Learning to master and control our emotions
Let us do an emotional check in. How are you feeling today? We all experience a wide array of emotions throughout our daily lives. We have our good days, not so good days and days that we would rather not talk about. In my life’s journey, I have come to realise the importance of staying positive, and I strive to maintain a positive vibe and happy emotions in the things that I say and do. I have learned that staying positive is the key to happiness, success and manifestation of the things we desire.
However, that is not to say that we should stuff down all our negative emotions. I often try to avoid negative emotions as I associate them with unpleasant feelings. However, as you all know, stuffing down negative emotions often does not work. Our ego usually try to rule and end up making us unleash our negative emotions in a dramatic and destructive way. On the one hand, our ego is there to protect us, serving as our powerful servant. On the other hand, if we allow our ego to rule, it will become a dangerous master.
I constantly ask myself, “How do I master and control my emotions?”. I have learned in my life’s journey not to neglect my negative emotions, but instead to feel them, express them and acknowledge that negative emotions have their purpose, i.e. to act as a contrast for the positive emotions that I do want in my life. More importantly, I am learning the importance of having the mechanisms to master my emotions, so that the negative emotions do not get the better of me, and to find ways to realign myself to positive emotions.
I will confess that I am a work in progress but I am becoming better at it with time and experience. I have my fair share of anger, frustrations, sadness, jealousy, and insecurity. For instance, during a much anticipated happy outing to the city with my children a while ago, we crossed path with 2 guys who felt offended when one of my children unwittingly obstructed their pathway. These 2 guys then decided that the best thing for them to do is to unleash some very unkind words at us. Experiencing that moment of unkindness made my body tensed up with anger and frustration. Those negative emotions took hold of me in a way that made me felt really bad, and I made a commitment to myself to learn better ways to master my emotions.
In another example, I was in a relationship with someone who was perpetually unfaithful. During the multiple times that I discovered the unfaithful interactions that he was having with his exes, the strong wave of painful emotions of hurt and betrayal was sharp and intense. Even though that relationship is now over, I still sometimes find myself getting triggered and experiencing unwanted negative emotions of insecurity and paranoia whenever a current partner has contacts with his ex-partner beyond what I perceived as necessary.
As you can see, negative emotions abound in my life as well. I have learned to acknowledge that every negative emotion is valid and is there to protect me. However, I know the negative emotions do not serve me if I dwell on them. Negative emotions should be temporary. We should not allow these emotions to pitch a tent and camp out in our heart space.
I have since learned visualisation exercises that are really helpful in helping me release negative emotions. Sometimes I take moments, other times hours or even days to feel and express my negative emotions. When I feel these negative emotions, I thank my ego for trying to protect me. I visualise my ego as a furry monster and I try to quieten my ego down by giving it a nice cup of hot chocolate and some cookies. Then, I try to make sense of why I am feeling the way I feel. And when I feel ready, I visualise myself standing by a flowing river. I visualise myself releasing my negative emotions onto the leaves that are floating on the river and watch the currents carry these negative emotions away. Alternatively, I sometimes visualise myself releasing the negative emotions onto the clouds and see them drifting away across the sky.
Food, environment and meditation also help me with the process of mastering my emotions. Consuming soul food and drinks that are harmonious to my body, mind and soul is a soothing way to help me realign my emotions. Drinking tea has a very calming effect on me. Energy is all around us in our environment. Spending time in nature has a magical effect of helping me soothe my soul. And learning the art of meditation has helped me to quieten my mind and when I stop all thoughts, I stop giving energy to the negative thoughts and emotions. Over time, these negative emotions will lose their momentum, and I can then get myself back in sync with the peace and joy of my inner being.
I have learned the importance of having the will power not to react, as our power lies in our responses, not our reaction. When we react when triggered, we are not in control of our emotions. Instead, when we respond, we are in control of our emotions and we respond in ways to make the situation better, not worse. To help us not to react, it is important to allow our heart to rule over our ego whenever we experience negative emotions. When we get into our heart space, our whole body will surrender to it, and we will make choices that will serve us well.
A key thing that has helped me to want to overcome my negative emotions is the desire to be happy. I make an effort to think of the feeling of happiness by recalling moments of joy. And the desire to experience that happiness again motivates me to go through the deliberate process outlined above to realign my emotions to positive ones.
Everything takes time and practice. We must remember not be too hard on ourselves when we lose control of our emotions. We will get better and better if we are mindful and aware, and take steps to become the master of our emotions. Sending you love, peace and joy, beautiful souls. Have a wonderful life.