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47 Strong Ways to Not Cry & the Fastest Ways to Stop Those Sad, Mad Tears

If you’re an overly emotional person, you might want to learn how to stop crying. With these tips and tricks, you can gain control and stop your tears. 

how to stop crying and not cry

Nothing is worse when you are in an emotional situation where you can feel yourself welling up, but you don’t want to. At those times, learning how not to cry and stop those tears would be very useful! 

It could be on a first date – perhaps you see a movie that makes you sad. 

Maybe you’ve had a fight with your partner where you get so frustrated you just cry instead of calmly talking about the way you feel. It could be at work where someone speaks too bluntly, and your feelings get hurt.

If you’re wondering how to not cry and hold those tears back, that’s completely okay. But at the same time, remember that the attitude of crying being a weak emotional response is old news. 

Get with the times, people – all of us cry. In fact, it’s actually healthy to cry as it balances your emotions and relieves stress.

Crying is nothing to be ashamed of, but it can be a real bummer in the wrong moments. So, when you want to save the tears for later, learn how to not cry. [Read: How to express your feelings – 16 must-know ideas to speak your mind]

Why do we cry when we’re mad or sad?

Before we get to the part about how to not cry, let’s quickly understand why we cry in the first place, and why it’s not such a bad thing at all.

Crying is your body’s natural and most efficient way of releasing stress hormones. 

Tears cause your body to release endorphins, which is a feel-good hormone that makes you happier and reduces any kind of physical and emotional pain in the body. [Read: When a woman is crying – a gentleman’s do’s and don’ts]

So, when you find yourself crying at the most random of times, or when you’re really mad, know that letting out a good cry is never bad. 

In fact, you WILL feel a lot better and happier as soon as you shed those tears.

Of course, there may be a few instances when you want to hold back those tears for a few more minutes because you just don’t want to cry at that moment. And that’s completely okay! [Read: Emotionally stable – how to find your zone of perfect calmness]

For that, we have all the things you can do to hold those tears back, or to learn how to stop yourself from crying if it’s already started.

Why you don’t want to cry at that moment

The thing is, crying isn’t always the most appropriate. Sure, if you’re alone, with family, or with your partner, cry away. But if you’re upset at work, during an interview, or in public, you may want to hold back the tears until you can let it all out in private. 

Whether you’re feeling extra emotional due to hormones or stress, it can be hard to pull back those emotions. [Read: 17 life secrets to smile more often, feel great, and laugh your stress away]

If your boss yelled at you, you were embarrassed, or even saw something cute or sad, you may start tearing up. You don’t want to let your boss, coworkers, or strangers see you cry, so you need to find a way to stop it before everyone notices. 

Even though there is nothing wrong with crying, you don’t want to get a reputation for crying on the job. But all said and done, crying shows you feel comfortable in your emotions. It actually portrays strength, not weakness. 

But when you want to keep the waterworks private, there are some ways to stop yourself from crying. [Read: How to let out all those tears for a good cry therapy session]

How to stop crying and hold those tears back

You have the right to decide when and where you’re going to cry, right? Well, if you don’t know how to control your tears, you may be showing them at times when you wish you weren’t. 

Knowing how to stop yourself from crying would be very useful, but learning how not to cry in the first place would be better!

If you want to know how to not cry and hold your teary eyes up high, here are some tips that’ll help you. [Read: How to control your emotions and become the pinnacle of restraint]

1. Breathe

Ah yes, just like in the movies. “Just breathe, God, damn it!” Well, now it’s your turn to focus on it. You need to breathe. 

Focus on your breathing by taking long, deep breaths. If you’re having problems focusing on your breathing, try to focus your attention on someone else’s breathing. 

When you cry, your breathing distorts, and you tend to gasp for air. Try to slow down your breathing. Focus on that, so you aren’t stuck on crying. [Read: How to stay calm and get those inside voices out of your head]

2. Pinch yourself

Crying is hard to control because it’s a psychological response. So, you can control it by using a physical distraction. 

If you want to know how to stop crying, pinch yourself. Surprisingly, it’ll distract you, and you’ll be focusing on the physical pain instead. Now, don’t get too crazy with the pain part. All you need is a quick pinch.

