Ep #12: What to Do with Negative Emotion

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A lot of people come to this work thinking that it’ll help them feel happy and positive all the time. This is definitely how my brain has been trained, and I believed for a long time that I needed to always show up happy, positive, and optimistic. But that’s not what living a full human life is about.

Negative emotions will and have always been part of the 50/50 of life, and so today, my goal is to show you how to allow and process them so that you can see it as an opportunity for growth and to dig into those feelings deeper. I’m introducing you to a concept I learned from my mentors called clean and dirty pain, and how this embodies the importance of allowing your negative emotions to exist.

Join me this week as I show you what living a full human life entails, and the process I go through to allow and feel my negative emotions when they come up. Living an Anything but Average life is all about playing full out and living big, and that means it’s not going to be great and positive all the time, but using this concept will act as a catalyst to show you a pathway to a deeper, more meaningful life.

If you are ready to finally commit to the change you want to create in your life, whatever area that may be, you need to join my Anything but Average program. You’ll learn the step-by-step process on how to make real change, and you’ll also get a lifetime of coaching with me and support in a wonderful community. Click here to find out more and I can’t wait to see you there!

What You'll Learn on this Episode

  • What clean and dirty pain means.
  • The difference between clean and dirty pain.
  • What living life fully entails.
  • How I feel and process my negative emotions.
  • Why identifying your dirty pain presents a growing opportunity.

Featured on the Show

  • If you are ready to take this work deeper and make your dream business a reality, join my Anything but Average program.
  • Join me on Instagram and tag me in all your Anything but Average aha! moments!

Click to Read Episode Transcript

Welcome to the Anything but Average Podcast, where I, life coach and mindset expert Lindsey Mango will teach you how to master your mind, yourself, and take massive action to create a life that blows your mind. Let’s get started.

Hello, how are you guys? And welcome back to another week and another episode of Anything but Average. I am so freaking excited to talk to you all this week and before we dive in, I just have to say how tremendously grateful I am for the feedback and just the openness that you guys received last week’s episode with.

It’s just this relationship between us, even though some of you guys, we’ve never talked, and if we haven’t, I don’t know why. Follow me on Instagram, @lindseymango_. I try my best to interact with as many of you as possible. But I feel like regardless if we’ve ever had a conversation or not, we have a relationship and that relationship goes both ways.

You guys listening, giving your feedback, being open, being vulnerable, listening to what I have to say and taking what I teach you guys and utilizing it in your life is a two-way street. I get just as much from serving you all as I give to you. And I get so much love and support, and I’m just truly grateful and I want you guys to know that, especially when I come out with a real and raw episode.

I just think it is so cool to watch you guys and watch you receive it and learn and grow and just be really open and vulnerable with me too. So in light of when I’m recording this episode, I’m sure when this episode comes out that the Black Lives Matter movement is still something very much on the forefront of our mind and is probably going to be something on the forefront of our minds forever until that’s healed.

In light of that, I wanted to use this episode to talk about handling big emotions. And whether you’re dealing with your own process of learning and growing with Black Lives Matter, or whether it’s something you’ve been pioneering, or something you’ve been experiencing personally yourself, or maybe it’s not something that’s on the forefront of your mind anymore.

Wherever you’re at, handling big emotions is a part of life. It’s a part of growth. It’s a part of living and creating an Anything but Average life, so I just want to preface this with if you are experiencing heavy emotions from what’s happening in the world right now, this is for you. If you are not, if you’ve processed them, this is still for you because big emotions are a part of life.

So let’s jump in. What I want to talk about today is how to handle big emotions and the difference between what I call – not me. I actually learned this concept from a couple of my coaches that I’ve had, but I call it as well, as after learning from them, clean and dirty pain.

Because here’s what I’ve realized. A lot of people think that this work is just about feeling positive and happy all the time. And I will tell you that that is kind of how my brain has always been trained, no matter how I feel on the inside, like I need to show up and be happy and positive and optimistic, which I see as a great asset in this work.

But I have learned through this work that handling negative emotion and being really honest with myself and feeling emotion is just as important to the human experience, to my human experience, and to my growth as feeling positive and feeling happy.

