Episode 157: Practical Steps to Process Emotions and Resolve Conflicts

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Discover practical steps for processing emotions and resolving conflicts, emphasizing the importance of adopting a higher perspective and viewing situations through the lens of love. I advocate for forgiveness, open dialogue, and setting boundaries as essential components of the journey toward emotional liberation and healing.

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Practical Steps to Process Emotions and Resolve Conflicts

Have you ever experienced a situation where you felt compelled to retaliate after being hurt? I certainly have!
This is a common occurrence, particularly during high school or grade school or if you grew up in an environment where pettiness was normalized.
Regardless of the circumstances, throughout our lives, we have the opportunity to decide how we respond to any given situation. It's a chance to exercise our agency.
You have the choice of how you react.
When people wrong you, the instinct to seek revenge may arise. This is a natural reaction.
For instance, I once had an ex with whom I engaged in petty exchanges. It became a cycle of tit-for-tat, where one action led to another in retaliation.

The Cycle of Pettiness and Trust Issues

And we found ourselves caught in a cycle of pettiness, which ultimately eroded the trust between us because once you continue to behave in such a manner, there's no turning back.
Recently, I experienced a situation where someone's actions deeply hurt me. After processing my anger and disappointment, I contemplated my options.
I thought, "If they're going to treat me like this, what could I do?" Naturally, I considered the potential repercussions of my actions because every choice has consequences.
Reflecting on it, I realized that not only would I be hurt, but innocent bystanders could also suffer the consequences of my actions. Is it worth it?
Absolutely not. Pettiness, with its tit-for-tat mentality, presents an opportunity for introspection. It's normal to entertain thoughts of retaliation when feeling wronged.
However, it's crucial to recognize that seeking revenge often leads to further harm.

Understanding Karmic Debt and Reactions

Your words might vary, but the issue lies in the karmic consequences of your reactions to any situation.
Karma can manifest as positive, negative, or neutral outcomes. It's not always negative, despite common belief.
Choosing to grow, take the high road, and shift perspectives serves as a learning opportunity, fostering soul evolution.
Conversely, being pettish and causing harm to others accrues negative karma, which impacts not just the immediate targets but also yourself.
Let's consider another perspective. Often, behind our hurt lies unacknowledged feelings.
I confided in a friend about my recent experience, expressing disappointment, anger, and thoughts of retaliation, but I recognized that such actions would only compound the harm.

Identifying Underlying Feelings and Sadness

This friend responded, saying, "It sounds like you're really sad."
It hadn't crossed my mind that I was sad because my anger and disappointment had consumed me, overshadowing any sadness I felt.
This highlights the importance of having a trusted confidant—a sounding board—someone with whom you can freely express yourself without fear of judgment.
I highly recommend it, regardless of where you are on your spiritual journey.
Having someone who supports you and can provide a broader perspective is invaluable.
When my friend pointed out my sadness, I realized they were right.
I was indeed feeling very, very sad. I could sense the disappointment in my inner child; it was as if someone had taken the joy away from her.
Her sadness stemmed from unmet expectations, which is inherently disappointing and saddening.
Despite our reluctance, experiencing these emotions is essential for our emotional well-being.

Taking a Higher Perspective and Bird's-Eye View

Instead of resorting to pettiness, especially when I'm not grounded and present in my body, I choose to take the opportunity to adopt a higher perspective.
"Higher" doesn't imply superiority; it simply means viewing things from a broader, more encompassing viewpoint.
By adopting a bird's-eye perspective, I can consider multiple viewpoints beyond the one I'm currently witnessing or experiencing.
Taking this perspective allows me to perceive aspects that may be obscured otherwise. For instance, imagine you're working with a colleague who seems to be falling behind on a project and isn't communicating about it.
It's easy to jump to conclusions and assume laziness, neglecting their responsibilities and reacting angrily or with harsh words.
Alternatively, taking a step back, I can wonder about what might be happening in their life. Perhaps there's a personal issue affecting their involvement.
In this scenario, I could approach them calmly and inquire about their situation.

Viewing Situations Through the Lens of Love

Perhaps you discover that their dog has passed away, or they've been battling an illness, or they've received distressing news.
You never truly understand what someone else is facing in their life and why they may behave, react, or neglect their responsibilities.
They could be grappling with personal challenges.
I refer to this perspective as the "lens of love."
Embracing this mindset in any situation allows for personal growth and enables you to empathize with others.
It encourages you to step back, empathize with their situation, and consider factors that may be influencing their behavior.
However, it's important to acknowledge that sometimes people are indeed lazy, unwilling to fulfill their obligations, or acting from a place of shallowness or inner woundedness.
They may choose pettiness or avoid embracing their personal power, which may cause their actions to not align with your values.
Nevertheless, we always have the opportunity to evolve and grow.

