3 ways to know you are avoiding feeling your emotions.
On the other side of feeling is healing. There is a lot of reward in giving yourself the space to feel.
A lot of us have no idea how to feel our emotions. Instead we revert to distracting ourselves from them. Here are 3 main signals to know that you are avoiding feeling:
filling up our social calendars (aka always being around other people)
binging on Netflix or other entertainment
alcohol and other drugs (aka reaching for the vape every time we start to feel something)
There are endless ways to distract, and none of these things are bad... they simply do not work because the emotion is still stuck within you. If you are interested in learning how to create space to feel... read on!
Our relationship to our own emotions is modeled after how our caregivers treated theirs. If you parents never expressed emotions in front of you, you may feel that there is something wrong with you for having them.
The other side of this is that they did express them, but in an unhealthy way which may cause you to fear your emotional experience. Very few of us have healthy models of how to express and deal with our emotions.
Let's clean up our mindset first. These are common beliefs to question that may be holding us back from feeling.
These are some common beliefs and misunderstandings about emotions that could be blocking you from feeling them. If any of these resonates with you, I invite you to questions them deeper and ask yourself "What else could be true?"
Crying or being sad is weak
I need to be strong for others, others depend on me to be emotionally stable.
People won't accept me if I am too emotional
I don't want to be too much
What if I never come out of the emotion and it is an endless pit? I am afraid to feel.
When you open your mind and questions these beliefs, you might find a few things.
Perhaps you are actually inspired by people who are vulnerable and authentic, yet haven't allowed that for yourself yet.
Perhaps it would benefit others to see you feel your emotions. For example: if you have children and bought into the idea that the depend on me so that I can't feel.... maybe they depend on you and that is exactly why you need to feel!
Once you have questioned your beliefs, it's time to set some time aside and do one of the following practices.
Putting it into practice
Each one of us has a window of tolerance when it comes to feeling our emotions. My recommendation is to start small. Here are few practical rituals you can put into place to help you feel.
Put a 5-minute timer on and sit in silence and ask your body how am I feeling today. Then listen. (I recommend this daily to build your emotional muscle)
If you know there is an emotion coming up and you are having trouble accessing it to release... put on a sad song and let your body express the emotion somatically.
Give the emotion a voice. Let it express itself fully, and then access your nurturing self and give it a hug telling it that its okay to feel that way.
These are just a few simple practices that you can do.
I want you to takeaway that all emotions are beautiful, and they are all trying to support you in someway. It is safe to feel them, and they just need a little bit of space.
If you are ready to do the inner work and are looking for support to dive deeper into your emotional experience and heal and release apply for a complimentary clarity session ✨
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