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5 Emotional Blindspots Most People Never Notice

Trying To Control Our Emotions

Emotions are not easy to be directly controlled, and in trying to do so, people may make it worse. But the most common advice provided by friends and family is to control one’s emotions or to manage one’s mood.

Accepting your emotions instead of controlling or suppressing them may be painful in the beginning but is a more holistic approach.

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5 Emotional Blindspots Most People Never Notice

5 Emotional Blindspots Most People Never Notice

https://nickwignall.com/5-emotional-blindspots-most-people-never-notice/

nickwignall.com

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Key Ideas

Emotional Intellectualization

As adults, the way we express ourselves is ruining our natural feelings. Words are misused to explain something which we feel from the inside, as a primitive defence mechanism to avoid further painful feelings.

This leads us to be unaware of our true feelings, which get distorted or mutated due to the words used intellectually. Having labels and syndromes for everything doesn’t help either.

Trying To Control Our Emotions

Emotions are not easy to be directly controlled, and in trying to do so, people may make it worse. But the most common advice provided by friends and family is to control one’s emotions or to manage one’s mood.

Accepting your emotions instead of controlling or suppressing them may be painful in the beginning but is a more holistic approach.

Judging Our Emotions

Our judgement of emotions, something extremely common, is the fastest way to end up in a therapist's office. Getting judgemental never works in making you feel better.

It is not a good idea to feel bad about feeling bad while you are feeling bad.

Running Away From Our Emotions

Pain by itself isn’t dangerous but is only a signal about something else that needs your attention. Killing pain never killed the actual problem, just like painkillers do not work on the real reason for the pain, but only blunt the sensory input to the brain.

Instead of using your energy to escape emotional pain, it is better to address the real issue behind it.

Go For Values, Not Emotions When Making Decisions

Emotions provide us signals and sometimes those can be incorrect. It is better to let your values be your guiding light and ignore a few emotional signals of discomfort.

Good things have some costs involved. If we want the best things in life, we have to pay the price, and sometimes it requires us to feel bad too.

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Try to recall a time when you struggled in a similar way and with a similar set of difficult emotions and moods. It's a powerful way to appreciate someone else struggle.

Get out of the “Fix-it Mode”

Most people struggling emotionally don’t want someone to fix their pain, they went to feel understood.

Use Reflective listening. It means that when someone tells you something, you simply reflect back to them what they said, either literally or with your own slight spin on it.

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Emotional clarity

It means that we have a good understanding of how we feel emotionally. 

Label your emotions

Use plain language. The more fluent you are with real emotional language, the more clearly you will be able to think about how you’re feeling.

Clarify your emotions

Get used to the idea of emotional complexity. When we feel upset, we're not feeling one single emotion. We are usually experiencing a blend of many emotions.

Training ourselves to look for and see this emotional complexity is key to better understanding ourselves when we’re upset and moving on in a healthy way.

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Accepting sadness
Accepting sadness

As we associate sadness with a negative feeling, we tend to try to run away from it.

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Embrace your sadness

You might feel sadness from time to time, which actually makes you want to run away from this mood and focus on something happier.

Nevertheless, running has never been a solution and it will certainly not start being one in this specific case, as embracing your sadness is a surer way to control and get rid of it on a long term.

Scheduled sadness

In order to better understand and control your sadness, check out the below steps that lead to a so-called 'scheduled sadness' that will eventually help you reach your goal:

  • schedule a consistent time to focus only on your sadness
  • start by spending ten minutes on the task
  • express clearly the things that have made you feel this way
  • make sure you do not overthink it.