FEEL YOUR FEELINGS
Because to heal you must feel. Lets take a deeper dive on this. We all experience a wide range of emotions and feelings during our daily lives. Emotions and feelings, along with Consciousness set human beings apart from other species. But what are feelings and emotions? What are these mysterious unconscious things? There are many different definitions, but the below definition captures the essence of what they are:
“Emotions are mental states brought on by neurophysiological changes, variously associated with thoughts, feelings, behavioural responses.”
I get lots of questions in my clinic about myself, people in general are curious about the hypnotherapist’s life. There is often a view from clients that we have finished our personal development or emotional intelligence journey. Not only is this not accurate but it is a misunderstanding of what growth and emotional development are. Growth does not mean that we stop feeling a certain way, it simply means that we learn to allow our habitual feelings to arise and learn to deal with it in a different way- so that the feeling no longer has a controlling grip on us.
When we allow our feelings to arise without resisting them, they lose their energy. There is a simple explanation as to why we resist emotions as opposed to being open to them- it is how we are taught in our childhoods. We express anger, and our parents scold us because it is ‘shameful’ behaviour. We express anxiety, and our parents react with their own worry and anxiety. We express sadness and our parents immediately try and cheer us up. Zero validation. It does not mean our parents are bad people- it is just the culture of our times. My response to client’s questions about my own emotional experience is always the same- I feel emotions more than I have ever done and it feels terrible at times. However, when I feel sadness, r, fear or frustration, I try to be as open to the emotion and feeling as possible in that particular moment but try to not identify with them.
So, is there an easier way around dealing with our emotions and feelings? Change career? Change your friends? Avoid your family? In my opinion there is not. I changed from corporate life to becoming a hypnotherapist and constantly empathising with clients has made me a more empathetic and compassionate person, but it hasn’t stopped me feeling and is never likely to. There is no magic state of being where we feel nothing. Even Buddhist monks with a lifetime of practice and discipline, have emotions and feelings- they have just learnt to be open to them and hence they do not escalate or take over their choices or behaviours.
To heal you must feel
Another common response from clients is that they are “not very emotional” and when asked a simple question like “How do you feel about that?”, the response is that they don’t feel anything. There are many reasons why this may be the case. Trauma or protracted periods of stress may lead to an inability to feel or a feeling of numbness. Also, depending on your personality type, you may supress emotions as a response to beliefs formed in the first 7 years of life.
I can relate to those clients- not that I didn’t feel anything in the past, but I supressed my own feelings a lot. I grew up on a farm in south Brazil, part of a German background farming family. And whilst hard work and strong family values were instilled in us all, communication was never seen as important as we were always busy farming! We would never talk about feelings and emotions at home. I was never asked how I felt or encouraged to express my feelings. The net result of never expressing my emotions was that I became disconnected from them- the more I failed to feel my feelings, the more they would come out in unhealthy ways.
Feelings are often considered as not real, something imaginary, illusory, a theoretical aspect of life. I think most of us probably have heard at some point in their lives “don’t be angry” “don’t be sad” “don’t cry” “don’t be so worried “and as discussed above, what those sentences indirectly mean is that you shouldn’t feel. It is this lack of validation for our feelings that ultimately causes us to resist negative emotions and feelings. That is a huge problem, as feelings are made to be felt and by feeling them you allow them to be balanced, but if you avoid them, suppress them like I did in the past they get stronger and tend to come out unconsciously in unproductive manners. However, when we are aware of them, accept and acknowledge them, the unpleasant and destructive emotions dissipate faster. The only way to heal and to be emotionally balanced is by feeling your feelings.
What I can say from my own experience with feelings and my years of hypnotherapy practice is that no one that has avoided, repressed, or rejected their feelings their entire life has emerged unscathed. The consequences can be any one of the following: quitting, weight gain, eating disorders, uncontrollable temper, anxiety, depression, conflict in your relationships, or mental and physical illness.
I am passionate about using my hypnotherapy skills to provide a safe space to help my clients to deal with their repressed and avoided feelings and the indirect emotional consequences. My hypnotherapy practice is centred around the fact that people can and should live a happier and healthier life, as is our natural human state! Everyone has the gift and capacity to be happier and healthier. I am not saying it is easy, but it is possible. It is a process and hypnotherapy can help you. Hypnotherapy accesses the subconscious mind and provides gentle support and assistance at reaching and releasing those suppressed and repressed emotions locked deep in the unconscious part of your brain and reprogram your false limited beliefs around feelings.
-There is no short cut – to heal you must feel – let me take you on a journey with my empathetic and understanding way of guiding you through the hypnotherapy process to become emotionally balanced and live a healthier and happier life.