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Rumi, the 13th-century Sufi poet, compared emotions to unexpected visitors.
We're supposed to let them in and not hide from them, suppress them or pretend they do not exist.
In a society that promotes gratitude and positivity, there is pressure to suppress or conceal negative feelings.
But psychological studies reveal that acceptance of your negative feelings promotes emotional resilience, with fewer symptoms of depression and anxiety.
Acceptance of negative emotions involves not trying to change how we feel but taking them for what they are.
Acceptance works because it blunts the emotional reactions to stressful events. In time, it can lead to positive psychological health.
Acceptance doesn't mean handing yourself over to a stressful, negative situation. We need to accept death, but we don't need to suffer through unfair treatment.
When we try only to think positively, we put ourselves in a striving state of mind, which is the opposite of calm contentment.
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