Question of the day: What do we DO with all of our emotions and the subsequent pain they can sometimes cause—either the pains we inherited, the ones that were thrust on us by our experiences, or even the ones we’re so desperately willing to step into? Any takers?
The goal, dear ones, is to eventually integrate the emotions that these experiences evoke. It’s never about getting rid of our experiences (because we can’t). It’s truly about making sense of them so they can settle into our stories and the defenses become less necessary to protect the soul.
When we process intense emotions, they don’t bite us in the ass out of the blue or keep us stuck in time in an experience. The kicker: you can’t go around any of it. There are no shortcuts. You have to go through it. It’s the simple acknowledgment of some of the particularly dark, heavy burdens that is the key to healing. That is the work of allowing each of us to see and feel seen.
Simply acknowledging another’s truth becomes particularly difficult when that experience is much unlike our own. And it seems that the more we disagree, the more we just want to fix it; get you back to a state of emotional regulation; suggest strategies or solutions or enforce our power to bring you to where we think you should be. That is the fundamental definition of behaviorism. The intention is to “make it better”; however, if we do that before truly understanding, we miss so much.
The most important and underused superpower of all of us is empathy. So, deep breath, friends. For those of you who have read my latest book, Feeling Seen, you’ll remember the importance of simply acknowledging—holding space for all the shit you’ve been through. Because when you’re acknowledged, you will rise. And so will they.