Understanding Your Emotions
Wednesday, October 17, 2007 at 04:34PM
Dennis Young in Energy Medicine, Joy and Well- Being

Our emotions are our way of knowing whether our energy systems are aligned with, and supporting, the things we say we want, the things that matter to us. When we feel good, it means that all of our energy is linked, aligned and flowing toward our dreams. Good feelings means we are working with our intentions, not against them, and all parts of us are pulling in the same direction. When we are feeling bad, it means that our energy is discordant, weak, that there is a backflow of energy resisting our own intentions and alignment, (usually because of resistant or negative habits of thought) making it harder to do almost anything. Bad feelings mean our energy is split, unaligned, resistive -- in psychological terms, conflicted.

On a psychological level, negative emotion is an alarm. It means there is internal discord to be worked out. On a physical level, physical discomfort or pain and suffering means the same thing -- that there is some disregulation or non-alignment within the body, which again, needs to be worked out.

Comfort and discomfort are not information about the world around us. They are information, feedback, about our response to the world around us. An adaptive response feels good. A maladaptive response feels bad. Discomfort is merely an indicator that some adjustment needs to be made in the way we are organized relative to what we are up against. We need to get aligned.

This is why it is so important to feel good, and this is why feeling good is the basis of meditation and healing. Once again: good feelings mean that our energies are aligned, resonant, and flowing powerfully; bad feelings mean we're at cross purposes with ourselves.

And our physical health and ability to heal will be diminished by those mental and emotional conflicts.
This is also why it's important to release, eliminate, and resolve all the things that "bother" us. Our health, well-being and ability to live our dreams depend on it. Putting up with unhappiness of any kind means we're persisting in states of mind that conflict with our own intentions and desires for ourselves and others. Simply put, it means we're saying we can't be or do or have what we want.

We need to adjust our thinking to stop contradicting our own thoughts and intentions. We need to learn to think constructively, not cynically or critically.
The shortest path to well being and having more control in our

lives is to learn to welcome or allow good thoughts, constructive thoughts, and release and let go of the thoughts that are critical, complaining, fearful or upsetting to us. Once we learn to do this and find ourselves feeling better, it's a lot easier to take the required actions and improve the world around us. Being upset just renders us weak and ineffective, and engenders resistance from others.
The heart of the formal practice of this mind training is meditation, but it's something we should also be mindful of and practicing all day long: choosing thoughts that help us to see and make the best of whatever it is we're faced with; choosing perspectives that help us feel a sense of relief and empowerment.

Our emotions are our constant feedback, from ourself to ourself, about how how we're doing in this regard. Specifically, our feelings indicate whether our thinking, or our focus of mind, supports our intentions.

Our feelings tell us directly how we feel about ourselves in relation to our stated intentions, hopes and dreams.

When we feel good about ourselves (because we have focused on positive aspects of ourselves, given ourselves credit, or practiced self-appreciation) we are more aligned, and more powerful. Habits of thought that are in alignment with our desires and intentions feel good. Habits of thought that say no to what we want feel bad to us.

We can use a scale to show the range of feelings from good to bad and see where we are at any given moment in relation to any topic that is important to us:

joyful; happy; certain
more-or-less OK
tense; anxious
scared; worried
discouraged; feeling hopeless
sad; numb
feeling powerless, despairing

Again, our dominant feeling state regarding any topic tells us whether we're energetically in alignment (flow) with our hopes and dreams, or resisting, out of phase energetically, with our hopes and dreams. It is a relative thing, the better we feel, the more resources we have, and the more opportunities we have. The worse we feel, the more disabled we are. In this sense, it's better to be angry than it is to be afraid (feels better, too.) but it's not as good as feeling hopeful.

It is important to have good feelings about the things you want, the things that matter to you. If you have bad feelings about the things you want, or about your ability to get them you're only going to generate a sense of powerlessness. Feel better first and actions and results come easily.

Let's say you have a desire for something: you feel good when you say yes to it, when you believe you can have it. You feel bad when you say no to it, when you don't believe you can have it. Example: "I want a successful relationship." When I think I can't have one, for whatever reason, I feel some degree of misery, from concerned down to despair. When I believe I can have one, I feel some degree of good, from OK on up to certainty and joy.

We usually look outside of ourselves, to others or the world around us, for evidence as to how we're doing, or what's possible, even though there is really nothing in the world that can tell you what's likely to happen or what you can do. History shows, over and over again, that change or innovation is usually not obvious until it happens. Anything is always possible, but only if your energy is aligned around it, only if you mind is open to it and your heart feels good about it.

Our beliefs about the world do powerfully shape and influence our own personal experience of what is possible. So someone who thinks things are hopeless (whether they are or not) feels hopeless, and doesn't see any possibilities. This is what depression is: a pervasive, practiced, negative approach to life that says, "It's no use." An optimistic person is merely someone who has practiced thoughts of possibility, and is and feels convinced that anything is possible. (Which happens to be just as true. Remember the adage: whether you say you can, or say you can't, either way you'll be proven right.)

When you practice finding ways to be more optimistic, you feel better and things improve. When you are "realistic" and look to the world to tell you what's possible, things stay the way they are and you feel helpless.

Think of it this way: you can expect to encounter events which support however you're feeling most of the time. If you're feeling frustrated most of the time, life will seem frustrating. If concerned, you'll see plenty of things to be concerned about. If you're happy, then there are lots of things that are delightful. The world is as you are.

When we work on feeling a little better about things, feeling more of a sense of possibility, things start to loosen up and improve. Opportunities show up, resources become available. Think of a time when you were happy -- didn't life seem wonderful? And didn't things just seem to go better?

One last thing: In general, it is important that you get to feeling at least neutral before you try to take action on anything important. Wait until you feel "better" before you make any major decisions, or take any major steps. Steps taken from a negative place will be at best of mixed value. Get to where you can think about what is important to you without feeling upset about it at all. And remember, learning to feel good is a practice, and it takes time to get good at it.

Article originally appeared on Counseling - Coaching (http://www.dennisyoung.com/).
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