Don’t we love a good old tussle – especially with our emotions? Society conditions us that it's essential always to be happy and upbeat. “Enjoy yourself!”, we are commanded as we go on a day out. “Keep your chin up” when the chips are down. 
Imagine the next sentence in the style of Hugh Grant’s character Charlie in the closing scene of Four Weddings and a Funeral, as he popped the “let’s not get married” question to Andie McDowell’s Carrie. What if you could learn to embrace NOT feeling happy, and what if NOT always grasping for positive emotions might just be the key to change your life? 
If we realise that all emotions have a purpose, which is always attempting to serve us rather than bring us down, it can pivot our thinking towards acceptance. That avoidance of resistance means less pressure to be happy, and perversely that will make us happier. 
Look at these emotions and consider their purpose (my view). 
Anger – to get ready for counteraction against something which is against our values. 
Fear – a warning to protect from danger – even if powering through is ultimately our best choice. 
Worry – to look forward and consider potential pitfalls. Make contingency plans if you can or need to. 
Surprise – to focus on something new so we can give it full attention – pleasant or unpleasant. 
Joy – to remind us to repeat that which pleases us or rewards us. 
Sadness – to connect us with those we love. 
Trust – because you need help sometimes – emotionally or practically. 
Disgust – to recognise what might harm us – think of a child’s face when tasting something off! And think how that might have been helpful before we developed language… 
Guilt/Regret – to remind us that we might do something differently next time. Note, that’s different from lamenting – which is being sad about something over which we had no control. 
If, while feeling any of this stuff, you remind yourself that you are a human being, and these emotions are coded into us, it will allow you some breathing space. We all feel emotion, even if you can’t explain it. Health-side, it is wrong to deny them too. By noticing you have them and giving yourself a break that you are human, you might feel that it really is okay not to be okay. Remember that, and the quicker you will move through the emotion and be happy again anyway. 
When you feel emotions yourself, it might be useful to ask yourself what is the purpose of yours? They do belong to you after all, so own them and enquire. Why are they here? 
Tagged as: Emotions
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