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​Emotions Revealed

Wednesday, 4th May 2016

Our emotions can have us feeling happy one moment and anxious or fearful in the next, why so immediate and how do we respond to them? Eminent Naturopath Rumana Zahn talks about how we can tune in and keep our emotions in check in part four of her six zone Wellbeing Programme | Part 4 of 6
Emotions are part of our innate communication system of how we relate to the world and others. They are what drive us, they dictate what we like, what we don’t and the way we behave. It is all down to our emotions.
 
Unwanted behaviours are driven by emotions too and they can be triggered by many things not just a situation we don’t want to experience but also by food, chemicals, lack of nutrients and our environment. And the response can happen in an instant.
 
“I’m unhappy and I don’t know why, I have no energy, my skin is terrible, I’m often angry, I suddenly become hot and embarrassed in a specific situation.” These are some of the comments I hear from my patients in clinic. Although I may be presented with a physical condition, part of the treatment protocol is to assess any underlying emotions. What triggered this condition? What block needs to be removed for this person to regain their energy and vitality? I have to investigate. 
 
“When did you last do a timeline looking at what point a health condition started in your life and what was going on leading up to the diagnosis?”
 
Certainly uncovering the history helps how you responded to certain situations and circumstances in your life.  Even though that event may have passed the memory and patterning may still remain.
 
We often blame others for making us feel a certain way but that’s not strictly true. We make us feel the way we do by responding in a certain way.  It is this response which is embedded in our programming formed from previous experiences, parents, peers, teachers, etc that may or may not serve us now and which may needs us to reprogram it, particularly when it is hurting us or others.
 
Being aware is the first step which means either knowing how you are behaving or being guided by those you trust who can tell you the manner in which you are behaving. I really love the following quote by Daniel Goldman, a leading researcher in the field of Emotional Intelligence. He used a quote in his book by Aristotle that aptly describes an emotionally intelligent individual:
 
“Anyone can become angry – that is easy. But to be angry with the right person, to the right degree, at the right time, for the right purpose, and in the right way – this is not easy.”
 
Becoming emotionally intelligent requires work. It means that we need to be aware and understand what triggers our emotions and the way they cause us to behave. This is an essential component of your emotional wellbeing, being mindful of the way you act. Then moving on to find the trigger is not always easy!
 
A patient of mine was regularly being triggered into angry fits. He just lost control and was worried. He never found counselling or psychological techniques helped him. He wanted me to help him find a solution and also get his health into shape. On working closely with him I realised he was hypersensitive to the slightest bit of sugar that entered his mouth! Just by putting a sweet in his mouth it would change his mood. He didn’t believe me until I convinced him to keep all sugar out of his diet for 5 days. 5 days of no anger was bliss for him. On day 6 he told me he started chewing a sweet and instantly felt his anger rise up inside. This had such a significant effect on him that he became incredibly remorseful at how he behaved all those years and where various courses of medication had had no effect on him. As a child he was given antidepressants and Ritalin to control his ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder), now he understood it was all down to this hypersensitivity to the slightest bit of sugar.
 
Our emotions communicate with us all the time sometimes we listen sometimes we don’t. It’s a very resourceful system if we learn how to work with it. Not listening and blocking emotions often leads to health problems. It’s therefore important to give time to listen, to process and to readjust as we go along.
 
Understanding ourselves does not have to be a difficult process, it can be joyful and maybe you discover just one thing to change about yourself which can make all the difference to your life.
 
I was quite influenced by Paul Ekman’s work on emotions. In his book Emotions Revealed he talks about developing four main emotional skills that are essential to developing healthy relationships:
 
  • Become aware of emotions before you act or speak
  • Learn how to act when you are emotional so you achieve your goal without damaging other people
  • Become more sensitive to how others are feeling
  • Use the information you acquire about how others are feeling carefully 



Next month Rumana will take us through Part 5, where she will focus on how beliefs and values affect the way we live our life. You can find out more about Rumana’s 6 Zone Online Programme at http://www.planetorganic.com/rumana-healthbrnaturopathic-consultation/
 
About Rumana Zahn ND
Rumana has teamed up with Planet Organic to help share her findings on how to achieve the best possible health you can. With over 25 years of experience Rumana is an expert in the field of natural medicine, runs clinics in the UK and speaks worldwide.
 
Rumana enjoys living a healthy vibrant life, practices yoga and meditation and loves argentine tango and singing.

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