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Disappointment, Discouragement…Raindancing?

Learn How to Be Fair to Yourself

Posted By: TeamTKN

We’ve all been there. We find ourselves strolling down life’s path when BAM something happens to throw us off. Maybe it’s an unfair situation. Maybe you meticulously prepared your dinner, only to drop it on the way to the table. Maybe there was a job that was PERFECT for you, and they picked someone else. Maybe you spent years building your business, only to have a series of completely unprecedented circumstances shut you down.

 

Feelings of disappointment, discouragement, and defeat are tethered to our lives. The best laid plans of mice and men and all that.

 

But here is the thing about negative emotions.

 

They are painful.

 

They are powerful. 

 

They are TEMPORARY.

 

In fact, they are almost exactly like positive emotions.

 

Have you ever noticed how you self sabotage when you’re feeling dejected?

 

I’m so miserable, I’m going to eat this entire bag of chocolate chips and then collapse into a food coma. 

 

Have you ever noticed how you ALSO self sabotage when you’re feeling elated?

 

I got the promotion! Let’s drink!!

 

And how many times have you lamented the fleeting nature s of motivation and inspiration?

 

You wake up on a particularly sunny spring morning. You feel like you can do anything. You make an incredible plan for how you’re going to change your life. But by lunch time you want a nap, your plan is shelved, and you move on with your life.

 

The fleetingness of positive emotion can be frustrating, but take heart: your negative emotions are just as transient.

 

The funny thing about our powerful emotions is that

  •  they happen at random.
  • they come and go as they please
  •  they are often misdirected.

You can have the same thing happen to you 100 times and experience 100 different responses. It all depends on 

  • your mood
  • the mood of others around you
  • the events leading up to your current situation

You use all of these things to make sense of your world and craft a narrative. And this narrative can leave you with some powerful emotions.

 

But these feelings are temporary.

Ritualizing Your Feelings

Disappointment, discouragement and defeat may be temporary. But it is easy to ritualize these emotions in ways that have lasting consequences.

 

Stimulating yourself when you feel discouraged can feel medicinal. 

 

If I’m tired, I drink coffee>And the tiredness goes away.

 

If I’m anxious, I drink wine>And the anxiety goes away.

 

If I’m sad, I eat>And the sadness goes away.

 

But the reality is: your feelings will eventually dissipate on their own. 

 

At best we are distracting ourselves while our feelings do their thing.

 

We are creating a Raindance. 

 

Raindancing

Disclaimer: I know very little about Raindancing, but stick with me for a moment and feel free to educate me at the end. 

 

Does performing a ritualistic behavior influence a seemingly unrelated environmental condition?

 

IE. If I do the Raindance, does it make it rain?

 

As far as I know, there is no causal connection between dancing and rain. HOWEVER, if you do the rain dance UNTIL it rains….well, that connection is as solid as concrete.

 

I don’t know that any of us think that eating or drinking actually improves the situations we find ourselves in. But many of us have spent years establishing “proof” that eating when you’re sad cures the sadness.

 

We all have a Raindance, and I don’t even think that’s a bad thing. Trying to make decisions and solve problems while you are high on positive OR negative emotion can be a recipe for disaster.

 

I know I’ve committed myself to things that seemed like wonderful ideas when I was on the upswing of motivation and inspiration, but when I came down I realized I had succeeded in making my life more stressful.

 

Similarly, I’ve tried to solve problems while in the depths of despair, and you know what, I’ve ended up “fixing” things that were perfectly fine.

 

It’s okay to use stalling tactics to wait out powerful emotions. But here are some ways to make your Raindance work for YOU:

 

1. IDENTIFY YOUR RAINDANCE

  • What do YOU do to wait out negative emotions?
  • What are the actual effects of your Raindance?
  • How do you feel about those effects?

Chocolate chips and cashews were my Raindance of choice for years. Now I take a walk. 

 

Neither activity actually solves any problems underlying my emotions, but you better believe I can tolerate the effects of a 30 minute walk more than I can tolerate an extra thousand calories of chocolate and nuts every time I feel sad.

 

So what are the results of your Raindance?

 

Are they helping or hurting you?

 

2. RECOGNIZE THE CHOICE IS YOURS

Understanding the WHY behind the choices you make when you are under the influence of strong emotion is not nearly as important as recognizing that your responses ARE A CHOICE. They are YOUR CHOICE. 

 

You are always in the driver’s seat. Better to recognize your role than act like a silly goose, holding the keys while playing the victim. 

 

3. CHOOSE YOUR DESTINATION

When you recognize you are in the driver’s seat, you have a few travel options. You can respond to disappointment, discouragement and defeat by making yourself more miserable. OR, you can embrace the unfairness, choose a raindance that helps you, and say, “Yes. Life is unfair. But I will be fair to myself.”

 

We make choices and reinforce rituals every day. 

 

The good news is:

 

WE have always been the ones making the choices. 

 

WE have always been the ones creating the Raindances.

 

So do you say we pick a dance we like?

Dr. Trevor Kashey Explaining Disappointment, Discouragement, Defeat and...Raindancing?

We make choices and reinforce rituals every day. The good news is: WE have always been the ones making the choices and creating the raindances.

Raindancing

Disclaimer: I know very little about Raindancing, but stick with me for a moment and feel free to educate me at the end. 

  1. Identify Your Raindance
  2. Recognize the Choice is Yours 
  3. Choose Your Destination

About Jacquelyn Laporte

Jacquelyn LaPorte has had the privilege of working with TKN since 2018. The journey has been a wild one, but it has ushered her into the driver’s seat of her own life. She learned how to ask questions, answer them honestly and act on the answers. She has used this process to become a better parent to her 3 kids, a better wife, a better boss, a better learner, a better human. She believes that no experience is wasted, (not even majoring in a dead language with no career plan😊 or starting a business with 0 entrepreneurial spirit). Each experience gives the gift of new eyes. Perfect choices are not required, and that makes her free to choose.

 

“There are a thousand thousand reasons to live this life, and every one of them sufficient.”

-Marilynne Robinson-

Trevor Kashey Nutrition

Team TKN

Team TKN cultivates, curates and shares Dr. Trevor Kasheys’ stories and core principles, to help others achieve an extraordinary life.

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