Understand Your Feelings

Feelings and Knowledge

"How do you feel today?"

This is a question that is not unfamiliar to us. Feeling good is great. Feeling happy is a wonderful thing. But it is also not unusual that unsettling feelings do creep in at times and it certainly would be worthwhile to contemplate a little on how we deal with them.

Scientifically it is well accepted that how we feel has a direct effect on our body, mind, personality and how we carry ourselves through the day. And hence, wouldn't it be prudent on our part to weigh our feelings before letting them influence our behaviour and personality? Such is the significance of what we is called 'FEEL' or 'FEELING'.

Getting on to the crux of the issue:

Are our feelings always correct?
Do they always portray the situation accurately?
Are all of our feelings really destined to do us good?

The answer need not be a 'YES' always.

Can our feelings mislead us?
Do our feelings have a probability to be wrongly based?

The answer need not be a 'NO' always.

So what is this so called "FEELING" and why should we give importance to its significance?

When a child is crying and his mother lifts him, the child feels good. It is because the child physically experiences the goodness of his mother's gentle caress and hug. When a schoolgirl is appreciated for her on-stage singing, she feels good because she sees her teachers getting impressed by her performance. In both the cases their needs are met and that is good.

But what happens to us when our situations and circumstances are not in tune with our wants and desires?

For example: a boy wants his close friend to spend the evening together with him in a restaurant, but unfortunately she is late. Maybe it is a natural response that the boy starts to feel bad but this feeling makes him think that he is not valued much by his friend. Now... this is where our feelings can lead us in a totally wrong direction if we do not have a check on them.

The following situation is also common in families: Many times a family member may say things like - "I don't feel love from you", "I don't feel you like me anymore", and "I don't feel companionship from you". But it would be a sensible thing to note and remind ourselves that at the most, all such statements are JUST 'feel'ings.

Many a time when someone says, "I feel or I don't feel....", all they are proclaiming is something of which they don't have proof of - or in other terms they are using GUESSWORK at best.

So does that mean we have to consider our feelings as unimportant?

The answer as we all know is a big No! We have to take our feelings into consideration but above that, we have to use our knowledge of the situation otherwise we would be like a rudderless boat - honestly.

In the above example of the boy in the restaurant, what if the girl found herself in some official commitment all of a sudden and for some reason couldn't make it in time? Now her friend, sitting in the restaurant, is angry and disappointed and makes some 'I feel' or 'I don't feel' statements. But little does he realize that knowledge about what exactly happened would actually solve his predicament.

Similarly in families, a lot of problems could be avoided if only people would learn to stop (let us reiterate STOP) coming to conclusions based on the 'I feel' opinions.

Let us all remember the fact that such feelings, which are not in juxtaposition with the knowledge about the situation, make people weak in mind and their decisions immature.

If any of us is like one of these then we have to learn to tell ourselves - "Hey, sure I feel a little down, but it is just my 'feel'ing. I know that it is not doing me any good. So why not seek the facts and then come to a conclusion?"

An eminent authority in psychology says, "Most of our fears and anxious thoughts would never have come true". Then how immature it would be if we decide things based only on what we feel.

Hence, it would do us immense good to remind ourselves that - Only when we couple our feelings with the exact knowledge of the situation can we really make life a lot easier for us as well as for our neighbours.

Copyright 2009 Sam Vijay Kumar
As I was sitting and having thoughts about my life, I find out that most of the problems are due to what we feel. If in such times one studies the situation, a lot of problems could have been avoided. I also realized that it is not late at all to really keep our feelings in perspective.