Types Of Emotions You Need To Let Go Of
Emotions are a strong force. They affect our surroundings, our loved ones, even our very health. Different types of emotions affect us differently. If someone is happy or angry, the whole mood of a place can be lifted up or put down. Check out the mini-story below. See if you can figure out what Ally’s feelings are and the physical manifestations of these types of emotions.
***** Ally’s mind reels as she glances at the big oak tree from her backyard deck. A black-chinned hummingbird hovers near her, as if sending a flutter into her belly. For Ally, losing weight is not about trying to win Greg back. She’s relishing her newfound freedom without him. What she wants to know is, who is this other woman? She’s heard plenty about her but never seen her.
She clenches her jaw, fist shaking. The heck with him. See if I care.
Suddenly a tightness clutches at her chest, her body going cold. Four years ago, they had signed divorce papers with little fanfare. Each knew it had to be done. He was not going to give up the other woman…and she wanted freedom with her dignity intact. Divorce was the only option. Their daughter Chelsea was a sophomore in high school, old enough to handle it. Maybe.
Ally’s heart pounds as she tenses her body. Greg made his choice. I’m going to make mine.
It’s not just about losing the belly fat. Her health is at stake. The chronic fatigue, the constant back pain, the migraine headaches. She can’t stand the mental fog that settles over her brain, smearing colors together, blurring lines. If brain fog tries to interrupt her art, she’ll obliterate it.
Her head spins as she staggers back from the wooden deck railing. She reaches out her hand, grabbing it to steady herself. Her daughter’s voice echoes in her head. Mom, you should take care of yourself more. *****
Strong emotions can be seen as a handicap or realized as a gift. Emotions tell you when you’re in danger (the fear signal) or when you need down time (the worry signal). Science and research grows to back up the way different thoughts affect different types of emotions.
Positive psychology books and courses teach positive self-talk for programming our minds to overcome challenges. Along with alternative health literature, they give you knowledge on what types of emotions affect your health and how to manage them.
When push comes to shove, when you need real help, when you’re having a bunch of feelings heaped on you and you’re feeling the weight of them all, what do you do? We can do all we know to control our emotions, but there are aspects of our emotions we cannot fully control. What happens when a very strong desire takes over and you start succumbing to it? Depending on how far you get in your training, you might be able to stop it. It takes real skill, commitment and dedication to train to the point of being able to let it come to you, engage and not get hit, redirect it, and deliver a blow back to the opposing negative thought.
In this article, we are going to distill the many negative types of emotions down to five basic ones. We’ll talk about how they affect most people. These are: worry, anger, heartache, grief (or sadness) and fear. Although we don’t cover it here, note that there are cousins and distant relatives to these five emotions.
1. Worry happens when we HAVE to know what will happen next. We get anxious if we don’t know all the ins and outs. Fact is, we will never know all the ins and outs. We can try to know some of them and hope that’s enough to calm the restlessness. The difficulty with worry is that we start to push the limit of what we should know and what we need to let go of. We want to know more than we need to know, thinking when we know it, we will be better off. Sometimes that might be true, but sometimes we feel even worse knowing more, for it gives us more to worry about. Worry, if you’ve not noticed, likes to branch off of existing worries. Among the other types of emotions, worry is the trickiest one to detect. Its goal is to sneak in to consume our minds, choke us slowly and crowd out any sources of peace.
Worry unstopped makes us anxious. Taken to an extreme, it can turn into panic attacks. At the very least, worry starts when you overthink a situation or interaction. We can get into a pattern of feeling helpless and lacking control. Over time, we might get stuck in a cycle of failing at what we try. Then we equate it with our sense of self-worth, resulting in low self-esteem. These are a few ways worry affects our emotional health. Physically worry can manifest itself in different areas of our body. We can feel it in the form of lower back pain, knee problems, indigestion, neck pain or a headache. We may have a hard time standing up straight as our shoulders become rounded – hunched over as if the weight of the world is upon your shoulders, too heavy for you.
2. Anger flares up when an incident or interaction triggers pain or discomfort. It can be something someone said that has hurt you and the wound is deep. If an event reminds you of a bad feeling from a past emotion, it can still bring up a strong angry reaction. Some of these bad feelings include discontent, frustration and indecisiveness. When we are jealous of someone else, this can feed anger. Maybe a friend looks to have everything all together and her kids are well-behaved. We can look at her and feel bad about ourselves. We may not know where it comes from, but hatred can sneak in from a number of sources, like hating yourself for not being a better mom for instance. I struggled with this one for a season. It escalated into resentment and guilt. Then snowballed into bitterness and depression. Out of the other types of emotions, anger is the most powerful one to channel into action. When feeling angry, we might be led down a bitter path but we have a choice. We can train ourselves to act for the good of everyone involved.
Physically anger can show up in a stomachache, mid-back pain, or sore throat. It can also produce itself in a headache. When I was at odds with anger in a full blown way, I would go to bed with a tight knot in the left side of my stomach and wake up with it. There were occasions when this would continue on for weeks and I would end up with an eye sty, which is another one of anger’s expressions on the body.
3. Heartache happens when the connection we want doesn’t come to us. We can feel it when trying to connect with a friend that doesn’t respond to our texts or phone calls. Heartache pierces those of us that have to separate from our spouse. It can also plague us when we are waiting for a special guy to notice us, and he doesn’t.
Physically heartache clutches at the chest, making it feel knotted up and tight. Our shoulders and upper back can ache too. We might feel light-headed with a headache. Our joints may empathize with our pain as our legs feel like jelly. Of the other types of emotions, heartache is the most tender. It depends upon love and connection with other people.
4. Grief happens when a relationship ends. Breaking up with a boyfriend does something indescribable to a girl doesn’t it? It is sad beyond words and not easily forgotten. I still remember the first break up I ever had. I felt the grief of rejection, confused by his reasons for breaking up. Oh it was devastating. I remember playing a song called One Last Cry up on the roof of my parents’ house at night.
I was sobbing uncontrollably, chest heaving as I struggled to catch my breath in between crying spells. My brain was a foggy mess. I was drained with fatigue and prone to catch a cold up there in the cold roof top air. But back then, I didn’t care. Looking back now, I can laugh at my song choice. If I wanted to feel better, why did I play a song that was so sad? In hindsight, I can see it was a case of misery loves company. That song’s sadness touched my sadness. Among the other types of emotions, grief is the one that makes you short on breath, coughing and gasping for air.
5. Fear can freeze people. Have you ever noticed someone starting to give a speech and stopping mid-way, not able to continue? It doesn’t mean they don’t know their material, just that they feel paralyzed. The amygdala, the part of the brain that controls emotions like fear and anger, has hijacked communications with the prefrontal cortex, the executive center of the brain. Rational decision-making has been cut off. The person no longer has command over his actions. Fear can cause intelligent people to behave irrationally. Of the different types of emotions, fear is the one that paralyzes reason and intelligence.
If fear is pricking at us, we might feel butterflies in our stomach. It can show up in headaches. Your chest can feel tight and squeezed. We might have stomach problems like indigestion or a stomachache. Upper and lower back pain may act up and cause us discomfort.
Letting go of these different types of emotions can be hard. Go here to get a free PDF guide and discover how to get off the crazy emotional roller coaster ride. Or enter your name and email towards the upper right of this page.