We see more and more folks today including children and young adults who are seriously struggling with proper emotional release. Struggling with controlling their emotions in light of normal stressors of life and events.
Yet the body is perfectly designed to deal properly with normal amounts of stress and bounce back….So why does it seem like it’s harder and harder for people to go with the flow so to speak when typical stress events cross their paths today?
Maybe the sensory overload that happens today with social media, the marked level of violence portrayed in our entertainment industry including music, the constant barrage of “fear” factoring by media headlines and the popularity of violent video games that majority of parents allow their young children to play (wonder how many parents take the time to sit with their children and watch them play some of the video games to actually see the content); then add to the equation, the barrage of chemicals in our living environments which work against the body as endocrine disruptors which interfere with hormonal responses in the body.
Too many folks no longer have specific set routine schedules either, we have no rest and relaxation that is not still interrupted with the constant companions we call cell phones. You need only to walk thru a sit down restaurant and look around at the people sitting at the tables. Too few are even personally interacting with one another, instead they all sit there glued to their cell phones letting time evade them of physically and emotionally spending time with the loved ones they are with. People are taking up physical space but it’s like they are personally unavailable.
Same with parents who have young children, are relying on now plugging them into tablets and I-pads vs. parenting them? There is nothing wrong with allowing your children to play on these devices, it is the way of their future and they for obvious reasons need to know how to use them, and there are some wonderful educational interactive programs devised for learning, the technology’s versions of PBS programming so to speak; but set a time ratio per day that they are allowed to spend on it. Children are even spending less and less time in school actually physically writing. You do realize that the process of writing with a pen/pencil and paper or using crayons and coloring books serves some critical brain/neurological & hand and eye development? Same with reading “books”, I mean actual books, everything is moving towards “audio” books, vs. children and their brains having to perceive what their eyes are seeing; instead we listen to videos, and audio books with little or no vocal inflection, Ever really listen to an audio book? The voice is mono-toned no expression or inflection to even make the story interesting. Yet when I physically “read” a book my brain actually perceives the emotional tone of what I’m reading. How many parents actually read books to their kids today? Not only read the book but get silly with it, change voices for the different characters and stuff, you don’t understand that when you do things like that you are “TEACHING” a critical part of communication to your children, you are showing them personality and so much more. I realize we are in the technology age, but there is NO SUBSTITUTION for parents to make the time to spend physically and emotionally PRESENT with their children, teaching them, playing with them, enjoying them.
I have to admit, I am guilty of it too; it is super easy to become unaware of how much time all the apps. on our phones receive vs. the people in our lives. With me having a practice/business, my emails come through my phone, I have the various social media accounts like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc. that I have clients reach out to me through. So I have to frequently check the status of those accounts. But then it’s so easy to get sidelined as you are intrigued by a post or article and next thing you know 40 minutes has zipped past. Or a BIG one for me is my followers and patients frequently send me things to read especially with supplements, herbal remedies, or a variant of health posts/articles etc. I am learning how to set and establish healthy boundaries on those areas because I would never get anything done other then responding thinking I’m being polite. Yet it literally sucks my time like a never ending vortex.
How many of us have been short or testy with our loved ones including our children because they are trying to get our attention away from our faces being buried in our phones? Technology is both a blessing and a hinderance.
That being said…. Emotional imbalances seem to be at an all time elevated high. I started realizing that more then 35% of my patients within the past year all have the complaint that they cannot cope with their own emotions. This is a REAL thing today, and I consider it to be a SERIOUS wake up call of sorts!
Some things to make note of: If you find your emotions feel like they are on the roller coaster highs/lows here are some things you can incorporate into your daily routines, many of my patients have noted that within 2 weeks they can certainly see and feel notable improvements …
- Begin your day with an 8oz. mug of hot lemon water (this includes toddlers and young adults, you can sweeten initially with small amounts of raw honey or Agave Nectar)
- Go to bed earlier so you can wake earlier as a family to actually pray together for the day and have breakfast as a family before everyone jets out the door for work and school. ( I am blown away at how many children today are getting themselves ready and out the door for school because the parents have already left for work). There is much to be said for “Pre-paring” what is needed to start the next day the night before. Set out clothing for everyone, figure out ahead of time what is for breakfast so preparation runs smoothly and children can and should help with this, you are teaching them how to be responsible.) I realize some parents due to commute times and such may need to leave early for work, but like I said there is no reason why children cannot be woke early too so that everyone gets to physically see and interact together before they start their day!
