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Good and bad emotions

Hurrah for Susan David and all the other people out there giving us permission to feel our feelings.

Not only have we grouped them into good and bad we then use this hierarchy to judge which we can express and which must be pushed away, hidden or denied.

We have become afraid of our so called negative emotions and learned that it’s not acceptable to have them. We are supposed to feel good all the time, be happy shiny people, just like the adverts right?

If we aren’t then there is something “wrong” with us which needs fixed it as soon as possible:

Get over it.

Think about something “nice”.

Distract yourselves.

Have a drink

Go shopping

Zone out

In other words do anything but actually feel what we feel.

Something is wrong with me

I have beaten myself up for years for feeling negative. I believed that some emotions were bad and I was at I was at fault for feeling them. Somehow, though I knew not how,  I should be more in control of myself. It fuelled a belief that there was something wrong with me.

However I have learned something which I’ve said before, and it needs saying again.

There is nothing wrong with me, there never was, and it’s the same for you too.

Emotions are normal

We have our emotions for a reason, they are NORMAL, here to allow us to express ourselves and to  tell us things about our lives; they are what make us fully alive and human.

Imagine a world without emotion? No joy, no sadness, no grief, no regret, no anger, no gratitude, no love.

Go on for a moment actually stop and imagine it.


Something’s not right, is it?

That’s because we need out emotions to live.  To experience life in all its glory we need to feel it.

Have you heard the expression E-MOTION, energy in motion. That is what our feelings are and there is much to experience and learn from that energy.

Suppression of Emotion

What a mind numbing bonanza we live in right now, a zillion different ways not to feel. We have screens, not one but two or even three, food, drink, drugs, on-line and real life shopping to name a few.

We are now far too ready to medicate emotions away creating living zombies walking this world in a chemical fog.


we are promised release through some therapy or healing modality. In my EFT world some believe we can simply tap all the negative stuff away. Just let go and releasing them, they say. It sounds simple, like some helium balloon of discomfort, these therapies promise the means to simply cut the string and let them all magically float away.

Oh joy!

If it actually worked.

Whatever your preferred method for numbing out your feelings or trying to get rid of them, there will be a cost and that is never truly being free of them.

There are no negative feelings

Let’s drop the labels and consider for a moment that there are only emotions, no bad or good only emotion.

How does that feel?

How does it change your relationship to them?


BUT some are bad I hear you cry!

Mmm, is that true?

It’s all about perception. To one person anger feels bad, it’s unwanted and they have learned to feel ashamed of anger, scared by it and afraid to express it. However someone else may feel empowered by their anger, they love it and embrace it’s energy, it motivates and fuels them.

So it is with all emotion. How we see it and what we have learned about it influences how we engage with it or not.

Diving deeper with emotion

To me emotions are a gift. Oh yes!!!!

Ok, so it’s true I definitely do not always feel like that. If while wracked with grief, throwing myself on my bed and wailing over some heart wrenching situation in my family, you had suggested I look at the learning, I would probably have cut your head off!

So timing is key and that’s why I want to get this message over now, before you encounter another gut churning episode. I want you to know that whatever you feel there is an important message there for you.

Delving a little deeper to find out what fuels the emotion, what lies beneath, is the place of true understanding, change, integration and emotional freedom.

Now, it’s true sometimes emotions can feel excessive, too big to handle in fact, and yes we need to do something with them. But it’s what we do that’s important.

If we can see our emotions big or small as a road map to what needs attention in our lives then they are fulfilling their purpose. Do we need a good cry and to be held because of some loss we have exprienced, do we need to learn better boundaries to deal with what makes us angry etc.


Do we need to address some past event that has left us triggered into repeated emotional states, plagued by a limiting belief and repeating unhelpful behaviour patterns?

By being made afraid of our emotions and labelling them as bad we can miss the learning they offer.

Do anything but feel

We may spend shed loads of money on diets, supplements and nutritional advice, we try umpteen physical therapies, sometimes going back for months on end with the same problem. We do almost anything other than sit down and feel what we feel.

I exhausted my nutritionist to the point where she finally said, “Mairi, we’ve done everything we can do nutritionally, you are following it all faithfully, you have to look at the emotional stuff now.”

I get it, I really do. I’ve eaten tubs of ice-cream, smoked a zillion joints, danced any dance but the one of facing the truth of how I feel.

But here is what I have learned.

You can’t out run or out numb your feelings.

If you ignore your so called bad feelings for long enough they will show up elsewhere in your life. Your physical health deteriorates, relationships fail, jobs are lost, lives destroyed all for the want of knowing it’s ok to feel.

We all have normal everyday emotions, we undulate up and down through them in the course of a day. They show us what’s going on with us, and mostly we ride their wave and carry on.

However some of us have deeper, bigger emotions to process. Ones which talk of past events we don’t want to think about, situations which mark our lives, shape our futures, form our beliefs and dictate our behaviours.

These are more of a tsunami of emotion and no matter how much positivity we layer on top we cannot stop the impact leaking through into our lives. These emotions require more specialised help where we can slowly learn the story they are trying to tell us.

Turn to face the truth

Desperation made me face my emotional truths. A break down in my 20’s, decades of depression despite masses of therapy, crippling anxiety and non existent self-esteem had not been addressed and eventually showed up as physical ill health.

Lifting the lid on my emotions revealed painful truths which had shaped me into the person I knew and loathed, a reality that led to me lying flat on my back with ME/CFS.

Facing my emotions has not been easy. I do not always like fessing up to how I feel.  Being seen is scary. But in so doing not only have I reclaimed my health I have found emotional freedom.

This does not mean I don’t feel emotions, it means I allow myself to go in there, to find out why they have arrived and what they have to teach me.

Using tools such as EFT and Matrix Reimprinting,  yes, we release the unhelpful energy, but first we learn the lesson.

This is the freedom.


it is available for all of us. Drop the labels, check yourself out, ask what is going on and why? Be truthful and honest and you will uncover riches you cannot believe.

Change is always possible if you believe it is.








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About the Author: Mairi

Radical Self Care Coach, supporting you to create a calmer, simpler, more deeply connected life where you take better care of yourself and our planet.

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