When you think you are right, you are probably wrong. I could, however, be wrong about that.
As much as we like to think we think logically, the fact is we rarely do, we are designed to think emotionally. Thinking is a learned skill.
Thinking emotionally is not always bad and in fact, can reduce stress. However, when bad, mad, and sad feelings create problems, stepping back from your feelings and thinking more logically works better than going with your heart, your gut, or your intuition.
Emotional Intelligence is about thinking logically. Emotional Fitness is about helping you do that.
Emotional Fitness tip One: When you are getting into an argument about who is right or who is wrong, open yourself to the possiblity you are wrong or thinking emotionally. Ask yourself:
- Am I tired, stressed, hungry, sexually tense, sick? Each of these conditions depletes emotional intelligence and leads to foggy thinking.
- Is uncertainty making me doubt myself, making me jealous or envious, creating fear or anger? Uncertainty is almost as strong a creator of negative feelings as physical needs and drives. Two uncertainties fuel fear, anger, and depression: uncertainty about our core beliefs and uncertainty about ourselves.
- Am I trying to control the uncontrollable? The past, future, and other people are things we try to control, but cannot. We can learn lessons for past mistakes or make an amends; we can plan thoughtfully for the future; and we can ask others to change, but expecting to control what cannot be controlled is not emotionally intelligent.
- Am I desperately seeking perfection,when good enough is probably more than good enough.
- Am I pursuing all the wrong things? Fame, fortune, and material possessions have value, but not as much as loving relationships, caring, and sharing.
- Am I violating my code of honor? Efforts to get along, keep life peaceful and others happy sometimes sees us going against what we value most. Not good.
Emotional fitness tip two: As long as following your heart harms no one, and that includes messing up important relationships. thinking clearly is not worth the effort. That said, when stress, bad, mad, and sad feelings start disturbing the peace, take the time to think more clearly or just let it go. Doing so requires strong self-soothing skills.
The younger the child, the more the child thinks what is is right. Essentially that means what feels good is right; what feels bad is wrong. Feelings drive every thing. Becoming a logical thinker takes time.
First giant move forward comes around six or seven. Belief in fairies, Santa Claus dies to be replaced by belief in what the child experiences directly. Some acceptance gets placed in what the important voices in a child’s life say is real. However, if such voices conflict with what the child experiences, the child’s experiences win out.
Here’s a good example of that. Children of divorce are often told, the divorce is not their fault. But when one of your parents is no longer around you feel sad and sadness feels like punishment. Guilt and low, self-esteem often infest children of divorce.
The next switch in the way children think comes to most during the teen years. Suddenly, they can think about many, many possibilities, not just one or two. This explains why some teens love the occult.
Parenting tip one: Encourage curiosity.
Parenting tip two: Encourage trying more than perfection
Parenting tip three: Encourage looking for lessons when mistakes are made.
Parenting tip four: Teach good enough not perfection.
Parenting tip five: Make sure your own behavior reflects the above.
Parenting tip six: Work daily to improve your own thinking skills and as your child moves into the teen years, actively do the same.
IMPROVE YOUR THINKING SKILLS NOW
How? Answer this Word Press Daily Prompt Silver Screen: Take a quote from your favorite movie — there’s the title of your post. Now, write!
The movie that inspired me was Not As a Stranger starring Robert Mitchem and Frank Sinatra. After seeing in my teens, I read the Microbe Hunters by Dekrief, thinking the movie had been based on it. The line in the book, “Blesded are those who expect nothing, for they shall not be disappointed” became part of my philosophy and holds true for thinking you know the truth about something. What you know is your version and that might or might not gel with reality.
LINKS OF INTEREST
- When Intuition Fails (apa.org)
- Logical Reasoning (en.wikipedia.org)
- Twisted Thinking (psychologycentral.com))
- Emotional Intelligence (en.wikipedia.org)
- The EFTI Store (eftistore.com)
- Word Press Daily Prompt (wordpress.com)
Don’t think you can afford a life coach? Like a life coach, EFTI’s poster coaches inspire, teach, motivate, and reinforce thinking about what matters. To use, print up in color and post there it will be seen often. Poster Coaches can also be used at Family Meetings to start a discussion about what matters.
THANK YOU FOR ALL YOU DO
Keep working to stay strong, I work hard to do the same . As noted above, I am not perfect, no one is and this week;s post will be all about praising imperfection.
Remember’s sharing is caring and the easiest way to practice kindness is to share this post if you found it helpful. Thank you.