Wednesday, July 8, 2009

choose your emotions

failure happens. that's life. sometimes it's funny, even to you. and other times it's heart wrenching. but in the end, the results are the same - you didn't get what you wanted. and it's important to accept that.

as batman's dad said, we fall "so we can learn to pick ourselves up." but resilience is not the point of this post. it's about something more fundamental. as i pointed out earlier, when rejection happens, it has an emotional effect on us.

but when we look at exactly what emotions are, one thing becomes very clear, they have a lot in common. anger and sexual arousal have the exact same physiological effects on our bodies. so do fear, nervousness, and excitement.

the thing that differentiates the emotions is how our brains interpret what our body is going through based on the context and situation we experience those physiological responses in.

and because we interpret and label our physiological responses, we choose what emotions we feel. a man imposes his will, even on his feelings.

consider the following situation: you're at a bar and see a cute, but drunk girl by herself. you think to yourself, "easy pickings" and proceed to walk on over. when you get there, she pushes you back and says she's a lesbian--before you even utter a word.

how do you react?

1) offended that she (correctly) assumed you were trying to hit on her,
2) guilty and apologetic, as if you were doing something wrong and need to smooth things over with her for some unexplained reason, or
3) laugh because, hey, it is funny.

if you're like me, you've probably done the first two.

do you remember what happened when your first two reactions were in play? that's right. if you acted apologetic, she smelled blood and went straight for your jugular, unless you were smart enough to run away. but that didn't leave you feeling like much of a man. so maybe the next time you were offended and tried to tell her off. and what exactly did that accomplish? assuming she wasn't a violent drunk and it didn't escalate the situation to where the bouncer kicks you out, her friends came in and put some distance between you two, leaving you with lots of pent up anger, preventing you from enjoying the rest of your night.

having reacted the first two ways i know both ruin my night. and i've seen my friends react that exact same way to rejections that weren't even their own to know it ruins my night and their own. now, anger and guilt do come in handy at times when intimidation and forgiveness are necessary. but if you can solve a situation without getting your own blood boiling or stomach knotting, why not choose that different way?

here's how i react to that situation above: instead of anger, i feel sexual arousal. feistiness turns me on. instead of guilt, i laugh. if i'm that obvious, there's no point hiding it. maybe she'll let me watch. i do come with my own strap on.

how you feel in any situation will affect how you deal with any situation. if you feel good about it, you are more likely to do something. if you feel nervousness or fear, chances are you won't.

and while i propose courage is the best way to deal with fear, sometimes the best way is to simply choose not to be scared.

i'm not saying this will change anything. she might still continue being a bitch. this isn't about winning her over. you can't win her over. if she was into you, she wouldn't have been rude in the first place. but this is about not letting her bring you down. misery loves company and she'll stop at nothing to get you on her team.

think of the last time a chick was rude to you. what ways could you have turned that moment into an opportunity to shine? how could you have used her negativity to show your wit or sexuality? or both.

remember to do that the next time something similar happens. and if things still go nowhere, remember, at least you fell laughing.

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