Emotions, it is one of those conversations many people don’t care to have. Men often see emotions as a messy hindrance in their daily life that many men avoid some emotions though if you were to believe some media sources you would think that men love to be angry and brutish all the time. This is because of people often don’t understand emotions. They avoid what they deem to be negative emotions while perusing only good feeling emotions. Both of these tactics with your feelings are not good nor healthy for your mental health. So this week buckle up men we are talking emotions.
What are emotions?
Ask a person what an emotion is and you will get a wide assortment of definitions. Yet, they all center around one key point. Emotions are felt. That would make sense considering they are also called feelings. We describe emotions as the action of being felt. I feel happy. I feel sad. I feel baffled. I am feeling powerless. All emotions are felt. In its simplest form, an emotion is a vibration that is created by a thought. That is all an emotion actually is. Vibrations you feel.
This is where we often get ourselves trapped. Yeah, we feel an emotion. We have a feeling, and with that, we think other people are experiencing that emotion as well. The truth of the matter is they don’t. The only person who gets to experience an emotion is you. As I said it is a vibration YOU feel. Not a vibration your wife feels.
Where do Emotions come from?
To explain how emotions work and how they actually affect you. We need to look at a modified TEAR Cycle. Or as Brooke Castillo Calls it the Model. This is where you experience an event. The Event creates an Emotion. That Emotion causes you to perform an Action. That Action generates your Result.
Therefore, everything you feel comes from your thoughts. Your wife said you were going to get to have some hanky panky and she falls asleep an hour earlier. You may feel robbed or you maybe just flat out miffed that she did this again. Do you think she is feeling your anger? No, she is sleeping. Yet your mind has gone int to overdrive fueling that frustration. You keep pointing to this fact and that fact. Yet those thoughts don’t make you feel any better.
Those emotions you are feeling affect only you. Nobody else, only you. Your actions may cause other people to have emotions that spark their own feelings but you can't feel those feelings.
Does this mean that you don’t have to worry about anybody else emotions? Because you have seen your wife giving you the stink eye because you haven’t carried out the trash you promised you were going to do 3 days ago. Because her anger towards you doesn’t affect you. Well you are right it doesn’t affect you but you do want to express your love to a person. You want to care for them. You want to show them that you care. So you do things for them. You take out the trash. You make them supper. You rub their feet after a long day. These displays of affection and/or respect help you to connect to others.
So why do men not show emotions?
There are many reasons as to why so many think men don’t show their emotions enough, and that is the key point many want men to share their emotions as much as women do and we aren’t women. WE as men process our emotions differently. Many times men will tap in to being stoic which is the endurance of pain or hardship without the display of feelings and without complaint. This doesn’t mean we bury our emotions. No, We process our emotions at the needed time and place.
So you are saying men hide their emotions?
No farthest thing from stuffing our feelings down. You never want to suppress your emotions. These vibrations have to ring out their full life. Even if those emotions are negative emotions, they have to go the full extent of their life. When anybody be it a man or a woman repress their emotions, those emotions will eventually resurface and often in a more physical form. All of a sudden instead of experiencing an emotion you are experiencing an addiction. That addiction has taken the place of your emotion because now you have to have a much stronger tool to keep that vibration at bay. You are not able to have a good healthy relationship. You have mental health issues. All because you would allow a negative emotion to be felt.
Yet men are being told they don’t share their emotions enough
Well to a point that is right. To another point, these critics are completely wrong. Men do share their feelings. They just experience and process their emotions in a completely different way. Most healthy men understand the emotions they are feeling. Yet men do share what they are feeling. The big hang-up is that people want men to share their emotions in the same way women share their emotions. IF men do that those women reject that man. That's because women, in reality, don’t want those men to share their feelings that much. That is when men are called clingy and immature. They want to know what a guy is thinking a lot more than what he is feeling. So there is a time and a place for everything. The middle of a battlefield isn’t when a man needs to be expressing his emotions. With his wife after the end of the day yes share your experiences. Share your thoughts.
Is this why men are so Stoic?
In reality no. The definition of stoicism is,
the endurance of pain or hardship without the display of feelings and without complaint.
That doesn't mean that stoics don't feel their emotions. No, in fact, most stoics understand and appreciate their emotions. Stoics for off don't complain. There is no need to whine and moan about some hardship. Bitching and moaning about something isn't going to make it easier. Yeah, you may feel like you are being a part of a group, yet not really. You are just whining and complaining
Other times Stoics knows that emotions get in the way of a decision. If you ever made an important decision while being emotional you often find out that it is the wrong decision.
Want proof of this? Look at the Patriot act. The whole nation was just punched in the face by a group of terrorists. So what did we do? We acted on emotions and made the worst and most 4th amendment destroying law. All because of an emotion. We reacted to an event instead of responding to the event.
Many times stoics are called cold and heartless because we won't tap into our emotions while someone is trying to pull us to one side of an argument. That is because that decision is an emotional decision and a stoic understands that we don't want emotional decisions.
For more information read Marcus Aurelius Meditations*
As I wrap this post up I do want to say there are hundreds of emotions each has their own special nuance and beauty about them. Yes, Emotions are beautiful. Especially because they are expressed by us weird creatures called Humans. We have been given emotions for the purpose of expressing them. Emotions are the colors of our memories. Though we do remember events we remember emotions more.
So even if we could actually turn off out emotions we would lose out on so much. Stoics still feel their emotions they still recognize the anger the sorrow and all the other emotions that are available to us. The same as people who more freely express their emotions.