When it comes to our emotions, there are five things we can keep in mind:
- Emotions help us to understand what is important to us. What brings me joy or sadness is going to be different than what brings you the same feelings. Although emotions are fairly universal, the nuance of emotion helps us to form our own personal value system.
- Emotions protect us. Every emotion comes with a message which can help us in deciphering which direction to go. When we tune into our feelings, they can help to protect us from what might threaten our value system.
- Emotions are meant to just be. It is never our feelings that get us into trouble but rather the action urges that accompany them. If we can slow ourselves down to process how we are feeling, we stand a greater chance of moving to a response versus being led by a reaction.
- Emotions connect us to others. We are a relationship species and emotions play a crucial role in our attachment system.
- The personal meaning of emotions can change. We grow up learning about emotions in our childhood home. What I learn about anger or fear is going to be different that what you learned. The good news is that through gaining a greater understanding of our emotions, we can let go of the associations or judgements assigned to emotions – allowing for our feelings to work with us and not against us.
Keeping these five facts about emotions in mind can help us to better understand the value that they provide to us. As a result, we can begin to honour our feelings; processing them as we journey through the experiences of our lives.
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