The Journey of Overcoming Negative Emotions
Webster’s Definition of Emotion: “A state of feeling, a conscious mental reaction (such as anger or fear) subjectively experienced as strong feeling”
My Definition of Emotion: “Moments of where you allow your feelings to dictate your decisions and state of mind.”
I am currently in the process of receiving my Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood Education. One of the things that I have learned with teaching young children is how to help them manage their emotions. There is a technique that I use when helping children overcome their emotions that they experience towards their peers. I often talk them through their feelings and help them to find the right resolution. I love this because it helps children learn how to effectively communicate at such a young age! (I promise I’m going somewhere with this!)
You know this past week God has really placed it on my heart to discuss emotions. And He has shown me that I didn’t learn how to really manage my emotions until I became a Christian and began living my life for Jesus. You see, in the past there were many times where I allowed my emotions to speak for me. I had no filter or control of how I would handle certain situations in life. Why? Because I simply didn’t understand how to handle my feelings and emotions. I was often either really happy or extremely sad, there was never any in between the extremes. I simply lived on the cuff of my emotions.
The Emotional Impact:
What kind of impact do you believe your emotions can have on you if you’re not careful? In the past, whenever something would upset me, I would be upset for a long time and I often needed someone to help bring me back to reality. I’m reminded of a scripture in Ephesians 4:26: “…Do not let the sun go down when you're still angry”. Quite honestly, God knows how much negative emotions can impact our sleep due to carrying the weight of undealt emotions on to the next day. So what do you do when you begin to feel your emotions arise? Personally, I take a moment to regroup and give whatever is bothering me to God. Why? Because I know how much He cares for me and wants me to enjoy my life. Sis, God cares about you too. And if you're too concerned about the situations that you experience, how can you truly enjoy your life? I believe that God gives us each the ability to exercise self control. I encourage you to take a moment to reflect on the impact of allowing negative emotions to speak for you.
The Emotional Void:
You know in the past, I was known as one who wanted to be emotionally attached to my peers or a “romantic relationship”. It wasn’t enough for me to be stable on my own; I needed the support of others. Sadly, this was disheartening and overbearing for some people. When my husband and I were dating, he didn’t realize it but he had a lot of work ahead of him. I recently asked him about my emotional stability in the past. He smiled and said: “Yes, you’ve come a long way.” Have I arrived? Oh no ma’am. Do I still experience challenges in my emotions? Of course I do. But what I do about the negative emotions that I experience is what matters the most! You see, I believe that God gives us the ability to control our emotions so that we can learn how to effectively manage them (through His help of course). Wherever you are in your life right now, I think we can all agree that there is always room for improvement.
The Right Perspective:
Have you ever been in a situation where you perceived something one way but looking back you realized you may have overreacted? *inserts raised hand* I’ve definitely been there plenty of times. However, I believe by having the right perspective can help lead to healthier emotions. Truth is, nothing in life should make you sacrifice your joy. The bible tells us that the joy of the Lord is our strength (see Nehemiah 8:10). This means that when you become angry, afraid, sad, or anything between, you give up your joy-- and essentially your strength. I’m not sure what battles you are facing right now but I can sense that your negative emotions are leading you to bitterness, anger, or sadness. Maybe you didn’t a call back for the job you applied for, or the relationship didn’t work out the way you planned. Or maybe you were like me where you allow your emotions to rule your everyday decisions. I am here to tell you that God wants to shift your perspective to what matters most. I want to remind you that you have been called to overcome any situation you face. You may not be where you want to be, but thank God that those of you who are reading this blog are headed in the right direction! My dear friends, review the three keys below of how to overcome negative emotions.
3 Keys of How to Overcome Negative Emotions:
What Does a Confident Woman Look Like?
Previously my definition of a confident woman was one who looks well put together and who’s outer appearance spoke for her. As time went on I realized that it’s much more than what a person looks like on the outside. Rather it’s loving the woman within, the fears she overcomes while also being persistent when life gets challenging. I would like to share with you seven secrets that I believe are some characteristics of a confident woman. So let’s dive a little deeper. My prayer is that you will begin to grow in knowing what it means to be a confident woman. ❤
Secret #1: Facing Her Fears
It’s not that she doesn’t feel fear—she just doesn’t embrace it and allow fear to consume her.
Instead of saying how hard it looks or how afraid she is, she speaks life over her situations.
So what do you do when life gets challenging? For me, I have found the importance of speaking positive affirmations over my circumstances. This is when I began to see God bring the dead situations back to life. It can be tempting to lose confidence and settle. But instead, I face my fears! I can recall a time where I was afraid to do public speaking. I felt so nervous and intimidated by the people in the audience. However, I didn’t allow my own fears to keep me hostage from the task at hand. I dismissed the fear by using the word to remind me what God says about fear. 2 Timothy 1:7 says: "God has not given me the spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline". Ladies, what are you doing about the fears you experience? I encourage you to embrace your fears by speaking the word of God to overcome every challenge that you may ever face.
Secret #2: There’s No Comparing with Her
A confident woman doesn’t compare herself to anyone. She’s simply too busy enjoying the woman God created her to be. In the digital age that we live in, it’s so easy to jump on social media and play the comparison game. Yes, the game of reviewing someone else’s profile wishing you looked like her, or have what she has. Am I guilty of this? I wouldn’t be human if I wasn’t. But what I have learned is that there is a difference between gleaming from a person versus being envious. I believe that God wants us to enjoy who we are and celebrate the diversity of others. His intentions for creating people with different ethnicities, backgrounds, and races were never meant to compare one another. Instead, God wants us to enjoy who we are individually. Let me make this clear, there is no person who is better than the other. The next time you feel tempted to be envious of someone else, I want you to remember that God made no mistakes when He made you.
