There are no bad emotions, though many of us may come to believe that there are. Often if we come to believe that some emotion is bad, it is because growing up the expression of certain emotions was responded to with rejection in one form or another. Society reinforces the notion that certain emotions are bad, for example when we are told to rise above and let go of our anger or when we are hurt and people tell us to get over it already. In men, vulnerability is often shamed as a weakness while women are generally discouraged from expressing their anger in an assertive way.
There are no bad emotions, though some emotions are unpleasant and distressing. It is understandable that we have trouble at times tolerating emotions, that we want them to go away, or that we feel shame for having them because these are the messages about our emotions that we have received from others and discomfort is simply hard to sit with.
Our emotions, much like our physical sensations, are important pieces of information that have something to tell us. When you burn your hand on something hot, the pain is intense and unpleasant, but it serves to protect you by letting you know that continuing to touch the hot surface is bad for your health. Emotions work much the same way, they are responses to our environment meant to help us figure out what supports us and what does not. If a lion is chasing you, fear tells you to get away and if your friend embraces you in a hug, the joy you feel tells you that you are supported and loved.
The examples above demonstrate what happens when our emotions are accurate, but this isn't always the case. Difficult experiences and messages that some emotions are bad distort our emotional system's ability to accurately respond to our environment in the present. We may not notice a reaction when one would make sense because we needed to push certain emotions out of our awareness to be accepted in our social environment. On the other hand, we may have a disproportionately strong emotional reaction to something in the present because it is reminiscent of something distressing that happened to us in the past.
There are no bad emotions, however, there are problematic ways to react to our emotions. When we feel an emotion that we don't like, we may react from that emotion and act in a way that is destructive towards ourselves or others, such as lashing out at someone in anger, avoiding people or activities out of fear, or abusing substances to deal with anxiety. When we are unaware of our emotions or actively work to push them away, we miss an opportunity to find out what they have to tell us about our life in the past and/or the present. If you can take on the challenge of staying with your difficult emotions and opening yourself up to them with curiosity, compassion, and acceptance, you may discover something quite important about yourself, and with this new knowledge become more powerful in choosing the direction of your life.