Dealing With Unpleasant Feelings
June 10, 2020
One of the root causes of low self-confidence is our struggle to deal with some of the unpleasant feelings we encounter in our day to day interactions. Our sense of feeling emotionally capable and robust is tied to our capacity to handle unpleasant emotions and feelings.
The unpleasant feelings could be fear, sadness, shame, helplessness, anger, vulnerability, embarrassment, disappointment, frustration, etc. When we experience any of these feelings, we try to suppress them and try to keep the feelings at bay. Many times we don’t know how to deal with these feelings and manage ourselves better.
Thoughts are the language of our mind, while our emotions are the language of our body.
Neuroscience suggests that when emotions get triggered, chemicals are released by our body that rush through our bloodstream and activate our bodily sensations. Emotions are experienced first in our body as a physical sensation, as a feeling. Our brains release chemicals like Endorphin, Oxytocin, Serotonin, and Dopamine when we have good emotions and we feel good in the body. When we have unpleasant emotions, then our brain releases chemicals like Cortisol, Adrenalin. When we have an unpleasant emotion, our body experiences it first as an unpleasant feeling.
Feelings fire chemicals in our brain, and these chemicals flush through our bloodstream and then they dissipate in about 60 to 90 seconds.
Our feelings, if we observe them, are like waves. They can be rough moderate, mild, or tranquil depending upon the intensity of the emotions. It does not matter that the waves are rough or mild; the laws of nature dictate that waves pullback after hitting the shore, lingering just for that fleeting moment. Our feelings are similar. When we experience any emotion, there is a rush of chemicals from our brain that coarse through our bloodstream, creating the body sensations which dissipate as soon as the effect of the neurochemicals wears off.
There is never any problem with positive feelings. The body naturally feels good. It is the unpleasant feelings that we need to learn to navigate without avoiding or suppressing them. If we observe our negative feelings with awareness, we will notice that the flush of unpleasantness comes and goes as the chemicals released wear off.
Unpleasant Feelings always subside, and we need to learn to let them ride out their course. When we begin to notice and journey through our unpleasant feelings with awareness, we will feel centered, calm, and confident.