I’m sure you’ve heard something like this: “Smile, it will get better.” In response you judge the sad or disappointed emotion you feel.
A recent study at the University of California, Berkley, found that embracing your darker moods can actually make you feel better in the long run. Author Iris Mauss, “We found that people who habitually accept their negative emotions experience fewer negative emotions, which add up to better psychological health.
Perhaps you judge your emotions as inappropriate and then set about trying to twist them into something else or disregard them altogether. Start by exploring your judging habit:
I tend to judge negative emotions such as ______________ and _____________________ because I would rather _________________________________________________. But when I do judge and therefore try to change or deny the emotion I end up _____________________________________.
Victims of trauma often judge their emotions as a means to control them. Sometimes there is a fear that if you do allow them, the reality you're trying not to "know" will sink in. Or if you start feeling that emotion, you may not be able to stop. It is important to allow your emotions to complete. Because:
1. Emotions are a part of who you are. When we judge and suppress an emotion we are suppressing and judging a part of us.
2. Human emotion is natural. Without our emotions we live as robots. We need to find happiness in life and relationships. Our emotions connect us and make it possible to experience the connection we seek.
3. It interrupts a healing process. In order to overcome and heal from loss and trauma, the heart has to heal. Part of the grieving process is to be sad, and angry. Without acknowledging and experiencing authentic emotion, you can get stuck.
4. Emotions carry a creative potential. Drawing, painting, dancing and singing are great outlets for emotional expression. And these creative arts are empty without the presence of emotions.
5. Judging emotions bring up other unnecessary reactions. You might feel guilty that you have to take medications to manage anxiety. If you deny that guilt, it adds to the pile that contributes to a negative feeling about your self.
Having emotions does not make you weak or a bad person. It is what you do with that emotion that matters most.
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I usually get caught up in judging then suppressing emotions because I don’t want to be the type of person who___________ ______________________________________________________________ so denying or trying to change my emotions reasure me that I ________________________________________________________________.
But whenever I deny what I am really feeling, I end up battling ___________________________________________________ and feeling like _________________________________________________________.
For me to decide to stop judging my emotions I will have to accept that as human being I need __________________________
___________________________and it is appropriate for me to feel
emotions such as _______________________________________. I will also have to stop _______________________________________________
____________________and be willing to____________________________.
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