Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas
Anger makes dull men witty, but it keeps them poor. Elizabeth l
Last night was another great night at Toastmasters. It was my fourth Toastmaster’s event in six days so I didn’t have the time to prepare my speech as I had hoped. My kids kept telling me my speech topic on probiotics wasn’t interesting.
In the end, I went with Aspiring to Be Unoffendable. I should have printed off my post from yesterday instead of just going off the top of my head. In The Elijah List Francis Frangipane says when we allow offense to remain in our hearts, it causes serious spiritual consequences.
In Baby Steps to Happiness John Q. Beaucom tells us, deal with your feelings or become them. Feelings destroy lives. Feelings are also responsible for virtually all creative, heroic effort, and acts of unselfish sacrifice. It is not our feelings that are the problem, but how we deal with them.
It is not the boulders we stumble over, but the stones. We handle big disasters well, it is the little squabbles, hurts, betrayals, annoyances, mockeries, put-downs, and slights that bog us down.
We only have so much emotional energy we are told, and we can use that energy negatively or positively, but when it is gone it is gone. Each new day we get more emotional energy and use it how we wish until it too is gone. This is the choice we have in our lives, how we use our emotional energy.
Doctor’s tell us 85% of all illness and virtually all headaches, ulcers, and backaches are feelings based. There is even a link between feelings and cancer. We choose to spend our emotional energy on fear, anger, or rage or we can spend it on love, happiness, and joy.
When we are in the middle of it, does it seem like a choice? Negative feelings can be like a drug. We feel more powerful when we are angry and enraged.
I’ve always thought you can think positive just as well as you can think negative. Sugar Ray Robinson
Expressing our feelings is the opposite of depression. Expressing our feelings means “out with pressure.” Depression means “under pressure.” We repress our feeling at our peril.
We can’t do both at the same time. We can deal with negative feelings through expression. When we express our feelings it is different than becoming them.
Expression is talking, writing, singing, dancing, painting, throwing darts at a dartboard, exercising. Expression is not hitting or screaming. They mean hitting or screaming at the person we are upset about. If we have a punching bag and take all our frustrations out, that would be expression in my book. If we could go somewhere and scream at the top of our lungs without alarming anyone, that would be expression as well.
If we want to find a positive way to deal with our emotions we need to find a way of expression that works for us. The recommendation by John Q. Baucom is to choose one active, and one passive way of expressing ourselves each day.
Journaling has always been one of the ways I express myself. I paint but that is much more sporadic than journaling. Is going for a walk active enough as an outlet? Some of my best thinking happens on walks. Some of the things I’ve figured out in my life happen on walks.
It was during walks that I come to the realization that what offends me some times is a truth about myself I need to embrace. Yesterday I embraced being a liar. If not having grey hair, wearing makeup, high heels, and foundation garments like spanks and push up bras is lying then I am a liar and I embrace it. If wearing red is a signal of fertility – guilty of that too.
If feeling good about myself, makes me a narcissist then I embrace that too. Being part of the privileged people in the world, as I believe almost all Canadians are, I embrace that too. It is not possible to know about or understand every person’s struggle and if that makes me insensitive, inconsiderate, and selfish I embrace that too. If my view of the world is too small I embrace that.
If some people don’t like how I think or express myself, I embrace that too. We are more than our supporters or detractors, and neither should be too important to us. Flattery isn’t that much better than criticism.
We can be offended or perhaps we need to deal with the small nugget of truth we don’t want to accept? When we embrace ourselves warts and all then we can choose what parts of ourselves to improve. As Dr. Phil says “we can’t change what we don’t acknowledge.”
Emotion has taught mankind to reason. Marquis de Vauvenargues
Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.
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