Not a Problem, a Signal of Values Being Violated

Pain is good, but that doesn't make it hurt any less.

Angry feelings, are a response to a situation where your values were violated. Someone did something that is contrary to your values or didn't do something that would have fulfilled a value of yours. Each of us experiences violations of our values as a painful feeling. Such feelings as when we are disrespected or mistrusted or berated or insulted or threatened or unjustly blamed happen to anyone who has values. It is important to recognize that such feelings are not a problem in and of themselves. In fact, they are signal . . . a signal that your values have been violated, and that is a good thing to know.

If I could get rid of my feelings of this kind, I wouldn't. Without knowing when our values have been violated we each would be in real trouble. We would be like a car without a fuel gauge or an oil light. To take a drug to feel only good feelings would be like covering the oil light in your car with a piece of tape. If you don't know your car needs oil, eventually the engine will grind to a halt. It is the same with our values violation feelings. They are signals, not problems. Because values violations are painful, it means that they've been violated. It means what there is some healing to do. And it means that the event which triggered the values-violation feelings needs to be examined and understood.

If you don't heal your pain, you run the risk of behaving in a way that violates your values and harms others as well. Face, feel and heal your pain. Then expand your thinking, your understanding, your views. Then plan your actions. Then behave. That's VBL.

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