We are first feeling beings before we are human beings; our perception of all life experiences is through feelings; without the feelings an experience would be incomplete, daft, void… ~boi
We live in a society that prioritizes logic over emotions, reason over sentiments… more often than not invalidating our feelings, deliberately demanding of us to suppress them or expecting us to deal with our difficult emotions without providing any tool or guidance to navigate them…
When our feelings are rejected or ignored, it seems like we are made wrong for feeling a certain way, it feels like a rejection of who we are. Feelings are the language of our soul. It is through our feelings we get in touch with our truths. And we understand our feelings by dint of our emotions. Emotions are energies in motion; they are like an internal compass helping us navigate life.
Our perception of the outer world is first through our feelings BEFORE our thoughts can take over and intervene. This phenomenon can be clearly observed in children. When a baby is born its first 8-10 years, it solely experiences the world through feelings before it learns to talk, think or get acquainted with the mechanics of reasoning or logic. Thoughts are the language of the mind. Words are the language of the body. A lot is lost in the translation of feelings to thoughts and more is lost in transcribing thoughts to words. Words are the least reliable purveyor of the truth.
We exist in an age of emotional illiteracy. This is what creates all the problems we have today in our world. Out here on earth, we have it all backwards! We try to do things that will make us feel good and so our happiness depends on the outcomes of the things we do and if that doesn’t match our expectations, ba da boom doom gloom! Whereas we should be taught to tune into our feelings first and from that space of truth, take any action. Then we would intuitively know whether doing it will serve us or not… our feelings will communicate that to us.
What prompts feelings? Emotions! During any interaction or situation, emotions come into play, which in turn inform us how to feel about that situation or circumstance and through that process we get in touch with our truth about anything. Is it a good feeling or a bad feeling? Is it the right choice for us? Is it calling us? Is it something we want to pursue or not? An inner chat can then follow with thought, reason, analysis etc. and this is where our minds come into play, to process our feelings and understand them, so we can be pointed in direction of our truths. If we all were capable of doing this, we would be masters of our own destiny! However, we more often than not are confused about our feelings, unsure if it’s a good or a bad feeling, or it’s a fleeting feeling causing us more doubt and confusion or the message hidden within a feeling isn’t clear, if at all we are in touch with our feelings in the first place… feelings talk to us through snippets, like a hunch or an intuition; they are not elaborate conversations or long drawn analyses and they are immediate. We have to be aware and open to catch their meaning before the feeling fades away and thought takes over, judging or abandoning it altogether with what should be in lieu of what is. This is only possible when we are in tune with ourselves. Nevertheless, most of the time we are out of tune with our feelings. We are taught to be this way, to be normal… but it is not natural, it’s a learned response. Because we live in a world where we’ve been trained since childhood to reject our feelings over logic and reasoning. That’s why so many adults are walking around lost, with baggages of unresolved issues. When it comes to emotional maturity, most of our species still holds the EQ of a child! This is because most of our unresolved emotions are stuck somewhere in childhood and we haven’t been able to free them since. Thus we have lost touch with our souls, we have forgotten how to really feel; we try to think our way to feelings! This wreaks havoc. It creates wars. It robs inner peace. It destroys relationships. It builds walls. It separates.
We are not only experts at rejecting our own feelings, we also invalidate others who try to feel. We are so used to doing this so automatically that anyone who is willing to be vulnerable or express their feelings is suppressed or called weak in our society. However, we are damned as a species if we cannot be vulnerable with each other, if we cannot express our truths with others. This suppression and invalidation of our feelings show up as anger. A lot of anger! Frustration and all sorts of negative emotions. It is demonstrated through irrational behavior, out-of-place anger outbursts, temper tantrums, bouts of depression or sheer indifference when we are even scared to show our anger. Still we feel bad, if we cannot express that, or feel like none would understand us, thus we create separation and distance or become aloof, lonely, isolated in our misery, indifferent to not only our own but also to others’ pain and suffering. Nearly everybody you come across today is carrying around some kind of unresolved issue stemming almost always from childhood invalidation of feelings, which compounds well into adulthood.