3. Tense your muscles

If you want to control the tears, try tensing your muscles. When people cry, it signifies that they’re feeling passive and helpless. Therefore, you want to do the opposite. [Read: Calm your mind – how to get the inside voices out of your head]

Tightening your muscles will make you feel more in control, and thus, prevent you from trying. You can even try squeezing a stress ball when you feel the tears welling up, it works like a charm!

4. Drink something cold

This is kind of a weird tip for learning how to not cry at the wrong moments, but bear with us. The facial nerve stimulates your tears. So, what you want to do is stimulate the facial nerve with another sensation. [Read: Girly drinks – 33 best and most common staples every girl has gotta know]

So, get yourself a glass of really cold water and start guzzling it down. It’ll stimulate the facial nerve branches and remove the attention from the one that’s just about to make you cry a river.

5. Step back

Obviously, there’s something in your surroundings that’s making you upset. So, if you can, try to remove yourself from the situation. 

Try to avoid situations that will bring up these emotions for a while until you settle down. It’s not worth it. [Read: How to be emotionless – 16 ways to lose feelings and gain control]

6. Pay attention to your thoughts

What’s making you cry? Why do you cry when you see two people hug you or when your dog licks your face? Is there some childhood connection to these emotions? 

Ask yourself these questions so that you’ll be able to become self-aware. That way, the next time a similar situation happens, you’ll know the triggers.

7. Move your eyeballs

This one may sound and look a little odd, but if it works, why not? Moving your eyeballs around can actually help prevent you from crying. [Read: Crying during sex? What it means and how you can end those tears]

That’s right, you may get a couple of weird looks but wiggle or wink those babies everywhere. Whatever allows you to stop the tears.

8. Physical movement

Don’t stay seated in your chair. That’ll only make it worse. You need to get up and move around, clean your room, or go for a coffee break. 

By walking around and moving your body, you’ll be able to distract yourself. Your main goal is to keep your mind off the trigger. [Read: Benefits of exercise on your mind, body, and libido]

9. Get the lump out of your throat

You know the lump we’re talking about. That lump is causing all the problems. When you’re just about to cry, you can feel it develop in your throat. If you want to stop yourself just in time, you have to get rid of the lump. 

So, take short sips of water, yawn, or swallow slowly. You can even try coughing to break it up.

10. Don’t listen to happy music

You probably believe that putting on upbeat music would not be one of our tips for how to stop crying, but it usually evokes tears in most people.

Fast-paced music does not help you calm down. It could just agitate you further and make you lose control instead of calming you down. 

In fact, put on sad music. It’ll help you process your emotions and calm you down. 

The best songs to listen to when you feel like crying are ones where the melody is predictable, slow and steady, and most importantly, simple and easy to listen to. [Read: 40 fun and upbeat songs to groove you out of that funk]

11. Think of the future

Maybe you just broke up with your partner or lost your job. If you can’t cry at that moment, think of the future and tell yourself that everything will be okay. 

You may be freaking out on the inside, but it’ll help you look at the future instead of the current situation.

12. Talk it out

This may sound a little weird, but talking to yourself when you feel like crying can help you calm down, especially if there’s no one else to talk to. [Read: 20 wild steps to get over a breakup and heal like you don’t care]

If you have some friends around you, talk to them about how you feel. Verbally releasing your emotions may prevent those tears from coming. Even writing them down can be enough to let out your feelings.

13. Take a break

Whether you feel like you are about to cry in the middle of an argument or a movie, take a break. 

Pause the movie. Ask to take a break from the fight and return to it in a few minutes, an hour, or even the next day. Your emotions can overtake your calm thinking and make things worse. [Read: How to find yourself again after a seriously low point in life]

When you cry, it pushes arguments too far, or your partner could want to comfort you instead of just speaking honestly.

14. Rationalize

It is hard to think rationally when you are about to cry? Yes, it is, but you can do it. Start with some of the more physical tips, then rethink where you are. Are you overreacting? Is this due to your hormones? Did you eat enough today? Are you tired?

