3 Destructive Lies about Feelings
Two-year olds do what they feel.
You’re doomed until you learn to live beyond feelings.
You’re unstable when feelings control you. You’re unpredictable until character – not emotion – guides action. When you feel like sleeping do you go with your gut and stay in bed or do you jump in the shower? The difference is character.
A person governed by character is predictable, but you tiptoe around emotional volatility. The less tiptoeing teams need to do the more success they enjoy.
Don’t wait to feel it just get busy.
3 destructive lies about feelings:
Lie #1: You need to feel it before you do it.
The notion that you need to feel it before you do it is bull crap! People protest, “I feel like a hypocrite when emotion doesn’t align with action.”
Did you feel like giving your first public talk? Probably not. But you did.
When you do the right thing when you feel like doing the wrong thing, you’re responsible, not hypocritical.
Lie #2: It’s disingenuous when you do something you don’t feel.
Manipulation is disingenuous. When you feel like lying but tell truth it’s character.
You’re completely genuine when you live into your aspirational self. You don’t have to feel grateful to practice gratitude when you aspire to be grateful.
Practice gratitude when you don’t feel grateful. Someone might complain, “But I feel like a hypocrite. Isn’t it disingenuous when you do something you don’t feel?”
Lie #3: You can’t make yourself feel something.
There are two kinds of people in the world, those who feel their way into behaviors and those who behave their way into feeling.
Emotion follows action.
Action produces emotion.
Put a big smile on your face and your brain starts thinking you’re happy. Practice gratitude: feelings follow.
What do you do when you don’t feel like doing the right thing?
4 Ways to Practice Gratitude when You Don’t Feel Grateful
Four Ways Gratitude Helps You with Difficult Feelings
When I don’t feel it, I give myself a time limit. “I’ll do this for a ___ (hour, day, week). I’ve very rarely come to the end of the time period with any regret.
Love this approach. A commitment with a short timeline feels doable. Glad you added your insight, Andie.
Ego versus Conscience
We have an ego that wants to be noticed and appreciated and feel important and valued. Carly Fiorina, said, “ …we crave the proverbial ‘fifteen minutes of fame’, we strive for “likes” and “going viral” is the highest form of compliment.”
We also have a conscience that tells us right from wrong.
Our ego desires can be so strong they overtake our conscience. Our need for approval overtakes our need to do what is right. We deny, rationalize, and stretch the truth to make us feel good about ourselves—to make us appear important and powerful.
But doubt creeps in and we begin to have feeling or being fake or phony. That’s the wakeup call to align with your conscience. Authentic leaders do what’s right not necessarily what makes you feel good.
I hadn’t thought of the ego in connection with emotion. This opens a new channel of thought for me. Thanks, Paul.
Interpretation gives feelings and feelings give tension and tension gives action. There is as you know a difference between emotional tension and creative tension. It is a never ending story or a lemniscate or the ‘infinite’ sign. Action produces data, data are interpreted, interpretation gives in some cases emotions and enough creative intention (when de ‘delta’ between the perceived reality and the desired reality is too big) to imagine and decide some actions, which produce data …
Brilliant, Johan. Emotion is a result of how we perceive something. That’s why horror movies scare us, even though they aren’t real.
I think we are all lumps of clay, round balls of clay that have been shaped and are changing by the influence of heredity and environment from inside the womb and mostly from early childhood ,but also though life. We receive stimuli constantly and from that are motivated into action, no-action suppression or repression,etc. Once you acknowledge the feeling you may react to or not ,or not even know some stimuli was directed at you. Good actors imitate feelings all the time. Its the mind’s interpretation of your surrounding that decides ,or not, what to do. I find talking out and talking through your feelings and is the best course of action.
As a very dedicated ‘thinker’ I rationalize those pesky feelings as data. I try to stay curious about the feeling itself. What about the issue is causing such a reaction? In my mind, this makes the feelings data driven and easier to appreciate.
Another very destructive lie in the world of work is “Your feelings are irrelevant”. When you remove feelings from work, as is often said to be a requirement, you also remove humanity.