EMOTIONS FROM NOWHERE


I have written about how our feelings influence every one we meet. Their feelings also influence how we feel. I wrote about what a great opportunity this is for each of use to spread a little joy in the world and increase our own joy by doing it.
A week ago I had an intense experience of another emotion. The setting for this was a youth league basketball game. The experience caught me completely off guard. I was watching the game. My grandson was playing well. I was having fun. Suddenly, a spectator in front of me started yelling, threw his cap down on the bleachers, and stalked out of the gym.
I was intensely angry at him. For what? I don’t think I was truly angry with him. I tried to make up reasons why I might be. They were not right. What I was doing was simply reacting and sharing his anger. It was a strong feeling. I mention writing this blog to my wife. She seconded my description of my reaction. She also mentioned that she felt the anger return when he returned. Even after he apologized to the wife of the coach he was angry at my wife was uncomfortable.
This feeling might have been useful at some distant time. It might have been a way to rise up and drive off a predator. The physical symptoms of my anger could create a feeling of danger in that predator. It might have been useful in diverting anger to a weaker target. It’s not very useful now.
I believe sharing aggressive feelings is more common than we think. Sure, we have all had a day ruined by an encounter with a grumpy, unhappy, or unpleasant person. Often this does not happen with a specific person. More often, we are in groups or situations where a number of people are a little angry. We find ourselves on edge. A certain easy irritability or uneasiness creeps into our body. We are ready for a fight or flight..
Fortunately, along with inheriting the ability to sense and mirror another’s feelings we have developed the ability to reflect on our own feelings. When I am infected with an emotion that surprises me I look for the trigger. Sometimes, I do find it in a reaction to something I am aware of. Sometimes, I do not. When I do find a trigger I examine it and gauge the proportion of the cause to the reaction. That often reduces my emotion to a whisper.
The trickier times are when can’t find any cause within myself. Where can it be coming from? Every once in a while I can spot the exact source. That is what happened at the basketball game. That makes it easier to disengage from the emotion. At other times the just does not seem to be a specific cause. When I can find a cause I often find that the exercise of looking for a cause, itself, will drop the intensity of the emotion.
If I can’t find the cause or reduce the emotion, I have two options. I can exit the environment. This is, to me, the better alternative. It puts distance between me and the cause. The other alternative is to enter into a mini meditation and disengage from the environment. That also puts distance between me and the cause.

THREE GIRLS


At times I think my friend Jim will build his entire PSYCH-K® practice walking his dogs. Several weeks ago he met a member of his apartment maintenance crew. They chatted about the weather and stuff.  Jim noticed that J.X. (as we will call him) never looked him in the eye.  Most of the time J.X. looked at the ground with his shoulder slouched.

J.X. wanted to know what Jim did for a living and Jim described his work helping people with PSYCH-K ®.  J.X. described his reaction to that as thinking Jim “was pretty kooky.”  After that two said hello and chatted from time to time.  Even as they became better acquainted, J.X. still avoided looking Jim in the eye. Jim saw that J.X. hung his head and slouched when he noticed him working in the apartment complex.

One evening Jim heard knocking on the door.  He opened it and there stood J.X.  Although he told Jim that he still thought his methods were “kooky” he was desperate.  He was willing to try anything.  Jim asked what the one thing he wanted to change was.  J.X. replied that he had “felt worthless and had no self esteem at all.”  Jim explained the details of how a PSYCH-K® balance works.  He facilitated a basic balance with J.X. J.X. raised his head and looked Jim in the eye.   His head stayed up and his shoulders rolled up and back.  He said that he felt better.

A few hours after Jim facilitated the balance for J.X. he got a phone call.  J.X. was on the line.  He had gone home.  He didn’t stay there.  For the first time in years, he felt the urge to go out to a club.  He was calling from the club to tell Jim that three girls were talking to himHe had gone to clubs before.  Mainly, he stayed on the edge for a while and then went home.  Not this time.  He was not only talking to three girls, but he had started all three conversations!

Since the balance J.X. bought a new truck.  Jim told J.X. that he had progressed from being mainly a cleanup worker.  Now, he was doing real maintenance work.  Jim suggested it might be a good time to ask for a raise.  J.X. agreed with him.  The next time he was in the office J.X. pointed out to the manager that he was doing more difficult and important work.  He said that he deserved a raise.  The manager agreed with him.  The raise will show up on his next pay check.

A few weeks later I met J.X.   He was friendly and smiling.  He looked me in the eye and held his head up and shoulders back.  Most of all he flashed me a high wattage smile.  It was just impossible not to smile back!  He confided to me, as if it were a great joke, that at first he thought Jim was just some old kook.  Now he thinks Jim is a miracle worker!