Are you still trying to figure out how to control your emotions?
You’ve tried to control your anger, but eventually you explode.
You’ve tried not to be sad, but you end up in tears or you get asked if you’re all right.
You’ve tried not to have sexual desires for other people, but you can’t get the fantasies out of your head.
You try not to argue with your partner/boss/parent/child, but you end up having a bitter dispute.
Has this ever happened to you? Or perhaps something similar? Sometimes we want to behave differently from what comes naturally to us, and for that we use control. Because we’d like to feel differently, but the most we can do is control our actions, what we do on the outside. We control the way we behave, and sometimes it works for us. We can, with a lot of effort, hold back the desire we have to do something different. And sometimes it works… for a while.
I think control is something very useful in specific situations. For example:
If you have a bad day, so you don’t take it out on the first person you come across.
If you have a professional event, and you don’t want to end up in tears because of something that happened to you. (and I think it’s fine if you cry, but maybe for you it isn’t)
If you want to be faithful to your partner, and you’re presented with a tempting option…
In my experience, controlling your behavior is something that works for a while, but sooner or later it fails. And, on top of that, it involves a lot of effort. You have the energy from what you actually want to do (crying, yelling, sexual desire, or whatever) and the opposite energy to counteract it. It’s twice as tiring.
That is, controlling your behavior may work in the short term, but in the long term, I don’t think so. It neither works nor is satisfying. But sometimes we insist on continuing to control and control…
So I think that, if you want to change some behavior or emotion that you habitually have, you must explore it in more depth. To know why it happens, what it says about you, to learn more about yourself by observing how you feel. To not get into an internal war (which is basically what you are doing with your attempts at control) but understand and maybe from there, change or accept, which is always an option. All of these internal conflicts are wonderful opportunities to get to know yourself better and get closer to what you want, a better life for yourself. Controlling over and over again only prolongs the internal conflict you have. Face up to it. It’s the only way to grow and attain inner harmony, well-being.
If you do so, your behavior will flow. There will be no resistance, no wasted energy, no internal battles. It’s more efficient and will bring you more happiness and inner peace. It’s the path of integration.