What Are You Shoving Down?

Real joy happens when we feel all of our emotions, and learn to let them flow, like a stream, in a healthy way to guide our lives.

As Karla McLaren says, emotions are “energy in motion.” Emotions send us important messages, and tell us what is and isn’t working in our lives.

Anger is often about the need to create boundaries. Sadness is often telling you what isn’t working and needs to be let go of. Fear, as opposed to anxiety, provides you with protection and should be listened to.  If fear instructs you to suddenly swerve your car to avoid an accident, it is good you got the message! Being “happy” at that moment helps a collision.

What Emotions Are You Shoving Down?
We can all relate to ignoring an uncomfortable emotion such as anger, when we “over” eat, drink, clean, organize, plan, tv watch or social media.  I have been guilty of all …. well, ok, maybe not the cleaning.

When we shove our emotions down, we do a disservice to our mind, body and loved ones.

If you ignore your anger, it doesn’t go away.  It will just pop up in a different situation, like yelling at the kids, or it gets stuck in your body and may show up as an illness.

Healthy Ways to Deal with Your Emotional Messengers
Screaming at a co-worker for taking credit for your effort on a project may feel good in the moment, but probably won’t advance your career. Figuring out a healthy way to honor your anger will  make you feel better, and then lead you to what boundary needs to be set or next step.

Here are a few things that have worked for me and my clients:

  • Stop and Feel What You are Feeling: Sometimes it is as simple as allowing yourself to “stop” and actually feel the emotion.  Some neuroscience support a “90 second rule,” for allowing an emotion to pass. As Jill Bolte Taylor states, when a person has a reaction to something in their environment, there’s a 90 second chemical process that happens in the body. After that, any remaining emotional response is that person choosing to stay in that emotional loop.
  • Do an Activity to Help the Emotion Flow:  Sometimes you may need to “do” something to get the emotion to flow:  What you “do” should feel right for you.  For example, with anger, maybe writing, running or punching pillows.  For sadness,  try a good cry or listening to sad music.
  • Seek Extra Help When You Need It: Sometimes you need a mental health professional to guide you. Never be ashamed of getting extra help, you are worth it!

Being Authentic Will Always Guide You
Let go of pretending to be happy in a situation when your not.  When you allow yourself to feel, honor and listen to all of your emotions, solutions appear. The more you will be guided by YOU to having authentic joy in your life.

Today, go for Real Joy