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How to Let Your Emotions Guide You to Happiness

For some, we find ourselves in certain situations where our emotions take over. Many people believe that nothing that can be done about it. Often, they just let their emotions run its course, leaving it at that. But there is more to your emotions than just feelings that need to be released. An emotion is an instinctive response to your circumstance and an illustration of your feelings. They are indicative of your desires and thoughts so if you are able to read them, then you can unlock much about yourself.

Depending on various circumstances, emotional responses can contrast from positive to negative. Obviously feelings of joy, happiness and the like don’t need to be sorted out because we love those feelings and understand them completely.  On the other hand, negative emotions, such as anger, hate and jealous, are a different story.

When you are able to determine the cause of your negative feelings, you can address any issues and begin on your path to happiness.

 

The Cause

Whenever you feel or express a negative emotion try to identify the cause. Ask yourself, where is this coming from or why do I feel this way. Examine the thoughts that went through your head right before and while you experienced the emotion.

Remember that your emotion is a response, so if you’re feeling badly something is wrong. This reaction is the emotional equivalent of physically removing yourself from a hurtful situation. For instance, if you were to grab piping hot food out of the toaster oven, you’re initial instinct would be to let go to reduce further harm. Your emotions are doing the same thing. They are telling you that something isn’t right and needs to be fixed in order to be happy again.

Usually when negative emotions are displayed they are a result of you doing something or being in a situation that is not compatible with your true self. It can also be in response to fear that you may soon be in such a situation if you continue.

 

What To Do

Since you are more familiar with the source of your adverse reaction, we’ll continue with how to address it. And what do you do when you receive this feedback.

If you are having adverse feelings such as envy or jealousy after hearing about someone else’s success, consider your desires. You are probably not working towards your goals and therefore have not achieved them. This would result in such an emotion. Don’t just let it eat you up, do something about it, take action. Develop a plan to meet your goals and implement it.

Perhaps your feelings are a bit different, especially during different circumstances. When you are not sure of what to do simply visualize a specific action you’re considering and notice how your feelings change. If you have a few ideas, practice the visualization technique with each action and go with the one that feels the best.

 

Get the Goal

Your emotions are an incredible tool for determining how able or committed you are to completing your goal. If you want to uncover your true feelings behind your desires, examine your emotions. Visualize your goal and think about everything it would take to get you to it. Observe how it feels.

Maybe you want a new job, the sooner the better right? But what is your overall feeling about everything you’ll have to do to get a job? Consider how you really feel. Think about the searching, the interviewing and the overall time spent. If you feel negative emotions about any part of the process, you probably won’t follow through.

When your thoughts or feelings about your goal result in discomfort, you are likely hindering your progress. You need to address these emotions before you are able to continue on successfully. Once you’re able to rid your mind and body of harmful thoughts and feelings you’ll be on the road to happiness.

Having negative emotions is not completely a bad thing, we just need to be able to read them otherwise they can become destructive. Think of them as signs on your road to happiness. They let us know if we are on the right path and if we should continue down a specific road. Once you are able to effectively understand your emotions you’ll be able to live a happier life.

 

Lea is a conscious living advocate and personal development coach. She enjoys helping others reach their potential and achieve true happiness. Get valuable personal development resources and your free copy of Design a Plan for Your Life eBook at LeadingEdgeAdvocate.com. Connect with her on Twitter.

Photo credit: Just A Geek

 

 

  • http://clarityimpulse.com/ Jonathan Haye

    Nice article Lea. The problem is that it’s often very hard to pinpoint the cause of negative emotions.

    I know I’m often in a bad mood or don’t feel well, but I just don’t know why, and no matter how hard I think about it, I can’t find the cause…

    Happiness requires hard work and determination, much like anything in life really :)

  • http://clarityimpulse.com/ Jonathan Haye

    Nice article Lea. The problem is that it’s often very hard to pinpoint the cause of negative emotions.

    I know I’m often in a bad mood or don’t feel well, but I just don’t know why, and no matter how hard I think about it, I can’t find the cause…

    Happiness requires hard work and determination, much like anything in life really :)

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    notification about bad mode is unable to capture because of its measureless quality. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/djnice013 Joseph Feliciano

    Negative emotions stem from negative memories in my opinion or past negative experiences. It isn’t easy to just erase those memories from mind as they subconsciously pop in and out when they please. I thought this was a good article when I started reading but towards the end their was nothing I could really take way from it as ‘New Info’ and most importantly helpul.

