7 Words - A Personal Development System
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7 Emotions

July 26, 2011    Leave a comment


 Anger, its gentle brother irritation, and its fearsome distortion rage, point to our need to express more authentically the truth of our individual identity, by proclaiming clearer boundaries. But how do we know who we are? Well, whatever makes us angry shows us what we are not - so we move away from that to another situation until we feel less irritable and less likely to trigger anger in another.


Curiosity doesn't kill the cat, although its distortion, nosiness, might be enough to provoke aggression. We are a naturally curious species, and that gives rise to the spirit of inventiveness, exploration, creativity and the pursuit of knowledge. All of these sponsor the widening of our horizons and therefore the refinement of perception. Through this we evolve.


"Love makes the world go around". That may actually be true on some level, since it is gravitation that fuels the Earth's orbit around the Sun: the power of attraction. When this same principle is felt in a human, it is very pleasing and inspiring. Distorted, love shows itself as possessiveness, and such a need usually leads to rejection.


Grief allows us to move on. Research has shown that people who have problems about letting go of the past are much more likely to be unhappy. The painful feelings of loss that can arise in life need to be experienced deeply and fully if we are to be free of the debilitating sense of impotence and depression that can otherwise develop. So for example, rushing headlong into a new relationship after a failed marriage may be quite unhelpful since that would probably restrict the ability to grieve.


Envy is what motivates a baby to learn new skills; it is what stimulates adults to overcome inertia and achieve more of their potential. It is not a deadly sin at all, but actually a gift from God. When denied, and therefore distorted, it degenerates into the green eyed monster called jealousy - with its inherent sense of resentment. That will never take us to joy.


Fear is a totally natural feeling that is good; its usefulness has to do with stopping us doing something stupid that might threaten our emotional well-being or cause harm to the physical body. Perhaps we can think of it less emotively as caution. Of course, if we deny our fears - in other words pretend we are not afraid - then a distortion will develop, in this case probably panic.


Joy. Isn't this what we all really want? It's like happiness with a sparkle. Its relationship to pleasure is rather misunderstood perhaps. Lots of us pursue pleasures of the senses, even to the point of obsession. Yet pleasure does not lead to joy; it is joy that leads to pleasure. In joy we find that simple things, natural things, are profoundly more pleasurable than the glamour of the physical senses that we spend our money on.


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