- Adults: how many have “games” on their cell phones ones that you find yourself playing here and there daily? DELETE them… seriously, I personally LOVED these games, I used the excuse that when I was waiting, or while my husband was driving, I’d occupy myself playing those, they are HUGE time manipulators. Take that time instead to actually INTERACT with real walking, talking PEOPLE and make eye contact while doing it!
- Children: young ones and right up to early teens, establish SET time limits on how much time they can spend on these devices. In the evenings instead of being plugged into the television, turn it off and play board games, do crafts together, engage your kids to do puzzles with YOU, build Lego’s together, clean the kitchen after meals as a family instead of everyone eating and going their separate ways as mom is left to clean up. So many of us have claimed our RIGHTS at the end of the day to “unplug” by literally vegetating in front of the television, and so we are not interrupted, we’ve made sure that the kids each have a television and/or tablet or such of their own to close themselves off in their rooms. We are “electing” to teach isolation vs. social interaction right under our own roofs! What happened to teaching our kids how to paint, how to build, how to cook, how to sew, how to play?
- Check everyone’s schedules for extra activities; i.e many kids are in multiple things at school, like they play every sport offered at school, they are in a variety of clubs etc. at school too and they are still meant to juggle their school work, homework etc. I’m all for kids exercising and playing sports, but when we allow them to be in everything and then wonder why they can’t handle stress or can’t be successful or excel in something could it be because they are functioning on “overload”? Pare it down, pick one or two favorite sports (truth is the majority of kids that play sports are not going to move into the sport as a profession). I keep seeing different posts through social media about how many of the classes like shop class, cooking, sewing classes should be brought back into the schools….yet my mind keeps asking why can’t the parents be meeting that need at home with their children? If you are cooking meals why are the kids not helping? If Dads are fixing or building or repairing something why aren’t the kids helping and learning (within safety reasons, they can hand tools learning their uses etc.) You get my drift, why do we as a societal whole seem to be more comfortable abdicating the “teaching” of our children to someone else in the areas we are more then equipped to teach via example and simply by spending time with our kiddo’s? Most families are running in separate directions all week long!
- When is the last time we were honest with ourselves and identified NEEDS vs. WANTS… can you by choice scale back how you live or the gadgets and such that many are in debt trying to own, adding to their emotional overload. Does anyone but me seem to notice that there are kidney dialysis centers popping up like Walgreens, (one on every corner so to speak)? If you don’t think emotions affect our health you are WRONG! Those who are constantly in fear over not having enough money, that emotional zone affects the kidneys. I had a family I was working with their 14 year old daughter who was having a roller coaster of emotional imbalances and they wanted to try changing her diet and such before turning to prescription medications. After the 2nd appointment, I counseled with the parents because every other word out of their lips was about “money”, if we do this it will take away from our vacation this year, it will cost, cost, cost, I mean it was infused into just about every sentence in some fashion. So their daughter lived in constant emotional stress over finances that she wasn’t even responsible for… and let me be clear they weren’t struggling in their finances but money was more in their forefront of conversation then any other topic. We teach our children how to respond to stress by how we model it to them, we teach them how to cope again by how we model it to them. The old saying “DO as I SAY NOT as I DO” doesn’t work, never has and never will. Actions will always win!
Simply by having a moment to be simply honest with yourself, and to be willing to make lifestyle shifts the “stressors” can be limited by establishing different boundaries… Many are on sensory overload and that factor can be improved when choices are changed!
Now, there are also nutritional imbalances that contribute to emotions being out of sync too: I also address those on a one to one personal approach. There is NO one size fits all approach so rather then toss out a variety of herbal/nutritional remedies and such. When it comes to this health issue, I prefer to work with my patients to tailor their nutritional battle plan. If that is something you are interested in you can go to my website : www.jodibarnett758.com and click on the services tab.
Dr. Jodi Barnett N.D.
Harvested Health LLC.