Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Thinking and responding to negative emotions

Someone wrote, in a Hacker News disscussion, on how he thinks of dark or undesirable emotions. Some things can not be changed easily. That stray thought that makes you feel like a blasphemer, accept it as part of the normal. It does not mean you have to be overly concerned about it, instead, what we should do is think about it, recognise it, just don't assault yourself for these thoughts:

You, the thing listening to this advice, is just a small part of a greater whole, much of which you (the thing listening to this advice) are not consciously aware of. This is because you were built by your genes to be good mainly at one thing: reproducing. That's all your genes care about. They don't care about your happiness or achievements or having a fulfilled life. In fact, they don't even really "care" about reproducing, except the same way that water cares about flowing downhill.
Your negative emotions are real. The pain you feel is real. But it's not you. It's something that is being done to you. In that regard it is exactly the same as physical pain, which is also not part of you, but rather something done to you. The fact that you're depressed is no more a character flaw than the fact that it hurts when you skin your knee. - lisper

It is a beautiful way to look at things when it comes to emotions. An objective assessment of the situation, a contextualisation based on biology, so that you need not feel bad about it all, most of it is beyond your control.

Original post linked to a research news on how accepting negative thoughts without lashing out against yourself makes people better than beating yourself up for your thoughts. Feeling bad about feeling bad can make you feel worse


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