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Have you ever been so in love, lust, or enamored by a man that sometimes you’d lose your mind? Or feel like you were losing it at times?

How to Control Toxic Feeelings and Take Your Power BackMaybe you didn’t lose your mind but you would lose significant portions of yourself. It would especially happen when the relationship would hit a snag or he wouldn’t act “right.”You know, when he’s not calling as much as you’d like, not as attentive or enamored by you as you think he ought to be, or it seems he’s losing interest.

Maybe I’m just describing me and your girlfriends, and you really can’t relate.

Well, here’s what I’ve discovered about negative emotions:

1. They are triggered by the story we tell ourselves, not by what’s happening

2. When we change the story, we thereby change the emotions we experience

3. An overreaction to a situation it’s an indication that we’re reacting not so much to that present situation but to a past hurt, an old wound

Now, don’t get me wrong, we need to honor our feelings. But there are many times when the story that we are telling ourselves is completely fictional, we have no basis for it in fact. See, stuff that happen to us as children and earlier traumas and hurts get triggered whenever we experience something that looks a lot like that past experience.

Here’s the challenge: to see the current event for what it is.

To not confuse it with the past.

And to decide to be the master of your emotions.

You really do hold the key to your happiness, and that includes your emotional well being. Really, you do.

So, here’s how to take your power back:

1. Understand that in many cases you are confusing what your beloved does or don’t do with your interpretations.

Remember, interpretations are largely based on some old stuff, i.e., baggage from your childhood and past. So, for example, if your ex cheated on you when he was out of town on business, you might find it impossible to trust your new man when he travels out of town. Consequently, your insecurity might cause you to call repeatedly or even interrogate him for no apparent reason, other than he’s leaving town.

2. Know that you are not crazy; you’re wounded.

You need emotional healing.

3. Let’s explore ways to master our emotions.

By the way, if your over-reactions, outbursts, clinging, nagging, snooping, and any other behaviors are sabotaging your relationships, it’s not only okay but recommended that you seek professional help. Why? Because you are worth it. Success in love is your birthright.

Okay, let me offer three things that you can do right now to tame toxic emotions:

1. Love YOU

There’s no man worth losing yourself or your dignity over. Love you enough not to make a man your world. He’s a PART of your world, not your world. When we make a man the center of our world we are heading for trouble. BIG trouble. Keep your friends near and dear. This includes male friends. Too often women make one man their everything, then when they need the ear and perspective that only a man can bring, they’re stuck.

2. Think Before You Act

This can sometimes be hard. Because when you’re triggered, just like a gun, you fire off. Never make important decisions while you’re reeling. You’ll regret it later. EVERY emotion need not be acted on. Sit still. If you believe in prayer, as I do, pray. Take a walk. Call a friend, an emotionally savvy friend.

3. Change Your Story

Remember, much of what people react to isn’t really happening; it’s ALL in your head. Sure, sometimes men misbehave. Or just don’t do what we want. When that happens, talk to yourself. Tell you a new story. Remember, usually things aren’t what they appear.

Take your power back, emotionally! Until you have hard evidence that a man is misbehaving, be slow to react.  And if you must tell yourself stories, only tell yourself  stories that empower you!

DeBora M. Ricks

DeBora M. Ricks is the author of Why Did He Break Up With Me? Lessons in Love, Loss & Letting Go and Love Addicted: One Woman’s Spiritual Journey Through Emotional Dependency and Write That Book! How to Start or Finish the You are Meant to Write. DeBora has appeared on such shows as NPR’s Tell Me More with Michel Martin, WHUR, WOLB, WBAL-TV and WJZ-13. She is also the host of She Struts Radio, on Blogtalkradio. DeBora is the former executive producer of The Anthony McCarthy Show, a WEAA cultural affairs talk show. She travels the globe but calls Baltimore home.  Visit DeBora at

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