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Why Am I so Emotional? 10 Reasons Why And What You Can Do About It

Why am I so emotional? Learn more in this blog.

Have you ever started crying for no reason? Or experienced emotions so intense they feel all-consuming? Emotions are a normal and healthy part of life, but sometimes they can get a bit much. If you feel overly emotional, you’re not alone. Your intense emotions might be a normal reaction to something happening in your life, or they could be signs of a deeper mental health issue. Regardless, if you can’t stop crying or are overly emotional and sensitive, it’s important to understand why. 

The Emotion Wheel is one tool that can be used to understand your feelings. A lot of the time, there is a perfectly understandable reason behind your feelings. Other times, further action is needed. Let’s look at 10 reasons why you’re so emotional and how to cope with your intense emotions.

Is it normal to be extremely emotional?

Emotions are a normal and healthy part of everyday life. In some situations, heightened emotions are a perfectly reasonable response. Women cry between 30 to 64 times a year, and men cry 5 to 17 times a year. Being above this range does not necessarily mean you are too emotional. You might be going through something extra stressful that warrants tears or are simply more sensitive than the average person. 

If you are experiencing intense emotions that make it hard to meet your goals, maintain relationships, or stay healthy, therapy can help. Emotions communicate our needs to us, but sometimes they can be hard to read. Therapy provides the coping skills you need to understand what your emotions are saying, manage intense emotions, and not let your emotions determine your actions.

10 Reasons Why You May Be So Emotional

There are a lot of reasons why you may be so emotiona, ranging from chronic stress to depression to just a bad a day. Here are 10 common reasons why you're so emotional and what you can do about it. 

1. Stress

In 2019, the APA found that more than 75% of Americans experienced symptoms of stress, and nearly half of adults say stress negatively impacts their behavior. Then, in 2020, nearly 1 in 5 Americans said their mental health had declined due to stress levels. All in all, stress levels in America are higher than ever. 

Stress is also a big trigger for intense emotions, especially chronic stress. If you have been feeling stressed for a few weeks or longer, your emotions are likely worn thin. You are more likely to cry frequently, experience angry outbursts, and feel depressed. 

How to cope 

When stress is the root cause of your intense emotions, it’s important to learn good stress management techniques. This may look like removing the source of stress from your life if possible, like cutting off a toxic relationship, adjusting your work schedule, or moving somewhere new. This isn’t always possible, so learning strong coping mechanisms is also important. This could look like exercising regularly, practicing meditation or grounding techniques for anxiety, leaning on your support system, or journaling.

2. Unmet Physical Needs

Eating healthy, exercising well, and drinking plenty of water may seem like too simple of a solution, but it’s where everyone who’s been feeling overly emotional should begin. Studies show that diets high in sugar are linked to impaired brain functioning and increased risk for mood disorders like depression. Our emotions tell us something, and sometimes they tell us that our physical needs are not being met. Just like an infant will cry when hungry, tired, or sick, intense emotions are sometimes a way of your body crying out for help.  

How to cope

Start by eating three meals a day, with a vegetable or fruit in every meal. Try to go outside once a day for a walk, or choose a home workout to get your blood flowing.

3. Lack of Sleep

Studies show a link between lack of sleep and increased negative moods like sadness, anger, and frustration. When you’re not sleeping as much as you need to be, you might cry more frequently or feel overwhelmed by your emotions. 

How to cope

Aim for between 7-9 hours of sleep a night. Avoid using your phone or electronics an hour before bed, and make sure to plan about 15 minutes to fall asleep. So if you have to wake up at 6, try to be in bed around 9:45 so you can get a full 8 hours. 


4. Hormonal Imbalances

Hormone imbalances are a common cause of intense emotional mood swings. Both men and women can experience imbalances in insulin, steroids, growth hormones, adrenaline, and thyroid. In men, imbalances in testosterone can also cause mood swings. In women, estrogen and progesterone can become imbalanced and cause intense emotions. 

How to cope 

If a hormonal imbalance is causing strong emotions, we have to figure out what is causing the hormonal imbalance. Some physical health disorders like hypothyroidism are linked to intense emotions and crying more often, and can be treated with medication. Other times, natural supplements like vitamins or exercise can help rebalance hormones.


5. Depression

A common symptom of depression is crying for no reason or feeling sad all the time. Many people feel overly emotional when they experience depression. Fortunately, depression is highly treatable with a mix of talk therapy, coping mechanisms, and sometimes medication. Depression is very common, with around 21 million US adults experiencing it at some point in their life.

How to cope

Talk to a mental health professional if you think you have depression. Learning coping mechanisms can help provide symptom relief quickly.


6. Grief

Losing someone you love is always a traumatic experience and comes with waves of emotions that at times may not feel sensible. Healing from grief takes time, and doesn’t always follow a linear path. If your overwhelming emotions, need to cry, or sensitivity stems from grief, give yourself time to heal and feel the emotions. 

How to cope

The well of emotions that grief brings need to be felt. Allow yourself to fully process your loss however you need how. It’s okay if you feel overly sensitive, want to cry all the time, or are sad, frustrated, irritated, or angry. If you want support in recovering from your loss, talk to a grief therapist.

7. Trauma

Experiencing a traumatic event will always produce strong emotions. This is a natural response as you are healing, a process that can take weeks to months. If your emotions are too intense or have not been healing on their own, a trauma therapist can help. 

