“What are you talking about?” I asked.
“I’ve been reading in all these self-help books and learning in all these workshops and classes about acting out the emotion you want to adopt… If you are angry, just act happy, if you are frustrated or hurt, convince yourself that you are forgiving and easygoing, with time, they claim, you will get used to the new feeling and adopt it. But this never works with me. I am still stressed, angry, frustrated… and it’s actually getting worse!”
“No wonder,” I say “you can never fake an emotion”
“Do you mean this is wrong?”
You must have miss understood. You can act or convince yourself or fake-as you call it- a habit, but not an emotion. You can keep eating broccoli or low salt food cheerfully till your palette get used to the new flavors and actually accepts them. .. You can smile and act happy while going on your daily jogging till it becomes part of your routine… You can pretend to love chemistry for you to understand the ‘logarithms’ of its equations…
But you can never fake an emotion. Emotions are emotions… just that. They are not good or bad in themselves. They are here to tell you something. You need to listen and acknowledge them as they are to be able to release them and transmute them into whatever you choose.
If your actions and attitudes are contradictory to what you feel inside, you are bottling up your emotions. Acting happy despite of your anger and rage or cheerful when you’re oppressed won’t serve you any good. Your third energy center (chakra) malfunction results primarily from burying and denying your emotions. The malfunctions at this level start as early signs of stomach upset or what we call ‘gut feeling’ and can progress all the way to ulcers, diabetes or even cancer. In fact Dr. Paul Martin, in his book the Healing Mind, identified a third personality type (beyond the famous A and B personalities) which he called Type C personalities or Cancer-prone personalities. These are people who tend to deny their feelings and bottle up their emotions. They deny themselves the right to be angry or feel oppressed or frustrated whether due to social, religious or cultural beliefs. These people are sensitive and vulnerable and usually listen and behave according to pre-set norms that they hate but fail to admit even to themselves.
Of course I am not saying that you should spread your emotions out letting everybody know or share your bad mood or sufferings… shouting to your boss, exploding in your spouse or child’s face or cursing the driver next to you aren’t the solution either… The key to dealing with emotions is not faking or denying, it is rather acknowledging, then giving ourselves the time and space to consider options, reasons, circumstances and consequently the appropriate behaviors and attitudes.
Practice keeping a journal for venting out and exploring your deep heart whispers. Allow yourself sometime alone preferably in nature, take a walk or meditate, practice breathing exercises and relaxation, surround yourself with active supporting community, and, most importantly, find true meaning in your life… your true purpose and goal. When your life has a valuable meaning and this meaning in strongly connected to your creation and to your Creator, you’ll find it easier to understand wisdoms behind life challenges, stresses and troubles.