To continue on the theme of feelings, I was working with a client last week and something came up that I wanted to share. If you just remember these three things about feelings, you will be able to navigate them better.

Feelings are neither right or wrong. The very nature of feelings really defies logic. Ten people can look at something and feel 10 different ways about it. So ask yourself, which one of the 10 are right and which ones are wrong (if any). Feelings are generated without our prior consent. They evolve out of nothing sometimes and other times from past based experiences. Therefore, we can attach a value judgment on them as right or wrong. Feelings are one of those things that just IS. Don’t attach a value judgment on them as this will only make you feel worse (if you’re already feeling bad) or knock you out of the present moment when you are feeling good. Enjoy it if it’s good and just ride it out if you’re feeling down.

Feelings are valid. Now, just because feelings are not right or wrong doesn’t mean that they are not valid. I have often heard clients say that they are wrong or stupid for feeling a certain way. While the actual feeling isn’t right or wrong, having feelings (no matter how little they make sense) is valid. Your feelings are valid because you are feeling them. Don’t compare your situation that you are feeling a certain way about to anyone else. Your feelings are valid independent of anyone else’s circumstances. Just feel without judgment and/or comparison. Know and accept that you are feeling a certain way and that’s it.

Feelings are not always reflective of reality. While your feelings are valid, they don’t always reflect reality. Think to a time when the shit really hit the fan. Because you were feeling so bad, you thought your whole world was bad. You were feeling so bad that you couldn’t be grateful about anything yet you have at least one thing in your life you can be grateful for. Just because this one situation(s) sucks, doesn’t mean your whole life sucks. No matter how bad you feel, you will be able to come out of it despite what your negative feelings are telling you.

So I think this ends my ranting about feelings. Let me know if these tricks work for you.

Tags: feelings, mental health, psychology, coaching, lgbt, gay therapy, gay love, gay man, gay relationships, alcohol, drugs