Emotions are not what they seem; they are not reactions. Yet, most people don’t know that. People are so combative with fear, anger, sorrow, grief that they go to great lengths to deny or rationalize these emotions. Those that do express their feelings are told that they are too emotional, too sensitive and are seen as weak and unstable.
The issue at hand is that most people do not know how to listen to the internal messages that emotions are communicating.
For instance, Anger isn’t bad, yet so many of us undermine this feeling and try to control it. Anger is a clear indication that our boundaries are being crossed, we don’t feel safe, or that something is wanting to change and we’re not trusting ourselves. Anger points to self-repression and self-doubt. When we are caught in the grip of anger, our receptive channel is closed off, we become righteous and none-generous, and we disbelieve that life can support us. When this occurs, we are not in touch with anger’s true message of empowerment and authentic expression, nor its need to release pent up energy.
Fear is a conditioned emotion that initially feels like tension, anxiety, and contraction throughout the body. But in truth, it is an impulse letting us know that we are not feeling safe. Maybe fear is indicating that we are being disingenuous. When we don’t set clear boundaries and wrestle with judgment and conflict, fear alerts us to what we need in order to return to balance and safety. But if we are not listening, we miss the point altogether. In the book: The Language of Emotions, author Karla McLaren suggests that fear is part of our intuitive and instinctive nature. By being in touch with our fear, rather than activating its survival mechanism, we are receptive to our inner knowing.
Sorrow provides the opportunity to rest and it brings us in touch with our longing – the desire to connect with life in a meaningful way. Sorrow also lets us know when we feel let down and abandoned, and that neglect and abandonment are not the ways that we want to be treated.
Hurt tells us that we have a body and that we had better embody it with total presence, and take care of ourselves first. When we are nourished by own self-care, our hearts are full to overflowing. Then we have enough to give to others.
And Joy provides us the opening to be wild, free, and authentic, and the encouragement we need to be fully committed in our lives. Joy surrenders to beauty, divine will, purpose, faith, and forgiveness, and excites possibility, as well as inspires others to live their own truth and belonging.
“Strong emotions provide protection, deep cleansing, strengthen the psyche, and increase our ability to stay focused in our own bodies.”
McLaren teaches this life-affirming principle in her book The Language of Emotions, and explains that emotions give us the resource and skill we need to deal with each situation we encounter, “as long as we approach them correctly, interpret them honorably, and treat them with respect.”
The key to respecting our emotions is to become aware of when we are in reaction.
It is important to become aware of when we are controlling our emotions with reactive and conditioned responses. This occurs in moments of wonder when we disbelieve our spiritual faith or when we feel sad; we tend to give ourselves a short window of time to grieve, or we doubt that we even have the right to be sad. This is as equally significant for when we feel hurt; we blame others for our pain rather than allow the pain to flow through us, inform us, and soothe us. When we give ourselves sufficient time to grieve with presence and care, the sadness supports our need for deep rest and we release the pain.
I’m not talking about clinging to sorrow; I’m writing about the need to feel the sadness throughout the body and let the grief move through you. It feels so good to not hang onto an emotion, as emotions need to flow through us, not become a story that we repeat over and over again.
By becoming self-responsible with our reactions, narratives, and projections, we can nurture our feelings of inadequacy and dis-empowerment.
By being aware of what stirs beneath the surface of our self-denial, we cease invalidating our feelings and we stop making quick interpretations of our experiences and the actions of others.
We begin to heal and return to balance. We operate out of a mindful consciousness, a healthy relationship with our emotions, free to desire and connect with our Spirit and awaken to the needs of our body.
How connected are you to your body?
If the following list describes some of your life-experience,
please consider receiving my support to re-write your early childhood programming, and discover the spiritual wisdom within your body.
– You defend, explain or justify your experiences and needs.
– You have low self-esteem or you feel insecure, ungrounded and alone.
– You are either over tolerate towards other people’s needs and behaviour, or you withdraw and hide.
– You are socially awkward or you feel drained when you are near other people, especially in large groups.
– You tend to be highly judgmental towards others and can dislike humanity.
– Your mind is super active, you are anxious and have difficulty relaxing.
– You have difficulty sleeping.
You can also learn self-care practices for clearing and strengthening your energy
with my audio course: Energy Renewal
Read the sister article to this blog:
Personal Empowerment, What it is and how to attain it.