I’ve had this topic flying around in my head for some time now, and it just doesn’t go away. Have you ever been called “emotional” - in a really bad way?
If you ask this question in real life, it gets interesting. You ask a woman - the answer almost always is yes. You ask a man - they look at you as if you’ve just arrived from a different solar system.
Curious, huh. So ladies, today, this post is for you.
If I type “being emotional” into Google right now, this is what I get:
Before that, there is ONE article that deals with being emotional as a positive thing - Kali Roger’s “5 reasons to love being emotional”. It starts with an excellent question that echoes my Google results: "When did the word "emotional" become such an insult?"
Yeah, when did it? In my book, being emotional is good. And I tell you why.
1. You show what you’re feeling. Most people don’t like working with a mask. They like working with real, authentic, flawed, joyous people. People who show them when they’re happy, people who show them when they’re hurt. Why? Because they know these people care. Showing others what you feel makes you vulnerable, sure, but what you get in return is SO worth it. Honest friendships, real connections, and, most of all, the feeling that you can always and anywhere be who you are.
2. You fight for what you believe in. I’ve heard “you’re too emotional" most often after a meeting where I was very vocal about something that I wanted or that I didn’t want. I’ve always found that weird. We talk so much about finding our passion, and yet when I show passion that suddenly is a bad thing? From my experience, it’s a lot more enjoyable working with people who have an opinion and who are passionate about it - even if it means you get into heated discussions. At least you know they’ve taken the time to form an opinion, and they’re willing to fight for something.
3. You care. Honestly, this is a mashup of the two above. You can’t show emotions if you don’t care about something. And caring about something implies you’re passionate about it. I firmly believe that you can only do your best work and be your best self if you’re doing something you care very deeply about. Everything else is a waste of time.
Being authentic, fighting for what you believe in and caring deeply are what, in my opinion, lie behind this weird statement of “being too emotional”. And the truth is: All of this - the being authentic, finding what you believe in, and fighting for it - is scary. Really really really sh** scary.
I believe that’s the main reason why being “too emotional” got the stigma of being a bad thing these days: If you’re emotional, you trigger fear. The fear of “I actually don’t have anything that I care so much about”. The fear of “what would happen if I actually did?”. The fear of “I might get hurt if I show so much of myself”.
I do understand this fear, but I firmly believe that it’s worth to push through it. Give yourself permission to be emotional - or to not care about being called too emotional anymore.
Don’t stop showing your emotions. Talk about them. Be yourself. Fight. Care. And the next time, someone tells you, you’re too emotional, ask them why the think it’s a bad thing. And ask them if they’d tell you that if you were a man. The answer is bound to be interesting.
P.S.: To the ones on the other side, to the ones who say “you’re too emotional”: Before you say it the next time, take some time to think. Think about why you would say that. Think about if you’d say it to a man. And then, maybe, don’t say it.