Extreme Vulnerability

Kris Girrell Author Interview

Learning to Feel is a personal story for you, sharing your path of emotional discovery and guiding others on how to do this as well. How hard was it to put this story out in the world for people to read?

This was a difficult book to write since it differs from all of my previous writing. I am accustomed to writing as a subject matter expert on topics from my field. Learning to Feel however was my first attempt to write a personal experience of exploration. Writing in a way that was not overly autobiographical (afterall the book is not really about me – but about the process of discovery) and yet revealing of the challenges I faced was a real tightrope walk. The most difficult part was when I  submitted the book for reviews. I experienced a moment of panic and extreme vulnerability I had not felt before. 

What were some ideas that were important for you to share in this book?

I think the things that are important drivers for writing Learning to Feel were a sensitivity for how so many of us today are numbed out by the pain, terror and violence evident wherever we look. At some point, many have just said “I can’t handle any more, so I don’t want to feel.” In addition, as a man who has been involved in men’s work and counseling men since back in the late 1970’s I am attuned to how men have been programmed not to feel and not to allow their thinking to be swayed by emotion. But the point here is that the warrior spirit is heavily attuned to emotions as part of our early warning system. SO I am hoping to reach a certain segment of the male population.

What is a common misconception you feel people have about feelings and emotions?

Many people say “I don’t let my emotions rule the day” meaning that when they get up and don’t “feel” like going to the gym, they summon the guts to do it anyway. However I submit that isn’t a feeling – it is a thought! And those folk, having denied their emotions, have also blocked access to their inner thoughts (the producers of emotions). I also think that many people believe that if they access their full array of emotions, they will be run by their emotions – that they will become “too emotional.” Nothing could be further from the truth. Emotions are natural and part of our evolutionary process. Everything we have as elements of our current life form has evolved for a reason and emotions are no exception. It is therefore incumbent on each of us to understand our emotions and the clues they provide about our thoughts and beliefs. That is where the real work is.

What is one thing readers take away from your story?

1. Emotions are natural and good. 2. Emotions provide us clues to how we perceive the world around us and therefore provide a path to how we can become more aware and effective in life by understanding our emotions and their antecedent thoughts and beliefs.

Author Links: Twitter | Facebook | Website

Understanding the complexities of human behavior and emotional response is no real help when it comes to experiencing feelings. In fact, having studied psychology and emotions as a career got in the way. In order to reconnect to his feelings-or what might be called the experience of the emotional experience-the author had to peel back layer upon layer to unlock the many places where his emotive process had been stuck. Learning to Feel may be one person’s journey in emotional discovery, but it serves as a set of trail blazes through the dark forest of discovery for others to follow. Each chapter concludes with provocative questions for the reader’s own self-exploration.

About Literary Titan

The Literary Titan is an organization of professional editors, writers, and professors that have a passion for the written word. We review fiction and non-fiction books in many different genres, as well as conduct author interviews, and recognize talented authors with our Literary Book Award. We are privileged to work with so many creative authors around the globe.

Posted on April 23, 2023, in Interviews and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.


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