We all have our ways of coping - whether it's working excessively, indulging in food, getting easily distracted, feeling restless, going on shopping sprees, mindlessly scrolling through social media, or simply trying to avoid and ignore our emotions altogether.
The minute we believe that this shouldn't be happening, this is wrong, this feels terrible, the more power we give to it.
It is important to acknowledge that these momentary distractions will not cause our emotions to vanish. In reality, they make them stronger and occur more frequently. Our mind and brain will see this pattern as a means to serve you and protect you. With each attempt to avoid feeling your emotions, it will build on an automatic thought process with good intentions to keep you safe.
When we avoid our feelings, our world and life experience will get smaller and limit us greatly. This can cause many negative things, such as not being able to grow as a person and find out more about yourself. By suppressing our emotions, we prevent ourselves from fully understanding and addressing the underlying issues. This often leads to feeling like there's something wrong with us, that we are broken, different, and not worthy. All of these are disempowering and a fast track to hopelessness.
When we feel a negative emotion, and use it as evidence that there’s something wrong with us, that keeps us stuck.
Furthermore, avoiding our feelings can also have a detrimental effect on our relationships with others. When we refuse to acknowledge and express our emotions, we rob ourselves of the chance to connect, bond, and build trust with others on a deeper level. Communication becomes superficial and lacks authenticity, leading to misunderstandings and a lack of genuine connection. The other person will feel like there's something off, resulting in misunderstandings.
In addition, by avoiding our feelings, we deny ourselves the opportunity to learn valuable lessons from our experiences. Our emotions often serve as a smoke alarm of what is working well in our lives and what needs to be addressed or changed. By ignoring these signals, we deprive ourselves of valuable insights that can help us make better decisions and lead more fulfilling lives.
On the other hand, when we embrace and acknowledge our feelings, we open ourselves up to a world of possibilities. We allow ourselves to fully experience the ups and downs of life, and in doing so, we cultivate resilience, grit and emotional intelligence. By recognizing and honoring our emotions, we learn to navigate through life's challenges with grace and authenticity.
Avoiding our feelings may seem like a convenient short-term solution, but in the long run, it only serves to limit and restrict us.
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