Feelings end up in your unconscious when you don’t feel them. You stuff them deep down so they are mostly or completely hidden and walk around as if everything is ok. But it’s not ok. What shows up around you will prove that. Pretending your true feelings don’t exist won’t solve anything. You actually have to feel your feelings if you want to move on.
If you cover-up or hide your feelings, they get bigger. Hidden feelings gain more power in your unconscious and they begin showing up in all areas of your external life. They are trying to get your attention so will do something about them! The more we hide from our feelings, the more massive they get.
Now, the truth about feelings is we cannot technically change them on our own. Feelings change when we let them take their natural course. And their natural course is being felt. But what we can do to hurry the process along is to actually take some time to get to know our feelings—what are they all about, why are they here, and what are they trying to teach you? When we start to get to know our feelings better, they start moving through us pretty quickly.
One thing that is important to know about feelings is that fear is the root of all feelings that we don’t like to feel. Worry, anxiety, fright, panic, despair, uncertainty, hopelessness—of course no one wants to feel these things. Fear is what happens when we stop believing in the truth about ourselves. Fear is what happens when we start believing that we are separate, that we are alone, that we aren’t completely worthy, and that we are missing something. Fear is the indulgence of the ego—it stems from the felt sense that we are incomplete.
The ego is not your truth. The real truth about you is that you are completely worthy. The real truth about you is that you are a loving person, filled with grace, joy, and peace. And this truth—the truth of your Soul—stays with you no matter what feeling arrives! This means that you are always whole. No matter how bad you feel, no matter how hard of a time you are having, underneath it all, even when you can’t feel it, love remains strong. Your capacity for well-being and love never leaves you. This is a big deal! You can always make your way back to feeling love and loved. Always. And you will. To do so, you must look your feelings in the eye.
There are two big mistakes we make when it comes to feeling feelings: we either repress them (oh hell no you don’t exist) or we indulge them (you exist in a big, big way—in fact, you’ve taken over my life!). Let’s talk about both.
Indulging uncomfortable feelings means letting them define who you are. It means surrendering your power over to fear. It means buying into the illusion that you are anything short of magnificent. Here is the truth—you are not your feelings. You are not your depression. You are not your anxiety. You are not your hopelessness. And you are not your fear. What you are is pretty f-ing magnificent. The truth about you is you are a stream of well-being who gets hooked into the ego’s delusion from time to time. Remember that. You are fantastic. And your feelings are just feelings.
On the other hand, repressing your feelings means you essentially turn a blind eye to them. You put your hand up and look the other direction. You pretend they aren’t there. But you know that they’re there! Resisting your feelings just makes them worse—basically, they get pissed off that you’re ignoring them and they start to riot. Resistance equals persistence. We use a ton of psychic energy and force to make our feelings go away, but we end up feeding them ammo instead. Bad move.
Instead of completely indulging your feelings, or completely resisting them, turn around and look at them in the eye. Figure out what they are all about. Figure out if they are even based in reality or not. Many feelings that occur within the present have very little to do with what is actually going on for us now; they are usually from our past. Again, most feelings of discomfort stem from the illusion of separation. They come from the very-false belief that you are alone, that you have always been alone, and that you will always be alone. This is a lie that your ego likes to tell you.
Here are questions that will help you stay present to a feeling when it comes up:
- What does the feeling feel like in my body? Where do I feel it?
- Where does the feeling come from? Can I determine the root? (Sometimes, we cannot)
- What am I really scared of? Is this the truth about me, or is this one of the ego’s illusions?
Now all this looking your feelings in the eye is definitely easier said than done. It’s not fun. But it's really the only way through. You have to be brave; but don’t worry, you are. You’re courageous, you’re strong, and you can do this. If you do, your feelings are going to move right through you, and you can get back to being the fabulous person that you really are.