Sweet Emotion

February 12, 2013 at 7:47 am | Posted in Life and Living | Leave a comment
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I was reading an article in a magazine recently (not something I normally do, but my BFF left the latest Real Simple at my place on her last visit) when I was struck by an article in it.  The article covered the human act of forgiveness and the ability to truly forgive and forget — how it can help one find closure, even if the party being forgiven is not asking for forgiveness.  It also covered the human act of revenge and how revenge, too, can help a person heal.  Revenge is, in fact, sweet.  But the perception of both of these acts is somewhat complicated.  Forgiveness is often a hard pill to swallow and revenge is typically frowned upon.

It made me think about the way we are taught to feel, recognize  and respond to emotions.  People joke that elderly people no longer care who thinks what of them and so they express their emotions more freely that younger folk.  As children, we are taught what emotions are socially acceptable to express — tantrums, anger, tears are all to be hidden.  Jealousy is unattractive.  Having too high self-esteem makes people think you are full of yourself, and have too low self-esteem makes you look weak.  Because emotions are characterized in these ways, we often suppress unappealing emotions, bury them deep so no one knows how we really feel.  We pretend that they don’t exist, but the problem is that they do.

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve learned to recognize these feelings more readily.  Though I understand that it’s still not always desirable to exhibit these emotions, I’m not afraid to admit that I have them.  If human beings only felt good feelings all the time, life would get pretty boring really quickly.  It’s okay to be jealous.  It’s okay to be angry.  It’s okay to be sad.  It’s okay to not always simply swallow your pride.  It’s okay to want to seek revenge.

Of course most don’t want to be malicious, so it is important to keep your emotions in check, but denying your emotions is not the best reaction.  It’s not easy to be rational when it comes to your reaction to your emotions — there’s no real definition of the right or wrong response, though people will try to tell you how to react, heck people will try to tell you how to feel.  At the end of the day, you need to first be in touch with your emotions and then choose a reaction that you feel is appropriate.  Recognize your emotions, for feeling any and all feeling, is a great capability of humanity.

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