Secret #3: The Woman in the Mirror
A confident woman doesn’t wait to be noticed, she notices herself. When you look in the mirror what do you say about yourself? I can honestly say that when I look in the mirror I say to myself out loud: "I am beautiful! I am confident!" The truth is, we can’t rely on others to tell us that we are beautiful. We must be purposeful with saying positive affirmations to ourselves. In the past, I often desired the compliments and approval of my friends. I finally realized that I couldn’t continue to rely on others to make me feel good about myself. It wasn’t their responsibility to make me feel confident—it was my own. This change of looking in the mirror and loving who I saw took time. I slowly began to release the pain of my past and see what God sees in me. I think it’s very common that women look in the mirror and they see what others have said about them. It’s easy to see the pain of the past, or even the things that you feel insecure about. It takes courage to see what God sees in you. Moving forward, I encourage you to say something that you love about yourself every time you look in the mirror. This could be something like: “I love my smile. I love my freckles. I love my dimples. I love who I am.”
Secret #4: Trials Precedes Victory
She looks at her previous attempts as a stepping stone to build her life upon! I don’t believe a person ever truly fails at something. If it didn’t work out one way, then there are multiple ways of accomplishing a dream or a goal. In fact, it’s all a part of the process. A confident woman understands that just because there is opposition doesn't mean she's headed in the wrong direction. It may just mean that you're making all the right steps! God has shown me how He works all things together for my good (see Romans 8:28). This means that even the choices that you believe were not the best, God will somehow bring it all together. Ladies, you may be feeling discouraged about your circumstances in life. Or maybe there’s a dream that you believe will never come to past. I’m here to tell you that your dreams will not be accomplished without trials. Does this mean that you have to throw in the towel and give up? Of course not! Keep going and press through to the finish line. I promise that it will all be worth it in the end. Remember, your greatest victories are birthed outside of your comfort zone.
Secret #5: God Loves Me
She understands that God loves her no matter what and that she’s been created for a reason. There came a point in my life where I accepted God’s love. During this time, I also learned to love myself. Previously, I thought that God’s love was dependent upon how people treated me. This was very disheartening because when people didn't treat me so well I believed that God was upset with me. However, when others treat me nicely, I believed that God loved me. One day, I was on my way home from work and I thought to myself: “God’s love cannot be determined by how people treat me. His love is much stronger than that.” Ladies, you may be in a place in your life where you haven’t experienced the love of God or you may not have a relationship with God. I want you to know that the Bible says that God's love is steadfast (see Psalm 136:26) Dear friend, God loves you more than you could ever imagine. The greatest love you could ever experience is the love of God. His love isn’t subject to how your feeling, the way you think of yourself, or whether or not you make any mistakes. God’s love is unconditional, everlasting, and unchanging. Knowing this, you will be able to walk in a new level of confidence!
Secret #6: She Leans on God
A confident woman trusts in the Lord to take care of her (see Psalm 112:7). In today’s busy world, you may have a ton of things on your to do list waiting to be checked off. I’ve found myself being disappointed when I relied on myself to get things done on my own. When I learned to trust the process of life, I begin to experience true confidence! I believe that confident women learn how to be okay with not having all of the answers in life. This year, I’ve learned to trust God even when I don’t know what’s coming next. There’s definitely a level of peace of not having all of the answers. There’s a scripture that comes to mind that I’m always reminded of. Proverbs 3:5-6 says: "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; acknowledge Him in all your ways and He will make your paths straight". This scripture is so profound because it demonstrates what will happen when we learn to put our trust in God alone. Sis, will you begin to lean on God for the answers you've been searching for?
Secret #7: Her Confidence is Found in Christ
A confident woman doesn’t find her confidence through material things or people. Rather she looks to the word of God to find her true identity. Where have you been looking to find your worth and value? Is it social media? A best friend or boyfriend? Proverbs 31:10 says: "Her value is more precious than jewels and her worth is far above rubies or pearls". True confidence takes place when you understand how valuable you are. Sometimes, in life you have to remove yourself from the circle of friends who tell you that you have to look a certain way in order to be confident. I want you to know that your confidence does not have to be determined by the various things of this world. In fact, your confidence was never intended to be based off of the clothes that you wear, the car that you drive, or the career path your on. Instead, you can find your confidence in your creator, the one who created you so unique and beautiful.
You see, there are many definitions of what it means to be a confident woman. Let’s face it, the media can portray confidence as long hair is more beautiful or a certain skin complexion is more admirable. All of these different depictions can be misleading and leave you to feel invaluable, less than, and overlooked. Dear beautiful ones, I want to let you know that your confidence doesn’t have to come from whether or not others approve of who you are, challenges that you may face throughout life, or your outer appearance. Rather it can come from the one who is above all things-- Jesus Christ. I decided to be a little bolder on this post to help you to understand that God has created you so perfect! You are beautiful, you are a masterpiece, you are not a mistake, you were created for a purpose! God loves…. YOU!
p.s. Comment below with the secret that resonated with you the most. I'd love to hear your thoughts!