So I just want you guys to know that if you’re well on your journey in this work or you’re just beginning, I don’t want you to take that and feel afraid of it. I want you to take it and see it as just an opportunity. Because below negative emotion, below being really honest with ourselves and our feelings is so much gold and so much opportunity and so much life.

Because here’s what I want to tell you guys, and this is something I really had to dig into and still have to remind myself all the time. The human experience is about living life to the – at the highest level. And to me, at the highest level doesn’t just mean living life where you’re just like, numbed out and happy all the time. Yes, that’s of course a part of it.

But living life fully and experiencing life fully is also about loving so deeply, loving so vulnerably, if that’s even a word, that there’s another side to it. That there’s pain, that there’s sadness, that you play so all out with your emotions that you’re going to feel bad sometimes. You’re going to feel sad sometimes. You’re going to feel negative emotion, and that’s a part of it too.

So I hope just saying that inspires some of you because some of you might be hearing this and you’re like, “Well, why would I want to feel negative emotion or why do I want to deal with my big emotions? I just want them to go away, I thought that’s why I was here to do this work.”

What I want to offer to you guys is this idea that living fully is about feeling fully. And the more you can feel, the more you’re willing to feel, the more you build resilience to be able to handle things in life, but also the more you live life. Because to me, it’s like, the reason why love, loving other humans is such a beautiful thing is that there’s also the opportunity of loss.

That’s what makes it. That double-edge sword is what makes it such a beautiful and amazing thing, like being vulnerable enough to love someone, knowing that we could lose them. And so I just want you guys to see that an Anything but Average life is also about playing big and living full out and sometimes that means negative emotion.

Now, easier said than done, right? A lot of us like to avoid negative emotion, but again, I just want you guys to see that negative emotion can inspire us into change. Look at what’s happening with Black Lives Matter. It’s inspiring people to get into motion. It can be the catalyst.

So I just want you guys to be aware of when you’re resisting negative emotions and to realize that resisting them actually makes them last longer and kind of keeps them below the surface, taking away from your positive emotions without even realizing it. Even though you feel like you’re numbed out or you’re not feeling them.

So with all of that said, let’s talk about what it looks like to handle big emotions. Handle negative emotions is really what I mean. To me, handling negative emotion or big emotion is about first, feeling it. So a lot of you guys want to use the tools that I teach you and you want to just jump right in and you want to start fixing it and changing it, and I do this a lot too.

But I want you to see this as an opportunity to feel. To actually recognize what the negative emotion is, where it is in your body. Something that I practice doing when I feel negative emotion come up is actually putting my hand on my heart and describing what the negative emotion feels like, like I was going to explain it to an alien.

So if I’m feeling anxiety to sadness, I might be talking about how it’s tightness in my chest. It feels like a pit in my stomach. It feels like nauseousness, it feels like tightness all across my shoulders. So when I have a negative emotion, to help me feel it and process it and be aware of it, I will literally sit and experience it in that way.

And here’s what I will tell you. You will notice that when you really allow it to be there, and maybe it’s tears flowing down your face, that you actually move through it quicker than when you’re just resisting it all day. So that’s really the first thing I want you guys to take from this.

Whatever negative emotions you’re feeling right now or in your day-to-day life, or with what’s happening in the world, I just want you to practice first before you go to jump in and fix it, I just want you to experience it. Because again, it creates an ability to have a high level of resilience. And if you’re not afraid of feeling any negative emotion, I want you guys to think about how bullet proof you really are and how much you’re really living out your life.

Now, the second thing I want to talk about is the difference between clean and dirty pain. This concept really blew my mind and helped me understand like, how to manage negative emotion and pain, when to see I’m indulging in it versus feeling it.

Because that’s something that comes up for a lot of people. They’re like, when am I indulging in the negative emotion? When have I stayed there too long and getting stuck on it versus actually feeling it and what’s the difference? And that’s what I’m going to explain next.

So clean pain, in my own unique definition based on what I’ve learned from my mentors and as I’ve applied this work is the natural emotion that comes up as a byproduct of a circumstance that happens, a thought you have about it, and the negative emotion you have.

