Understanding Feelings

“To have inner peace doesn’t mean you never feel, but that you are peaceful with whatever arises.”  Aaron

One of life’s interesting difficulties is that words mean something slightly different to each of us.  And when it comes to the word “feeling” there is probably no other word that means so many different things to every single human.   Despite the confusion surrounding this word, we cannot escape the fact that the root of our being is held in our capacity to feel. That being said, for many of us, it is the fear of feeling that is at the root of our discontent.

Our feelings -emotions, sensations, instinct, intuition and extrasensory perceptions- are our communication super highway.  They provide signals that hold important information and help us learn.  They are our national broadcasting system warning us of danger and our complete entertainment system all in one.  Their affect and effect happen nearly spontaneously … requiring us to be more “tuned in” than “tuned out”… A real reversal of thought for many of us.  Sadly, the majority of us were taught some pretty strange ideas about our “feelings.”  When we don’t understand the language of emotions and sensations, we become victim to them.  As a victim, we are in a constant state of go between…. a part of us is anxiously waiting for more joy while another part of us is constantly fearing all types of possibilities. Long story short, being a victim of our feelings is like being superglued into a canoe that is traveling on every type of tributary known to man.  One minute you are gliding along a calm, clear blue stream and in the next you’re flowing into quickly growing rapids heading toward a 100 foot waterfall where its sink or paddle…you are constantly in the state of reaction.  The good news is with a little bit of emotional intelligence you will be able to free yourself from that darn canoe.

The real value of emotional awareness is that it gives you the ability to navigate our inner world more clearly.  Once you become adept at the workings of your inner world, you will be able to see the outer world from a complete perspective.  Stress, anger and anxiety are some of life’s toughest obstacles. Learning how to navigate through life’s ever changing landscape leads to a more fulfilling life. In order to do that, we must be able to appraise our feelings to determine if they are appropriate for the moment.  This empowers you to shift from reacting to responding, a vital key to stress management.

Feelings are meant to be felt, understood, explored and released.  In order to extract the information from our emotions and sensations, we must be willing to be an explorer, curious about what is lurking underneath the surface.  The real question is, Are you willing face your feelings long enough to discover what’s underneath the surface?

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