It's OK Not To Be OK
We live in a world where so many of us seem disconnected from our feelings. It is like we are walking round on auto pilot, doing what needs to be done, but attaching no feeling or emotion to it. Or worse yet we are thinking that we have to be happy and positive all the time. Guess what you don’t, and no one expects you to be.
I think we have social media to thank for a lot of this. Don't get me wrong I think social media definitely has its place - my business wouldn't be here without it so I'm not about to say get rid of social media all together. What I do think we need to remember is that social media is just a snap shot of people's lives. It's what they choose to post, it's like an edited version of all the good things. And in so many ways I like this, I like to scroll through social media and see all the awesome things that people are doing, but I do know at times it can leave me thinking that I'm not good enough and all these people are achieving amazing things and I'm not.
Did you know it's completely normal and healthy to feel a range of emotions? Everything you feel from happiness to sadness, and anger to joy is totally normal, in fact I would be worried if you were not experiencing this range of emotions.
What is not healthy is to suppress these emotions, especially the negative ones, which if we are to be honest they are the ones we normally suppress. We believe that for an array of reasons no one should know when we are upset or angry.
Let's look into why we suppress how we are feeling, what can happen when we do this and then finally some healthy ways to express our emotions.
Why do we suppress how we are feeling?
It's seen as a weakness.
Some people see expressing their emotions as a weakness. I challenge you on that and say it is the exact opposite. Expressing how you are feeling shows an enormous amount of strength. Telling someone you are hurt, angry or upset is often a lot harder than keeping it too yourself.
Fear of judgement.
Surely if I tell people how I am really feeling they will judge me, they will think I am weak and not strong enough. Yeah, they might, but what happens if they instead want to help you, listen to your concerns and be there to support you? I know it's said all the time, but a true friend won't judge you for feeling a certain way. Those that do judge give them the flick you don't need them in your life.
Don't know how.
Expressing how we are feeling is not something that we are often taught, there is no subject in school that teaches you to express your feelings both good and bad (although I do think there should be). As a result, many people don't know how to express the way they are feeling in a healthy way, so many people turn to alcohol, or worse drugs. It's is so important we learn how to express our feelings in a healthy way (we will go into that later, so keep reading)
We feel like we don't have time.
Let me explain this one a bit. I know I have felt like this from time to time. Feeling like you don't have time to be angry and upset because there are so many other things to do and get done. So instead we put in a brave face and continue to pretend everything is ok. Let me tell you this will only work for so long.
What happens when we suppress our feelings?
What we are feeling only intensifies. It doesn't go away, it only gets stronger and stronger.
You can only push your feelings down for so long.
They will always come back and usually at a time when you least expect it!!
Suppressing intense feelings for long enough can lead to anxiety or depression.
We can start to take out our feelings on others. This can be both intentionally and unintentionally but over time we can start to be not very nice to be around.
It can start to affect the way we look after ourselves. When we are constantly feeling down we are less likely to eat well and exercise.
Eventually it can also start to affect our jobs, relationships and social life. Things we used to be able to deal with are all of a sudden, a lot harder.
Healthy ways to express our feelings
Journal. Write it all out, The good the bad, the ugly. Get it out of your head and on to paper.
Exercise. Especially boxing if you are really angry!!!
Punch a pillow – again release the anger if necessary.
Talk to someone, a friend or professional.
Draw. If you find it hard to express how you are feeling with words, then draw it instead.
Meditate. A great way to calm your mind and to take the emotion away from how you are feeling.
Breathe. Taking 5 deep breathes will instantly calm you down.
Let's change the way we deal with our emotions. No more pretending… it’s time to get real with ourselves and others.
If you know someone who could benefit from reading this post, please share it.