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emotional troubleshooting

Page history last edited by Tantek 10 years, 10 months ago

Emotional Troubleshooting


Disclaimer: this is nearly all self-introspected (metacognitive, meta-emotional) and may be very specific to my own background / environment. YMMV etc.





If something doesn't feel right emotionally:

  1. walk up Maslow's hiearchy (bathroom, water, food)
  2. if sleep debt, attenuate emotional responses 
  3. take a 10-15 min walk outside among trees, then drink some water, eat a small snack.





If you

  • feel "off"
  • feel "slow"
  • "notice you're not firing on all cylinders"
  • feel emotionally oversensitive (disproportionate to the stimulus)



  1. Methodically take care of needs (even if they don't seem necessary) as ordered in Maslow's hieararchy. (As originally suggested in response to [1](FB))
    1. go to the bathroom (and try to go to the bathroom)
    2. wash your hands with soap, and wash your face with cold water
    3. drink water, if it feels quenching, drink more until you feel you've had enough
    4. eat a small snack, if you feel hunger in response, consider eating a meal
  2. If you don't have to go the bathroom, aren't thirsty (e.g. have been drinking water), and feel full, then ask yourself:
    1. how much sleep did you get last night?
      1. if sleep debt > 2 hrs (e.g. two fewer hours than "normal" for you)
      2. then realize your emotional responses will be magnified (multiplied)
      3. and attenuate your emotional responses (or how much you pay attention to their strength) accordingly
      4. plan on NOT going out / staying out, and instead going to be earlier that night.
    2. are you tired?
      1. physically?
      2. mentally?
      3. emotionally?
      4. socially?
      5. take a respective break / nap
    3. are you stressed out?
      1. due to recent personal events?
      2. due to someone on your mind?
      3. due to reading/watching the news
        1. stop reading/watching the news/Reddit etc. for 24 hours (or more)
  3. If none of those match, or in general,
    1. do 15+ min of light solo physical activity (yoga, hike, walk, jog, run, bike)
      1. going for a 10+ min walk among trees is especially helpful. see related WillpowerImprovement
    2. then drink some water and eat a small snack.


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