Tag Archives: sadness

How I Healed My Boys High School Choir Bullying Trauma

I went to an all-boys high school where the first grade rugby team enjoyed the highest social status. Anyone who wasn't into aggressive body-contact sports got their head kicked in other ways, and boys on each level of the social hierarchy boosted their flagging self-esteem by bullying the boys on the level below. Any innate sensitivity in a boy was crushed both in the classroom and in the play/battle-ground.

Although I was highly intelligent and generally got good grades, this wasn't valued as highly as sporting prowess at my high school and being a thin, nerdy kid who was the youngest in my year, I didn't do so well at school socially.

I spent my lunch times singing in the school choir or hanging out in the computer room learning to use the new machines that the teachers didn't know what to do with. This was a couple of years before the computer revolution went mainstream and decades before Big Bang Theory made nerds hot prime-time-viewing commodities.

Childhood bullying can leave our adult selves feeling self-conscious and hyper-vigilant to criticism from others.

Since I was a late developer my voice didn't break until well after high school. It was embarrassing still being in the alto section of the all-boy choir as I headed into Year 11 so I quit and joined the lighting crew in the hall instead where I could feel good about solving technical problems backstage and wouldn't have to perform in front of people and end up feeling so self-conscious.… Continue reading…

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How To Deal With Someone Who is Upset

Many men (and women for that matter) in our society don't deal with their emotions well. As a result, most of us are walking around carrying an ever-increasing accumulation of emotional baggage that can get triggered even in seemingly innocuous situations.

People who are upset need empathy, not judgement.

For an example where this happened to me, check out my recent story on Why I Got Upset In Guitar Class. I'll wait here while you do that...

... OK!

Dealing with people who are upset can be very challenging. Part of what makes this challenging is that other people's emotional upset is likely to trigger our own unresolved emotional baggage. This is why many people try to shut down expressions of unpleasant emotions in other people or resort to "rescuing" behaviors intended to stem the flow of another person's feelings that are making us uncomfortable. Naive rescuers often think they are "helping" because they see the upset person appearing less outwardly distressed; but the upset person is simply internalizing their emotional pain which has disastrous consequences for everyone in the long run.… Continue reading…

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Start Expressing How You Feel

Hey there, it’s Graham here from The Confident Man Project, and today you are going to learn all about the importance of expressing how you feel. Now, as guys, often we don’t get taught how to do this, we don’t learn how to do this, we don’t practice how to do this; we just tend to keep our feelings to ourselves a lot of the time and this is a massive problem because when we bottle up our emotions inside, we are prone to all sorts of horrible things like illness and depression and just unhappiness and frustration and it makes it hard to connect with other people, particularly with women who just love having an emotional connection with you.

And so I want to really advocate for the idea of you expressing how you feel in any moment. Like, right now I’m feeling a whole mixture of things. I’m feeling happy and I’m feeling frustrated and I’m feeling a bit pissed off and irritated and, you know, all this stuff is going on inside me all at once and it’s very unhealthy to just keep all that stuff bottled down inside.

So it’s very important to be able to express how you feel, and there are a few basic emotions like anger, sadness, happiness, joy, love, peace, frustration, fear, anxiety.… Continue reading…

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Basic Emotions

HappinessMany of us guys lack a basic emotional literacy; we have physical sensations when we're feeling something, but we often don't know how to identify what we're feeling, nor are we able to recognise emotions in other people. Being able to identify emotions is the basis of empathy, which is a core communication skill.

In short, most of us don't understand how our emotions work. Simply learning to identify and express the following basic emotions will improve your relationships dramatically:… Continue reading…

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Music To Make You Happy When You Feel Sad

When you're feeling sad, listening to positive, encouraging music can help you break out of it.

Here's my favorite music for turning sadness into happiness and optimism:

Chumbawumba: Tubthumping

I get knocked down. But I get up again. No, you're never gonna keep me down. Words to live by.

Paul Colman Trio: Turn

Gotta turn this life around, turn this life around. Catchy jingle about beating hard times, if you can ignore the kitsch religious undertones.

Steve Winwood: While You See A Chance

While you see a chance, take it! Great advice Steve.

En Vogue: Free Your Mind

Confidence is a lot about how you think. Free your mind!

David Guetta featuring Kelly Roland: When Love Takes Over

Want to feel more love in your life? Get it here.

Dutch featuring Crystal Waters: My Time

This is my time, this is my time.

Jimmy Cliff: I Can See Clearly Now

A classic song for emerging from difficult times.

KT Tunstall: Suddenly I See

For that "Aha!" moment, when you realise you've now got the confidence you always wanted.

Vanessa Amorosi: Shine

Everyone's gonna shine.

Steve Winwood: Back In The High Life

That's where you're going to be: Back in the high life again.… Continue reading…

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Emotional Healing

Traumatic or emotionally painful events in our past can leave us with emotionally charged memories that get triggered whenever we find ourselves in similar circumstances later in life. This will undermine your confidence in these situations, as the powerful emotions triggered quickly become overwhelming even though there's no real threat present.

There are a myriad of different life experiences that can cause trauma and emotional pain. Perhaps your parents were emotionally unsupportive, only loved you conditionally when you were good, or didn't approve of your friends, hobbies, interests or career plans. Maybe they argued and left you feeling unsafe in your own home. Perhaps there was abuse and violence in your family. Or your parent's divorced or separated, leaving you wondering if you were to blame. Perhaps your brothers and sisters, or other kids at school didn't accept you, or you were bullied, or the girls didn't want to play with you. Maybe your childhood sweetheart broke up with you, left you for another guy, or just didn't want to be around you in the first place. And then they went on to become a media star, reminding you of the pain every time you saw them on TV even years later.… Continue reading…

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