Hello feisty soul!
Bring on the feelings: good feelings, bad feelings, unknown feelings, they all offer us so much.
The last two weeks have been sprinkled with big, full, feelings for myself-anger, sadness, resentment, despair, ecstasy, you name it, I felt it!
Did you know that besides the emotional release that comes with feeling feelings, there is also an immense amount of learning and growth that happens.
I didn't always like feeling. In fact, I didn't feel so much so that I got depressed. That doesn't work for me anymore.
So feel I do. And I have a few tricks up my sleeve to help.
1. Let the feeling come without attaching any additional stories to it. Or worrying how long the feeling will last.
One of my favourite therapists David Schnarch, called this "clean pain".
I let myself feel sad, breathing with the sadness but don't add more stories to it like:
- "this will never end"
- "I shouldn't be feeling this"
- "I need a drink...piece of cake... escape..." fill in your own short term distraction from the feeling!
- the list could go on and on!
Feelings don't last long. Our stories make them last longer! I have timed my "feeling" moments. If I don't loop new stories, they rarely last longer then 10-20 minutes. Some last as little as 90 seconds or the length it takes for our neurotransmitters to disipate!
2. Let the feeling go
Don't analyze your feelings. Let them be energy experiences and wait with deep breaths for the feelings to pass and the wisdom of the moment to be present.
If you are with a friend, ask them to sit with you and remind you that, "you are safe and ok, that this will pass." The invitation to do this could sound like, "While I cry, could you remind me that I am safe, and ok and that this will pass?" It is ok for them to say no.
If I am with my kids and crying for example, I say, "Mommy needs to cry, I am ok. You are welcome to sit with me or not. This just needs to be felt. Nothing special needs to be done." My kids often offer a hug. It is never expected.
With anger, I usually add, "Mommy is very angry right now and needs space from words. I am going to sit and breath. You are welcome to stay or leave." I might also choose to go for a quick walk to make breathing easier.
If people around you are open; a hug, or company may ease the experience. But it is not mandatory.
When we pretend to be Jung, we inadvertently take ourselves out of the moment which is often fresh and clear, and back into a "Groundhog Day" loop of repeating the feeling over and over. Let's just let it go by being.
3. Be gentle with yourself.
After an emotional release or big feeling, be kind and tender with yourself. I have noticed that I am often tired and in need of rest, water, and maybe a walk or nap after a big feeling leaves.
This isn't a sign that something is wrong, but rather that you have laid down a heavy burden, like setting down a heavy backpack, you realize how much work it was to carry that load. Feelings are the same way, bottle them up or trying to prevent them from being expressed is hard work and tiring. Honour your needs after the feeling has passed.
4. Come back to the present moment and back to your focus
After the gentleness, come back to what is alive in your now!
I start with: "Am I standing, sitting or lying down?" Then...
What are the 3 things on your plate and take one step forward in completing one of those tasks.
5. Repeat as needed.
Works every time. Keep it simple and be kind and compassionate as you live with and through your feelings!
Let me know if this helps.
, I am here to remind you that You Are Enough and it's time to stop suffering and love your life.
PS. If this has helped you, it may help someone you love. Please share far and wide. More love and compassion in the world is a good thing!