Before we even start, let’s clear something up–you can’t get rid of your emotions. Nope. No way. Not possible. (And you once you learn more about them, you’ll realize you’d never want to!)
Along those same lines, you can’t control them either–but that’s okay too, because once you understand them better, you’ll want to let them do their job for you. You’ll be glad you have emotions (and I’m talking about the uncomfortable ones!), and yes, you might even look forward to feeling them when they are absent. Sounds crazy, I know. I didn’t believe it at first either. But once I truly understood what my emotions were and how to work through them, I changed my mind. Keep reading, try out the processes described for each emotion, and see if you don’t change your mind too . . .
What are emotions?
Emotions are simple. Even though they can seem overwhelming, mysterious, overpowering, and uncontrollable, if you internalize this one simple thing about them, it will change your life forever:
Your emotions are messengers that are telling you something you need to do.
We can go into lengthy scientific discussions about what they “really” are or whether they are biological or not. But we won’t. Because none of that really matters to you. All that matters to you is that you have them. And there’s something that needs to be done about that.
They won’t leave you alone.
They won’t stop coming.
And they most definitely won’t make life easier for you.
Unless you can internalize this one thing:
Your emotions are messengers that are telling you something you need to do.
They are a gift from God. They are given to us to help us move forward and progress in life. To shed old skins and to cleanse from limiting beliefs. (Do you like staying stuck in a rut? Believing you’ll never be good enough? Or any other unhealthy, untrue, and unwanted belief? I didn’t think so.)
That’s why our emotions are a gift to us. What a beautiful gift!
So how do we actually use the gift for good? Rather than letting those emotions control us and lead us into depression, anxiety, or rage?
Here’s what you need to know about emotions:
- Emotions are messengers that are telling you something you need to do. (Okay. We’ve covered that. I just want to make sure that you got it down.)
- Emotions help us rid ourselves of unhealthy, limiting beliefs. For example, hypothetically speaking, if I have a subconscious belief that I have to be perfect or else others won’t accept or like me, then my fear will bless me with anxiety every time this belief is expressed in my life. . . . until I actually discover the message my fear is bringing and take action on it. (Okay, so this may not be so hypothetically speaking . . .)
- If you want to discover the message in your emotions, there are a few things you need to understand about them. I call them Hints and Questions.
- Hints explain the purpose of the emotion. They give a hint as to what you are experiencing. For example, sadness means there is something you need to let go of that’s just not working for you.
- Questions are very specific questions for each emotion. Asking the appropriate questions to yourself when you are working through a specific emotion will help you discover the action item your emotion is trying to tell you. For example, when you feel sadness, you can ask its specific questions to discover exactly what you need to let go of.
- Once you learn what the emotion is trying to tell you to do, and you act on it, the emotion has done its job, and it will leave. No more holding on to whatever wasn’t working for you (unhealthy beliefs included), and no more feeling sadness–until the next time you need to get rid of something, and then it will come again to let you know.
- That’s it! That’s all you need to know to work through your emotions!
It might seem too simple, I know. And once you get the hang of it, it will be simple. But to be honest, starting out might not be as easy as you’d like.
Believe me, though, it will be worth it.
I know this.
And here’s a warning: if you don’t recognize the message your emotion is trying to give you, or if you do but you don’t act on it, then that emotion can get stuck inside you. Literally. Everything emits vibrations—yes, even emotions and thoughts (thank you Law of Vibration). And if you don’t work through that emotion that is alive and present within you, then it will wedge its way into a cranny within you and stay there, causing angst and pain in future similar situations to when it originally began.
For example, if I am seven years old and a friend lies to me about something, then that anger and fear (if not worked through), will get stuck within me. As I grow up, any similar situation to being lied to, whether I really am or not, will prod those trapped emotions and exaggerate my perspective and pain of the current situation.
That does not feel good.
