Connecting with our Emotions
Author: Valarie Bittner M.A. CPC
If someone feels insecure they might put forth great effort to say and do the things they think others want to hear, for fear of being judged or rejected if they shared thoughts or feelings that they feel would be unwanted by others. Strong feelings of wanting to accommodate or please others can also cause someone to push down their authentic emotional experiences. When we practice pushing down our feelings it can result in losing touch with our true emotions and can make it difficult to connect with our feelings and express them.
Some truths about our emotions:
All emotions are neutral, and are neither good or bad, although different emotions might feel positive or negative.
Our feelings do not come “out of the blue” but always have a reason for being present, even if we can’t put our finger on it in the moment we’re experiencing it.
Our feelings are influenced by the way we perceive events and react to our “self talk.”
Sometimes we can feel more than one emotion at the same time and sometimes they can be seemingly opposing, such as feeling excitement and fear, or anger and relief.
When we run away from our emotions, it will have consequences in our lives. It can leave us wondering “if people knew what I really felt they would reject me” which can lead to feeling insecure in our relationships and judged by others. As mentioned above, pushing down our emotions can disconnect us from our feelings. It can put limitations on relationships when we are emotionally distant, and can fuel the eating disorder. The very things we’re trying to protect ourselves from (judgment, rejection or being misunderstood) ends up being the very feelings that are reinforced.
We can practice connecting with our emotions by pausing and checking in:
Can I name an emotion that I’m currently experiencing?
Where do I feel this emotion in my body?
Would it be helpful to share this emotion with someone?
Let’s practice connecting with ourselves and our emotions!