Unpacking Emotional Baggage

When dealing with emotional baggage, you are constantly struggling under the weight of baggage, bad filters, and triggers. In any situation, nothing that is said is evaluated objectively. Everything is going through a filter that distorts the original message. It stops being about the content of the message, and instead becomes about our perceptions of the sender, and more importantly, about us. We have let ourselves get to the point where we're not really hearing anymore, we're just judging. If you've reached this point with someone, it's time to unpack your baggage.

Here are a few things that contribute to the problem and understanding them is important tp changing the situation:

  • Your brain processes most information using primitive filters looking only for the most basic information about threats that should be attended to.

  • Attention errors make it likely that you'll pay more attention and give weight to information that confirms your original point of view.

  • You don’t get to hear the intent of people’s messages; you only to get hear how their words come out and to feel how the message impacts you. The disconnect between intent and impact is at the heart of many strained relationships.

Start with a Positive Assumption

The next time you react to something someone else says, turn the situation on its head. Start with a positive assumption, rather than a negative one. Instead of assuming that a person is attacking you, start by assuming they are adding value.

  • Instead of having your normal reaction to what is said, really think about it. Repeat what they said in your head before responding. Think about the words, without reading between the lines or thinking about the back story. Hear the words coming out of someone else’s mouth—how do you interpret them now?

  • Pay attention to the positive, rather than the negative components of the message. Did the person start with a compliment and then share some constructive feedback? Focus on the compliment for a moment. Let it soak in.

  • Think about the possible positive intentions they might have had. How might the person have been trying to help? What were they trying to get at? What value are their comments adding?

If you start with a negative assumption, you waste all the value that others could be providing.  A positive assumption is the only thing that gives you a chance.

If you live in the Los Angeles/Westlake Village area and are interested in understanding your emotional baggage and unpacking them, I invite you to contact me via email at: tanyasamuelianmft@yahoo.com . I provide a complimentary consultation. Contact me now to see if we might be a good fit to work together! Or book your appointment now!

Preparing for a Good Week Ahead

Happy Sunday! There are a few tricks to setting yourself up to have a really good week ahead. How you spend your Sunday has a big impact on you feel the rest of the week. Having a Sunday ritual helps to create the positive environment and mindset you want to have in order to be prepared for a really great week ahead. Here are some tips:

  • meal prep: taking some time out of your day to meal prep will allow you to get all of your meals ready for you to just grab and eat during the week. Not only will it save you time and stress, but it also makes it so much easier to eat healthy since you don’t have to think about it.

  • clean up your space: the way your space looks makes a huge impact on the way you feel. If your home is messy, you feel like your life is a mess, too. Kick off the week right by spending a little time on Sunday tidying up.

  • enjoy some self care: taking time for yourself on Sunday will boost your mood, relieve stress, and will make you feel overall happier so that you can dive into the new week with a good mindset.

  • set your intentions: setting an intention for the week ahead is so powerful. It’s not so much about goal setting or what you want to check off your to do list; it’s more about deciding how you want to feel in advance. 

  • plan out your week: this one is especially important if you know you have a busy week up ahead. Instead of just letting your to-do list roam around in your mind, get it all down on paper and map out when you’ll get what done. This will instantly relieve some stress which allows you to focus on just the tasks that need to get done for the day — instead of feeling overwhelmed by everything that needs to get done that week.

What are some of your Sunday rituals? Share in the comments below!

If you live in the Los Angeles/Westlake Village area and are interested in individual or couples therapy I invite you to contact me via email at: tanyasamuelianmft@yahoo.com . I happily provide a complimentary consultation. Contact me now to see if we might be a good fit to work together!