“The more you hide your feelings, the more they show. The more you deny your feelings, the more they grow.” – Unknown
When was the last time you felt bad? And I mean REALLY bad? Like “what the hell is the point!?” bad. And what if I told you that it was a GOOD thing?
A REALLY good thing.
I’ve always been a highly emotional person. “Over-sensitive” and “dramatic” are labels that have been tossed my way over the years. And I felt offended and misunderstood. And bad.
These days I EMBRACE each of these labels with fondness.
Here’s what’s changed.
Change of Perspective: Why Feeling Bad is a Good Thing
Until a few years ago, I always thought feeling emotional was wrong. I was the youngest in a family unit where emotions were controlled. Frowned upon. Repressed.
Desperately reaching for acceptance and approval, I felt that I needed to be different. Dial down my feelings. Be more like “normal” people. Less expressive. Numb.
That was before I learned that our emotions are our BUILT-IN guidance system.
Read that again slowly…
“Our emotions are our built-in guidance system”.
ESPECIALLY those uncomfortable ones.
Understand The Message Behind Feeling Bad
My daughter works in the world of music festivals. She resonates with it. Deeply.
Up The Creek is her favorite festival. She’s managed the vendors for the past four years. And while that’s not her dream position, she’s always appreciated just simply being involved.
Until last year. When she was told that financial constraints had made this role redundant. The vendors would simply be put on someone else’s plate. So to speak.
She was devastated. Really, really glum. Her connection to this festival was deep. The venue was special. The event team was family. How could this happen?
A few months later, she was approached with a new offer. From the same team. Her role was to manage their social media. And with her degree in marketing, it was a no-brainer.
That was three months ago. And her position has subsequently morphed into that of marketing manager. Her dream came true! Yay!
What she’d judged as a “bad” event had ended up making space for something way bigger. And more exciting! Her proverbial “blessing in disguise.”
Quite simply, in feeling bad (for months), she had held herself in a place of defeatism. Possibly victimhood.
Those bad feeling emotions were telling her to consciously shift gear. Her own built-in not-so-subtle nudge towards adopting a NEW and GOOD-FEELING perspective.
And if she’d acknowledged that sooner, she could have saved herself months of glumness!
It’s not rocket science. Emotions are part of being human. And ALL of our emotions have value. The trick is to ACCEPT how you feel. Observe it, and understand what it’s telling you.
Feeling BAD = shift gear! Try a new perspective that serves you. Feeling GOOD = you’re on the right path! Forge ahead!
Who’s In Charge? You are.
Let’s be honest. No one likes feeling bad.
We sometimes feel like were caught in a vortex of misery but in most cases, it really is a CHOICE.
Let’s say that a much anticipated and sought-after promotion at work is given to your less-than-deserving colleague. You’re initially devastated. Which turns into anger. Followed by a sense of worthlessness.
In a nutshell, your feel BAD. Here are your choices: You can… Repeatedly engage and indulge your feelings of “badness”. Beat yourself up and play the victim. And continue to feel bad. For ages. OR really FEEL those bad feelings. Briefly. Observe it. Then recognize the message, and choose to shift. Dig out the GOOD.
Like maybe furthering your studies. Or throwing your net a bit wider for opportunities in new companies. Or appreciating the current position without the added responsibility that comes with a promotion.
It’s a simple shift in perspective.
And as you begin to feel better you’ll open yourself to heaps of inspiration. And opportunity. And adventure.
When you feel bad, it’s your guidance system telling you it’s TIME TO GROW. So either change your perspective about what is or move on. It’s. Your. Choice.
Life is fluid. It flows and expands. If it stagnates it becomes putrid. And smells.
We’re meant to be curious. And courageous. And have fun. LOTS of fun.
So learn to EMBRACE feeling uncomfortable. LEAN INTO IT. Find the message in it.
We’re human. And we’re FEELING beings. All of our emotions have a purpose.