Emotions just are. They flow through us; or rather they arise like a wave and then subside. What creates discomfort and pain is the attachment to the story, which you add to emotion. Meaning, something has happened to you and you keep on telling yourself how bad/negative it was over and over again and in the same time your emotions keep on building up to the point they become overwhelming and you experience pain and/or discomfort. If you stop telling yourself the story and just let emotions flow, they will be gone in a matter of seconds.
Belief #2: There are positive and negative emotions.
These are just labels. Once again – emotions just are. They are neither positive nor negative. It’s the story you tell yourself about certain emotion that makes it either positive or negative.
Belief #3: Positive emotions are good and negative ones are bad.
Emotions are the most direct way of communication from your Higher Self/Soul. When you feel ‘positive’ emotion what it simply means is that you are in alignment with much vaster You. Conversely, when you feel ‘negative’ emotion it indicates lack of alignment.
All and all, it’s just a guidance system, like red and green traffic lights or GPS.
Belief #4: It’s not acceptable to express certain emotions.
We have been conditioned to avoid and suppress emotions since childhood. A baby is absolutely fluent with emotions. It just allows them to flow easily, that’s why it will cry and laugh in a matter of seconds! We could learn a lot from little people just by observing how they ‘deal’ with emotions.
What happens when a baby cries? It’s immediately consoled with the words: shhh. When you quiet a baby you are trying to stop it from expressing an emotion. It takes few years of such training and then a child gets it! He/she will know pretty quickly that it’s not ok to cry or express emotions because they are uncomfortable, not for the child though but for the parents. Yes, you read it correctly, for the parents. A child’s emotions, when he/she expresses them freely, trigger unmet and suppressed emotions in a parent. Since the parent hasn’t dealt with his/her emotions and child’s emotions bring discomfort, what parent does is tries to avoid by all cost & all means feeling his/her stuff therefore attempts to suppress child’s stuff.
Different example… a woman gets irritated and angry by something. In many countries and cultures it’s simply not acceptable for a woman to express that anger. It needs to be held in, bottled up. Men, on the other hand, are allowed to vent this particular emotion and they normally won’t be frowned upon. In general it’s the opposite when it comes to showing emotions – women are considered to be more emotional and it’s ok for them to show it, while men are considered less emotional and it’s not acceptable for them to express it. Luckily this is starting to change and both women and men are getting more balanced when it comes to this matter.
Belief #5: It’s ok to avoid and suppress emotions.
We all have used both of those strategies – one often to a greater stage than another. So pretty much everybody knows how it feels when you try to avoid or suppress emotion. It’s like trying to stop volcano from eruption or shaken bottle of coke from exploding. It required massive amount of energy!
The longer the suppression or avoidance continues the more energy you use up to hold it at bay. It’s so exhausting, yet people keep on doing it for years! Apart from the fact that it cost you a tremendous amount of energy which you could use for something more fun, it also affects your body and being beyond your imagination. Your body is made mainly out of water and water is a great conductor. An emotion leaves a chemical trace in a body, which is imprinted in the water. So imagine bottling up rage for years, or resentment – it is basically poisoning you on physical level. It creates a huge load of toxins which lodges itself into some part of your body and stays there for years. The longer it stays there, the more damage it causes, and few years down the line you end up with dis-ease. Continuous lack of ease (or lack of flow) creates dis-ease!
Belief #6: It’s hard to deal with emotions.
Well, you know already what I’m going to tell you, don’t you? It’s super easy to deal with emotions. No matter how huge emotion feels like or how terrifying, uncomfortable or you name it, it might be, the best thing you can do is just FEEL it. When you just open to it, honour it and feel it, it will burn through you like a match stick and it’ll be gone in few seconds to a minute. Remember it wants to just flow, in and out, like a wave, so allow it! It’s the best way to stay healthy and sane at the same time.
Belief #7: People can make me feel in a certain way.
No, nay, never!!!! It’s simply impossible! You and only you have power make yourself feel in a certain way. In a tiny space between an event and your reaction to it you make a choice how you’ll react to it. Yes you do! In 99% of the times it’s not conscious and pre-programmed choice – meaning it’s based on previous experience. Example: you’re driving and someone just cuts in front of you third time today (event), you immediately honk and shout (not that this person can hear you anyway) or curse and call them names (response) and you get irritated and/or angry (second part of response). It’s like there’s a button within you and when something happens it’s being pressed and you react in a same way time and again. What can you do? Remove the button, be more aware and make a conscious choice of how you feel. This takes some practice, ok… a lot of practice and a lot of self-awareness. It’s one of the most liberating things you can do for yourself. You’ll never again be a slave to your go-to responses! This is hugely empowering act – to choose how you’re going to react and how you’ll feel.
To sum up:
1. Emotions simply are – no judgement, no labels, no story!
2. They just flow and it’s safe to allow them to do so.
3. It’s safe and it’s acceptable to express emotions.
4. Emotions are easy to ‘deal’ with – you just feel them.
5. Emotions are a guidance system telling you that you’re either in or out of alignment with You.
6. Only you can chose how you feel!
Now you can take a big breath and simply let go all that’s been bubbling up inside. Meet and honour each and every emotion one at a time. Remember you want just a raw emotion, no story! Just feel it and let it pass by. There might be next one in the core of the present emotion – that’s perfect! They get stuck on top of one another creating a pearl necklace. Just take your time and go through them. You’ll know when you’re done when you feel emptiness, peace and you can go further into that – most of the people tap into joy, love, gratitude, serenity and they see light. Stay in that place for a while – this is basically how the real You feels pretty much all the time. It’s priceless to experience it!
Photo credit: Peter Kaminski