Emotional Hijacking: 6 Signs To Watch Out For And Ways To Deal With It

By: FPJ Web Desk | July 24, 2023

Emotional hijacking is a loud or extreme reaction to an emotional state. This happens when strong emotions take over the thinking part of the brain and the brain perceives a threat and hence, it starts to give out a reaction that turns out to be extreme. With the heightened emotional state, the brain also goes into flight or fight mode

An overwhelming surge of emotions: is one of the first symptoms of emotional hijacking which we do not know how to control

Physiological changes: We start to feel elevated heart rate and tense muscles when we feel emotional hijacking. This makes us feel unrest in the body and the mind, enabling an extreme reaction

Loss of rationality: With such changes in the body and the mind, we start to feel a loss of rationality. Due to the same, we feel the intense urge to show a reaction

Difficulty in communicating: We feel that we are not able to communicate the things that we are feeling – this makes us take an impulsive decision and we end up showing an extreme reaction

Inability to regulate emotions: We are also not able to regulate the nervous system and the reactions – we fail to regulate our emotions and feel unrest. Short-term focus: We do not think of the long-term consequences of our actions

Example of situations when a person may experience emotional hijack include public speaking, road rage incidents, work conflicts, relationship disagreement and financial stress

Tips to deal with emotional hijacking: Do deep breathing as it activates the body's relaxation response

Distract yourself: like going for a short walk, listening to music, taking a shower

Seek social support: talk to someone you trust as it will provide relief and perspective

Reflect and learn: After the emotional hijack has passed, take time to reflect on what triggered the response and how you handled it. Learn from the experience to better cope with similar situations in the future

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