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DBT What Makes It Hard To Regulate Emotions

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Emotion regulation helps individuals with identifying or understanding their emotions, which can reduce their emotional vulnerability and decrease emotional suffering. However, certain factors can affect a person’s ability to regulate their emotions effectively, such as their intake of medications, a lack of skills, their mood, and myths they have about emotions.

The DBT What Makes It Hard To Regulate Emotions handout introduces six factors that make it challenging to regulate emotions, with each factor accompanied by helpful information to increase awareness and understanding.

Recognizing the things that lead to difficulties in emotion regulation is the first step towards helping kids and teens develop and improve their coping skills. This handout can be incorporated into therapy sessions where emotion regulation is introduced and during open and honest parent-child discussions.

For further exploration of the concepts in this handout, individuals can work through our DBT What Makes It Hard To Regulate Emotions worksheet.

*This item is an instant digital download. A link to download your files will be emailed to you once payment is confirmed.

Want more resources like this? Check out our full catalog of DBT worksheets and handouts.


  1. Boekaerts, M. (2011). Emotions, emotion regulation, and self-regulation of learning. Handbook of self-regulation of learning and performance, 5, 408-425.
  2. Gross, J. J. (2015). Emotion regulation: Current status and future prospects. Psychological Inquiry, 26(1), 1-26.
  3. Linehan, M. M. (2014). DBT skills training handouts and worksheets. Guilford Publications.
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  • File: PDF
  • Size: 8.5" x 11"

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