stop light go pedal to the metal

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Tonight I questioned my values and actions. Thinking and doing. As is wont to occur every now and again I sometimes have a totally radical thought process that just seems to come out of nowhere and doesn’t stop until it tosses everything I know upside-down and inside-out. Tonight seemed to be one of these nights. Hoo boy. Hold on to your brains people, it’s going to get messy out there:

Think about the process of your actions. What begins as a thought or emotion is crystallized into an action. As such when a particular scenario keeps occurring and you keep firing off the same reaction scripts, it becomes second nature. When you react to losing in a competitive game with anger, enough losses would see you change from mild-mannered geek to downright ugly-ass monster. The repetitions work themselves into your script. They are ingrained, they are doctrinated, they are wired.

If this is an undesirable result, you must change your reactions. Tonight I thought long and hard about my undesirable behaviours. What didn’t I like about my reactions to events? How would I change my reactions to situations that made those things occur? If, instead of welling up in anger, I congratulated the winner of the game, would it have diffused or short-circuited my body’s expectation to get angry? Could I possibly even feel better about myself by giving congratulations to others? Could I extend this to my other emotions like hurt, emoness, jealousy?

I know when I feel particularly emo I have a playlist of what I like to call ‘soul-destroying’ songs that I loop. They are all killers in their own right and together they do sort of help you feel from ‘slightly emo’ to ‘I want to kill myself’. To arrest that progression from occuring the logical thing would then be to stop that playlist from getting ear time in the first place. But how do you address that feeling that wants to be fed? That emo feeling that demands you attend to it?

You see, it is JUST a feeling. It is truth, yes. But it is also temporal. A good friend once showed me a passage from Tuesdays with Morrie that illustrated an interesting angle to emotions: Feel them. But understand they are not the only emotion out there. Understand they are finite. Understand you’ve felt them before and they are just that: feelings. You control how they progress.

That’s when I changed the music to Jason Mraz – The Remedy. Hey. I won’t worry.

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