Moving Beyond Emotional Rigidity
When we go through tough situations, we cannot ignore our negative emotions with the hope that they don't matter.
Write down what you are truly feeling in a personal notebook. Move beyond the rigidity of denial.
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We are caught up in a rigid culture that values positivity.
However, when we put aside our difficult emotions in order to embrace dishonest positivity, we fail to discover skills that can help us to deal with our problems.
When you feel a strong, tough emotion, don’t run away from it. Understand why you have this emotion and be open to it.
What is the emotion telling you? Notice the emotion for what it is. Be with your emotions with curiosity, compassion and courage.
Don't consider what you think you should feel. Open your heart to what you do feel, even the difficult emotions. It could involve pain, regret, grief or loss.
When we name our emotions accurately, we are able to find the cause of our feelings. For example, there is a big difference between "I'm stressed", and "I'm in the wrong career."
Emotions are not directives. We can label our emotions for their values without listening to them.
We own our emotions, they don't own us.
How we deal with our emotions affects how we love, how we live, how we parent and how we lead.
We should not view our emotions as good or bad, positive or negative. We need our emotions for real resilience.
Emotional agility is the capacity to be healthy with our thoughts, emotions and our being.
Our emotions need a level of gentle acceptance and compassion, as they are not good or bad by themselves. Self-hustling ourselves and trying to bring out only positive emotions does not work, because when we suppress certain emotions, they get amplified or show themselves in some other form.
An often overlooked but essential ingredient in a good life is spontaneity. Without it, we may suffer from an excess of orderliness, caution and rigidity. We haven't danced in a long while.
A more spontaneous life means that we will be more impulsive in expressing emotion and thoughts. In our work, we might embark on a potentially life-changing initiative sooner than we imagined. In our leisure time, we might start to write a collection of recipes or poems.
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