I was always told that I was too intense, I had to water my wine down. When I started working for a big pharmaceutical corporation, more than 13 years ago the feedback I systematically got was “You are too emotional”. The issue is I had no idea what people were talking about. As I saw it, I was only going through life the only way I knew, feeling it intensely; feeling the ups as amazing highs and the lows as deep, deep painful drama! In my mind I was ”just” reacting to the Emotions I felt. And that is ”just” it! I was re-acting! I was defined by those emotions.
Fast forward a few years, years of personal growth, personal development and even dare I say maturation. I still feel life in a similar way, I still feel happiness as a euphoric bubble and at times, excruciating pain from being sad. The thing is the outside world is less able to sense, see, even witness this! I am no longer, dare I say, a victim of my emotions. I re-act far less and am more able to create space to decide how I will respond to what I am feeling. The other change is that emotions are in the moment when the moment is gone the emotions, most of the time, go too! Emotions come and go, the ebb and flow of life! It is no longer like the light circles of Vincent van Gogh’s Night sky; never ending spirals that suck you in deeper and deeper; more like the colourful player an artist uses to bring life to their creations.
What is important for me is that I am I still feeling my emotions. Humans are after all emotional beings. Descartes said “cogito ergo sum; I think therefore I am”. While rationalisation and thinking are critical in today’s world, I also believe that we need to go back to the essence of our humanity, our emotions. Having the beautiful gift of witnessing developing souls, one can only but admire the innocent and beautiful way they experience and even experiment with their emotion. The raw and yet powerful relationship they have to their emotions, is something we need to get in touch with once again. Plastering our emotions behind safe walls is the best way to have them explode at us at the worst times.
So why the title? I was recently blessed with the gift of going to watch Passenger and Ed Sheeran play live in Johannesburg. I loved every second of the show and what amazed me was the power these 2 musicians had over their public. What magic was at play? Quite simply human emotions. Music connects us as humans through our emotions. Our emotions connect us together and are the conductors of the famous African word ”Ubuntu; I am because you are”. We are fundamentally connected to each other and our planet through our emotions. Emotions bring us to life! I feel therefore I am connected and human.