You can learn to use emotions to your benefit.
An emotional reaction usually isn’t viewed as a good thing. When our emotions feel out of control, so can everything else.
Studio 5 Relationship Contributor Dr. Matt Townsend says our emotions can actually be effective tools to improve our day, our relationships, and our life if we learn how to use emotions intelligently.
Find more on Matt’s REAL Communication/Real Connection Couples workshop on March 12th on his website, www.matttownsend.com.
Four Truths to Elevate Your Emotional Game and Learn to Use Emotions
All Emotions Have a Past, Present and Future
Matt says that any time we feel an emotion today, it is deeply affected by what we felt about that emotion in days past. Yet, whether it feels like it or not, all emotions are neutral. They are not positive or negative, good, bad, right or wrong.
To-Do: If you feel an extreme reactive emotion, Matt says to take some time to track it back to the earliest stage in your life that you felt a similar emotion. Learn why you react so strongly to certain things.
Emotions Are Contagious…So Emotionally Distance
Have you ever had someone in a good mood lift your spirits? Or have you ever been dragged down by someone else? Humans are wired to pick up and pair and share the emotions of others.
To Do: Just because someone else is having emotion doesn’t mean we need to jump in the emotional river with them. Matt challenges us to instead notice it and stand at a distance so you don’t get sucked in.
Emotions are Meant to Move You
You can’t fake emotions very easily and they are designed to be read and to move your body to some fight or flight action.
Here are what your emotions may be trying to communicate.
o Anger moves you away.
o Sadness moves people toward.
o Embarrassed moves you away.
o Fear moves you away to hide.
o Excited moves you toward or others toward you?
To-Do: Recognize what your emotions are trying to tell you. Use emotions to teach you of the deeper needs and subconscious thinking that is going on behind the scenes.
Emotions Can Seriously Distort Meaning
Sometimes we are blinded by our emotions, or they can confuse the meaning.
To-Do: Matt says to let the emotions dissipate before trying to understand what you really feel about something. Before writing that email to the rude neighbor, slow down the process and allow your emotions to cycle through other interpretations of events.