This week I have been reminded of the cyclic and natural flow of emotion. With a project delivering one frustrating outcome after another, it's been difficult to navigate. Keeping my optimism levels has been a challenge but at the same time I have been reminded to trust.
When in the depths of despair, whether it be due to sadness, frustration or some other perceived negative event or emotion, there indeed a process. I'm repeatedly reminded that being in the emotion, that is, feeling it for every ounce of fury, sorrow or exasperation, is the only thing to move beyond it.
The only way out is through.
Keeping this top of mind is not always easy however. I'm fortunate to have a very close friend who is totally on the same page. When it comes to getting stuck during difficult times, we remind each other of the process.
Often or should I say, almost always, when I dwell on the thing that is not working, rather than feeling the emotion, I remain in that place. As soon as I express the feelings in safe ways, I start to move to a new space within my mind. Once that happens, I can see the lessons, and I can see new possibilities.
So, how do I move through the emotion? What do I actually do?
1. Journalling is a way to express whatever is going on. Simply writing a daily journal, then picking it up again when I have strong emotions, really helps.
2. Writing Letters works brilliantly when there is an issue with another person I need to resolve for myself. These are letters that are almost always never sent, but having the opportunity to express how I really feel, releases the emotion.
3. Exercising is perfect for releasing the energy of emotion. Pounding it out on the pavement provides an opportunity to get frustration and anger out of my body. Similarly, any other forms of exercise I enjoy does the same. Getting on my bike and peddling hard up hills and lifting enthusiastically at the gym are just some.
4. Thumping a Mattress by kneeling beside my bed using my forearms to pound it out works too. This is something my Psychotherapist told me about many years ago and every now and then I still use it.
5. Sobbing from the depths of my being and really feeling into my solar plexus is great for deep, deep grief. Sometimes this is only for a few seconds, other times, it's minutes or longer; but every time, I feel a huge sense of relief and lightness.
Running a regular check on my emotions is something I've done for years too. Each morning when I wake up, I check in and notice how I'm feeling. These days with my new supplement regime I can say that mostly I feel positive and ready for the day, but there have been times when I've struggled; really struggled.
You will have ways that work for you too. I'd love to hear what they are so we can all learn from each other. Please do let us know in the comments.