Emotions: Is It Important To Take Responsibility For How We Feel?
If one was to think about someone they appreciate, there is a strong chance that they will end up feeling ‘good’. Yet, if they were to think about someone who presses their buttons, for instance, they are unlikely to have the same emotional experience.
And when they feel good, there is not much chance of them wanting to blame the other person for how they feel. However, this is not necessarily going to be the case when it comes to the emotional experience they have when they don’t feel this way.
Human beings want to feel good, and as a result of this, they will often go out of their way to experience pleasure. So when one spends their time around someone who they enjoy being around, they are not going to tell the other person to change their behaviour.
This may happen if they were to change and one no longer felt the same way around them. But in most cases, they are not going to have the need to tell the other person to ‘stop making me feel this way’.
On The Other Side
If, on the other hand, someone doesn’t feel ‘good’ when they are around someone, they may end up blaming them for how they feel. This can relate to someone they spend a lot of time with or it may relate to someone they see on the odd occasion.
How they feel when they are around them has then got nothing to do with them, and it can then be normal for them to see the other person as the cause. What is going in within them is then irrelevant, and there is no need for them to engage in any kind of self-reflection.
One way for them to gain support for their outlook and to prove that how they feel has nothing to do with them, is to gain support from others. These people can then validate what is taking place and tell them that it has nothing to do with them.
As a result of this support, there is then no reason for them to take responsibility for how they feel. But while they may get to be ‘right’, it is not going to give them the chance to see if they are playing a part in what is happening.
However, there is always the chance that they will come across someone who responds to them in a different way. When this happens, they may encourage them to go inside and to see why they feel as they do.
And if they were to do this, they may start to understand why they feel as they do when they are around the other person. This is not to say that how they feel is ‘wrong’, but it will give them a chance to take responsibility for how they feel.
When someone is in touch with their thoughts and emotions, it will make it easier for them to see why they feel the way they do. If they don’t have this connection, their emotions may appear to be the result of what is taking place externally.
It is then not going to be possible for them to see if what is taking place within them is playing a part in how they feel. Their attention will be placed on what someone else has said or done.
And while it is important to look into what is taking place on the outside, it is also important to look into what is take place on the inside. If one only looks at what is taking place externally, they will end up feeling like a victim.
Yet, if they only look at what is taking place within them and don’t reflect on what is taking place on the outside, they will also be out of balance. Instead of being in a position they are avoiding responsibility, they will be in a position where they are taking too much responsibility.
For example: if one feels angry, they could blame the other person or they could take their time to think about why they feel as they do. And instead of telling the other person that they make them feel angry, they can say they feel angry when they do or say something.
The first approach is likely to make the other person defensive, and if this happens on a regular basis, they may start to experience resentment. The other person may continue to be there physically, but they may start to emotionally disconnect from them.
The Second Approach
When they take the second approach, there is less chance of the other person being defensive. This is because one is not blaming them for how they feel; they are simply pointing out how they feel when something takes place.
There is then no need for the other person to experience resentment and it will be easier for them to maintain their emotional connection. In order for one to take this approach they will need to be in touch with how they feel and to own their emotional experience.
Through taking responsibility for how they feel as opposed to blaming others, it will give them the chance to grow and to work through the problems they have with others. Blaming others may allow then to feel better in the short-term, but it won’t allow them to grow and it is likely to have a negative effect on their relationships.
It one finds it difficult to own their emotional experience, this may be a sign that they haven’t developed boundaries and that they have an emotional build-up. Through letting go of their emotional build up, they will start to develop a sense of self.
They will then be able to see where they begin and end and where other people begin and end. This is something that can take place with the assistance of a therapist and/or a support group.