Beat Your Negative Emotions through Acceptance

23 May, 2016

There are negative emotions that live inside us like monsters that haunt us and come out in the most inopportune moments, such as guilt, fear, pride, selfishness, envy, jealousy…

Sometimes it’s complicated to overcome a feeling of guilt over something we’ve done, or it’s inevitable to feel fear when faced with a situation that worries us.

It’s probably not possible to eliminate the negative emotions, but it is possible to accept and manage them in order to coexist with them and not allow them to control our lives.

“Emotions are like wild horses. They aren’t an explanation that helps us move forward, but rather our will to do so.”

-Paulo Coelho-
sea monster

Identifying emotions

All of us can learn to identify and manage our emotions, but also, we can even identify other people’s emotions by using our emotional intelligence. In this way, we can sense what the other person feels by reading their words, gestures or expressions.

Charles Darwin maintained that all animals (including humans) have an ample repertoire of emotions, and that these emotions have a social function, since they promote the process of adapting to our surroundings.

There are six basic emotions and each one of them has a function…

  1. Fear. This is the emotion we feel when faced with danger, be it real or imaginary. Fear prompts us to protect and safeguard ourselves.
  2. Surprise. The wonder we feel about an unexpected event, be it positive or negative. Surprise allows us to orient ourselves when faced with this new situation.
  3. Aversion. It’s the disgust generated by something and which brings forth our rejection.
  4. Rage. Feeling of irritability when faced with a situation that bothers us. Rage is a negative and destructive feeling.
  5. Joy. Euphoria for something that makes us feel happy and gives us a sense of security and well-being. It incites us to want to repeat that situation that makes us feel good.
  6. Sadness. It’s the feeling that negative things produce. Sadness leads us to overcome a situation and free our emotions.

Emotion management  techniques

There are various techniques for controlling and managing negative emotions…

Immediate emotional control techniques

These are used to control our emotions right when they happen.

Generally, they deal with the management of our attention. It’s the effort to avoid expressing negative emotion when it happens and preventing ourselves from getting carried away by it.

Techniques to discover the causes of our emotions

This is a group of techniques aimed at understanding what makes us react in a certain way and finding a way for us to react differently.

The reason might be a lack of self-esteem, the wrong perception of a situation, fear, etc.

“We’re not responsible for our emotions, but we are responsible for what we do with them.”
-Jorge Bucay-

Techniques of permanent emotional change

Techniques of permanent emotional change work within the depths of our beings, toward personal growth to stop reacting in ways we don’t want to.


How to accept the monsters

We can’t avoid feeling emotions but we can learn to manage and accept them so that they won’t hurt us.

Up next, here are some tips to manage your emotional intelligence and control the monsters:

1. Remember your virtues and successes

We all have many flaws, but also many virtues that differentiate us and make us unique people.

It’s customary that we continuously say negative things about ourselves: I’m so bad at this! I’m a mess! I’m always late!, etc. But we never stop to think about all of the virtues we have, on all of the things we do well, in our everyday successes.

2. Distract your attention towards something concrete

When a baby cries, the first thing we do is try to distract its attention so that it may stop crying.

Don’t let your mind wander. If your partner tells you that they’re not sure about the relationship, don’t think about how they might leave you, think about the book you’re reading.

3. Think about the immediate future

Sometimes, negative emotions make us think about the long-term consequences, but it’s better to think about the immediate future so we may be more realistic and maintain our self-control.

4. Meditate regularly

Meditating has been proven to help in avoiding negative thoughts, not only when they emerge but also in the long run.

Meditating and breathing correctly can help to reduce anxiety and other negative emotions.

5. Think about the worst thing that can happen

If you think about the worst thing that can happen, you’ll learn to put your problems into perspective, compare them, and manage your emotions.

“99% of everything that worries people are things that haven’t happened and never will.”
-Emilio Duró-