Myths About Emotions

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There are a lot of myths about emotions. This is true not just for those of us with borderline symptoms, but in our whole society.

For example, "Emotions are really stupid."
Do you think this is true? Of course not. It may feel that way sometimes, but emotions are there for a reason.

What challenging statement could you write for "Emotions are really stupid."
Maybe "Emotions help us to deal with our lives," or "Emotions are there for a reason," "or "Everyone has emotions."


There is a theory about emotions:

  • There are only a few basic emotions: anger, sorrow, joy, surprise, fear, disgust, guilt/shame, interest. All of the others are learned, and are usually some combination of the basic emotions.
  • Emotions come and go, like waves.
  • Emotions are self-perpetuating. Once an emotions starts, it keeps restarting itself. I once heard a DBT moderator say, “Emotions like themselves. They want to live on forever.”

  • In invite you to work through this writing challenge by writing a more realistic view or an opposite statement. Of the examples listed below, write a myth and a challenge.


     

    Exercise

    Examples: "Emotions are for babies."
             "If I had the right feelings, I wouldn't have so much trouble."
             "If I had no feelings, I wouldn't have so much trouble."
             "Only good feelings are okay."

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