While there are certain emotional responses that are seen as appropriate, there are others that are not seen in the same way. As a result of this, it can then be normal for people to have moments where they ignore how they feel.
It could also go a step further than this, and this means that they could be in a position where they are not even aware of how they feel. This comes down to the fact that when one stops themselves from experiencing one emotion; they can end up losing contact with every other emotion.
On The Surface
As a result of this, one can end up living on the surface of themselves and it will no longer be possible for them to operate as a whole human being. If one was able to remove the emotions that were seen as inappropriate and to keep the emotions that are seen as appropriate, this wouldn’t happen.
This would then be similar to one having a plate of food and removing the food that they don’t enjoy. Through doing this, they will only need to eat the food that they enjoy; they won’t need to compromise.
A Different Experience
But while this will work when it comes to food, the same approach won’t work when it comes to one’s emotions. In this sense, if one was to remove the food they don’t like, they would also the remove the food that they do like.
This could cause one to say that this is ‘bad’ thing, and this is because they will have to experience emotions that ‘negative’. They may believe that their life would be a lot easier if they were able to feel ‘good’ all the time.
On one side then, one may want to avoid certain emotions because of how they feel through feeling them and on the other side; they can have the need to avoid certain emotions because of how they are perceived by others. This can relate to how their society responds to emotions.
They could find that where they live, people rarely, if ever, show how they feel, or they may find that there are certain emotions that they express. Through living in this environment, they could find that they behave in the same way.
However, while some emotions can be classed as ‘good’ and others as ‘bad’, they are simply there to provide feedback. For example, if one was to put their shoes on and one of their feet felt uncomfortable, they could find they have a stone in their shoe.
But if it wasn’t for this discomfort, they might end up carrying on as normal and this could end up causing even more damage. Though experiencing discomfort, one will know that something is wrong and this then allows them to take action.
Therefore, even though the feedback that one receives is not always going to make one feel good, it doesn’t mean that they should overlook it. If they were to do this, it could then set up to suffer in one way of another.
This could cause them to do things for the wrong reasons and they could end up being walked over, for instance. Yet if they are out of touch with how they feel, they might not even realise what is taking place.
When one is in touch with how they feel and they allow their feelings to influence their behaviour, they are going to be authentic. They will know who they are and the people they are closes to are also going to have a good understanding of them.
Yet when this isn’t the case and they are out of touch with how they feel, they could end up playing a role that has been assigned to them by someone else. Not only will they not know who they are; the people they are closest to won’t know either.
However, even though one is in touch with how they feel, it doesn’t mean that they will end up being controlled by their emotions. At the same time, it also doesn’t mean they will end up controlling their emotions.
What is can mean is that they will have the ability to contain their emotional experience; to be with how they feel without losing their self-awareness in the process. This is then similar to how a loving parent would respond to their child who is angry, for instance.
They can pay attention to how they feel as opposed to saying that they shouldn’t feel the way they do. If they are angry, they can take the time to reflect on why they feel the way they do.
This could be a sign that someone has crossed their boundaries, or it could mean that something didn’t go to plan, for instance. The next step might then be for them to make sure they stand their ground or to speak to the person who is not respecting their personal space, or they might need to look into what they can do to achieve what they want to achieve.
Whereas if one was to experience hate, it could be a sign that they haven’t been violated by someone once, but that this is something that has taken place on more than one occasion. Hate could then be seen as prolonged anger and this will be an emotion that has a stronger charge.
It will then be important for them to reflect on what is taking place and to see what they need to do. Once again, they might need to speak to someone or it could be a sign that they need to walk away from another person, for instance.
If they were to ignore how they feel, their life could end up getting worse on the one hand, and on the other, they could end up being controlled by how they feel as time passes. This is because how they feel will build-up within them until it ends up coming out in the form of reactive behaviour.
Therefore, if one is unable to contain their emotional experience, it will be important for them to develop this ability. Through doing this, they won’t always need to deny how they feel and they won’t always need to be controlled by how they feel either; they will be able to operate as a conscious human being.
One can develop emotional strength with the assistance of a therapist and/or a support group. During this time, one can express how they feel in a safe environment as well as release any emotions that have built-up throughout their life.
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Oliver JR Cooper
Oliver JR Cooper
Author of 25 books, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.