Understanding emotions – riding the waves

Dany Griffiths Birthing Programme, Blog, Prenatal Parenting Programme 2 Comments

Wise Hippos at South Beach TenbyI am feeling very grateful this week as I am on holiday staying in a beautiful apartment on the lovely South Beach in Tenby. Extra grateful because the sun has been shining a lot and the rain is mainly only falling during the night. The living room and my bedroom have panoramic views of the sea with floor to ceiling windows and there is an enormous sea front patio, (is it still called a patio when it is two floors up, it really is too big to be called a balcony ;-))?

Everywhere I look I can see my ‘Sea of Serenity’.

I love being by the sea, watching the waves rolling in and out and especially listening to the sounds that they make. I’ve really enjoyed lying in bed at night watching the waves in the darkness and being lulled off to sleep with their rhythmical tune.

I like to share the serenity I feel when being around the sea and anyone who has attended our Wise Hippo courses will have experienced that through our Wise Hippo mp3s.

Today however I thought I’d use the sea to share with you another of my passions and that is understanding emotions.

Watching the sea here on South Beach, Tenby is particularly hypnotic.  At one end of the beach there is a lovely cove and at the other some great caves for exploring. I particularly like how the sea rolls along from one end to the next in what very much looks like a Mexican wave as it moves along the shore. Sometimes gently and sometimes with great big crashing waves. Often those big waves turning up out of no-where almost knocking us off our feet.

As I’ve sat enjoying the wonderful views of the sea over these past few days it got me to thinking about emotions. Much like the sea there is a great depth to each and every one of us that often remains hidden, sometimes even from ourselves.

What we see on the surface isn’t always a reflection of what is going on underneath. There are times when a person can appear calm on the outside and yet are hiding a mass of turmoil within that, much like a riptide, we don’t know is there until it is too late.

Some show their feelings really quickly and obviously with great bursts of excitement or anger, like those wonderful crashing waves that can be thrilling and exciting when we know how to ride them but scary and frightening if we are out of our depths.

The sea shows us what mood it is in through its movements and we have to make sure that we listen to the messages of its (e)motions. For example on a calm sunny day it gently ripples and we may choose to enjoy a paddle in the sea. When it is stormy and windy we see great crashing waves and perhaps decide it’s best to steer clear for a while, unless we are skilled enough to ride those waves in a positive way.

We all know that we have to respect the sea. It is fun, enjoyable and beautiful but we have to be mindful of its moods to ensure that we stay safe. Having respect for our own feelings by sharing openly in a useful way about how we feel; the good, the bad and the ugly and having respect for others by enabling them to do the same is the key to success in our relationships. 

We often don’t get taught to share our emotions in this way, instead being told that some emotions are good and some are bad. That some should be hidden away because if we show them, if we dare to feel them, to express them, we ourselves are bad.

This makes me feel sad.

But that’s ok.  My sadness is what’s driving me to keep banging on about emotions because I know it can make a difference to people’s lives.

Research has shown that when expectant parents understand about the true messages of their emotions that it can support their baby’s emotional intelligence…

That can make a whole world of difference for our future generations.

To find out more ask your local Wise Hippo Instructor about our Bond with Baby sessions.

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