Updated: Dec 29, 2019
Are the mood swings getting to you? A constant fluctuation of moods. Generally ranging from changing every few moments to every few days or weeks. I can understand. While they’re frustrating to deal with, trust me, they’re normal. So, you’re not strange. Nor are you being a dramatic teen. It’s a part of dealing with the changing hormones over the teenage years and there’s nothing you can do to control them.
The consequences can be managed though. There are also techniques you can use to reduce the frequency of mood swings you’re having. So long as you deal with the before and after of a mood swing as best as possible, you’re doing the right thing.
The first thing to do is acknowledge your changing moods. Don’t be embarrassed or try to hide it up. Looking back at 12 year old me, I was a very different person. Since then, I have been through many different stages of development. These have included stages of isolation, extreme stress and anxiety, and the most recent stage of finally being a bit more care free.
During the prime of my teen years I’d often be teased about being a teenager from family members and so felt I couldn’t express how I felt. I felt I had to be perfect and get through the teenage years without any blips. Well, it doesn’t quite work like that. It’s most definitely healthier to be talking things out, trying to converse how you feel and experimenting with different coping techniques.
So, that’s my first tip. Try your best to understand how you feel. That’s not the easiest tip, and not always possible. Try to understand whether you want some alone time or want to be around people. If you’re struggling to understand how you feel, try writing it down. Whether that’s with pen and paper, on the notes section on your phone or by sending multiple frustrated voice notes to a friend or someone willing to listen.
You may be thinking, you are not a writer. This doesn’t exclude you from being able to write down how you’re feeling. Often you’ll find raw emotions will come pouring out without having to do any excessive thinking. I was always the kid in class who never finished writing their story off because I got bored. I was the person who’d purchase diaries at the start of each year and give up noting down my daily tasks within a week of purchase. I still am the really cool kid who thinks they don’t need to use their planer, and insteads tries to remember very long to do lists in their head. But, when I need to write, I write. When you need to vent, you will be able to. So whether that’s on paper or vocalising your feelings, make sure you get them out. Do not keep them suppressed. It’ll do more damage than good in the long run. Don’t think you’re putting people out of their way by getting them to listen to you. Because trust me, someone is willing to listen to you.
Mood changes can happen within minutes of each other
I’ve noticed there are times where I’ll be texting a friend and they say something which changes my mood - in a way they might not have necessarily intended. Ultimately you know yourself best. If something causes your mood to spiral, don’t feel guilty to disappear on the friend or person you’re conversing with. Similarly, don’t take it personally if your friend disappears on you. You are your main priority. So, often I do disappear on online conversations and take an hour to a few hours out to do something else.
Tip 2, take yourself out of the situation. Take the time instead to do what you feel is best for you. As cliche as that is. If you’re at school and it’s lunch time, maybe pop to the library or a quiet space. Find an empty corridor and just take a moment for yourself. If you can go outside, perhaps to a playground area, do it. If I’m not in the common room or study room, you’ll usually find me going for a walk out of school!
If you’re at home, then change rooms. Currently I’m sat downstairs since the bedroom became just a little too claustrophobic today morning. I’d always recommend fresh air and being able to inhale some fresh, clean air. Music can help too. Other times, silence is more powerful.
Other than a change of scenery, some like to immerse themselves in something they enjoy. Whether that’s kickboxing, singing, playing the piano, painting or something else, do what you enjoy the most.
Once you’ve taken that time out, I hope you’ll feel a bit more at peace.
If you recognise your changes in mood to be very extreme or aggressive, or if you’re worried about your mental health, know that no concern is too small to be expressed to people that can help.
You're not alone!
There are multiple helpline handles, all which are really informal. You can have a 5 minute chat to chat lasting a few hours. Whatever you fancy!
Samaritans has a free service, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Call in confidence on 116 123.
SANEline also help on 0300 304 7000. That’s 4:30pm to 10:30pm every day.
If you’re under 25, you can call The Mix on 0808 808 4994.
And if you’re a parent, don’t make your child feel guilty about being a little more sensitive, clumsy or wanting to be alone. They’re just trying to navigate from childhood into adulthood.