“When you react, you let others control you. When you respond, you are in control.” ― Bohdi Sanders
A man once said to me, “You must be emotional.” Now my immediate thought was “No, I am not emotional!” Like most women, I was very quick to insist that I was definitely not emotional. I did this because I associated emotional with weakness and instability. However, the reality is I am emotional. I feel everything deeply. Whether I am happy, sad, excited or surprised, I tend to display a significant amount of emotion. In fact, most of our lives are filled with emotions. The dictionary defines “emotions” as a natural instinctive state of mind deriving from one’s circumstances, mood, or relationships with others. See Oxford Dictionary.
In my Mediation Class, I learned that contrary to our beliefs, most of our decisions are made from an emotional state rather than a logical state of mind. Human beings are made to be emotional. Even the most logical and rational of us still use emotions as we navigate through different situations daily. Emotions are very powerful. This is why we need to accept and learn to control our emotions. Just like a fire, emotions can either help us walk in the right path or negatively impact our lives/our relationships.
“Emotions are very powerful. This is why we need to accept and learn to control our emotions.”
With this knowledge, I am focused on learning how to control my emotions. Here are some things I have learned thus far:
- Emotions are beautiful: I love the fact that I feel everything deeply because it reminds me of my humanity. It allows me to love another person with reckless abandon.
- Your emotions belong to you: You are allowed to feel whatever you feel in that moment. I am a masters student that works 2-3 jobs. I cry a LOT! If you need to laugh, cry, yell or whatever, make sure you release those feelings!
- Embrace the moment and then let it go: When you feel negative emotions, be sure to not use it to harm another individual. And once the moment passes, do not let the sun go down while you are still angry. See Ephesians 4:26
- Never React, Always Respond: You should be the only one in control of your emotions! Never allow external forces to control how you feel. We are not guaranteed a life without sorrow, however, we have to power to choose our response.
Emotional Intelligence is important in becoming a better version of yourself. When you learn to control your emotions, you give yourself an opportunity to excel in your professional and personal life. I challenge you to acknowledge your emotions and then determine the best response in each situation. Remember, you are ALWAYS in control of your emotions!