• Quote by Dr Lord

    It may seem strange to think that we need to build our tolerance for positive emotions, but it is true.

    We do not come into the world already knowing how to tolerate emotions, that is something learned in primary attachment relationship. The infant experiences a strong emotion and gets overwhelmed (as evidenced by crying) and the caregiver reacts with attention, care, and patience, helping the infant calm down.

    That process helps the infant learn to tolerate strong emotions and sets the template that the baby internalizes for how to respond to emotions.

    If, however, the primary caregiver responds with their own emotional reaction or does not respond at all, the infant learns to shut down because the caregiver can’t help them. In that case, the infant not only doesn’t learn to tolerate their emotions, they learn to shut them down.

    And it is often not until therapy years later that people even realize that they did not learn to be okay with positive emotions. And then there is shame or embarrassment for not having learned this already.

    So remember, you didn’t come into this world with all the tools you needed, and maybe you didn’t get taught those tools either. Neither situation is your fault, and neither has to be a life sentence. You are never too old and it is never too late to learn a different way.

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