Feeling Well: Awareness
Quiet listening to our inner messages can be informative. An emotional check-in is valuable before major decisions. It also helps with being a whole person. Maybe your feelings have more to tell right now. Read any sensations in your body (stomach, chest, hands, throat, eyes, etc.) for messages. Are you aware of one or more of these feelings?
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|Emotional Awareness and Self-Management
Emotional awareness is recognizing our feelings as well as knowing causes and effects. The causes of emotions can often be linked to thoughts, actions and events. The effects might be linked to changes in perception, motivation and performance.
This internal information provides more knowledge about personal reactions to situations. These cues can clarify values and goals to help guide adjustments in behavior and necessary problem-solving. The self-awareness can also increase social skills: greater awareness of personal emotions helps in understanding other people’s feelings.
Self-management of emotions allows more skillful regulation of physiological energy. It saves draining of stamina that happens with over-stimulation. At the other extreme, it stops the blocking of energy that happens with blind suppression of feelings.
Emotional self-regulation skills include diverting attention from disturbing thoughts, effective positive focusing, reinterpreting dramatic events and self-soothing (serene calming).
Additional strategies can reduce the intensity of emotions when needed. One strategy is remembering personally valued goals versus the consequences of aggressive, destructive or impulsive actions. A second is engaging in goal-directed activities when upset to let emotions settle down.
Another approach is to simply be aware of feelings, sometimes called “mindfulness”. Accepting emotional responses (instead of rejecting or reacting) may help in knowing the reasons behind the feelings.
Acceptance means accepting your emotions right now, realizing that often you don't want to get rid of them completely -- and feelings will change in awhile, especially if recognized.