Negative emotions

“Negative emotions like loneliness, envy, and guilt have an important role to play in a happy life; they’re big, flashing signs that something needs to change.”

Gretchen Rubin

An interesting take that maybe some have you heard. I guess the common thing for many of us to do when those “negative” emotions comes up is to get out of the uncomfortable emotions as fast as we can. I know I’m good at that sometimes by stuffing, deflecting, blaming others or distract myself in one way or another.

One practice when I can think of it, is I try to fully feel the emotion coming up, kinda just being with it for a bit if I can. Get an awareness first.  Then, I’ll sometimes see if there is a particular place in my body I feel the emotion. A tool I use is to take a couple of deep breaths into the area or if I can’t feel a specific place, just take a few deep breaths, maybe for a minute or so. Sometimes this can at least slow or lessen the emotion. Sometimes I might just “feel it” for a number of minutes, not trying to change it or make it go away (not so easy all the time).

A next step could be to check if this is a more frequent emotion you have been feeling and the hard part…….is there something I’m doing in my life I could look at doing differently? I often think some belief I have is being “challenged” so to speak. Challenged by who? or is it whom? My best guess is its our inner self, whatever that is, maybe something a bit more unconscious than conscious. Now, we getting in murky waters, but my thoughts agree with the quote above a message is likely in that emotion somewhere. Can you get a sense you have when feel/think about the emotion during or more likely when the emotion is not as present what that emotion maybe saying? Just try asking yourself and see what you get.

For example, If you’re feeling envy or lack in some way a lot, can you look at the envy and see why your having it. I desire this or that and I never get it or why does she have this or that and not me? We all do that at times and we know comparing can cause a lot of stress and its all self imposed stress likely based on some belief we have that we more than what we actually have in this moment is better.  Although you might need some help peeling through the layers sometimes, one idea could be to do a practice of being grateful for what you have now or even more challenging, being grateful for what that snooty neighbor has. Of course, you can’t change what you have in that particular moment and  there is always something to be grateful for and that looking can often lessen, even if a little bit, those feelings of envy.