Moral of the story: Work through the emotions now so they don’t get trapped and make your life miserable later. (What about emotions that are trapped already? Click on the “Trapped Emotions” tag to learn how to get rid of those.)
You don’t want any more trapped emotions in you, right? I mean, think about it. How many years have you been storing those things away already?!? Yikes.
So let’s learn how to work through them.
But before we go any further, I just want you to know there’s one more thing to know about emotions (my favorite aspect of emotions!) that I’ll address just after we lay a little more foundation about working through emotions. This aspect is so important to know, and can really change the way you feel if you are often affected by other people’s emotions and energy.
But to re-cap the things we’ve already discussed: Your emotions are messengers to you that are telling you something you need to do.
They often come when there is a faulty or limiting belief running in your subconscious, and they want you to be aware of it so you can break free from it.
In order to recognize the message and act on it, knowing some hints and questions will help.
And the best part . . .
Acting on the message from your emotion allows the emotion to finally leave! And you will feel great!
Now wait a dog-gone second, though. Am I saying that if you’re mad and you feel like punching someone then you should do it?
The messages our emotions bring to us will never tell us to hurt someone else or yourself. In fact, the action we are to accomplish will never be violence, and it will rarely involve someone else (unless you need to apologize). Most often, the action we need to do will be to make a shift within ourselves. It could be a physical action to take, or it may just be a spiritual, mental, or energetic action (browse the website for examples of these). But it will never be to hurt someone else or yourself.
Well, is that all you need to know about emotions?
Yes . . . and . . . no.
Basically, that’s all you need to know to work through your own emotions, but you know what? We are energetic human beings, and sometimes one person’s fuzzy ball of anger (I like to think of it as cockleburs . . .) can get lodged inside you, and suddenly, you are feeling irritable and angry and frustrated at everything and at a loss for why your emotions seem “out of control.”
I call this “Carrying Emotions.”
And this, my friend, is my favorite discovery about emotions.
The hint to me that I am carrying someone else’s emotions is when I seem off or out of the blue. Maybe I’m stressing extra about a certain upcoming event that I wasn’t really feeling anxious about before. Or maybe I’m just feeling gloomy and glum without any triggers that come to mind. Or maybe I was having an okay day, but now I’m incredibly impatient when things don’t go right, I’m grouchy with everyone for even looking at me, there is not one single nice word that comes out of my mouth, and I have no idea why I’m so upset.
When my emotions seem so crazy out of control and out of the blue, I know: I’m carrying someone else’s emotion. I’ve written a great post that goes into more detail called “Carrying Emotions and How to Give Them Back.” It’s easy and truly amazing how much better you will feel when you add this tool to your emotional hygiene kit as well.
And basically, that sums it all up.
So what do you do now?
This all might seem like quite a bit. So here are a few suggestions to get started:
- Write “My emotions are messengers telling me something I need to do” on a notecard and stick it somewhere. Maybe on your mirror, your work desk, your nightstand, by the kitchen sink, anywhere that you go and will see it often. Or get a free printable by clicking here!
- Bookmark this page so the next time you start to feel an uncomfortable emotion, you can come back and read over this again, reminding yourself that you are now at an opportune time to reveal an unhealthy, limiting belief within yourself and to let it go and move forward in your progression.
- Read about emotional offspring here to learn about parent emotions. Do the activity, and prep yourself for the next time an emotion visits.
And what do you do when an emotion comes to you?
- Re-read this post.
- Label the feeling/emotion.
- Use the free Everyday Emo-Vocab Cheat Sheet to identify what the parent emotion is.
- Click on the appropriate parent emotion’s tag on the website, read the stories and walk through the steps to identify what your own emotion is trying to tell you to do.
- And then act on it!
Once you’ve worked through a few of your own emotions, the process will seem easy and seamless. So don’t give up!
Questions? Reach me. Shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll respond! You can do this! You can learn to work through your emotions and see them as a gift to you. I know you can!