6 Warning Signs You're A Slave to Your Emotions

“I don’t want to be at the mercy of my emotions. I want to use them, to enjoy them and to dominate them.” Oscar Wilde.

It is very natural to be self-centered, especially when you are mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually depleted. Our emotions have a significant impact and power over our choices and actions, and we can either become a master or a slave to them.

When you’re a slave to your emotions, you live in the now, see issues through the lens of yourself, are not rational, and are generally not pleasant to be around.

Here are 6 warning signs that you have become a slave to your emotions. If any of these 6 items apply to you, then it may be time to make adjustments to how you are thinking and reacting to certain situations.

1. You rarely think about others and only think about your own concerns and interests

Though this may come and goes in phases, but you generally only think about how situations affect you and your life. You are easily angered and have never heard of the word empathy– and certainly, don’t understand its definition. 

2. You rarely think before you speak

First of all, speaking the first things that come to mind is a terrible idea. Validate your emotions first, before you speak. Use the acronym H.A.L.T. If you are hungry, angry, lonely, or tired, you are more likely to be a slave to your emotions and say or do something you might regret. When you validate your emotions, you become more aware and accepting of them. Becoming aware of thinking before you speak is the first step in becoming a master of our emotions.

3. You campaign to get people on your side when you immediately speak your mind

When you immediately speak your mind, you may feel amazing, but you also may have remorse for days following your outburst. Extreme levels of regret is often a sign that you are a slave to your emotions, and it’s a coping mechanism to recruit a friend or family member to relate to your side of the story. When you are slave to your emotions, you frequently act in ways that let yourself down. To make matters worse, you tend to drag a friend down with you, because being insecure is a lonely place.

4. Your actions don’t help your situation or the people around you

In a sporting environment, everything intensifies. Emotional slavery ends up manifesting in ways that spread their negative emotions to others like a virus. When you do not act with responsibility, there is shame, anxiety, and stress. Your loved ones are left with a wake of devastation, and you become hard to manage and generally don’t feel good. Fear, lust, anger, and pride rise up as defensive mechanisms. Id, ego, and superego are on red alert. 

5. You are stressed and have trouble sleeping

Emotional slavery is exhausting. Feelings of regret and shame are by-products of the sympathetic nervous system and brain waves creating energy. The fight-or-flight response of the sympathetic nervous system creates energy, and this energy to fight or flight keeps you up at night. Thus, thinking about how to solve your regret keeps you up at night. Sometimes emotional slavery is not knowing how to express yourself at all and just suppressing your emotions. This also contributes to stress and lack of sleep.

If you often toss and turn at night, unsatisfied with your relationships with those around you, it may indicate that you need to communicate your emotions with them in a healthy manner.

Becoming a master of your emotions doesn’t mean you are stoic or emotionless – it means you know how to communicate your emotions in a constructive situation that’s productive for both parties. Without a healthy and balanced method of expression, there will be emotional residue at the end of the day, from either too much or too little expression of how you feel.

6. You take criticism as a personal attack and don’t like change

Ineffective and effective behavior happens every second of every day. Everyone is susceptible to becoming a slave to their emotions. The only perfect person to walk this planet was Jesus, and you are not Him. 

Becoming a master to your emotions requires change. Becoming a master to your emotions requires you to embrace faith, let go of some of your fears, not react so quickly to situations, and have increased levels of empathy and awareness. If you don’t take every situation personally and you embrace change, your outbursts will become less frequent and less intense.

One central concept in emotional intelligence is finding a balance between your rational and thinking mind vs. your impulsive and feeling mind. When you learn how to use both of these appropriately, then you have mastered our emotions, instead of being enslaved to them.


Are you a slave to your emotions? Will you respond differently now that you know what it means to be slave to your emotions?

“Control the young thoughts and become a master of your emotions” Dave Jones, Sports Psychology Coach