How to cope

With treatment, recovering from trauma is more than possible. A trauma therapist will provide you with the tools you need to manage big emotions in a healthy way. You can use these techniques whenever you feel the need to cry or experience large mood swings.

8. Big Life Transitions

Change brings with it a host of new emotions, comfortable and uncomfortable. If you’ve recently moved, changed jobs, got out of or started a new relationship, or welcomed home a new family member, you might be experiencing more extreme emotions than normal. That’s okay, in fact, it’s perfectly normal!

How to cope

The key when experiencing major life transitions is to practice good coping mechanisms and to lean on your support system. Find out what makes you feel best and do more of that. For some, it might be art or exercise. For others, it’s journaling or meditation. Whatever you can to make yourself feel grounded and in control, do that.

9. Burnout

Burnout is a state of mental, physical, and emotional exhaustion after or during a period of chronic stress. It can sap motivation and leave you feeling overly emotional, drained, and hopeless. You might feel like crying for no reason or you’re too sensitive. 

How to cope

Recovering from burnout can be a long process, so it’s important to take small steps at a time. If you can, start by removing yourself from the situation that caused burnout. If you can’t, carve out a time where you can just focus on yourself. Ask your body and mind what they need, and try to provide yourself with those needs as much as possible. If you need help, a mental health therapist can be a great resource. 

10. You're Being Gaslit

The final possibility is that you might not be too emotional at all! Remember that emotions are normal and healthy, especially if you’re going through a stressful time. If someone is telling you “You’re so emotional”, “Stop being so sensitive”, or “It’s not that big of a deal”, they may be gaslighting you. Gaslighting is manipulating someone into questioning their sense of self and reality. For example, someone can convince you that you are too sensitive and emotional when, in reality, you have perfectly healthy emotional reactions to situations. 

If someone calls you too emotional, think for yourself if it’s true. Do you feel like you’re too sensitive? Do you think you cry too much? Have your emotions gotten in the way of accomplishing your goals, doing your job, or maintaining your relationships? Do you think your emotions are negatively impacting your quality of life and happiness? If not, then there’s no problem.

Emotions are subjective, meaning they vary from person to person. Don’t let someone else tell you how you feel or when to feel it.

When to Reach Out for Help

Emotions are normal. They are healthy. They are responses to external events and can tell us what we need. So, if you feel overly emotional, too sensitive, or cry for no reason, should you seek help? 

That depends. We recommend you reach out for mental health therapy if you: 

  • Think you have a mood disorder, such as depression or anxiety. 
  • Are unable to complete daily tasks, like going to work, taking care of family, or personal hygiene. 
  • Believe your emotions are preventing you from accomplishing your goals or living a happy, healthy life.
  • Experience thoughts of suicide. 

Emotions can be a lot. You’re not alone. Mental health therapy is a great way to learn healthy coping mechanisms to understand and listen to your emotions for a healthier and happier life. 


Frequently Asked Questions

 During your menstrual cycle, hormonal fluctuations can have an impact on your emotions. The rise and fall of estrogen and progesterone can affect neurotransmitters in the brain that regulate mood. This can lead to heightened sensitivity, mood swings, and increased emotional responses. It's important to remember that these fluctuations are a normal part of the menstrual cycle and affect individuals differently. If your emotions become overwhelming or significantly impact your daily functioning, it might be helpful to discuss your concerns with a healthcare provider to explore coping strategies and potential treatment options.

 Frequent crying can be a symptom of depression, but it is not the sole indicator. Depression is a complex mental health condition characterized by various emotional, cognitive, and physical symptoms. These may include persistent sadness, loss of interest in activities, changes in appetite and sleep patterns, difficulty concentrating, and feelings of worthlessness or guilt. If you find yourself crying every day and experiencing other symptoms of depression, it is essential to seek professional help. A licensed therapist or healthcare provider can assess your symptoms, provide an accurate diagnosis, and guide you towards appropriate treatments.

 Feeling overly sensitive can stem from a variety of factors. Some individuals are naturally more sensitive due to their innate temperament or personality traits. Environmental factors, such as past experiences or current stressors, can also contribute to heightened sensitivity. Additionally, mental health conditions like anxiety or mood disorders can intensify emotional reactions. Understanding the underlying reasons for your sensitivity can be helpful in managing and coping with it. A therapist can provide guidance, support, and strategies to help you navigate and regulate your emotions effectively.

 Feeling like crying for no apparent reason can be challenging to understand and cope with. It's essential to recognize that emotions are complex, and sometimes, seemingly small triggers can elicit strong emotional responses. This can be related to underlying stress, unresolved emotions, hormonal imbalances, or mental health conditions. Consider exploring the patterns and triggers behind these feelings with a therapist or counselor. They can assist you in identifying potential causes and developing healthy coping mechanisms to regulate your emotions.

 Managing and regulating emotions can be a personal journey, and it varies from person to person. While it's not possible to completely eliminate emotions, there are strategies that can help you develop emotional resilience. Some techniques include engaging in regular exercise, practicing mindfulness and deep breathing exercises, seeking support from loved ones, and attending therapy sessions. Speaking with a therapist can provide you with personalized strategies to understand and manage your emotions effectively. They can work with you to develop coping mechanisms and identify any underlying contributors to excessive emotional reactions. Remember, seeking help is a sign of strength and can empower you to live a brighter life.

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