At Last! A Use for Emotions
Copyrighted by Lorna Tedder. Originally published in Third Degree Below.
I suppose I’m analyzing and intellectualizing emotions but, pulling myself out of them objectively for a moment, I’ve figured out that emotions are indeed useful in a life path and life purpose sort of way. They are absolutely the key guideline to where to put my energy.
I’ve long heard that if you “follow your bliss,” then you can make a living at whatever your bliss is because you’ll so love the work that the prosperity will follow. However, most of the time when that idea is discussed, it’s through the lens of financial security and monetary wealth. Those discussions fail to concentrate on the “bliss” part of it…that doing what you enjoy is a wonderful, joyful feeling.
And the feeling of joy is a sign to put our focus and energy there because that happy place is where the good stuff in life manifests.
Same goes for relationships. If there’s someone you enjoy being with, then be with them. Don’t make excuses for why you can’t. If you feel joyful in their presence or your just want to be with them, then go do it. Being away from them feels bad or lonely or sad, so stop it. Follow your joy to the person you want to be with.
That’s a principle I realized several years ago with a couple of different friends who are no longer friends and haven’t been in almost two years. Every single time I was in the presence of one of these friends, I would feel bad. Bad as in worthless, flawed, useless. Loser. They called themselves friends, and yet, they were constantly finding fault with me for the least little thing. I combed my hair in the wrong direction or I didn’t wear the right shoes or I needed to lose weight or dye my hair a different shade or not mix silver and gold jewelry or pronounce gallant with more of a French accent. The list goes on.
It got to the point where I was no longer excited about lunching with them or talking on the phone. In fact, I remember saying to one of them, just after I was asked to say honestly what was wrong and just before I got yelled at: “You know, I can’t remember when I last felt good about myself around you. Or good about any- thing around you.”
That was a huge clue—and I did learn to take it—not to spend my time and energy on people with whom I feel angry, resentful, bad, sad, afraid…or anything other than liking to be around them. I can think of no greater way to tell a person you love them than to say, “Hey, I just want to be with you.”
So that’s my key. I will spend as little time and energy as possible on the work, projects, and people that make me feel awful and I will instead turn my energy and focus to the places where I feel excited, happy, creative, and lovingly productive.
I know “follow your bliss” has been said many times before, but I’m now understanding it in an entirely new way.