Self-Regulation and Control
There exists a profound variance between self-regulation and control. Self-control is usually about preventing sharp instincts whereas self-regulation involves reducing the intensity and occurrence of strong impulses through the management of recovery and stress load (MindLab, 2016). In fact, self-control is made possible by self-regulation, but the reason usually lies deep inside somebody’s mind. Understanding and learning to control the two prove to be helpful when one approaches several life experiences. Use of positive psychology techniques helps individuals to monitor their emotions in the case of negative experiences and also help one to cultivate feelings of happiness (Fredickson, 2012). Various techniques can be employed to ensure that one has control over their emotions and regardless of the circumstance they are in they can use the situation to their advantage.
Making positive choices such as building relationships with other people is one technique to use. Most research findings have found that spending time with others makes us joyful. Social relationships either physical or virtual prove to be efficient in the area of self-control and regulation (MindLab, 2016). In using a cellphone to text or call a friend at random times and asking them how their day is, is quite gratifying to the person and makes the person feel happy despite the condition affecting them. Making new friends also has been proven by various studies to promote emotional wellbeing as it gives an individual a sense of belonging and the assurance that his or her peers have their backs in case of any situation (Fredickson, 2012).
Engaging in positive habits such as random deeds of kindness, help in self-regulation and control is another technique that can be employed (Fredickson, 2012). They increase one’s happiness. People doing volunteer work have known this strategy and studies have shown that people end up significantly happier than before engaging in the deed. Through this technique, people also build more positive relationships as they get to meet new people who have a positive outlook towards life (MindLab, 2016). This positive aura will be reflected upon everyone in the group, and everyone will feel good about it. This technique is useful because of various factors such as variety, social support, and their frequency. This influences its success at increasing joy since if one attends a charity event twice a week, it increases their potency to increasing happiness.
Positive interventions techniques such as self-reflection, gratitude visits and counting one’s blessings are considered to have emotional benefits. Taking time to reflect on oneself is quite beneficial and can be better if one joins an intervention group where people share their opinions and thoughts creating a sense of belonging (Zolfagharifard, 2017). In such groups, one is helped to identify their strengths which eventually lead to personal growth and success since they create hope, optimism, and confidence in a person. A confident individual is usually happy as they believe in themselves even if the circumstances are dire, they have the hope that they will prevail (MindLab, 2016).
Embracing positive thinking and emotions even after challenges helps boost one’s happiness. Adverse occasions usually remain in mind for long and keep on affecting a person more than positive ones. Even after criticism, you should hold on to the positive side of things to prevent them from getting into your head as this might drag your morale all the way down (MindLab, 2016). Negative thoughts are hard to challenge, but this technique has various strategies under its sleeve to actively conquer this by using simple exercises to change your way of thinking. This reorients your perception of the deed you thought you did wrong and helps one see the silver lining in every challenging situation.
Using signature strengths especially if one has just recovered from a life-threatening condition could also be an effective technique. These people tend to exhibit bravery, gratitude, love, spirituality, appreciation of beauty relative to people who have not undergone the same experience. This instills a sense of victory and appreciation of life and other little aspects of it that are usually overlooked (MindLab, 2016). These strengths are quite useful as an individual can use their past experiences to encourage others going through the same not to be sad or not to give up on life and to be patient. This motivates individuals to be happy despite the circumstances they are facing.
Humor interventions are supported by research findings that they lead to the promotion of emotional well-being. They are coupled with a variety of desirable results such as increased coping abilities, increased positive sentiments and decreased negative feelings (Lyubomirsky & Layous, 2013).
Gratitude interventions have also been supported to enhance a person’s well-being. These can include counting one’s blessings, writing letters to express their appreciation to others (Zolfagharifard, 2017). These interventions helped an individual being better and satisfied in life. Engaging in volunteer work has also been under test by experimenters as a happiness-increasing strategy. These activities usually vary between people and are reliant on various factors such as the person’s features, social support, exercise frequency, time, and frequency of engagement in the activity (Lyubomirsky & Layous, 2013).
Some of the recommendations I propose include: Including people in decision-making processes such as in workplaces. We should strive to support people emotionally to achieve self-control in behavior. I also recommend encouraging optimism at all institutions, may it be schools, hospitals, prisons and others. I also support challenging the negativity bias in our minds which keeps one from progress as negative thoughts tend to imprint more in our brains than positive ones.
Last but not least, ensure that you have strong social relations and associate diversely with other people.
Fredickson, B. L. (2012). The role of positive emotions in positive psychology. American Psychologist, 56(3), 218-226.
Lyubomirsky, S., & Layous, K. (2013). How do simple positive activities increase well-being?. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 22(1), 57-62.
MindLab. (2016). How to be Happier – Five Techniques from Positive Psychology – MindLab. Retrieved September 28, 2017, from https://mind-lab.com/happier-five-techniques-positive-psychology/
Zolfagharifard, R. (2017). 12 Positive Psychology Interventions + 3 Ways To Find The One You Need. Retrieved September 28, 2017, from https://positivepsychologyprogram.com/positive-psychology-interventions/