Why it’s so important to feel negative emotion
Updated: Apr 6
Do you regularly avoid or push away negative emotions?
A strange question to ask but I have come to realise that some negative emotions can actually be incredibly positive for us. Feelings such as discomfort, fear, vulnerability, disappointment can actually help us overcome challenges and achieve things in our life that we never dreamt we could. After having my first child, 15 years ago, I gave up my job. I felt lucky to be able to do this at the time. But over the years I began to realise that I really wanted to do work again. I wanted to earn my own money and not rely on my husband financially. However, my confidence ebbed away the longer I was out of the job market. I had various ideas about things I could do but I never took any action. They all fell by the wayside. I felt bored and restless but just ambled on with my life as it was.
Then about 2 years I had a conversation with a friend who runs her own business. She does a lot of public speaking for her job. I had so much admiration for her but I thought it was something I could never do. I thought she was a lot more confident than me but she told me she didn’t have the natural confidence to stand up and speak in front of people. She said when she first started public speaking she was absolutely petrified of going on stage and speaking. But she just pushed through these feelings as she had set herself a goal. Her goal was to speak at a certain number of events each year in order to grow her confidence with public speaking. This was a profound moment for me. Suddenly I realised I’d spent years avoiding various negative emotions. I was frightened of feeling emotions such as vulnerability, failure and discomfort. I had not pushed myself out of my comfort zone for years. I’d allowed myself to stagnate. No wonder I was feeling so bored and restless!
Always staying in your Comfort Zone is not necessarily good for you.
It is so important to set goals and allow yourself to feel negative emotions
I realised I needed to set myself some big goals and commit to achieving them within a certain time frame. I then decided I had to be willing to feel emotions that were going to make me feel incredibly uncomfortable in order to achieve these goals. Emotions such as failure, fear, and vulnerability. If I wasn’t willing to feel these emotions, it would be very easy for me to give up on my goals as soon as I encountered any obstacles. One of my goals was to become a Life Coach so I signed up to do a Certification Course. I found the course incredibly challenging. Most of the time I felt completely out of my comfort zone and I absolutely loved it! I felt fear and vulnerability on a regular basis and it made me feel so alive! I realised that the emotions we tend to avoid are the same emotions we need to work through in order to get the results we want. The course really helped me understand that I didn’t need to be afraid of negative emotions. They are just uncomfortable vibrations in my body, nothing else. If I allow a negative emotion to be there, it’s absolutely harmless.
Feeling positive about negative emotions
I’ve now started to feel a lot of positive emotion about certain negative emotions as I know they’re helping me evolve as a person. I’ve realised how important it is to feel negative emotion to allow new positive feeling. For instance, if I’m willing to allow myself to feel fear then that will result in a feeling of courage for me as that’s what I need to feel in order to overcome fear. I genuinely believe that if we allow our negative emotions to sit with us and not push them away then this is the secret to making all of my dreams a reality.
If you’d like help learning how to feel and process negative emotions then please click here to arrange a free mini coaching session.