Processing Our Emotions

Yesterday’s post explored the importance of accepting our emotions, without judgement. It includes being able to label an emotion as you are feeling it, without linking it to any learned associations.

“I feel angry right now and that is okay.”

“I am feeling sad and lonely.” 

“I am feeling peaceful and content.”

This may seem simplistic, but essentially, we are going back to what we usually learn in childhood – emotional regulation. It is our caregivers who have the ability to teach us that our emotions are meant to be felt. It is also our loved ones who are there to teach us how to process our emotions.

This is the part that allows us to slow down enough to ask ourselves “What do I want to do now?” Sometimes, it might mean having a good cry, other times, we may need to contain the emotion temporarily. Sometimes, we may need to say something to someone who has hurt our feelings, other times, we might decide this situation is not one worth going into battle for. Sometimes it is going to mean not doing something we might have usually done by way of an action urge – such as sending an angry text – and finding a healthier way to deal with disappointment.

In any given situation, we are going to have feelings. Acknowledging the emotion without judgement is the first step, followed by asking ourselves how we want to best use this feeling to not only inform us, but to work for us. Making decisions about how we want to proceed has an empowering effect and when we work to process our emotions, we are better prepared for the ebb and flow of every day life.

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