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Understanding Our Emotions

Learning to understand ourselves better with the help of a feelings wheel and worksheet.

Does the thought of “feeling” make your skin crawl?

How were you taught to view and manage your thoughts, feelings, and emotions? Were you taught they were a liability, something to get out of the way when things were difficult? Were you taught to tap into only a select few and ignore or minimize the rest? Did you approach your emotions from a purely logical and mental perspective?

Information alone doesn’t create sustainable change. No matter how good the data is, facts alone don’t overturn years of ingrained thought patterns and behavior. And over-intellectualizing our experiences ends up being another clever way to avoid our feelings. We need to become smart with the information we have available to us.

Being “emotionally smart” is having the ability to recognize emotions, understand their origins, and thoughtfully manage them in ways that unlock the agency and potential of ourselves and others (Learn more about how to be “emotionally smart” here!)

Take a few moments to answer the questions below. Consider writing down your answers, or taking a screenshot of these questions for later. 

Reflecting on Your Relationship with Emotions

  • Are you an emotion feeler or an emotion avoider? Or do you feel some and avoid others?
  • Which emotions do you tend to embrace?
  • Which emotion do you tend to avoid?
  • Are there messages in your past that instructed you to push certain emotions away? What were those messages?

Use the Feelings and Emotions Wheel below to put words to what you are feeling:

Found this check-in helpful? Download our Feelings and Emotions Wheel

If you want to learn how to understand your emotions (and actually use them to your advantage), check out our emotional health master class from our sister brand Onsite, Becoming Emotionally Smart: Uncover Your Hidden Superpower and Live a More Connected Life. Learn more at

Becoming Emotionally Smart is a digital emotional health class brought to you by Onsite that will help you recognize your emotions, understand where they are coming from, and harness them in ways that unlock your potential.

This accessible digital class includes over 80+ minutes of clinical expertise and an interactive workbook designed to ground, unpack, and apply the concepts to your everyday life.

In this class you will learn:

  • The advantage of building awareness and expertise of emotions
  • To cultivate self-awareness by identifying feelings and tracing them to underlying emotions
  • How you may carry stress and healthy ways to manage it
  • Practical tools to improve our relationships through emotional regulation
  • How to effectively overcome challenges and manage conflict

It’s time to stop ignoring your emotions and start leveraging them.

Feeling wheel
understanding your emotions