Help Us Help Others:

Often times just putting a name to what you’re feeling can help you understand it better and work to overcome these emotions. Below is a list of words describing different nuances of emotion. Read through this list of emotionally-laden words, and on a separate piece of paper, write down those that best describe what you’re currently feeling:

Abandoned     Angry     Anxious     Agitated     Apprehensive

Abused      Bad     Confused     Distracted     Depressed

Degraded     Distressed     Disgruntled     Disinterested

Detached     Frustrated     Frightened     Fearful     Furious

Guilty     Grief stricken     Helpless     Homesick     Held back

Inferior     Inadequate     Indifferent     Invalidated     Irate

Insecure     Incensed      Insignificant     Lonely     Numb

Neglected     Oppressed     Overwhelmed     Panicky

Powerless     Remorseful     Repressed     Restricted

Sad     Selfish     Shy     Small     Stuck     Timid

Trapped     Thwarted     Unable     Uncertain

As you read through this list, you may have been surprised to discover certain words struck an unexpected nerve, and that you’re feeling things you weren’t consciously aware of. Now pick out 4 or 5 of the ones that describe what you’re feeling most, and for each one, speculate on what it is that’s making you feel this way. Try to be as specific as possible.

Next, go through this list of neutral and positive-leaning words, and pick out 3-5 that best describe how you’d like to feel:

Able     Accepted     Acknowledged     Adequate      Alive

Assured     Authentic     Brave     Certain     Cheerful

Comfortable      Clear      Compassionate      Cherished

Confident      Content     Competent     Determined

Detached     Enthusiastic     Enlightened      Friendly

Good     Happy        Indifferent     Jolly     Loved

Motivated      Optimistic      Positive      Powerful

Protected     Resolved     Satisfied      Secure     Sure


Once you have your list of positive emotions, ask and answer the following questions about each list:

  1. Are any of these emotions tied to specific ideas? If so, what are those ideas?
  2. Are such ideas your own, or do they come from others? If you changed these ideas, would you still feel the same?
  3. What is the relationship between the negative emotions you’re feeling and what you’d like to feel?
  4. Is there anything tangible keeping you from feeling that way now, or is it all a matter of mind?

Help Us Help Others: