could be away from the bathroom for that long.  So I decided to stay home, some friends are coming over tonight to watch the L word.  And my parents were gone, my mom was nice enough to ask me if I wanted the house to myself and she’d take my dad somewhere.  So along with just kind of having the day to myself I’ve been working on doing things that are good for my mood.  This is the first day in a few days that I haven’t felt horrible.  It’s funny how I work, usually when something bad happens I’m okay for a couple days and then it just hits me.  I guess that’s what the break up did.  Also when I start to get bad with a few symptoms a lot of other ones get out of control too.  I guess I just don’t have as much resilience once something has hit me hard.  I still catch myself thinking of what I should have said but I need to get over this.  Off to do some smashing and maybe some lego.  A distress tolerance skill is Activities and an emotional regulation skill is pleasurable activities.  I think I need to type up some DBT stuff like explanations of the skill.  Would that be helpful for my readers?  Let me know with this poll.