This post is a hard one. I have some ideas rolling around in my head but I am not sure how they come together in a concise point so I am going to just throw some thoughts down on paper (e-paper).
I have been giving a lot of thought to the transfer of emotion. Let me explain, when someone is outwardly exhibiting an emotion it seems to be contagious. When I am around people who are bitching I tend to join in the bitching too. When someone smiles at me it makes me want to smile back.
Lately I have been in a situation where I am with a friend. Many times when I am with this friend they end up getting frustrated at something (which I had noting to do with) and when they are frustrated they tend to exude the emotion like they want to spread it. It makes me feel like I am being blamed for whatever caused the frustration and like I am in trouble. It makes me want to fight back. When I tell my friend that I they are making me feel like I am in trouble they would tell me I am I am being oversensitive.
Since this has happened a few times I decided this needed some considering. Am I being too over sensitive? Maybe I am, but I have decide that is just part of my personality. I have come to realize that I easily catch other’s emotions.
This led me to consider another situation related to avoiding added negativity in my life. In about 2000 I was working in a factory and I made friends with this guy named Tom. Tom and I had many similar interests so we got along well. The problem was that Tom always complained. He tended to spread negativity and I was prone to catch it. It was not that I complained too but that I would get emotionally down. I had to stop talking to Tom for a while because he was just so negative. We eventually made up, but from that point on I had become more aware of how I can be sucked into negative emotions.
It seems like I have subconsciously understood that I catch emotions easily for quite some time and I have been trying to avoid negative emotional influence. In addition, it seems that things which come from positive emotions tend to bother me significantly less than the same action which comes from a negative heart.
Last weekend I was at a Pearl Jam concert. I was in the GA section where people stand very close together trying to get the best spot. During the show some people asked to get in front of me. They were shorter than me and they were very nice about it and I said okay. There was one time during the show when I noticed this very short girl who was so touched by a song that she was crying, so I grabbed her and put her in front of me. I felt she would appreciate the show more than I could. In this case I was okay with being pushed back because it made those people quite happy.
Though, if you have ever been to a concert like this you will also notice people bullying their way in front and playing games to get their friends up there with them. This is where I had to draw the line. I was okay allowing the positive people through, but I had to confront the people who were getting in front of me with bullying. For instance, this guy asked if he could get in front and people said no so he just shoved himself through. I let it go when he ended up in front of me (splitting me and my wife up) but then he started to let his friends in front with him too. I called him out on this. Allowing the positive through was okay but I was not okay allowing the negative through.