When we are young, we learn to manage our emotions through the interactions with our immediate caregivers, principally our mother and father. The way our parents manage their emotions leaves a dramatic imprint on our developing nervous system that can last long into adulthood. This is particularly true of strong emotions like anger.
Two common adult reactions to poor emotional management by our parents are to submit or to rebel. We either live the rest of our lives managing our emotions they way they taught us out of fear and submission, or doing the opposite out of anger and rebellion. Neither of these two reactions represent true freedom. A better approach is to make our own choice in each situation but this takes insight and practice, especially if we choose to do things differently from the default programming we got from our parents. (more…)