Why is it important to listen to your emotions

Introspect and retrospect – you must have heard these words, right? Some of you must have also tried practicing these. It may have worked for you or not. But believe us when we say that listening to your emotions should be an absolute “yes” for you because it can help you heal.

At times, we find ourselves in a spot where we just can’t decipher how we are feeling. Are we sad, depressed, anxious, or just bored? That usually happens because we don’t take time to listen to ourselves, and our emotions. But once you start self-introspection, you will feel much sorted in your head and heart.

Thinking about how and why that’s going to happen? Come, let’s find out.

How are you feeling today? Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Renowned psychiatrist reveals 8 benefits of listening to your emotions

Here are some reasons stated by Dr Sonal Anand, psychiatrist, Wockhardt Hospitals, Mumbai, to convince you to listen to your emotions:

  1. Listening to emotions can help in making better decisions: Emotions are such integral channels of living meaningful lives and yet are undermined. Several times we fail to recognise our emotions and then may take decisions that can be unfavourable. It is important to understand feelings related to self and related to others around self. Understanding emotions leads to better decision-making and definitely better outcomes.
  2. It negates negative thoughts: “Not recognising unfavourable emotions can lead to negative thoughts and negative perception in general. A famous belief principle is Beck’s cognitive triad which states that depressed people have negative and hopeless thoughts or core beliefs about themselves, their experiences in the world, and in the future. Negative emotions fostered this way can lead to self-doubt and depression,” explains Dr Anand.
  3. Listening to your emotions can help you deal with a situation calmly: Reading emotions can give one an upper hand in dealing with day-to-day frustrations and disappointments. This is more in the case of children. Many children don’t understand the kind of emotions they are dealing with and may end up feeling lost and dejected. It is important that we help children recognise when they are feeling unhappy so that they can analyze the situation and find a better solution than just getting angry at themselves.
  4. It can help in avoiding stress too: Emotions and behaviours have an interdependent relationship. What we feel definitely shows in our behaviour. And though emotions can be fleeting and even flexible, the kind of impact that negative behaviour has on others can be a cause of stress for both parties. Sometimes, the impact can be permanent closure as well. If one recognises how behaviours can be made more adaptive to conducive outcomes by recognising the emotional burden, major stresses can be avoided.

    Emotional healthGet a hold on your emotions by listening to them. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

  5. It can help in devising a coping mechanism: Rejecting emotions may actually make things worse. Coping strategies can go haywire and may lead the person towards means of complete avoidance or instant gratification like substance abuse (using drugs), drinking alcohol, smoking, binge eating, or even screen dependence. Self-isolation is a common outcome and motivation to improve might become low without proper support. Keeping things bottled up for a long time can lead to stress and a host of psychological problems such as anxiety and depression.
  6. Listening to emotions will help you get a balanced mind: “When you do not accept your emotions, you become more susceptible to the hurt caused and may suffer from distorted realities. This may impact the family, relationships, career, and work prospects. Learning how to accept emotional burdens can lead one to a balanced state of mind and have better life quality,” says Dr Anand.
  7. It makes you emotionally intelligent: Emotional intelligence plays an important role in achieving success in life, and self-satisfaction levels. Emotional intelligence is the term used to refer to a person’s ability to accurately perceive one’s own emotions as well as others and to use this information to make wise decisions. An emotionally intelligent person is able to correctly identify how he/she is feeling and to adapt with good returns as opposed to simply being carried away by the most recent emotion.

    emotional healthHave you checked your emotional quotient? Image courtesy: Shutterstock

  8. It helps you decide between good, bad, and ugly: Judging your own emotions and cataloging them into “ bad “ and “good” can become a hindrance to progress and self-development. Knowing how to use emotions as feelings that provide insight into one’s situation can help one gather together the ups and downs of life. By recognising emotions, it also becomes easy to recognise when you need help and support from family, close friends, or even mental health professionals.

You see how important it is to know what you are feeling. So take some time out and hear what your emotions have to say to you.