So here’s what I mean by that. Let’s just say a few years ago I had a very young dog that I loved, he was only three years old, die expectedly. And clean pain would look like that happening and me having the thought, “I’m devastated. This was so unexpected,” and having the feeling of sadness.

Yes, we know our thinking creates the way we feel, and sometimes we want to feel sad. I didn’t want to feel happy when I lost my dog. Or some of you guys don’t want to feel happy when something bad happens or you go all in for a business goal and you don’t hit it and you feel disappointed. That’s a normal reaction. That’s an emotion that is okay to feel.

I mean, all emotions are okay to feel, but that’s what I want you guys to see is that if you were to really look at your model, that the thought that’s creating the feeling, you can see that it’s doing that, and being okay with the fact that like, okay, yeah, I want to feel sadness, I’m okay with that. This thought is creating it, I know that, but given the circumstance, this is a natural reaction to it. This is something that, of course, I would be feeling, and allowing yourself to feel it.

So clean pain is the negative emotion that you feel just as an inherent reaction to a circumstance. Dirty pain is what a lot of us do on top of the clean pain. Dirty pain is what comes after the clean pain. This is where you indulge in making the negative emotion mean something, or where you start to go down a rabbit hole of because this happened, this means I’m never going to make it, this means I’m never going to be successful, this means I’m a loser, this means that I’m bad, this means that life is just awful, everybody’s bad.

So it’s really making the negative emotion that you have mean more than just the emotion. So that really is the difference. The thing that we really want to work on in feeling negative emotion, in experiencing life, in handling maybe some of the big emotions that are coming up right now is practicing feeling the clean pain, but doing the work that you guys learn from my podcast and from whatever personal growth work you do, using that on the dirty pain.

So let me give you guys a full example. Let’s just say I start a new business and I’m so excited and I’m like, I’m going to enroll 10 people this week, I can’t wait, I’m going to launch this thing, it’s going to be amazing. I go all in, I do all of the things that I set out to do, and then nobody signs up.

The clean pain of that would be maybe disappointment or sadness, and the thought I might have is that wasn’t what I expected. I really thought more people were going to sign up. I really put my heart and soul and nobody signed up. And the natural feeling from that would be sadness.

Now, dirty pain would be, “I’m never going to be successful as a business owner. This is over. I look dumb. I can’t believe that happened. What’s wrong with people?” It’s taking that thinking and those feelings and taking them a step further and making them mean more than just the natural, oh my gosh, I thought I was going to get this result and I didn’t, feeling disappointment.

It’s taking that and taking it one step further. So I want you guys to be very aware this week when you’re avoiding the clean pain and why, and practice feeling it. And identifying when you’re dirtying up the pain, when you’re making the pain mean something, when you’re making the circumstance mean more than what it truly is.

Because again, when I learned this, I was like, oh my gosh, one, I avoid negative emotion a lot, and two, I don’t know the difference between when to feel it, when to work on it, and this gives you a really clear boundary of what that looks like. Because again, living an Anything but Average life isn’t just about feeling amazing all the time.

It’s about doing the deep work, it’s about feeling your feelings, and it’s about also realizing that when you do bring dirty pain to it, that that’s your growing opportunity, that there’s gold beneath that. So this week’s episode is a little different. I want you guys to go out there, I want you to feel your negative emotion.

I want you to be willing to live life fully and I want you to see that all negative emotion, no negative emotion is bad, and that it can be a catalyst and it can be a doorway into something more and a deeper life, and that’s what you guys are really here to do.

So I love you guys. I am so excited to chat with you next week. I’m sending you all the love in the world. And I just want to honor and celebrate all of you guys who are willing to do this deep work because it’s not always easy, but it is so freaking worth it and that’s how you live an Anything but Average life. So I will talk to you guys next week. Bye.

If you want to take this work even deeper and coach with me in my signature program, go to lindseymangocoaching.com/anythingbutaverage. In this program, I will teach you how to take this work and create results so you can have a life that blows your mind in the areas of money, purpose, health, lifestyle, and romance. I can’t wait to see you on the inside.

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