Lots of things can cause you to cry and understanding the situation you’re in can help block the tears. Will crying help your situation? Make it worse? Do anything to change it? [Read: Why am I so emotional? Emotional stability and 27 secrets to balance life]

15. Tilt your head back

Much like looking up, tilting your head back will make gravity do the work for you. Your tears won’t come streaming down your face if your head is tilted back. 

The tears will fall back and make it harder for the dam of tears to come rolling down. 

16. Prepare yourself

If you know you tend to cry when you stand up for yourself or have a deep conversation, try to prepare for it. [Read: How to express your feelings and get your point across the right way]

Think about what you want to say and how you want to come across. Consider all the outcomes. Even write yourself a script or notes so you don’t get off track.

17. Feel your feelings

Your emotions lead to tears. This is not surprising, but sometimes your tears make you avoid your emotions. You are so obsessed with the crying and nose-wiping you forget to just feel. 

Ease into the anger, sadness, or frustration that is leading to the tears. Really acknowledge how you’re feeling and focus on that instead of the crying part. [Read: Emotionally damaged – how people get that way, 26 signs, and how to heal from it]

18. Count

Breathe and count. Count to 8 and start again. This will steady your breathing, get you more oxygen, and calm you down. 

Even though you are crying and not having a panic attack, this is a proven way to reduce overwhelming feelings, especially ones that show physical symptoms. [Read: Signs of anxiety – how to read them ASAP and handle them better]

19. Notice your surroundings

Refocus your energy away from the situation that’s making you cry and feel everything. Smell the air. Feel the breeze. What does your shirt feel like? What sort of chair are you sitting in? Do you hear birds or traffic? 

Switching up the thoughts and feelings at the forefront of your mind puts you in a new perspective. Sit in reality and notice the facts around you. [Read: How to help someone with anxiety without saying or doing the wrong things]

20. Realize why you feel like crying

Analyze your reasoning for crying. Are you crying because someone said something mean? Are you just feeling emotional? Did you have an overall bad day? Did you get bad news? 

Focus on the why, not the how. Instead of worrying about how not to cry, think about why it is happening. It will take you a while to think about this deeply, and in that time, the crying will cease.

21. Let it out

You may be able to stop your tears at that moment, but at some point, you’ll need to let them out. There’s no point keeping those negative feelings locked inside of you. [Read: Why are women so emotional? 18 reasons they feel deeper than men]

Find a place where you feel comfortable crying, and when you’re alone and feel in control, release those tears. 

Take a warm bath or watch a chick flick in your bed with a cup of tea. It doesn’t matter how you want to do it. Just let it all out. Just do it. You’ll feel much better in the morning [Read: Ready for some tears – 20 movies that WILL make you cry]

22. Go for a walk 

Okay, so this may not be easy to do in some circumstances. But if you can, then taking a short walk to clear your head, getting some fresh air, and reasoning with yourself can work wonders. 

Mother Nature helps us out in more ways than we know, and fresh air is just the ticket for leaking eyes! It’s one of the best ways to learn how not to try and it can also allow you to figure out how to stop crying if the tears are already about to fall.

23. Distract yourself 

Focus on something other than what is making you upset. If you dwell on it, it will become almost impossible not to cry. [Read: 24 fun challenges to do with friends to bond and create fun memories]

However, by tricking the brain into thinking about something else you can probably stop yourself from crying.

List all the street names you can remember in your city, stare at the lines on your hands, or focus on reading those meeting papers or a book or magazine. 

If you can focus your attention away from the source of your tears for more than a minute, then you should be able to get back in control. [Read: How to bounce back stronger than ever when you feel worthless]

24. Press your tongue against the roof of your mouth 

Pressing your tongue against the roof of your mouth or behind the front of your teeth is another good way to stop yourself from crying, so if you feel yourself welling up, try this weird hack and see if it works for you! 

25. Squeeze something 

Squeezing an object can also help you remain in control when you feel as though you want to cry. If you have something designed for squeezing, like a stress ball, all the better! 

