Our feelings are not there to be cast out or conquered. They’re there to be engaged and expressed with imagination and intelligence.”
― T.K. Coleman, Freedom Without Permission: How to Live Free in a World That Isn't
Last week in DBT we were asked to go through a worksheet full of emotion myths and to write down ways of challenging them. The worksheet also had some answers in case one got stuck. I did not do all of the myths but just the ones that really resonated with me. I thought I would share my own challenges and the included challenges that really moved me.
Myth: Letting others know that I am feeling bad is a weakness.
My job is not to please others.
Myth: Being emotional means being out of control.
Being emotional means that I am human.
Myth: All painful emotions are a result of a bad attitude.
All painful emotions provide useful information.
Myth: Drama is cool.
I used to think drama is cool, now I know that it is exhausting.
Myth: It is inauthentic to try to change my emotions.
Challenge: I do not need to suffer.
Change is itself authentic; it is part of life.
Myth: Emotional truth is what counts, not factual truth.
Emotional truth and factual truth both count.
Myth: People should do whatever they feel like doing.
Challenge: Balance is key.
Doing what I feel like doing can be ineffective.
Myth: Acting on your emotions is the mark of a truly free individual.
Challenge: Being able to regulate my own emotions is the mark of a truly free individual. I will no longer be a slave to intense emotions.
Provided Challenge: The truly free person can regulate emotions.
My Response To The Provided Challenge:
The truly free person honors boundaries.
Myth: My emotions are who I am.
My emotions are a part of who I am but not my totality.
Myth: My emotions are why people love me.
People love me because I am a cool person!
Myth: Emotions can just happen for no reason.
Every emotion is produced by an interpretation to an event. Recognizing this will mean that I will have simultaneously more freedom and more control - I will be able to more thoroughly have the life I want.
Myth: Emotions should always be trusted.
Emotions should always be honored and honoring their information is not the same as trusting them as truth.