Just because somebody is smiling on the outside, doesn’t mean everything is okay in their life. Just because no tears fall from their eyes, doesn’t mean they aren’t breaking on the inside.
Emotions take many forms but we all have them, we all experience them whether we choose to express them or not.
But where do they come from?
It often ‘feels’ like our emotions are caused by events that happen or by other people’s behaviour but in fact your emotions come from the way you think about those events or behaviours. It’s not the events themselves that cause your feelings but the way you decide to respond to them.
Your brain is a complex organ that runs all the functions of your body. It has many automatic functions such as keeping your heart beating, your lungs breathing, reminding you to eat and sleep to name just a few.
But it also a gatherer of information.
Your brain is like a massive computer which receives information at a rate of around 400 billion bits per second however, we are only aware of approximately 2000 of those bits. Your body is sending 11 million bits per second but your brain is only processing approximately 50 bits per second.
What these statistics indicate is that your brain has an automatic way of eliminating information that seems unnecessary or irrelevant. In essence, your mind is only taking in data which is already recognises and can file in an appropriate drawer. The rest it discards before it even enters your mind.
So if your emotions are fuelled by your thoughts, and your thoughts are determined by what you already know and understand, isn’t it possible that much of what you think is no longer relevant to your life today?
Isn’t it possible that an update in your programming is required?
Just because your brain puts two seemingly similar events in the same file and triggers emotions from the first to replay at the second, doesn’t mean that it is correct or that you have to go along with it.
You have the power to react or respond.
A reaction is an automatic function of your programming; a response is a choice.
Emotions are temporary states of mind. Don’t let them destroy you
Lashing Out In Anger
We’ve all had times when we become suddenly and fiercely angry. In a moment of frustration we lash out at someone, speak harshly or in some cases throw something or cause physical harm to another person. Anger is a useful emotion when it is used to channel action to make a change however, when used without control, it can destroy your relationships with the people around you, impact on your career and cause long term bitterness that will sabotage your life forever.
Instead of allowing the default position of anger to be your reaction, take the time to count to 10 before responding. Sometimes the most powerful response is simply to remain silent or to walk away.
Allowing Anxiety To Control You
We all have boundaries that keep us safe, where we feel comfortable and certain. Fear is simply the brain’s way of letting you know you are in danger or more commonly that you are taking a step outside your comfort zone. Just because something feels strange, unfamiliar or risky, doesn’t automatically mean you should avoid it.
The next time you feel anxious, stop for a moment and ask yourself if you are in any real danger. If not, then thank your brain for doing its job to keep you safe and ask it to join you on a new adventure.
Reliving A Moment Of Loss
Loss is an inevitable part of life. At some point, we will all lose someone we love, someone we value or someone who is a huge part of our life. The emotions that spill over in a time of loss can threaten to drown you, to overwhelm you with their intensity such that you cannot function, that you cannot connect with your own life. Many people find themselves stuck in a moment of loss sometimes for years or for the rest of their lives. They relive the pain of that loss over and over again until it becomes their natural state of being. They are in reality programming their brain to a new state of normal.
Instead of reliving the loss, focus on the wonderful memories and appreciate the times you had together. Hold those memories in your heart like jewels and when you feel sad, bring out your treasure, hold it up to the light and smile.
Holding On To Guilt
Every single one of us has at some time in our life, made a choice which someone else has found difficult to deal with. Sometimes it’s our emotional reaction to a situation that causes another pain and sometimes it’s simply that your path and theirs are not going in the same direction. There are times when its appropriate to apologise for your words or actions and to take responsibility for the hurt they have caused someone else. However, taking responsibility is not the same thing as feeling guilty. Guilt is like stabbing yourself over and over again in the same place with the same knife. It’s a wound that never heals.
Apologise for the wrong if it is appropriate and then forgive yourself. You are not responsible for someone else’s emotions and you cannot make it right by feeling guilty. Let the other person handle their feelings and learn to manage yours.
Our body has a natural defence mechanism to keep us safe from illness. We call this our immune system and it works by recognising a threat and putting up a wall to protect us from harm. Our brain does the same thing. “Once bitten, twice shy”; sayings like this reinforce the need to build walls to protect ourselves from being hurt. But the outcome of one situation does not dictate the outcome of another unless you react based on a previous experience. Remember how our brain puts similar situations together and treats them the same?
You can choose to see each event, each meeting and each relationship as a totally new and separate experience. Instead of building walls, you can keep your heart and mind sharp, set clear but flexible boundaries for yourself and stay open. Challenge your brain to discover new information and in doing so you will expand your capacity for learning and for growing.
Certainly there are times when it is appropriate to walk away, to keep yourself safe from situations which will hurt you but you are the master of your life. Your brain works for you and just like a computer program needs constant updates to remain relevant, so does your brain.
Challenge yourself to take a step back from your conditioned way of reacting and make a new choice. You truly have the chance to change your life forever by stepping forward and becoming the BOSS OF YOUR OWN LIFE!