Not Emotion Led or Emotionless

Please, do not be Mr. Spock on Star Trek or someone who constantly "follows their heart." Healthy living is not emotion led or emotionless!

If you would rather live truth instead of speculation or opinion, then be clear about the interaction of three elements: feelings, thoughts, and actions.

Do you have a favorite scary movie? Maybe the classic film Psycho? Mine is the original Alien, and even though it is my favorite, I do not like to watch it because it scares me with its special effects and creatures!

Why are you afraid when watching a scary movie? When something scary happens on the screen, why do you jump? Is it because you are in danger? Of course not – it is just a movie!

Suppose you are watching a scary movie, but tell yourself, “I am watching a story filmed for entertainment, especially to create fear and excitement. There will be scenes created specifically to scare me, but I know that is not happening to me.”

That would take all the fun out of the movie, wouldn’t it?

The film is structured to draw you into the story, to appeal to your emotions, making you see yourself as one of the characters in the movie. When you remind yourself of reality, the fear is reduced or may be removed. At that point, your thinking is no longer driven by the movie but by reality, reducing the film’s efforts to engage or control your thoughts, driving your fear.

So, there are two important implications. First, feelings and emotions are primarily RESPONDERS. When you watch a movie and are scared, sad, happy, or crying, your emotions respond to the movie. Feelings need something to respond to. Second, and most importantly, feelings are often UNTRUSTWORTHY. Your emotions are untrustworthy if you can be scared but not in danger (like watching a movie). Your emotions are real, but they are responding to something that is not real. That is why when you tell yourself, “It’s just a movie,” the emotions are reduced or removed; they respond more to your thinking.

The SOLUTION – love – is not emotionless, nor is it emotion-led.

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