Top 5 Reasons for Being in Touch With Your Emotions
Posted Sep 06 2012 3:00am
by Anu Gupta
A friend (who knows I’m excited by emotions) recently sent me this story.
Overheard at a Washington DC metro station, as a man came up the stairs and read the delayed trains screen.
“F* you, metro. F*. Don’t f* me, metro. Don’t f* with me. I hate you metro. I have always hated you.” This guy is very in touch with his emotions.
The story, which makes me smile, hits a nerve because we’re all sometimes angry at delays and inconveniences we can’t control. But this got me thinking, “Is this guy really in touch with his emotions? How would you know? What does it mean to be in touch with your emotions? and why is that important?” These are common questions (at least for mind-body nerds like me. I get clients (including myself at first) that think they are pretty well tuned into their emotions and don’t need to work on them. I mean, I can cry during sad movies, I get very angry and yell sometimes. I don’t mind talking about deep and difficult issues. I even do yoga and occasionally meditate. Doesn’t that mean I’m in touch with my emotions?
First off, I’d like to emphasize why you should care. What will being in touch with emotions do for you? To get you started, here are my top 5 reasons for being in touch with your emotions.
1. You gain an amazing source of information. Emotions are a primary source of information or data about your life direction, needs, wants, and purpose. They point the way to passion, joy, and happiness. Ignoring this source of information is like being a scientist and ignoring the data that comes out of your experiments in favor of what you think should happen. In other words, emotions are a source of raw data you need to understand and navigate your life and direction.
2. Emotions help you heal. Each emotion has a purpose and good reason for being there. Often they are there to help us heal from past events. When we allow our emotions they ease our pain and help us move on.
3. When you feel an emotion it flows or passes so you can move on to other experiences and emotions. If we bottle up our emotions up and are numb to them, we don’t get their benefit and they don’t go away. They stay there and fester until we are ready to feel those emotions. Paradoxically, if we never allow ourselves to feel angry, we will always feel the anger, it will never flow or pass.
4. Emotions alert you that something needs to change before it gets really bad. Emotions are an early warning system. If you are mad at your husband for coming home late, that is awesome. The anger is there to alert you that something needs to be worked on and talked about before things get worse. When they get worse and you haven’t been listening to the warning system, your body has much louder ways (such as illness or pain) of getting your attention.
5. Emotions connect you to your soul wisdom, inner guidance, the Universe, God or whatever you want to call it. They help you go deeper. They connect you to your authentic self and to others. You feel the bliss, power, and creativity that go with all of that.
In many ways I’m a very private person. Yet I’ve learned – to my relief – that being connected to my emotions doesn’t mean I need to appear weak and weepy or full of rage in front of others. Feeling emotions is often a very internal experience. But it is also okay and liberating to express them externally when it is safe or smart to do so.
Next time I’ll cover how to know if you are in touch with your emotions.
The Language of Emotions by Karla McLaren
Anu Gupta is an endorsed mind-body coach, former academic scientist and parent, who loves to help people access the power and information within their bodies, emotion, soul, and mind. Check out her blog at www.triplepointcoaching.com