Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Approaching Your Feelings

A wise person reminded me recently of the importance of not overriding my feelings. In my focus on maintaining my thoughts in a healthy and productive place, I often try to think through the emotional issues that I’m facing, rather than really, truly feeling them.

Feeling feelings can be inconvenient. It can be painful. In the short run it can stir things up and make us less comfortable than if we had just chosen to let them go. It can also feel very unproductive, especially around situations that are past, or that we cannot change.

I deeply believe that choosing how I think about the ongoing events of my life, expecting good, and trusting God’s divine hand in all of it, mold my experience in a way that reflects my expectations, and my trust.

I’m finding, though, that some things have an emotional life of their own. My good intentions and positive thoughts help to a very large degree, but the only way through emotions is through them. And that means being fully present not with my thoughts, or how I want things to be, but with my honest feelings, messy as they might be in the moment.

When I approach my feelings rather than think them away, my body is healthier, and I am more at ease. There is a big sigh of relief when I touch on what is really going on, deep within me. Sometimes just acknowledging the depth of my feelings is all I need. That makes sense to me, because I always find that touching truth is a healing.

There is a technique called C.O.A.L., in which we approach a situation that is having an emotional impact on us by being curious, open, accepting and loving. With it we are not judging the fact that we are having an emotional reaction, but being ever so gentle with ourselves as we seek to understand and honor our feelings about it. I am finding it helpful.

I am, as always, grateful for the many tools that I’ve learned to help me embrace the miracle that is my life. And today, I remember to approach and honor my feelings.

May this tool be a blessing. . .

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