Our Habit of Avoiding Unpleasant Feelings

Written by on February 4, 2019 in Emotional Mastery

Our Habit of Avoiding Unpleasant Feelings

Whether we’re consciously aware of it or not, we are all familiar with the momentary relief that avoiding unpleasant feelings can provide.

If I can’t bring myself to have that difficult conversation or admit I screwed up, then I can make myself feel better by simply not dealing with it.

Admittedly, avoidance can be an effective solution in the short term, especially if you’re feeling overwhelmed and just need some space to regroup.

The problem is that avoidance quickly becomes a habit of convenience.

Many rely on an endless list of excuses to avoid the discomfort of trying new things or stay in unhappy relationships rather than confront the emotional pain and turmoil they fear will come with change.

Simply saying you’re just being sensible, or waiting for the right time or circumstances is an effective catch-all shield for avoiding all sorts of uncomfortable situations.

When it comes to relationships, the old saying, “Pick your battles” is a legendary avoidance strategy.

Unfortunately, over time, avoidance becomes a prison, because after a while you avoid more and more uncomfortable situations, people, experiences, and places.

The more you avoid, the weaker you feel and the less of life you experience.

The Gifted Wisdom of Unpleasant Feelings

Today I’d like to share with you a powerful TEDx presentation by Dr. Joan Rosenberg, a best-selling author, speaker, consultant, media host, and a cutting-edge psychologist.

In her work and extensive research, Dr. Rosenberg has found that more than anything else, what holds people back is their inability to deal with unpleasant feelings.

In her brief talk, The Gifted Wisdom of Unpleasant Feelings, Dr. Rosenberg unveils an innovative strategy and surprising keys for experiencing the challenging emotions that lie at the heart of confidence, emotional strength, and resilience.



To say that there is the opportunity for growth in confronting our demons sounds like such a cliche.

But only when we’re able to overcome the destructive habit of avoiding unpleasant feelings and emotions can we break free of our self-imposed prison and experience true freedom.

Related reading:
Will you be the passenger or the driver in your life journey?
About Marquita A. Herald

Marquita Herald

Marquita is an author, resilience coach and the chief evangelist at Emotionally Resilient Living. She’s also an unapologetic workaholic who loves red wine, rock n’ roll, road trips (and car dancing!), peanut butter cookies and (especially) a dog named Lucy.

She’s saddened and frustrated by excuses and cruelty and believes authentic compassion is the most powerful force in the world.

To learn more about Marquita and the mission of Emotionally Resilient Living click here.

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