I was just chatting to a friend and she mentioned how she’d been feeling a bit “bleh” this week…and this got me thinking about feelings..
Many of us are governed by them, day in and day out. We allow them to rule.
Happy. Angry. Disappointed. Depressed. Sad. And for many, Fat.
Now…as with most things, we learn over time how to label and account for our feelings. Through our upbringings, peer groups, and situations that have “unconsciously” defined us…we learn how to feel and what to call it. This is great for the most part…but what gets dangerous is when we actually have to name these feelings.
Many of us are too scared to feel and so we limit it to a range of 3 to 4 options…happy, sad, excited. I know I did this for years – If someone asked me if I ever get angry I’d say “of course” but when I really thought about it, all I did when I was “angry” was cry…so NO I didn’t ever get angry…I confused it, in attempt to protect me and others, and I called it “sad”. You see, we learn to run from things that are unpleasant, things that strike our internal-alarm-system and say “DO NOT ACKNOWLEDGE ME”.
Over time, I’ve learnt , for example, that…
Feeling “fat” isn’t a feeling at all
I am in fact feeling scared, alone, shameful. I started digging a bit deeper every time an unpleasant emotion swept over me…and I started naming them. “I am feeling angry and that’s ok…and no Caitlyn, you don’t need to cry…you are not sad, you are angry.”
I learnt that feelings pass…as they should…and that going for a run or doing whatever compulsive behavior you do when you feel an uncomfortable emotion rising within you, will not speed up the process of it passing. I learnt to sit with the feeling, acknowledge it and then choose what to do with it…I could accept it and let it pass or I could act on it (impulsively most of the time).
So today…I want to say that I get that you feel. I get that some feelings are scary and that some we want to do anything to avoid. But I also want you to know that the fact that you ARE feeling is GOOD!!! Repressed feelings (feelings unacknowledged, unfelt) only land us in a hole that many call “depression”.
So FEEL friends…and name those feelings…and if you are ready, see what happens when you don’t rush to escape the feeling and instead you acknowledge how you feel and then you choose to act, wisely.
Those that have mastered “feeling” are the very people who can sit alone at home and know that they are truly at peace with themselves..