The changing and challenging lives that people are living in today’s world has resulted in a greater increase in stress and mental health problems. It is estimated that one in four of the British population faces mental health problems in a year. Unfortunately, we are increasingly seeing this trend in younger children. This has resulted in more people being off work or schools with stress, anxiety or depression, impacting both their personal and professional lives.
There is so much that can be done to help people in such circumstances and we must acknowledge that the earlier we start, the quicker and greater the chances of a cure and these people can carry on living a happy, healthy life, progressing towards their life goals. Further still, prevention is always better than cure!
For this blog I would like to focus on the paramount need of acknowledging emotions in a positive way. We are told that we must always stay positive in order to be successful in life and be happy. It is certainly true that we get what we focus our mind on, and so positive people often attract positive things in their life, yet at the same time, this positivity needs to be embedded within the person in its authentic form rather than merely be a display of positivity.
Acknowledging emotions is such an important part of what’s known as emotional intelligence, which is basically awareness of self and others. When you feel sad, allow yourself to feel it. When you are happy, allow yourself to feel it. When you are frightened, allow yourself to feel it. When you are angry, allow yourself to feel it. The skill isn’t to dismiss an emotion because these are all natural and purposeful emotions and each one has a role in our survival and strife for excellence. Yet what is important is how we ‘allow’ and take control of these emotions rather than allow them to control us.
Stress is positive at times as it allows the body to release adrenaline and keeps us alert and going. What is negative about stress is when it takes over and begins to do the opposite of what it’s meant to do, resulting in procrastination of thoughts and actions.
Sadness is a natural emotion in life, and someone who suppresses their tears isn’t doing any favours to themselves or others. We need to feel sadness, yet at the same time, we don’t want it to overwhelms us, making us unable to get out of bed.
Anger too is a purposeful and natural emotion in itself as it is a motivating force that can empower people to face challenges and be a positive force for change. Yet of course, anger can result in violence and abuse of oneself and others if it is not controlled.
Often what I see is that people who fall victim to their natural emotions by loss of control are those who have tried for many years to suppress those emotions or have been told to suppress them by others around them instead of being taught how to manage them.
I’m a big advocate of positive thinking and cannot emphasise it enough but my belief in positive thinking isn’t about it being fake, but rather the need for it to be real! That means I encourage a positive attitude towards happiness, sadness, anger, calmness, love and hate.
Let’s change what we have always known and begin to say to ourselves and others that ‘it’s ok to feel this way’ and find a way to gain clarity and control of our thoughts, feelings and actions.
Unfortunately some people still believe that strength is in those who do not cry or those who do not fear anything. Let’s be real! Even the most successful people in our society have fears, but they endeavoured to face and overcome the paralysing effect of fear. Empowerment isn’t
‘not fearing’ anything but rather acknowledging the fear and taking the right course of action and seeking support to step out of that fear to develop and succeed. That’s real strength!
It’s time to rethink our mindset. Even though you may not have been taught how to manage your state, begin changing yourself and allow yourself to feel what you feel, take the time to really feel it and think of the purpose of that feeling and how it can help you move forward rather than stagnate you or push you down. If you think you don’t know how to manage these feelings then give yourself the love and chance to seek the help you need because you deserve to be happy and successful.
Final learning note: Strive to strike the balance between acknowledging your emotions and staying positive towards these to achieve your dream goals. An authentic positive mind will yield a positive life. Stay positive, stay happy! 🙂