Feelings: a Time and Place for Words
When it comes to feelings, it's very good for us to recognize when and where we need to place words to them.
Some feelings are better left felt in silence, allowing them to be fully experienced in their ebb and flow.
Others, however, are connected to trauma, unmet needs, and unwitnessed self-awareness and, by extension, the unexpressed self.
One of the greatest struggles a woman and perhaps people, in general, will face is experiencing their feelings in a wholesome way. It is a process of self-acceptance that takes time (and I do mean a lot of time) to master. One of the somatic practitioners I admire has said that recovering the ability to feel emotions often takes years and the slower we go, the better (because otherwise we risk retraumatizing ourselves with the process).
When I say master, I don't mean master in the sense of becoming great. Actually, mastering feelings and emotions is really less about controlling and gaining glory over our feelings and more about becoming humble to them as their head and simultaneously, as their servant. There is no glory to be had in this space. It isn't about gaining a sense of superiority over one's inner self. Rather, it is about loving ourselves enough to be present and embodied with our feelings and being protective of them while simultaneously becoming more deeply vulnerable, surrendered, and dearmored with our emotions. This is about becoming vulnerable in safety.
In this context, our feelings are brought into surrender to our conscious selves, who are servants and heroes to those feelings. We treat them with love, gentleness, and even humility, and our goal is to come to a sacred space within ourselves where our feelings become the hallowed ground that we gently and lovingly tend to, be present with, listen to, and witness, even protect from harm (interestingly, whether or not we realize it we are always doing this; protecting ourselves from harm!). This isn't about satisfying our whims based on our feelings, but rather is about a gentle and loving communion with ourselves: a type of self-care that is based on resiliency, giving ourselves what we need in the moment to overcome the adversity of life without throwing ourselves away or self-harming. In other words, we are honoring ourselves and our feelings in every moment and tending to their needs in healthy, wholesome ways that result in us becoming more resilient to adversity.
I see my feelings as the aspect that are in need of being held precious in my heart. Not that I am putting them there, I just feel myself FROM there; the portal to Heaven and the throne of wisdom. This allows me to witness and experience myself with tender love and acceptance and apply wisdom and honor to myself.
There is really a time and place for words. Not all feelings need words and not all words are worthy of our feelings. It's my experience that we ought to be more cautious about what we throw our feelings into. Our feelings are highly precious and impact our state of health. If we are constantly throwing our feelings away by sacrificing them to unworthy causes, are we any better than bullies and abusers?
We need to be aware of how we are treating ourselves, where our feelings need protection and sacred honoring. Feelings are precious and need to be experienced in a wholesome way that nourishes and heals us, and, by extension, nourishes and heals those we reach.
Let's be cautious with our words: the words we speak to others and the words we speak to ourselves. Let us hear ourselves and our unmet needs and honor the feelings that emerge as we do, but let us also not use our feelings as an excuse to become self-indulgent and corruptively selfish. Recognize the difference between self-care and self-destruction.