Opportunities for Growth and Forgiveness

We always have the opportunity to grow; I'll reiterate that three times.
We always have the opportunity to grow.
The moments when we're knocked down, disappointed, angry, or sad, when we're not experiencing bliss or happiness, are precisely when we can test our spiritual tools and view things from different angles.
Our purpose is to embrace and navigate a spectrum of emotions in a healthy manner; growth occurs through this process.
Moreover, I want to emphasize this: if you're feeling regretful because you've reacted with anger or pettiness in the past, forgive yourself.
It's all part of the journey.
I've certainly engaged in petty behavior before, and while it might have provided temporary satisfaction, in hindsight, was it truly worthwhile?

Forgiving Oneself and Letting Go of Feelings

Most of the time, it wasn't worth it. We've all made mistakes; what matters is how we choose to move forward from them.
Forgiveness is a pathway—a crucial aspect of our enlightenment and soul's evolution. When I talk about forgiveness, I'm not just referring to forgiving others; it's equally important to forgive yourself.
Indeed, we can extend forgiveness to others, but it's not solely for their benefit.
It's about granting yourself permission to release the pent-up emotions that may have manifested into physical ailments or diseases within the body.
These can manifest in various forms, such as illness, emotional pain, distraction, or physical symptoms.
However, it's not worth harming yourself over.
Reflecting on my own life, I've endured significant emotional turbulence, including various forms of abuse—psychological, physical, emotional, and sexual.
These experiences have shaped who I am today, influencing my perceptions and responses to trauma.

Processing Emotional Baggage and Healing

I'm aware that I'm not always right.
Nobody is right all the time, despite our desire to believe otherwise.
That's why it's important to take a step back, adopt a broader perspective, and utilize spiritual tools to navigate life differently.
These tools grant permission to heal, feel, process, and integrate experiences, enabling us to live our fullest lives without carrying unnecessary baggage.
Processing this baggage gradually lightens the load, although sometimes old issues resurface, temporarily weighing us down.
It's all part of the cyclical nature of growth—a process that's both perfect and beautiful.
Life isn't about perpetual bliss; understanding this makes it easier to handle emotions in a healthy manner.
Personally, I'm proud of myself for considering the consequences of choosing pettiness and recognizing that it's simply not worth it.

Speaking Up, Setting Boundaries, and Opening Dialogues

It's absolutely not worth it. With that being said, this presents an opportunity for me to express, "Hey, that really made me sad, and here's why."
Having that conversation may lead to unpredictable outcomes, but voicing my truth opens doors for growth in the relationship or for establishing new boundaries.
Regardless, there's always an opportunity at hand, and I can't control others' reactions.
Despite my expectations, I must allow them the chance to respond as they see fit.
Even if their response is unhealthy, I can choose to respond with boundaries, stand in my truth, and protect myself in the best way I know how.
This also gives them a chance to share their truth and provide alternative perspectives that I may not have considered.
Furthermore, opening up dialogue creates space for healing, as it provides a pathway for us to work through issues together.
Without such conversations, healing remains elusive unless we choose to speak up.
There are various ways to handle situations; some opt for silence, while others engage in conflict.
However, approaching it in a healthy manner—resting, digesting, and then speaking—allows both parties to share their thoughts.
It's crucial to remember that outcomes may not align with our expectations, but that's okay; it's how they're meant to unfold.
By honoring ourselves and sharing our values, perspectives, and feelings, we create room for healing.
If others don't reciprocate, that's okay, too; we must make peace with it.
The next time someone upsets you, and you feel the urge to be petty, consider how it will truly impact you and others.
Reflect on your true feelings, acknowledging that they may be complex.
Embracing these emotions will ultimately set you free.

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Full transcription of the episode:

Hey, Amy Robeson here. Thank you for joining me on this podcast, where we talk about spirituality, the awakening process, mental health, and so much more. Join me weekly to get your weekly dose of spirituality and medicine. I look forward to seeing you on the inside. Hello, everyone, and welcome to today's episode. I'm so excited you are here. Have you ever been hurt where you're like, Let me get back at you for doing that? I know I have. It's very common, especially in high school or grade school, or maybe you just grew up in a household where pettiness was a normal act. Whatever the case is, we have the opportunity all throughout our lifetime to choose how we want to react to any given situation. It is an opportunity. You get a choice on how you choose to react. Sometimes, people are going to do things to you where you want to take revenge. It's a very normal response. I know I had an ex of mine where we would just go back and forth being petty, where you do something to me, I do something back. You do something to me, and I do something back.

