Healing Arts Report

Practices for an Evolving Life

They Don't Tell You How

“You need to love yourself more.” “You shouldn’t feel that way.” “Always put other people first. Don’t be selfish.” The one thing that is missing from all this good advice is telling you HOW to do it. We introduce you to practical tools using your own character traits to support you in creating practical answers to those questions. Read more here.

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Books

Two memoirs tell about times of extreme personal growth in the author’s life. Sunny Side Up is a window into the early 70s when certain young adults were searching for a way to head off society’s path bent on materialism. The Transparent Feather tells of a dying author passing the torch of writing to her new friend cum student.

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Mission

You can love yourself and other people as well. At Healing Arts Report we explore fulfilling personal development that at the same time serves to create the shift to a peaceful new world paradigm.

“The privilege of a lifetime is to become who you truly are.” ―C.G. Jung

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Blog

Feelings – The Most Misunderstood Sense

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My client says, “You mean I’m not evil?” She has a look of surprise that quickly transforms into relief. The release of her tension is palpable. That’s some of the stress she’s been complaining about.

We are each tapping on the energy points of our own faces and chests while she’s been telling me about the death of her child. She says she sometimes thanks God that death came quickly. The child didn’t suffer long. Then she says that at other times she is beside herself with rage at God for taking her child at all. This isn’t the proper order for events, she adds. Children don’t die before their parents. She looks guilty and says she knows she shouldn’t feel that way.

That was my cue to interrupt. Even while we continue tapping, I talk about the nature of feelings. They are automatic and they can oppose each other, depending on the thought connected with them. There’s a very strong imperative in our culture, I explain, that a person is only supposed to have one feeling about any topic and that it better be the right feeling.

But feelings aren’t like that. We don’t decide what emotion to have. They are quick and automatic and we often have more than one. We can change their automatic default but that takes work to create new experiences. In the meantime, her feelings are healthy and in good order, I reassure her. They are working the way they are supposed to. They are alerting her to attend to meaning.

Choice enters the picture when you realize you do not want to act on a particular feeling. Feelings are what they are. There’s no ‘should’ involved. If you can learn to look at feelings without judgment, a skill meditation helps evolve, you can take the feeling in, listen to it, and then decide if you need to act on it. Until you can do that, you have no choice. You will re-act automatically according to your training and experience, and often not be happy with yourself afterward.

Look at every feeling as information—the same way you’d look at the physical pains caused by bumping your arm, cutting yourself, or the possibility of a broken bone. The bump might need nothing but to redirect your path among the grocery store shelves, a cut might need to be washed and bandaged. A broken arm might need professional care in a medical facility. With experience you learn to discern what action is needed.

It makes sense, she tells me. She’s always had mixed feelings about so many things, she thought there was something wrong with her. This is a scene I see repeated so often. It’s like letting the person out of jail. Locked into an impossible dilemma of thinking their feelings are wrong, their unease doesn’t allow them to accept the emotions, the acceptance of which creates a quiet state from which to see more clearly what needs to be done.

PRACTICE: Explore how thoughts, feelings, and bodily sensations work. Understand that their natural functioning provides a service that gives you information, even if you don’t always understand it right away.

CONTACT. Are you at war with certain aspects of yourself? If so, use your free no-obligation twenty minute phone call or one week email consultation for guidance in more understanding of thoughts, feelings, and bodily sensations.

Discussion

2 Responses to “Feelings – The Most Misunderstood Sense”

  1. I get so mad when something is unfair. I know that if i express it to the person who is being unfair, I’ll just make them mad. Nothing good can come of it. How do you express emotions without just making a bigger mess?

    Posted by Judy | March 22, 2013, 4:25 pm
    • Having an emotion is what we usually call a feeling but it doesn’t necessarily mean we should act it out in the way we might first wish. Usually what we first have is a reaction that is the result of years of habit and training. It isn’t necessarily a good example of what to do with an emotion. Your question is so important that I’ll write the next blog entry about it.

      Posted by BJ | March 22, 2013, 4:33 pm

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