  • http://communityethics.co.uk Josh Chandler

    I believe that negative emotions can create vast obstacles we need to overcome to succeed. 

    It’s not simply a wish that they will go away, it’s all about intent focus on achieving the goals you didn’t think were achievable. I know that’s how I overcome negative emotions such as fear and doubt.

  • http://communityethics.co.uk Josh Chandler

    I believe that negative emotions can create vast obstacles we need to overcome to succeed. 

    It’s not simply a wish that they will go away, it’s all about intent focus on achieving the goals you didn’t think were achievable. I know that’s how I overcome negative emotions such as fear and doubt.

  • Coaching

    Hi Lea great post! I’m a peak performance coach and in situations where people often feel like they can’t let go of negative emotions its because they over generalise the emotions as their whole experience. I coach my clients to remember that your emotions are not your whole story, their only brief moments of an experience. You have to actively tell yourself to stop over generalising about negative thoughts and experiences and focus on the good experiences you have! We live in a very negative world, which fixates on negativity too much, choose to seek out good news! Luke 

  • http://Mazzastick.com/ Justin Mazza

    Hi Lea,
    Emotions are such a complex issue stemming from something you ate to what kind of persistent thoughts you’ve been having. It takes a tremendous amount of conscious effort to get a grip on them and my best advice is to not resist them but rather allow. This does not mean acting them out though.

  • http://twitter.com/HSPStressRelief HSP Stress Relief

    My hunch is that when people are stuck in negativity somewhere there is some idea of inadequacy.  Inadequacy is a very subjective judgment, and opinions can be treated as facts when they are not.  Our competitive society encourages insecurity in my opine ion, which can make it hard to sort out.  

    I think we all deserve to think of ourselves with kindness and regard.

  • http://www.SoulSelfRealizationWithKandeyLarden.com/ Kandey Larden

    Hello Lea! 
    Thanks for your thought-provoking article.I believe that negative emotions are related to attachment. Whenever we want something because we do not have it yet, we become attached to the outcome. As a result, our focus is on the need/want, i.e. the lack that we are experiencing in the moment, and we get more of the same; because we become and attract into our lives that which we focus on. For me, the key to dealing with negative emotions has been to let go altogether of the attachment to the outcome. Ultimately, we have no control over the outcome of anything, because we have no control over others. So, simply accepting that the current situation is as it is, affirming to ourselves that we have done all we could, and that now it is really up to the Universe to make things happen, is what enables us to detach our selves from the outcome. Once we are detached, we do not experience the negative feelings anymore; and we get what we wanted to begin with or a much better result than we could have ever imagined.

    Cheers,
    Kandey

  • http://www.SoulSelfRealizationWithKandeyLarden.com/ Kandey Larden

    Hello Lea! 
    Thanks for your thought-provoking article.I believe that negative emotions are related to attachment. Whenever we want something because we do not have it yet, we become attached to the outcome. As a result, our focus is on the need/want, i.e. the lack that we are experiencing in the moment, and we get more of the same; because we become and attract into our lives that which we focus on. For me, the key to dealing with negative emotions has been to let go altogether of the attachment to the outcome. Ultimately, we have no control over the outcome of anything, because we have no control over others. So, simply accepting that the current situation is as it is, affirming to ourselves that we have done all we could, and that now it is really up to the Universe to make things happen, is what enables us to detach our selves from the outcome. Once we are detached, we do not experience the negative feelings anymore; and we get what we wanted to begin with or a much better result than we could have ever imagined.

    Cheers,
    Kandey

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  • andrea

    awsome read, cheers :)

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    I’m the marketing assistant for Robert Scheinfeld, a NY Times bestselling author who just wrote a new book on how to be happy.  It’s called “The Ultimate Key To Happiness.”  It offers a v-e-r-y different approach to defining what happiness really is, and a very different step-by-step path to experience it all the time, no matter what’s going on around you.  The Internet has gotten so complex.  So many options.  Can anyone here share ideas for how to get the word out there about this important new book?  I’d love to hear your ideas.  I’m sure there are tons of ideas I’ve never thought of before.