We would just go back and forth in this dance of pettiness just ultimately caused us not to trust each other because there was no going back when you continued to create and behave in that particular way. I recently just had a situation happen where someone's choices and voices extremely hurt me. My thoughts after I processed my anger and my disappointment, my thoughts were like, You know what? If they're going to treat me like this, here's what I could do. Of course, I thought about what are those repercussions? What are the repercussions of those actions? Because there's always going to be a cause and effect in the actions you choose to take. Sitting with it, it's like, I would be hurt, and other people would be hurt that didn't cause any of this to happen. Is it worth it? Absolutely not. It's not worth it. So pettiness, when it comes up, like that eye for an eye, is an opportunity for you to look at because there's nothing wrong with thinking about petty things you can do because it's natural. It's a natural response to going, You know what? You hurt me. So, let me think of how I can teach you a lesson.

And those might not be the words that you're using. The problem with it is there is a karmic debt that you are going to pay if you choose to react in any given situation the way you're going to react. The karma can be positive, negative, or neutral. Karma is not always negative. I know that sometimes people think that it's always negative. But if we choose to, let's say, evolve, take the higher ground, and look at things from a different perspective, it's a learning point. It's going to allow our souls to evolve. Versus if you choose to be petty and that causes harm to other people, not only to that one person or those sets of people, that is going to bring negative karma to you. And so, let's look at it from another perspective. Oftentimes, When we are hurt, there's something else behind that hurt that we have not identified, and those are feelings. I was venting to a friend of mine about this situation that I experienced, and When I was venting, I expressed that I was disappointed. I expressed that I was angry. I expressed that I could do X, Y, and Z, but this would actually cause more harm.

This particular friend replied back and said, It sounds like you're really sad. It did not even occur to me that I was sad because I was so in my anger and I was so in my disappointment that I overlooked the sadness that I was experiencing. This is why it's awesome to have someone that you trust, that you can then have a sounding board, be able to talk and express yourself in a way that allows you to be seen and heard without being judged. I highly recommend this. Very much so. It doesn't matter where you're at on your spiritual path, having someone that is going to have your back and going to take a beautiful step back and look at the whole picture for you is a beautiful thing. When my friend said this to me, I was like, Yeah, I am. I'm feeling very, very, very sad. I could see my inner child was so disappointed. It's like someone licked the red off of her lollypop. She was so sad because my expectations, my inner child's expectations, weren't met. And when our expectations aren't met, it's really disappointing. It's super sad. And it is an opportunity when that happens for us to feel those feelings, even if we don't want to because it's actually really healthy.

Instead of going towards pettiness, which if I wasn't in a state of grounding, being in my body, also taking the opportunity to take a higher perspective. Higher doesn't mean better. It just means that I'm taking a bird's-eye view. I'm looking at more perspectives than just the one that I am witnessing or experiencing at that particular moment. When we give ourselves the opportunity to take a bird's eye perspective, it allows us to see things we might be blinded to. For example, maybe you're with a coworker, and that coworker is supposed to be working on a project, and that project they're falling behind on. They're not talking about things. You can assume that that person is being lazy. They're not holding up their weight. You can berate them. You can get mad at them. You can yell at them. You can say all these nasty things to this coworker worker, saying, You're not holding up your end. Or you could take a step back and go and wonder what's going on in their life. I wonder if there's something that's causing them not to be as involved as they normally are. Hey, why don't I ask what's going on?

Then maybe you find out their dog died, or they've been sick, or they just got some really bad news. You never know what's going on in someone else's life and why they're choosing to behave or to react or not do the things that they're supposed to be doing because they might be going through something. This is what I call the lens of love. Being able to take an opportunity in any given situation and view things through the lens of love gives you the opportunity to evolve, gives you the opportunity to see through their lens, take a step back to be in their shoes, or have the opportunity to consider other things that might be going on that might be impacting that particular person. Don't get me wrong, and sometimes people are lazy. Sometimes, people don't want to hold up their end of their responsibilities. Sometimes, people are shallow, or they are in their wounded inner child, and they're choosing to be petty, or they're choosing not to have or be in their power. And so they're behaving in a particular way that's not in congruence with your values. And that's the thing we always have the opportunity to grow.

