We have been taught to believe that negative emotions can only cause us pain, frustration, anxiety, fear, stress, tears and a succession of equally bad feelings.
But, is all this true? Are negative emotions really as negative as they seem?
Do we always need to be happy?
We believe that we must always be happy to really live a content life, but that’s not natural. Can someone really always be happy? When we’re happy why is there no room to think about negative emotions?
When we live a happy life we still experience negative emotions. This is something we consider to be bad, but in reality it isn’t. In fact, negative emotions are necessary.
Can you imagine if we were all happy all the time? In such a world, there would be moments in which we wouldn’t know whether we were doing things badly or not.
We don’t always have to be happy. Instead, we have to accept our emotions, whether they be negative or positive. Our problem is that we tend to reject those negative emotions that we struggle with because they scare us, and also because we tend to run away from them.
Never reject your negative emotions because, as we shall see, they also have their merits. The problem is that negative emotions make us feel bad and we think that this is not good!
What we’re not aware of is that experiencing negative emotions is precisely what makes us human.
Real Negative Emotions
When delving deep into the topic of negative emotions, it’s important that we know how to distinguish those which are “normal,” but actually originate from a real negative emotion.
This happens because sometimes we allow ourselves to be influenced by an emotion that we view as negative, and that we unwillingly let get out of hand. In this article, we’re going to look at several “negative” emotions, which are normal, but derive from other real negative emotions, which are more worrying and serious.
Worry and Anxiety
Worry is a normal emotion and is not negative at all.
It’s a feeling that arises when something matters to us or when something happens that marks our lives. Worry also occurs when we have to make a decision and we don’t know whether we have chosen wisely or not.
The problem appears when this worry gets out of hand and develops into something else: anxiety.
When anxiety appears it means that we cannot find a solution to what worries us, which is often the belief that we are doing something wrong. This, in turn, makes us change the way we act and react.
We may be worrying about something that we shouldn’t worry about, and this is what generates a lot of anxiety.
Sadness and depression
Being sad is normal because we can have melancholic days or days when we’re sensitive.
But what happens when this sadness lasts for a long period of time? Furthermore, what happens when something has affected us so much that it causes us to have low self-esteem and makes us undervalue ourselves?
Depression pays a visit.
Being Mad at Yourself and Feeling Guilty
We get mad at ourselves a lot because we wanted to do things differently, but it hasn’t worked out. Or alternatively, we get angry with ourselves because we said something that we shouldn’t have. However, getting mad at yourself isn’t the same as blaming yourself.
Blame is something negative. While we learn from our experience when we get mad at ourselves, blame makes us more insecure, and we start to undervalue ourselves.
We should never go too far with blame because this doesn’t achieve anything worthwhile.
Irritation and Anger
Irritation is something completely normal. It’s basically a natural reaction that we have in response to something we don’t like.
When irritation turns into anger we’re already in a different situation. This is because with anger we devalue the other person. Furthermore, anger causes a lot of emotional and mental stress whereas irritation can help us release tension.
Many normal emotions end up turning into negative ones, because we don’t know how to manage them in the correct way. Despite this, we can also confuse irritation with anger or sadness with depression, for instance.
The emotions that we consider to be negative are sometimes completely normal and necessary. Imagine if we never worried about anything or if we never felt sadness? Would anything else matter to us?
Now is the time to change our perception of negative emotions and, therefore, accept every type of emotion.