Reducing Emotional Instability With BPD

Simple Changes to Help You Get Off the Emotional Roller Coaster

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Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is often associated with emotional highs and lows, impulsive behavior and sensitivity. Many people with BPD experience intense emotional instability, or extreme fluctuations between feeling great and feeling depressed or sad. You may notice that your emotions can change quickly in reaction to some events, such as a disagreement with a friend. Often, your emotional reactions may be disproportionate to the incident that triggers the emotion, such as feeling so sad you begin to cry over a very small inconvenience.


While some medications can help reduce your emotional instability, you can make changes to your lifestyle that can help dramatically impact this symptom. Making these changes can reduce the frequency and intensity of your emotions and can improve your overall ability to regulate your emotional responses.

Before undergoing any sort of treatment plan to address emotional instability, be sure to talk to your therapist about what's going on to make sure you don't interfere with your therapy. She can even help you with these changes to help manage your emotions. 

Reduce Emotional Instability Through Better Sleep

Have you ever noticed that when you feel tired, you are more likely to be bothered by smaller things? A good night’s sleep is one of the most important things you can do to reduce your emotional instability and reduce irritability. If you have trouble falling or staying asleep, you can do some things to improve your sleep overall and help you get through your days with less emotional turmoil, such as practicing good sleep hygiene and staying on a regular routine.

For more ideas on improving your sleep, check out the below article. 

Reduce Emotional Instability With Exercise

It’s no secret that you will feel better physically and mentally when your body is active. Exercise doesn’t just fight a host of physical health problems that are associated with BPD, it is also a great way to maintain a more stable emotional system.

If you don’t have an exercise program, the below article can help you get started. Start small and work your way up to get the benefits of exercise without hurting yourself. 

Reduce Emotional Instability Through Diet

When you feel bad, you are more likely to let your diet slip: Negative emotions can lead to urges to eat unhealthy foods, to binge eat or to skip meals. You may find yourself turning to comfort foods to help you handle stress or depression. Unfortunately, this can turn into a vicious cycle, because poor eating also impacts mood, leaving you feeling even worse. If you need help getting back on track with a healthy diet, check out these tips from’s Guide to Nutrition:

Reduce Emotional Instability Through Good Self-Care

The best way to reduce emotional ups and downs is to make a commitment to take good care of yourself. With all the demands that you are facing, this can be easier said than done. However, the time you spend on a self-care program will pay off if you can improve your emotional well-being.

From taking time for yourself to relax, meditate or pamper yourself, self-care can help you manage your symptoms.

While these tips can help your emotional instability, make sure you also talk to a healthcare provider. In some cases, these actions aren't enough to help and you may need therapy or medication to manage your symptoms. 


Linehan MM. Skills Training Manual for Treating Borderline Personality Disorder. New York: The Guilford Press; 1993.  

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