Emotions are the very center of our lives. Whether acknowledged or not, they drive everything we perceive, believe, think, say, and do. From one vantage point, your emotional state is the most important variable in any situation. It not only influences all your output; it filters everything you take in as well. The thing is—in case you haven’t noticed—our emotions aren’t up to us. What we do with them, however, is absolutely up to us. The parts of us that express our afflictive emotions are very much like people. If we relate to them with understanding and care, there tends to be one kind of outcome. If we relate to them by shoving them in the basement or forcing them to change, we get another kind of outcome.
From Don’t Tell Me to Relax: Emotional Resilience in the Age of Rage, Feels, and Freak-Outs by Ralph De La Rosa © 2020. Reprinted with permission of Shambhala Publications.
Thank you for subscribing to Tricycle! As a nonprofit, we depend on readers like you to keep Buddhist teachings and practices widely available.