Estimated reading time: 5 minutes
To experience and express love, we need to be able to feel. Love is a feeling. Joy, peace, happiness, and contentment are feelings. To experience feelings, we need to allow them to flow through our body. When we are in touch with and can express our feelings, it makes it possible to be authentic and congruent. Authentic means being real and genuine.
Congruent means saying what we feel in the present moment, as opposed to feeling something and saying something else. When we are authentic, people sense it, and we are more likely to connect with them on a deep and meaningful level. The exception is if we have a reaction and speak based on the resulting feelings. Speaking as a result of a reaction can create confusion and blame. Telling someone our feelings in the heat of the moment without processing your reaction first, does not usually lead to closeness and connection!
The most common way for us to resist feeling is to keep busy going from one thing to the next, without a break, or time to just be. It is easier to become aware of our feelings when we are still and quiet. If there are unresolved feelings of hurt from the past, staying busy can be a way to prevent these feelings from surfacing. However, these feelings drive our body anyway, regarding unconscious patterns and behaviours. To be in tune with our feelings we need time and space to feel them—rather than drowning them out with busyness. If unresolved painful feelings come to the surface, it is beneficial to recognise and observe them, rather than having them drive us in a way we may not desire.
When we resist how we feel, tension is created within our body that stops us from flowing energetically. We can even mistakenly identify ourselves as the feeling rather than observing the feeling. For example, we may think we are a sad person rather than just having a sad moment, which if we don’t acknowledge and don’t resist, will pass in time.
If we continue to ignore our feelings they can build up as emotional pain, and this can in turn manifest as physical pain in your body. All pain is caused by resistance to what is. Pain in itself is not a bad thing; it gives you information about yourself. Listen to your pain when it is small, if possible. It may be telling you to take action, make changes, or let go in certain areas of your life.
It is common to search for a quick fix or instant gratification about happiness—by shopping, taking drugs, drinking alcohol, working, or consuming food. Excess in any of these areas ultimately creates an imbalance and leaves you feeling dissatisfied. Imbalance shows that something needs to be addressed to allow you to return to a natural state of well-being. An instant gratification is a Band-Aid approach to life, rather than being deeply in tune with what makes you truly happy.
Small children are generally in touch with the full range of feelings. They naturally let feelings flow freely through their bodies. If you observe them, they can be sad one minute, happy the next, angry ten minutes later, and then happy again. They do this without any guilt or resistance: that is until they are taught to judge their feelings as good or bad. Accepting a child’s feelings and teaching them to express them in healthy ways, helps them to feel acknowledged and valued.
As a child you may have been taught that only certain feelings were acceptable and others, such as anger and sadness, were not. As an adult, you may find it difficult to tune in with and express your feelings, in a way that can be heard and respected. Fortunately, these skills can be regained.
First, you need to observe and validate how you are feeling. Resisting how you feel leads to repression, which is not healthy for your mind or body. If feelings are repressed rather than expressed in a healthy way, they weigh you down energetically. They make you feel heavy and disconnected from your natural state of wellness.
It is a gift to the people in your life to be able to sit with the discomfort of their feelings, without reacting to them. The exception is, if a person expresses their feelings in a violent or dangerous way, creating an unsafe environment for you. They would need to know that this is not okay for you and that they need to take responsibility for their feelings. It can be helpful to seek the support of a professional if the feelings are very intense and overwhelming. It is very beneficial to allow people to have their feelings without judgement or taking things personally. This process gives them the opportunity to explore and learn more about themselves.
It is important not to act impulsively on feelings but instead learns to observe them without judgement. Unobserved feelings can be unstable. However, once we learn to observe or witness them from our essence or divine loving self, we will become stable and strong as love is our true nature. We become even more empowered when we learn what thoughts are driving our feelings, and that will be the topic of next weeks blog.