The Fitness Herald

Feelings And Emotions Part 2

Emotions Give Us Clues.

 What does that look like?

A clue is evidence, or a trace, or a fact or object that helps solve a mystery. Are the purposes of emotions a mystery?

I think they have been a mystery for a long time. One of the proofs of that is normally we don’t know what to do with them, so we put them in a dead file, and we usually don’t go back to explore it because we are so sure we know that they aren’t very useful. Just tuck them away where they are out of “sight” and out of mind. Ignore them or control them is what’s best. So we’ve been taught or so we sometimes think, and as a result- believe.

 Emotions are our “Front Line Messengers”. They let us know when we are uncomfortable. But they don’t  tell us why. They are not just “thoughts” as some would suspect or imply. One glimpse at a physical altercation that was fueled by words would convince the staunchest of skeptics.

 Words exchanged that have a triggering effect can very easily become an out of control physical fight.

If the voice of reason (along with sufficient force) is not present there is hardly any need for restraint. I cannot count the times I witnessed this phenomenon growing up on the streets of New York in the 1950’s. Street fights, gang fights, injuries, and deaths resulted from words that triggered aggressive behavior.


 We almost always seem to know the “what’s” but we hardly ever know the “why’s”. We know what someone said or did that triggered someone else. But we hardly ever know the “why’s”.

Why did he/she say that?

Why did he/she do that?

We don’t always know.

Then, why did the other person react like that?

We don’t always know that either.

The only “thoughts” in this situation are thoughts of hurting this person who just hurt me, either in word or in deed!

But why is that?

Because this other person just “stepped over the line”.

What line?

The line that divides this present existence with a hurt or wound of the other person’s past. Into a place of our Unfinished Business.

 The person who reacted just took the express jet down memory lane to a place that could have been similar to the present situation, similar enough to remind them of that hurtful place (that hasn’t been resolved) and they remembered and felt the pain of that place, time or event. And that is what just got unleashed on the usually innocent by stander!


How is this usually dealt with?

Well first we go after the one who just “caused us pain” (if we can)

Then we reach for our pain-covering solution.

This gives new meaning to “I need a drink” or “I need a smoke” or “I need a whatever”. We feel pain and we want it to go away. What will it be? Food?  drugs? alcohol? gambling? sex? porn? work? What ever has been proven to ease the pain, that’s what we reach for.


Next time:

Part 3

Interpreting the feelings is the key to solving the mystery.


The Fitness Herald

Feelings And Emotions


They Are There For A Reason

 You are driving to work one morning and you hear an unfamiliar sound coming from the front of your car. You are not a trained mechanic so you really don’t know what to think, but the sound turns into a noise and the noise isn’t going away, in fact it’s getting louder. The noise continues to be persistent so you decide to take your car into the shop, and you learn that that was a very good decision because your mechanic tells you that you had an oil leak which could have potentially caused your engine to overheat and burn out which would have cost you hundreds of dollars to replace. And the noise you were hearing was because there wasn’t enough oil for the engine to run smoothly. No problem…now, your mechanic repairs the leak, fills your oil back up to level and you are back on the road. Because you took action you averted a potentially costly inconvenience.

 What’s that got to do with emotions?

Quite a bit, actually. As you read the account above it sounds like a very ordinary story, and it is. Yet when it comes to the part that emotions play in our lives most of us draw a blank. We have some very interesting reactions and responses to how we feel. Some of us ignore them, “I am not going to be ruled by my feelings”. Some of us feel that emotions are things we need to overcome and conquer. Then others may “over react” and place too much weight on our feelings.

 I am going to take for granted that if you are reading my blog you believe that we are like cars- intelligently designed. I have not found a part or system that is in or on my car that doesn’t have a function. And I think we are potentially designed the same way. Everything has a purpose or function. (I hope I don’t have to get side tracked and address the fact that there are disorders, hence “potentially”.)

 That said we have emotions and feelings for a purpose and a reason. And for the parameters of this discussion I would like to submit that most of us don’t truly know why they exist. I didn’t. I know, how many people even think about this kind of stuff? I do. More now than I ever have, now that I have learned more about the “whys”.

 We Deny Our “Signals”

 That’s right. Take a scenario and place the two different people in them and watch what happens. Here it is.

A child runs out into the street chasing a ball and almost gets hit by a car. A mother hears the tires of a skidding car, looks out the window only to discover that it’s her baby boy in the middle of the street, eyes glued on the ball running undaunted by this three thousand pound killer. She drops her dishes in the sink and runs outside not realizing that the water is still running. She runs into the middle of the street, sees the innocence of her 6 year old looking back at her holding up the ball hoping for her approval that it didn’t get lost.

She scoops him up and runs back to the safety of their fenced in yard all the time expressing her relief that nothing worse happened and saying “honey didn’t we tell you it’s dangerous outside the yard? All the while she is ever so grateful.

OK. Now put my buddy Bob in the same scenario. What do you think would happen? Most likely he will feel the same paralyzing fear, but he’s a guy so what he shows is what he thinks is socially acceptable for a guy so he yells at the top of his voice in anger and proceeds to scold the child all the way home, all the while shaking on the inside and hoping no one sees him. Are you thinking, hey I know a gal that would do that. Is there any difference? The point is we present one emotion over another because we believe that it isn’t socially acceptable, shows weakness, or “makes us look bad”.

In our intelligent design our emotions are attempting to communicate with us and they are beneficial to our lives because they are signals. And for the most part we haven’t been taught what all of their functions are so we ignore them or attempt to control rather than listen to them.

Next: Emotions Give Us Clues.