I talk a lot about thoughts and feelings in my posts. Truly those are the two most important things you can consider when moving throughout life. It doesn’t matter if you’re seeking to change careers, start up a new business, seek a promotion, or tackle a difficult relationship you have. What you think and what you feel will always determine the outcome. Always.
We often don’t take responsibility for how we feel. We want to blame others. We are very good at blaming others for how we feel. You’re not going to like this analogy, but it’s very similar to what children do. Children blame others for their feelings. This is called Emotional Childhood. When we are in Emotional Childhood, we blame everything and everyone else for how we feel and the results in our lives. We are literally trained to be this way. Consider the child in the back seat (this may have been you…) “Mom! She’s looking at me!” Do you remember this one? I do. My sister would stare at me or, even worse, she’d touch me with just a single finger ever so slightly on my bicep. OVER and OVER! Mom would yell back, “stop looking at (or touching) your sister, you’re going to make her cry!” For me, it was cleaning my plate at every meal, because if I didn’t, I would hurt my dad’s feelings. If I ate only what I wanted, the interrogation would start, “Was it not good? You didn’t like it?” So, I was taught that we are responsible for other people’s feelings and therefore when I had bad feelings, they were in turn likely caused by someone else.
We take this into our adult life as well. We say, if only my boss understood what I do, I would have gotten a promotion. If my kids would have listened to me this morning, I wouldn’t have been late for work. If my husband would eat what I eat, I could lose weight. He doesn’t support me. If only my mother had home schooled me, I wouldn’t have partied in school. I could go on and on.
When we blame others for our feelings, we are essentially saying that we need to control and manipulate everyone and everything around us so that we can feel better. This is simply not possible and disempowering. For sure, we cannot control others.
Pull the thread of this thought…
What if we were emotional adults? What would that look like?
Emotional adulthood requires us to take responsibility for how we feel – all the time. We take control of our thinking and take responsibility for how we feel no matter what other people do or say.
This requires practice. It takes work to start thinking about how you think and how you get to choose how you think and change it when it’s not serving you. It’s some of the most powerful work you’ll do. When you take your power back by taking responsibility for your thoughts and feelings, the results you have life will drastically change.
When I tell clients that no one can hurt their feelings, sometimes they turn it around and say, well, then, I can’t hurt anyone else’s feelings either, and this is true. The other person’s thinking about how you’re behaving is ultimately what will cause their feelings. BUT, you are responsible for how you behave. Do you want to behave badly or in a way that is purposefully unkind? Being an emotional adult means showing up in the world as the person you want to be. I like to believe we all want to be kind first and foremost.
Sometimes we are so wedded to our stories that we don’t see how we are not being emotional adults. I can help you tell a different story.
If you’re ready for massive transformation in your life, click below to schedule a free strategy session with me.