Feeling awareness is one of the six major emotional fitness skill Emotional Fitness Training strengthens. Feelings are signals, and all signals can get mixed, confused, or misinterpreted.
This link takes you to 12 tips for improving feeling awareness.
The article begins with this quote: by Tang Weng Liang: “Acknowledge emotions, not as good or bad, right or wrong but as a source of information that help you gain self-awareness.”
An Emotional Fitness Feeling Awareness Exercise
The Body Scan: This exercise has you doing a quick scan looking for signs of tension or other feeling clues announcing a feeling is visiting you:
- Imagine a scanner moving up your body from you toes to your head.
- Note any tensions, numbness, nothingness, itchings, other sensations.
- Briefly ask what feeling might be part of each sensation. Don’t over think, just spend a few seconds waiting for the feeling to speak then move on.
- List the sensations and accompanying feelings you were able to name.
- The sensations are feeling clues.
This exercise might immediately help you find some feeling clues and it might not. If you can easily identify what tension goes with what feeling or feelings, tone or more of the feelings attached to those clues, you are a skilled feeling detective. If you could not easily identify the feeling sending tensions to your body, try to do a body scan when you know you are angry, sad, or glad. Doing so will increase your ability to become more aware of feelings.
Emotional Fitness Tip
Becoming more feeling aware keeps negative feelings from bossing you. When you become aware of a negative feeling start self-soothing. Here is a quick self-soothing tip: If as you scan your body you find individual spots of tension, increase the tension, then release it.
This may not work immediately to relieve tension but in time and practiced often enough this eases many tensions.
Negative feelings visit us all. Most alternate with more positive feelings. Stressed because you are on a dead line. Meet the deadline and relief visits. Acting to oppose a negative feeling that lingers also helps. That is why I remind you to practice kindness, be grateful, move your body, and remember what matters.
As always for all you do, thank you.
The first and most important: Emotional Fitness Training is a self-help, knowledge sharing, coaching program. It is not therapy. Nor does it replace therapy when therapy is needed. If the exercises and support provided here do not help you gain control of negative feelings, more may be needed. Support groups, coaching, and therapy are other paths to emotional fitness.
Anyone with suicidal thoughts, thoughts of harming other people, or who engage in dangerous out-of-control behaviors needs professional help. Anyone with serious suicidal or homicidal plans need an immediate psychiatric evaluation. Call a suicide hot line if you are unsure of where or how to get help. Suicidal hotlines USA. Life can be better.
The second: I have dysgraphia, a learning disability that peppers my writing with mis-spelling and punctuation errors. All my books are professionally edited. Not so my blog post. Although I use all the grammar and spelling checks, mistakes slip by. If they bother you, seek another source of support for life’s less savory moments. Life is too short to let problems you can avoid irritate you.