In Become the Master of Your Emotions Part 2, WU World Changer Ilene Dillon shares about the difference between managing and mastering your emotions. Late joining this series? Catch up on Part 1!
It is Better to “Manage” or “Master” Emotions?
Very close to the beginning of James Clavell’s novel, Shogun, the protagonist, John Blackthorne, becomes invincible. The rest of the voluminous tale is filled with the amazing things Blackthorne accomplishes, once he becomes invincible.
If you didn’t read the book or see the movie, I’ll tell you that Blackthorne becomes invincible when he faces his own worst fear, the fear of his own death. Once faced, Blackthorne has nothing else to lose and goes forward in life with full power and strength. It seems that nothing can stop him.
Emotions are like that. They are powerful.
When we work with and master them, they serve us. We then can go forward in our lives with full power and strength.
Blackthorne didn’t try to manage his fear of death, he faced it. He experienced it. He sets about to commit hari-kari, and is saved from death only when someone else stops him from thrusting his sword deep into his abdomen. Facing this fear empowers Blackthorne and he becomes fearless. He faces subsequent life experiences with equanimity, calmness, and invincibility.
Blackthorne did not start out being an exceptional human being. He only became one once he experienced, faced, and took dominion over his own fear. My invitation to you (and to the world), is to become a more exceptional human being by experiencing, facing and taking dominion over your own emotions.
Become an Emotional Master.
Every person has the ability to move into such invincibility. You don’t have to be exceptional in any way. Even if you have made horrible mistakes or have character flaws, maybe you\’re not the best worker or parent, or don’t have the beauty or handsomeness you think you need, you can still start to live like Blackthorne and live your life with strength and power. To do so, you just need to start working directly with your own emotions.
Emotions have been with you prior to your birth, your constant companion, on duty 24/7 throughout your life. To live powerfully and integrity-filled like Blackthorne, yet within the circumstances of today’s world and your own life, all you need to do is to move out of the job of “managing” your emotions, and into the experience of “mastery.”
This, it turns out, is easier than most of us think, because we humans are designed to partner with our emotions. Our emotions are designed to help us live good lives. They show us how to navigate difficult situations, how to “get over” difficulties from the past, how to learn and grow. Emotions have been given to us human beings to help us navigate life. When we allow them to be present in our lives, learn their message, follow their direction and then let them go, that’s when our lives shift into “invincible,” “powerful,” and, “amazing.”
Over the years, we’ve allowed ourselves to become afraid of emotions, to see them as “negative” or “bad,” doing everything we can to avoid feeling. Fortunately, the time has come for us to reverse this, allowing ourselves to have, feel, partner with and use the very emotions we’ve snubbed for so many generations because of the principle, “The only time we have power is in the present, you have the power, today, to change your life.”
The most powerful way to do this is to change your relationship with the emotions you experience.
This will not work if you focus on “taking control” or “managing” emotions. That only serves to keep emotions at arm’s length, separate from you. In addition, you’ll continue spending a lot of your time “working” with emotions—having them arise repeatedly, developing rituals to deal with your reactions, devising processes or affirmations to keep them corraled, and more. Why would anyone want to keep working with the same emotions (maybe for years), when it is easily possible to get finished with our particular emotions and move on to other things?
Emotional Mastery is about embracing emotions, feeling and partnering with them, and supporting them to do their job.
Once you feel, experience, and listen to the emotions that arise in you and follow their message, you then can complete the lesson being presented to you. The amount of work you spend on emotions will shrink. Instead of repeatedly feeling fearful, angry, jealous or depressed, you will move into acceptance, peacefulness, calmness, and a patient observer. To move into a life you want, set your sights on becoming Emotionally Masterful.
Next blog post we’ll discuss where to start the process of developing Emotional Mastery giving you tools for experiencing and working with the emotions you experience. Emotions are simple enough for children to work with and understand.
Once you know the “system,” you’ll easily develop Emotional Mastery in your life.
Stay tuned for next week’s article!
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Ilene Dillon, MSW, has dedicated her life to helping people resolve personal challenges once and for all, then design life to be what they want it to be. A Transformation Specialist, she has worked 50 years as a psychotherapist and 15 years as a coach. She is a global speaker, Amazon International Best-selling author (The Wellness Universe Guide to Complete Self-Care, Volumes 1 and 2), podcast guest, and plans to give her first TEDx speech (on Anger) later this year. Ilene is also the author of Emotions in Motion: Mastering Life’s Built-in Navigation System and End Manipulation: Stop Being Jerked Around by Toxic, Energy-draining People. With her little dog, Pi, Ilene lives and travels full-time throughout North America in her RV, writing, teaching, and speaking along the way.