photo by Jen Conway

photo by Jen Conway

“We can only choose whether we will feel

and not what we will feel.”

-Sam Keen

Perhaps the most destructive myth in our culture is the idea that being emotional is a choice.

Refusing to experience or express our feelings is not a way of managing our feelings. It signifies weakness, not strength. When we choose to resist our emotions, it only leads to pain and exhaustion. We spend an enormous amount of time and energy suppressing feelings that eventually emerge, only in much more harmful ways.

Denying our emotions is denying ourselves. Avoiding our feelings at all costs by creating endless distractions from them and pretending they don’t exist is choosing to live in an alternate reality. It’s choosing to be something none of us like — a fake.

My primary goal in life is to find where I can be of most service. I seek to use my life experience, good and bad, to help the people I encounter become increasingly authentic.

-Tom Gentry