The positive side of negative emotions?

Friends,
Today I need to use this blog to work through some stuff.
Is that ok?

Because awhile ago I heard a little five minute podcast from my ever favorite Glennon Doyle Melton (of Momastery) and I’ve been thinking about it ever since.

Really.
That little baby podcast was posted on March 18th.
So basically it’s been almost a month of me thinking and thinking and thinking about what she said.

It’s worth you all checking it out – so please, click the link and go listen, but bottom line – she said that we so often think about what makes us happy. Then we try to do those things and be informed by those things.  Logical right?
But here’s the kicker – she said that we often ignore or hide or even run away from the emotions that make us uncomfortable, but it is THOSE emotions which can be the most instructive.

“What if we treated these negative emotions like traveling professors?”

You guys.
Here’s why this is changing my life.
Instead of being afraid of these negative emotions like envy or anger or competitiveness, G challenges us to see them as teachers, as helpful, and – most importantly – temporary.
Did you notice how she called them traveling professors?
Because they come in for a bit, you learn from them, and then they go on their way.

I’ve maybe mentioned once or twice that I struggle with perfectionism and performance… you  know, my drugs of choice.  For some it’s alcohol, for me, it’s doing things right and being good.  So when I have an emotion that doesn’t fit into those categories, if I find myself being judgy or envious, I tend to see them as failures.  I must be doing something wrong if I feel them.

But what if, like Glennon says, I see them as helpful instead of hurtful?
What if I didn’t see them as bad, but as part of the process to help me be more who I am created to be?

BOOM.
(that was my head exploding)

So when I find myself going to that place, where I am beating myself up for something I’m feeling, I can pause, and ask myself why am I feeling this way?
What is happening?
What’s at the root of this?
And what does it have to teach me?

See?
See how this changes everything?

So friends – what’s your negative emotion you’ve been hiding from?
How can you see it differently, and what might it have to teach you?
I’d love to hear all about it.