Emotional patterns

Emotional patterns emerge from our early years and stay etched with us throughout our adult life, until we learn how to change them. I believe different emotional patterns form depending on the different influences and those will bring about different emotional patterns in us.

For example, if someone is overpowering and we don’t know how to react when that person is around us, we may become more submissive. It tends to run in families. How many of us stop to question or identify our behaviour when we’re around family? We behave a certain way, but don’t always understand the family dynamics.

Unfortunately, parents with strong cultural values tend to put their cultural beliefs first and that of the community, instead of their children. Children are simply expected to conform to their family including their cultures, as well as conforming to their community.

As a consequence of conformity, as adults we will continue to enact the same conditional behaviour traits from when we were children. Because we’re not always consciously aware of it, we won’t even know we’re doing it.

Life will always continue to mirror the same patterns until we choose to change them.


29 Aug, 2012

6 thoughts on “Emotional patterns

  1. I have an aunt that act one way around us, then if someone else is around she puts on airs. I think it’s hilarious, but why she does it is strange to me. It’s like she is better than everyone else sometimes.

    I wasn’t raised that way. I was raised to treat people the way I wanted to be treated and not to act like I’m better than everyone else.

    I don’t see myself as acting differently around others than I act around my family. I have a strong will and I used to let people run all over me and boss me around, but I changed due to my first marriage.

    I got tired of being stepped on and run over, so I learned to be slightly aggressive instead of being shy and submissive.

    1. Lisa it sounds as though you’re aunt was slightly embarrassed of her family, behaving one way with her family then being different again around other people who aren’t her family.

      I think like me, your experiences stem from your upbringing, It’s great that you’re down to earth and understand that we’re all the same and should treat and be treated in the same way. I feel that too.

      If we all perceived our life that way, being shy and submissive or being stepped on and run over wouldn’t exist, or other behaviors within the family. Unfortunately as we grow up, we tend to have to compete with our siblings.

      It really is a shame that we often feel we have no choice. It depends on what’s going on around us.

  2. That is so true!! I know that I act differently when I’m around some people versus others.

    For example if I go out with friends, I’ll be talkative and happy. When I’m around my wife’s family, I will try to be more conservative, (because they never agree with my opinions and if I argue, my wife says it embarrasses her).

    With my family I’m the total opposite.

    1. I used to have that too! But generally speaking some people will always have problems with other people’s opinions unless your opinions are their opinions!

      I’m not sure how much of this is you Bill. It sounds like it’s not you at all. You’re just trying to fit in with your wife’s family. Just be yourself Bill, that’s all that matters. What others think is inconsequential.

  3. My emotional patterns were not something I really had a chance to develop naturally, since my parents were always fighting with us to conform to their bizarre standards!

    My mother worked many years on breaking my will and she finally succeeded when I was in my early teens. She expected me to be very shy and submissive, while my father always wanted me to stand up for myself in some ways.

    It was enough to make me start drinking and drugging at that early age since there were certain emotional patterns that were surfacing to the point I couldn’t even stand myself.

    It just made my life a living hell considering I stopped even wanting to function in the real world. I did have a strong sense of the difference between right and wrong, I just didn’t know how to properly express myself.

    I spent many years trying to live like a Vulcan, with no real feelings or emotion, which left me hollow and numb.

    I’m just learning how to start feeling and it’s going to take time to readjust to the so-called ‘normal’ world!

    1. Your story is so sad Randy, but the positive part is that you’re learning how to start feeling which is good.

      I think our life is made of behavior patters brought about by our formative years. It’s hard to believe that parents could parent in such a way, but if they could have parented in any other way I am sure they would have at least tried. No one goes to school to learn and from my own experience, parents usually parent as they have been parented, unless they work to change things. That is how it was with my mother and her mother before that.

      It of course doesn’t help now, but may go some way for you to understand why things turned out the way they did with your parents. As with all patterns, the bad ones are the hardest to break, but with perseverance and understanding I am sure you will continue to change things.

      Thanks for being so honest in your response. That is truly inspirational.

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