There is nothing wrong with crying when you are feeling emotional, it doesn't make you weak. However, sometimes crying in public feels embarrassing, so you should know the ways to compose yourself and hold back the tears. Here are some tips to stop yourself from crying.
Focus on your breathing. Slow, deep breaths are one of the best ways to calm yourself. Inhale through your nose, hold your breath for a moment, exhale through your mouth, repeat. Focus on your breathing and count your breaths to distract yourself from whatever has made your sad.
Pinch yourself. A quick and hard pinch will distract your brain by getting it focused on the pain you are feeling at the moment. Just don't pinch too hard unless you want to replace tears of emotion with tears of pain. Digging a fingernail into the palm of your hand or biting your lip/the inside of your cheek will do, too. Keep in mind that this method might not work in highly emotional situations.
Use your eyes. There are several ways to control tears using your eyes. Rolling or crossing your eyes will both serve as a mental distraction and physically keep you from crying. You can also try closing your eyes, looking up, blinking rapidly several times in a row, or opening your eyes wide and not blinking at all for several moments.
Get rid of the lump in your throat. When we're about to cry, we feel as if we have a lump in our throat. This sensation is caused by muscle tension. To make muscles in your throat relax, drink some water or yawn.
Distance yourself from the drama. In most cases, it is not other people's words or actions that make us cry, it is how we interpret them. Don't let mean people get to you and make you cry. Remind yourself that you are a strong person and be positive. The best way to distance yourself is to remove yourself from the negative situation, but if it is impossible, changing your attitude towards it should work, too.
Think about something pleasant. Instead of focusing on what makes your want to cry, try to think about things that make your happy. Think about your first kiss (if it is a good memory), a happy scene from your favorite book or movie, etc. It doesn't matter what exactly you are thinking about as long as it helps you change your focus.
Find other ways to distract yourself. Listening to music, watching a movie or an episode of your favorite TV show, cleaning your apartment, reading a book, watching cute animal videos on YouTube or stupid infomercials, going for a walk, exercising – whatever works for you.
Let yourself be angry. Sometimes we replace our anger with tears because crying in public somehow seems more civil than being angry in public. However, there are situations when you have every right to get angry. Just make sure not to cause bodily harm to anyone.
Keep in mind that it is harmful to repress your tears all the time. At the end of the day, everyone needs a good cry to relieve the stress. The tricks listed above can help stop yourself from crying when it is absolutely necessary, but you will still need an emotional outlet.