Classifying emotions as “good” or “bad” and accepting only the good ones is like trying to live only the parts of reality we like. It’s not possible.
In this interesting TED Talk, Susan David talks about the harm of being rigid about emotions.
The harm of just wanting to feel the “good” emotions and trying to repress the “bad” ones.
This does not prepare us for reality, reality is formed by a great diversity of situations that we cannot control.
“You might think you’re in control of unwanted emotions when you ignore them, but in fact they control you.
Internal pain always comes out. Always.
And who pays the price?
Our children, our colleagues, our communities.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not anti-happiness.
I like being happy. I’m a pretty happy person.
But when we push aside normal emotions to embrace false positivity, we lose our capacity to develop skills to deal with the world as it is, not as we wish it to be.”
To bring us more in harmony with life, she proposes what she calls “emotional agility.”
A concept that calls for greater openness on our part to accept and feel everything that can happen.
To accept our most uncomfortable emotions, without trying to reject them, without trying to exclude that part of us.
“Diversity isn’t just people, it’s also what’s inside people.
Including diversity of emotions.
The most agile, resilient individuals, teams, organizations, families, communities, are built on an openness to the normal human emotions.
It’s this that allows us to say,
"What is my emotion telling me?”
“Which action will bring me towards my values?”
“Which will take me away from my values?”
Emotional agility is the ability to be with your emotions with curiosity, compassion, and especially the courage to take values-connected steps.“
If we learn to feel and observe these emotions, we can learn to respond to those emotions. We can stop being controlled by them and conquer the crucial space that will allow us to choose the answer we want to give.
Shall we try to be more agile with our emotions?
Thank you Pedro for this excellent suggestion.