“It’s all gone terribly wrong”

But what if it hasn’t?

When we’re in the “other half” of our 50/50 emotional life, sometimes we may think something has gone terribly wrong, that maybe we’re wrong, that our life is wrong, that everything is wrong.

I want to offer that life and our human, emotional experience is 50/50 – 50% “good/positive” and 50% “bad/negative.”

It has to be this way because we wouldn’t know what “good” is without “bad.”

I think we’ve been taught incorrectly that our emotional lives should be “good” most, if not all, of the time. So when something happens and we feel the “bad” 50%, we think something has gone terribly wrong.

But if that “bad” 50% is supposed to be there, has anything really gone wrong?

No. We’re just in the 50% that sucks sometimes. And that’s okay. We’re okay. It’s all okay. We’re in the human experience.

It may not feel okay in the moment, but when we can stay with the negative feeling and allow and process our emotions, that’s when we’ll move forward. 

Avoiding the negative emotion can hurt us. Instead of experiencing the emotion, we buffer: we seek other things to make us feel better. Other things, like false pleasures, we don’t necessarily want, like over-eating, over-drinking, binging Netflix, over-Instagraming, over-working, over-spending, etc. 

We do these actions instead of allowing and processing an uncomfortable emotion like boredom, loneliness, shame, fear, jealousy.

But experiencing the negative emotion can help us. When we’re willing to experience the range of emotions, we open our lives up so much more. That’s when we know we can handle any emotion.

When we open up to the 50/50, we get some authority over it. Then we don’t have to be in a hurry to seek false pleasure or change things impulsively to feel better. 

Your turn: How would your life be different if you recognize that your emotional life is 50/50 and that’s okay? Are you open to allowing and processing negative emotions instead of avoiding or resisting them? What would you be more willing to do for yourself if you embraced the 50/50 of your emotional life?

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What’s on your mind? It can be powerful to learn from each other and our common struggles when it comes to our practice of self-care–or just being a human being. If you have something you’re struggling with and would like some perspective, share it here. Your issue may be chosen and addressed in the next post–it’ll be totally anonymous.

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