We always have the opportunity to grow. I'm going to say that three times. We always have the opportunity to grow. And where we have the opportunity to grow is when we are knocked down, when we are disappointed, when we are angry, when we are sad, when we are not in a state of bliss or happiness. Those are the opportunities where we get to put our spiritual tools to the test, where we get to have the opportunity to look at things from a different perspective. We are here to feel things. We are here to experience all the rays of the emotions. And when we do it in a healthy way, this is where growth comes in. I also want to just say this. If you're like, You know what? That sounds great, but now I'm feeling really bad because I've chosen to do X, Y, Z. I've chosen to be angry and be petty or whatever. Forgive yourself because that's part of the experience. I know I have done some really petty things in the past, and It might have made me feel good at that particular moment, but at the end of the day, was it worth it?

Most of the time, it wasn't. We have all made mistakes. It's how you choose to move forward from those mistakes. Forgiveness is a path, one aspect of our enlightenment, of our soul's evolution. I'm not talking about forgiving others. I'm talking about forgiving yourself as well. Yes, we can forgive others, and that is really important. But it's not to give them forgiveness. It's to give yourself permission to let go of the feelings that have been grossly pushed down to the point where they are causing disease within the body. Disease within the body can show up in so many different ways. It can show up through illness, and it can show up through emotional pain, it can show up through distraction, or scatteredness, it can show up through physical ailments as well. The thing is, it's not worth harming yourself over. It really, really isn't. I know that I have been through a lot in my life, and I have had a lot of emotional turbulence in my life. That emotional and psychological abuse that I have experienced, and physical, mental, emotional, sexual, all of that plays into who I am today, plays into the perceptions that I have, plays into my trauma response.

I'm not in the right all the time. No one is in the right all the time. As much as we like to believe that we are in the right all the time, we're not. And that's why taking a step back, looking at it through a bird's eye view, having spiritual tools in your toolbox allows you to experience life in a different way and gives you permission to heal and to feel and to process and to integrate so that you can live the best life you're meant to live without all the baggage. The baggage gets heavy. When you start processing the baggage, it gets lighter and lighter. Then, sometimes, an old thing comes back for you to look at it, and then it feels heavy. This is just the cycle. It's perfect. It's beautiful. We're not meant to be on cloud nine all the time. I think that the more that we understand that, the easier it gets to process emotions in a healthy way. For me, I'm actually quite proud of myself for considering the impact that if I had chosen to be petty, this is what will happen, and it's not worth it.

It's totally not worth it. With that also being said, this is the opportunity for me to voice, Hey, that That really made me sad, and here is why. And by being able to have that conversation, I can't guess how they're going to respond and what's going to happen. But by me speaking my truth, It does open the door for new opportunities for growth in the relationship or new opportunities to set new boundaries. No matter what, there's an opportunity at hand, and I can't control how they're going to react. No matter how much I believe that someone is going to react in a particular way, I have to give them the opportunity to prove me right or prove me wrong. Even if they chose to react in an unhealthy way, that's where I get to choose to react with boundaries. I get to choose to react in a healthy way that allows me to stand in my truth and allows me to protect myself in the that I feel is the best way to protect myself. But it also gives the other person or people in the situation the opportunity to share their truth and have an alternative perspective that I might not have considered.

It also opens up conversation and dialog where healing can happen because there is a door for it to work through, for us to walk through. And if that conversation doesn't happen, that opportunity is not available unless choosing to speak up. And there are all sorts of different ways to handle situations. Some people choose to say nothing, and it hurts. Some people choose to fight, and that hurts. Some people choose to do it in a healthy way where it's like, rest, digest, and then have the opportunity to speak, and then that other person or those sets of people will have the opportunity to share. And remember, remember that it's not always going to work out the way that you envision a particular scenario. And it is perfectly okay how it turns out because, guess what? It's how it's meant to turn out. And if you chose to honor yourself, you chose to speak up; you chose to share your values, you chose to share your perspective, you chose to share your feelings, you're making space for healing. And if they don't see that and they don't want the opportunity to do the same, that's okay, too. We just have to make peace with it.

So the next time someone upsets you, and you want to take and be petty, ask yourself, how is that truly going to impact you? And is it going to impact anybody else? And is it worth it? Also, ask yourself, what are you truly feeling? Because that's what really matters. What are you truly feeling? And it can be more than one emotion. Choose to feel those feelings, and it will set you free. It will totally set you free. All right, my friend, I hope you enjoyed today's episode. Please make sure you like, subscribe, and share this with a friend. See you in the next one. Bye.

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