I went to a college baseball game today (University of Missouri vs Mississippi State) in Columbia, MO. The MU Tigers won in the bottom of the ninth inning creating joy for one team and sadness for the other. Midway through the game they had a sign on the scoreboard between innings that caught my attention. It said, “What are the 5 main emotions in the movie Inside Out? The five key emotions in the movie are – Joy, Sadness, Anger, Fear, and Disgust.
In the movie the little girl’s world is shaken when she moves from Minnesota to San Francisco as she makes a significant change in her life. I immediately started to think how these emotions affect athletes and how it can have an impact on a person in life. I think the point of the movie is we are all subject to feeling these emotions. These are normal emotions to feel on and off the athletic field.
We normally feel joy when things go well, or we have a worthy accomplishment.
We experience sadness when we are emotionally invested, someone lets us down, or the experience (i. e. big game) does not go our way.
We might experience anger for the same reasons as sadness, but it’s a much stronger emotion. Anger might also surface when we don’t live up to the expectations of ourselves.
I find fear to be the most interesting emotion of all. The most common scenario is fear of failure when we are worried about letting yourself down or letting others down. Another example of when the emotion of fear can get in our own way is fear of success. Many people do not want to live with higher expectations of themselves or by others.
When someone feels the emotion of disgust, it is related to feeling strong disapproval. You might be disgusted with what someone else has done or said. Your disgust (strong disapproval) might be a result of you feeling helpless to change the situation. If the effort in the performance was not up to par, a negative outcome could leave you disgusted with someone else. You might also be on the receiving end of disgust. Someone might be disgusted with you for under-achieving. How will you deal with it?
What I want you to contemplate is are you choosing how you will deal with the emotion compared to how much you let the emotion continue to control you? It’s normal to feel sadness or disappointment, and possibly anger, after a loss in sport or life. At what point do your resilience skills take over to get you to a better place emotionally? How soon after the stressor can you change your mindset from dwelling on the problem to finding a solution?
The solution could involve a conversation with someone else or goal setting of your own. It’s up to you to find the way to a better place psychologically.