A LITTLE KNOWN WAY OF ENJOYING HUMAN INTERACTION

Hey, what were you thinking when you saw the title of this blog post? So many things could have passed through your mind, things I may never get to know. Anyway, my post is to tell you how to enjoy human beings’ company!

Here it goes. Many people find it hard to enjoy people’s company because of their emotional state! Surprised? Don’t be.  Emotions have been made to look like the villain, but they are an integral part of your humanity!

It is your emotional state that will determine just how well you will want to interact with people, enjoy their company and get the right meaning of what is communicated to you.

Mood influences perception!

There are many human beings who struggle with their interpersonal interactions because of their mood state. Such people are seen as impulsive, prone to temper tantrums, mood swings, and panic attacks.  Sometimes, they take psychiatric medication to handle their mood state but go off these drugs because the drugs make them feel flat and take the juice out of them.

I’m not going to dispute the reality or otherwise of these people’s suffering but consider this: do such people have a keen grasp of how emotions work? It is very likely they do not.

Many people spend their whole lives trying to bridge their present experiences with some point in time in their past, not realizing that if that point in their past experience was so fantastic, they would never have acted out, do the things that warranted their being placed on the psychiatric drugs to begin with!

What does this mean for you?

There are four main types of energy in our emotional experiencing:

  • Calm energy;

  • Calm tiredness;

  • Tense energy;

  • Tense tiredness.

Many people who are placed on mood stabilizers and other psychiatric medication are used to having Tense energy and Tense tiredness. That has been their reality for as long as they knew themselves. When they are happy, it’s like the sun is shining brighter than usual. When sad, everywhere looks bleak.

These drugs try to shift the human being to calm energy and calm tiredness but fail when a person has a poor understanding of emotions. Some people wrongly think they have to feel that bubbly way they felt while being happy before they are convinced they are happy.

Wrong!

It is true that many people feel bubbly when happy, but there are many people who feel rather calm and mellow no matter how happy they are. Their happiness is a state of equanimity; calm energy!

Such people possessing equanimity do not need to feel restless and antsy before they know they are tired of something; such is their reality and the keen grasp of their emotional state. So if you imagine that you need to feel emotions intensely to be aware of their existence within you, think again.

Know this: all emotions exist within you! Your emotions are an integral part of your humanity and the moment you stop having emotions, that is tantamount to death. Just like people have accepted the fact that there are many thoughts the brain produces you are unaware of, there are many emotions within you that you are unaware of.

You don’t need to feel emotions intensely to know they are still there.

Do you doubt me? Close your mind and think of this scenario. You are in an association with a woman, Janet. One day, you stop feeling the intensity of love you used to feel and now feel a low-grade form of restlessness. If you don’t understand emotions, you would say Janet is the cause of my restlessness.

There is likely nothing Janet did that made the emotional intensity you once felt wane. It’s just that emotions come in waves, highs, and lows and it is not realistic to expect that your brain will keep up that emotional intensity indefinitely.

This lack of understanding of emotions then makes your mind scan for whatever thing Janet did that made your love for her wane, while it refuses to accept that the emotional intensity had already lowered shortly (or way before) Jane did whatever thing that displeases you.

People who don’t understand this become those men and women I read of who decide to divorce their spouses because He’s a good man, takes care of the kids, foots the bills, is nice to me but I don’t love him anymore!

Likewise for anger. It is pointless trying to get your associates and romantic partners to change their behavior with the mistaken notion that once they do, the anger you feel will go away. It is ever present within you and if you don’t feel it in X interaction, you will become aware of its presence in Y interaction with someone else. Or with an object.

When you wrap your head around this, you will find it a lot easier to enjoy people’s company, conscious of the fact that these emotions are ever-present within you. If you don’t feel anxiety in X situation, you will become aware of its presence in Y situation because the ability to feel anxiety (fear) is what makes you human!

Now that you know this, why not try a new coping skill I coined for myself? I call it Perception shifting. It is a spin-off from my Mindfulness and radical acceptance.

Whenever you feel an emotion you don’t like, practice this coping skill by telling yourself:

I accept, instead of avoiding, denying, fighting or repressing the fact that I feel this way. What if I feel like this because of schemata, socializing forces, self-fulfilling prophecy, cognitive distortions/biases, external factors, an outcome-oriented way of thinking, my past & current reference group, my attitudes, my self-concept, my unmet needs, and/or my expectations?

Now, I choose to shift my perception by relabeling this feeling {insert whatever emotion (from your emotional vocabulary) that will induce a mental awareness of calm energy} and won’t change this new label just because of a change in my mood state!

This way of challenging and shifting your perception will enable you to enjoy your interpersonal interactions because perception influences communication, and communication influences perception!

It is pointless reading all the big ideas out there, going for any form of therapy, learning whatever communication skill you can if your basic perception (of yourself, human beings, situations, interpersonal interactions, life) remains unchallenged.

All that comes out of it is hearing big ideas & thoughts in your head while very little happens in your life. Next thing you know, you throw up your hands in despair and say self-improvement books & blogs are a total waste of time!

Remember, millions of people delude themselves into thinking they believe certain things (because of the ideas they perceive in their head) while examination proves their dominant belief is something entirely opposite!

As a take-home assignment from me: if there’s any person, social interaction or relationship you find overwhelming, why not challenge your perception of it? Inability to challenge perception results in rigidity,  in situations your mind nods assent to whatever good idea you are told, but continues in the manner it’s used to!

What did you like about this post? Rather, what did you dislike about it? Like, bookmark, share this post on your social media channels and venture into the comments section to let us know what you think! Also, check out other articles on this blog by clicking on the homepage: you never know what you might find helpful!

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