You need to be able to identify what you are feeling.
There really aren’t any good or bad emotions—they all carry a valuable message—even hatred and fear. Feelings bear important news; tell us what we thrive on and what we don’t, what energizes us and what drains us. They troubleshoot by showing us where to tweak; like a game of hide and seek they say cold, warmer, hot.
A Feeling Is A Messenger
The first step then is to be aware of what you are feeling. Step two is to interpret the feeling; ask “what is this feeling trying to tell me?”
Often our feelings are just telling us we need to nurture ourselves back into a state of strength and alignment—be kinder and more compassionate toward our selves or re-arrange our priorities.
The trick is to embrace and practice positive feeling patterns, so they become dominant—our default program. As we become increasingly aware of how we’re feeling from moment to moment, we become more adept at consciously creating our emotional climate, independent of other people and outside influences.
Powerful! Handle With Care
Emotional energy is one of the greatest powers on earth, a force of nature—capable of creating life and wreaking untold destruction.
Learning to manage your emotions is a bit like learning to drive a Ferrari—beyond exhilarating done with expertise, but potentially lethal if you’re not aware of what you’re doing. Speed and momentum builds exceptionally quickly. Slamming it into drive and flooring the accelerator without checking whether there’s a wall in front of you is not smart!
It’s advisable with emotions—and Ferraris to put them in park, pay attention to what’s going on around you, in which direction you’re pointing and then accelerate—gradually….
Choosing Emotional Responses
Imagine you are walking toward a dangerous or destructive experience, like lurching into the jaws of a hungry lion—and you’re thinking oh crap, I know how this story ends and I really don’t want to be lion lunch! Because you are now more aware of your emotional direction; more attuned to how they make you feel, you are in charge of where your emotions take you. You are no longer helplessly propelled by them.
So you stop, check your emotional pulse, do a mental pirouette and reach for a thought that takes you in the opposite direction, followed by another similar thought, and another, and another—that gradually lead you away from being sucked into a feeling you don’t want.
For instance why the hell does he always say that? Why does he always know best, tell me what to do, treat me like a child? It’s not as though his life is such a shining example of success and happiness. I hate it when he does this. What right has he got….and so the momentum builds.
Stop! Take your emotional pulse. Do a mental pirouette and start a new thought thread like, I’m not sure of his motivation for saying these things. Maybe he means well, maybe he doesn’t but I will not allow his words to catapult me into feeling angry and resentful. I can choose how I feel and I choose right now to ignore his comments. I choose to think of something that makes me feel confident about my abilities, something that makes me smile….and so that momentum builds.
Your Emotions Are Too Powerful To Use Irresponsibly
How about reclaiming ownership of them now:
- Hug someone—your self first
- Regularly list all the things you’ve achieved, overcome and excelled at—notice how this makes you feel
- Make a list of all you appreciate in your life—it will show you what is most meaningful to you
- Get to know your self—reflect, do self hypnosis or meditate for ten minutes today
- Support or praise someone who needs it—your self first
- Remind your self how valuable you are—often
- Decide as soon as you open your eyes that this is going to be a magnificent day and everything is going to go your way
- Anytime you feel yourself slipping out of alignment, pivot and get right back on track
- Laugh often—and take note of what makes you laugh
- Evaluate whether your goals are really in alignment with your self. If they’re not, change them—or your perception of them
- See the best in everyone and everything—especially your self
- Find solutions—don’t dwell on problems
- Read, listen to, interact with and watch only stuff that lifts you up
- Honor your feelings. They are valuable messengers and will keep you in alignment, even when life tries to push you off your perch
Just like our biological immune system, when our emotional immune system is strong, balanced and healthy, opportunistic emotional saboteurs cannot hijack how we feel.