I don’t disagree, but that’s because their emotions are having them, rather than them actually feeling and integrating their authentic emotions. And in many cases, their real emotions (fear, etc.) are so suppressed that they are running these people like puppets and their behavior is entirely unconscious. This is the whole point — when you are conscious of your emotions then you have more control over them. There are a lot more hysterical men on the internet than women, and although that has various reasons, at least one of the major ones is that most men don’t have good fluency with and understanding of their emotions. They then construct intellectual sounding constructs that are full of holes to cover for the fact that they are actually just being run by sheer emotion. Jordan Peterson and his acolytes are a perfect example.

We tend to look at life through wound-colored glasses, and if we are not conscious that is what’s going on, we may find ourselves doing things or saying things for no other reason than because they seem right to us in the moment. The wounded places are running the show. The more disconnected you are from your emotions, the more likely it is that they are what’s actually in control in your life.

Western societies are enamored of the logical, the rational and the scientific, but emotional and rational aren’t necessarily the antithesis of each other. In fact, our emotions actually give us a lot of information that can be analyzed and used to make decisions from a place of choice rather than knee jerk reaction, but you have to be able to meet and understand your emotions before you can use them in that way.

But if you were willing to be self-responsible enough, how would you evaluate whether or not your wounds were in play in any given situation? The first place to look is at conflicts or upsets of any kind. If something doesn’t seem to be going smoothly, take some quiet time alone and ask yourself:

  1. What’s really going on in this situation. Why did I become angry or upset?
  2. Who does the other person involved remind me of and am I reliving another older conflict or wound through them?
  3. Am I feeling unheard or otherwise undermined and is that truly taking place right now, or is that an old dynamic raising its head that is getting projected onto the present situation?
  4. What am I afraid of right now that is causing me to lash out?
  5. Where can I take responsibility for myself in this situation? Do I need to make an apology or give an explanation to someone?

Learning to do this is like building any kind of a muscle. It takes repetition and a willingness to dig a bit deeper the next time as you begin to get the hang of it. You have to make friends with your fears and your hurts. You have to be able to be vulnerable enough and emotionally healthy enough to acknowledge that you make mistakes or aren’t in complete control all of the time. But the pay off is that then you tend to then be involved in fewer “drama” situations. You begin to be able to communicate better and that leads to better relationships of all types.

PS — I read the link. Of course, in the midst of battle, you can’t afford to feel everything, but not unpacking all of that, later on, doesn’t help anything either. That’s in large part what PTSD is. The trauma hasn’t been released and so it lives on in the person. That’s why talk therapy doesn’t always help because it’s not truly releasing the trauma which is held primarily in the body.

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Dispelling cultural myths with research-driven stories. My favorite word is “specious.” Not fragile like a flower; fragile like a bomb! Twitter @ElleBeau

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