However, a jumper, shirt, or anything you can get your hands on should be just as effective. [Read: 45 secrets to be more positive and fill your mind with positive emotions 24/7]

26. Relax your face 

We carry many emotions in our facial expressions. If you are about to cry, your face tends to tense up, your brow furrows, your mouth tightens, and so on. If you can, try to relax your facial muscles and this could prevent you from crying.

27. Smile 

Some research has shown that just the act of smiling can help you feel happier, and can prevent you from crying. 

Obviously, this may look a little odd depending on the circumstances, but if you can, try broadly smiling for a while to see if that helps. [Read: How to stop overthinking & secrets to go from overthinker to relaxer]

28. Yawn

Yawning is another useful way to diminish the feeling that you have a lump in your throat. Purposefully yawing also distracts you from crying, so it can be doubly effective too!

29. Write your feelings down 

We all want to cry for many different reasons, and sometimes examining the cause of the problem will help us get to the bottom of it… and for you to move on. 

Write a diary or journal and be honest with your feelings. Doing this can really help you tackle those heightened emotions and feel better about them too. [Read: How to get your shit together – 16 strategies to stop getting stuck in life]

30. Recognize when crying is becoming unhelpful

There are appropriate times and reasons to cry, such as when a tragedy happens in your life. But then there are other times when it’s not helpful. You need to know the difference between them.

For example, crying during a business meeting is not the time to do it because it makes you look less credible and a bit unstable.

Even in your personal life, crying instead of taking action to change what is making you sad isn’t helpful either.

31. Use the RAIN technique 

Some people cry for no reason or they can’t identify why they are crying. So, the RAIN technique will help you stop crying. [Read: 45 positive & negative personality traits that can change your life forever!]

RAIN stands for Recognize, Allow, Investigate, and Nurture. Recognize why you’re crying, allow yourself to feel the feelings, investigate why you’re feeling this way, and then nurture yourself so you can recover from crying. 

32. Try the TIPP method

Temperature change, Intense exercise, Paced breathing, and Paired muscle relaxation are a set of skills that can help people regulate their emotions in moments of extreme emotional distress.

This is a type of therapy that combines behavioral and cognitive therapies, emphasizing the importance of its central dialectical – acceptance and change. [Read: 26 whys and ways to surround yourself with positive people and remodel your life]

33. Keep a neutral face 

This might sound too simple and even a little silly, but keeping a neutral face can help you stop crying too. And it’s pretty simple to do.

Just tilt your chin up, open your eyes wide, avoid blinking for a moment, and let the tears pool in your eyes. Just try to keep as calm as you can.

34. Pinch your nose

Tear ducts stem from the side of your nose to an opening in the eyelid. So, as strange as it might sound, pinching the bridge of your nose and the sides while clamping your eyes closed can block your tear ducts.[Read: Positive self-talk – what it is, where it comes from, and how to master it]

However, this only works best if you use it before the tears start flowing down. It’s more difficult if you want until you have been crying for a while.

35. Find a safe space to let your feelings out

It’s never fun to cry in a situation in which you’ll be embarrassed to do so. In fact, this makes you even more self-conscious and it might make you want to cry even more. 

So, do all you can to stop crying for as long as you can if you’re in one of those situations. Then, as quickly as you can, go try to find a safe place. That way, you can let all the feelings out by yourself. [Read: Positive vibes – 17 ways to welcome positive energy into your life]

36. Play the observer 

When we’re emotional, it shuts down the logical part of our brain. And what this means is that it makes it very difficult to see the situation from a rational perspective, which would help you stop crying.

So, try to look at the situation as if you are only an observer and not in the center of the storm. Imagine being on a balcony overlooking this particular situation. What advice would you give if you weren’t yourself? 

37. Address any issues

If you’re so sad that you got to the point of crying endlessly over something, then there’s an issue you have to address. [Read: 19 signs of emotional damage and ways to get past them]

It doesn’t matter what you’re crying about, you have to figure out what the problem is and start fixing it.

If you just wait out the tears until you can no longer cry before getting on with your day, you’ll only end up in tears over the same thing at a different time – probably later that night.

