“What do you mean?” I asked.
“Oh, I’m so unstable, I keep going through all sorts of things, it makes me so weak and wears me out.”
‘Being emotional’ has no positive connotation (emotional value, ed.). In dictionaries we come across terms such as ‘loaded’, ‘reacting violently’ and ‘irrational’. The negative charge that lies on being emotional and the undervaluing of emotions in our Western society are, in my opinion, very unjustified.
E-motion: energy in motion
So what exactly are emotions? Dissected in English, e-motion very aptly means: energy in motion . Energy in motion. Emotions should move, they should flow through us, they should flow from within – where they originate – out. In fact, the fundamental property of energy is movement.
But that is very difficult for many adults. To let their emotions flow, to accept them, let alone show them to the outside world. They don’t know what to do with it and ignore or suppress what they feel. And with that we fix the emotions, we frame them, under the guise of ‘difficult’ or ‘inappropriate’, and we extract the movement from the energy.
That’s impossible, to freeze or freeze energy. Like water, it seeks the path of least resistance, and always finds its way. And what should not come out, will express its power within us.
It will disrupt our inner life, affect our physical body and, like everything that involves great forces: if it starts to work against us, it can ruin us.
So emotions have to move. They want to flow, through us, and be felt. nothing else. Felt, so that from that feeling we can determine how we relate to the outside world, to the circumstances or to the people who trigger these emotions in us . Your emotions say something about you, about your preferences, your character, your views, your envy; in short, it determines your color. About how you are in life at the moment, you relate to what is happening.
To deny, hide or repress this energy is to deprive yourself of your own compass. Denying your own color. And with this you deny your authenticity, your genuineness.
It makes no sense
Emotions come through us in all kinds, degrees and intensities. Sometimes okay, sometimes nice, sometimes delicious, but sometimes very unpleasant. As human beings we tend to label what we like and like as ‘good’ and the unpleasant emotions as ‘wrong’. In the sense that we want more of the pleasant emotions and avoid the unpleasant ones.
And that was also indirectly what the woman in my practice wanted: only the pleasant emotions, to be stable happy and to eliminate all negative feelings.
Impossible! And above all very undesirable.
Every person has come to this earth with a rich and diverse palette of possible emotions: from low to high, from anger to joy, from jealousy to compassion, from optimism to despair – emotions come in infinite shapes and sizes. All energy that flows through us at different frequency levels.
Our temporary unpleasant emotions do not make us unhappy. We become unhappy when we resist it. Labeling them as ‘bad’ or ‘weak’, trying to resolve them, hide them, deny them; all forms of resistance to what is irrevocably happening inside us. We will never succeed or succeed in resisting that which arises emotionally within us. It is there, it wants to flow and it wants to be felt.
Emotions are not your problem, your problem with emotions is your problem.
What we do have to do with those emotions: feel them. They do not want to be understood, not analyzed, not resolved, not explained. That is the department of your head, of our thinking, but that is not the instrument for our feeling. That’s like trying to drive a nail into the wall with a screwdriver. Nothing wrong with a screwdriver, but it’s not the right tool for carpentry. Emotions only want to be felt and felt, nothing more than that. And that’s the department of your feeling. Simply feel what is happening, while it is happening. That’s not passive, that’s very hard work. To really keep up with it, not wanting to change it and letting it flow through you, that’s top sport.
Then we can decide with our head how we want to relate to the trigger of those emotions. We can use it by first observing and interpreting what they want to tell us about our relationships with what is occurring.
Emotions come to tell us something. They let you know who you are, they color your persona. Someone who likes everything, thinks everything is fantastic, has no likes or dislikes, always goes along with everything, is someone without color. Emotions are our compass, our feedback system that tells us how we relate to what is happening in the world around us, in our interactions and the direction we choose in our lives.
Emotions are one of the purest sources from which you can know yourself. They don’t lie, they are real, oversimplified and tell you what is true for you right now.
Emotions are clouds that exaggerate, you are the sky
When it comes to dealing with emotions, we can take an example from children. Babies in particular still know very well how to express emotions. For babies it is what it is. They can’t do anything but express their emotions directly. When they’re happy, most people around them don’t miss it, but when they hate something, everyone knows about it. We have all been on a plane with a baby…
Small children can still let emotions flow through them indiscriminately. They are still too small to learn from us. They don’t have any filters yet. Children can’t postpone emotions because it’s not convenient, can’t suppress them because it’s inappropriate, can’t deny them because it’s easier.
To come back to the woman in my practice. It was not the emotions that made her weak, the resistance against this -an impossible battle- exhausted her. This is hard work in which the energy of emotions does not diminish, but instead ‘fights’ to be felt. If not given an opportunity, all that force implodes inwards to affect our cells.
Emotions are like clouds in the sky. They come, they go, changing compactness and shape, but never staying long or the same. And we are the air through which they move, we notice them, feel them, feel them, give them the right to exist and let them exaggerate.