Difficult Feelings: The Reality Behind Your Emotions
Ashley was exhausted of dealing with her grumpy personality. Why was she always miserable about something? It seemed so pointless and self perpetuating. The more she was upset, the more she found to be upset about.
Read on...can you relate?
Today it started when she was looking at her friend’s Facebook page.
Her friend was announcing a new job promotion. It was a big step for Ashley, and she was overjoyed for her....or was she?
She was thrilled, but at the same time she was also jealous.
She felt like a failure in comparison to her friend - her friend got promoted and her? Still in the same position, not moving up.
Recognizing her jealousy resulted in her feeling awful about herself. What kind of person feels bad about her friend’s accomplishment?
Ashley reasoned that only a petty, unhappy loser would....so she figured that must be her.
And there she sat feeling miserable about feeling miserable.
The Feelings After...
There had to be a way out. Ashley wasn't thinking about physical self-harm, unless you include bingeing as self-harm. If that's the case, then an ice cream bucket was just the type of self-harm she was looking for. It always appeared to make her feel better, until she thought about what she had eaten - which just made her want to do it again.
But Ashley wasn’t going to find a way around her emotions. There was nothing except passing through them.
But Ashley wasn’t going to get through them if she made herself wrong for having them in the first place.
Ashley needed to start by acknowledging her feelings as valid and appropriate. It was OK to admit to jealousy. If Ashley looked further into her jealousy, she may even would realize that it wasn't about her friend not getting a promotion, but about Ashley wanting to advance in her job.
Ashley wanted more.
When she realized that her jealousy stemmed from her drive to achieve more, she was able to embrace it. She wasn't petty, nor was she a loser. In fact, the reverse is true. Ashley was a driven and dedicated worker. Instead of focusing on her friend's success and comparing herself, she needed to focus on what she wanted and how she was going to get there.
Her negative judgments and self-loathing would be amplified if she focused on her friend's accomplishments. So, Ashley took note of what she loved and hated about her career after directing her focus to her own ambitions and goals. She discovered there were certain areas of her career that she wasn't excellent at and didn't care about.
So she learned, that she also excelled in other areas but had little opportunity to do so. Ashley came to some crucial realizations about herself as she started to take her abilities and qualities into account - she didn't want to get promoted in her department.
She realized, that she actually wanted to work in a completely other field.
This was a surprising realization. How could this be? How could she have set the objective of rising forward in her field when this was so far from the truth?
Who knows where some of our beliefs come from?
Perhaps they originate from our parents, society, or social media. But, to be sure, while we are dealing with tough emotions, some essential realizations are lurking under the surface.
Before you try to ignore or talk yourself out of a terrible emotion, take a closer look - it may not always seem the way you think.
Be willing to sit with it. Talking to your therapist or a trusted friend, as well as writing, may help you process your emotions. Also, be ready to let go after you've achieved a certain degree of comprehension.
Difficult emotions need frequent visits, yet processing an emotion does not necessitate a permanent stay - which emotion have you been ignoring?