38. Stay away from triggers

If you know there are certain places or people or things that open the floodgates and send you into a fit of hysteric tears, avoid them. [Read: 15 ways to spot and stop selfish people from hurting you]

Stay away from those things at all costs if you want to know how to stop crying and be happy again. If you’re always being reminded of those painful things, you’ll never be able to heal and move forward with finding your happiness.

39. Find the one thing that cheers you up and go to it

We all have that one thing or person who can cheer us up in a second. If you know who or what this is and know without a doubt that it’ll make you happy and stop the tears from flowing, go to it.

Call up your friend, turn on that movie, or cuddle up with your dog, if that’s what will stop the tears. [Read: 21 quick ways to cheer yourself up and find inner happiness]

40. Change your train of thought

This takes a lot of practice, but it’s a great way to stop crying. If you can, just redirect your thoughts to something else to stop crying. 

Stop thinking about the one thing that’s causing all the tears. It’s not easy to do, but when you master it, you’ll be able to prevent the tears from flowing in the first place.

41. Think about the positives of the situation

Some situations are terrible and if you cry about it, you’re really only dwelling on all the negatives. Try thinking about the positives that come from the situation. [Read: How to be emotionally stable and find your zone of perfect calmness]

No matter how little they are, the good things have a way of breaking through the tears and halting them. So force yourself to think about the positive in any bad situation, and then you’ll know how to stop crying.

42. Make a list of things to do

This might seem like it’s unrelated to finding happiness and stopping the tears from overflowing, but it will work! Get out a piece of paper and write down a list of things you have to do.

They can be anything from cleaning to a shopping list, and even a list of small goals you want to accomplish. [Read: How to get a life and actually start living the life you want]

This will force your mind away from the sadness and redirect it to all of the things you want to accomplish.

43. Talk to someone you trust

Sometimes the only thing you can do is vent to someone. Go call up someone you trust and just talk to them about everything you’re feeling and let the tears fall.

You’ll quickly find that they can be comforting, supportive, and can even help you see that there is no need for tears in your situation.

They’ll help teach you how to stop crying and then you will find your happiness again. [Read: True friendship – 37 real friend traits and what it takes to be a good one]

How to take control of your crying 

When you are emotional, it feels like you are completely out of control. The tears flow faster than you can keep up with. But there are a few ways to take control of your crying.

1. Reach out to a professional

If you feel like your crying is a chronic problem and you can’t get it under control, there may be an underlying problem. [Read: Relationship therapy – 25 clues to know if it’ll help your romance]

If you can’t figure it out on your own, then you should reach out to a therapist or a psychologist so they can help you bring out your logical side more.

2. Take up journaling

The act of writing activates the logical part of your brain. It helps you get everything into perspective so you can read it back and process it more objectively.

When you are crying, all your emotions are jumbled and you can’t think clearly. So, journal regularly so you can keep track of how you’re feeling and figure out how to get it under control. [Read: 52 happy habits and ways to find happiness within]

3. Get more sleep

When people are sleep deprived, they get more emotional. Their brain gets foggy and they can’t concentrate very well. So, that’s why if you get more sleep, you can process everything in life a little better – especially your emotions.

4. Change your circumstances

You should reflect on the exact things that are making you cry. If it’s a romantic partner, a job, or anything else that you can change, then change it. [Read: 48 real secrets to change your life and find the right path when you’re lost]

Maybe once you remove the cause of your crying from your life, you might stop crying altogether – or at least not as much.

But sometimes, you just have to let the tears out 

Although it’s not always appropriate, crying is actually very healthy. When you’re done having a good sob, you’ll feel so much better. 

Feeling like you need to cry sometimes is very normal but pushing the feeling away too often just causes a build-up of tension. 

So, while you now know how to stop yourself from crying, remember that sometimes a good crying session is actually good for the soul!

[Read: How to recognize selfish people and stop them from hurting you repeatedly]

Crying is a natural human reaction to a tough time, but that doesn’t mean we want to cry! If you really want to know how to stop crying and be happy again, these tips will help get you there.

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Preeti Tewari Serai
Preeti Serai
Preeti, the founder of LovePanky, is an eternal optimist and believer in the beauty of love and life. With an exhaustive experience in love, relationships, and ...