This has taken on an epidemic toll. All the unrest, racism, bigotry, discrimination, terrorism, conflict in our world today stem from this: invalidation of our feelings and emotions. No one is born as a terrorist. No child comes to this earth with feelings of hatred or thoughts of revenge. Children are the epitome of unconditional love. They love everyone. They don’t judge or discriminate. They can fight or get into conflicts temporarily but then they make up easily and get back to play. However, these same children, while growing up in circumstances and situations where depending on the degree of emotional invalidation may develop feelings of hatred, violence, discrimination, coming from a place of being misunderstood or invalidated for being who they are.
It is time for repair if we are to get out of our despair. So feel your feelings. Even if no one would validate your feelings, you acknowledge them to yourself. That’s a great place to start. And then find friends who will be willing to be there to acknowledge your feelings and process them with you, instead of making you wrong for feeling a certain way. Do not bypass your negative emotions. You are doing a disservice to yourself and to the world as a whole, every time you reject your feelings or supercede a negative emotion with a positive thought. What you need to do is acknowledge it first and then process it, asking yourself why you are feeling that way and what is it informing you about you. Life is a process of self-discovery, the purpose of life is self-realisation. Rejecting or bypassing any parts of ourselves will not create any shortcuts to self-realization. To understand this better, read my blogpost: when positive thinking doesn’t work.
Yes we can avoid a third world war by tuning into our feelings, by allowing each other to feel their feelings fully and being there for them to process their difficult emotions instead of negating or invalidating them. Trump was not a born racist, neither was Hitler a born hater. These prominent figures in fact inform humanity of the vibrations of our collective consciousness that is mired in fear, self-rejection, fake confidence and invalidation of our core beings. And so our problems spiral out of hand, resulting in power struggles, manipulations, control games, ego stroking, hiding and dictating. Rather what we need today more than anything is transparency, authenticity, acknowledgement of our truths, unconditional love, total acceptance and approval of who we are reflecting our true selves. Therein lies the solution of our troubled and misguided society, the salvation of humanity. It is time to tune into our feelings and feel them without judgement or making them bad. A negative emotion is not necessarily bad as it informs us about where we are hurting and why; it gives us perspective and throws light on our own wrong thoughts about ourselves, causing the hurt in the first place. Vengeance is born when our hurts are not validated and we continue to hurt which then spirals into feelings of powerlessness to change the hurtful circumstances in loving ways. So ask yourself: what hurts you so bad that you have to hurt another to heal it? And go there… to that space of the hurt feeling to find the answer.
Anger, for example, is a cover emotion for disappointment, disregard, upset or invalidation. At the core of anger you may discover feelings of unworthiness or a sense of insufficiency, like I’m not enough. To cover that sense of worthlessness, and powerless to change that painful feeling, we disguise it in layers of other emotions like sadness, disappointment, upset, rage which result in blame and anger… but by doing that, we feel even more powerless, because now the key to our unhappiness lies with another, someone outside of us. And thus we get caught in a loop inside of the rat cage and cannot seem to come out of it. We stay in a place of perpetual anger, chronic dissatisfaction and fall ill to all kinds of disease and depression. But anger is only a trigger. If you get angry with someone, that person is triggering you to look within and go deeper to that place of ‘feelings of unworthiness’ and question that. How did you come to feel that way? When did you come to feel that way first? Always you will find that somewhere down the line you’ve been hurt, misunderstood, your feelings misguided by people you trusted and from whom you expected love or depended on for your survival. So be willing to go to the root of that emotion, feel it, question its truth, consider its message and then release it. That’s how you process it. Get dirty. Get down to the nitty gritty. Figure out the underlying cause of that anger or any other difficult emotion and you will have found freedom.
To sum up, when you reject your emotions you reject yourself. Don’t judge your difficult or negative emotions. Find out why you are feeling negatively and what it is informing you about you. Where is the hurt, the pain that you are trying to cover up with indifference and anger? Be willing to stay with yourself during your own difficult moments. Try hard, try very hard not to abandon yourself. You will be glad you did so! Be with yourself, always and all ways and if you don’t abandon you, others won’t either.
Emotions are our internal guides for navigating life, for finding the paths to our destiny, for coming to knowledge of our truths. If we invalidate our own emotions, then we invalidate parts of ourselves and so no wonder we feel lost, confused, stuck, unhappy, broken and overwhelmed with life constantly. We think something is wrong with us and then we go seek healing. What is wrong is that we are making our feelings wrong and each other wrong for feeling. We are all already whole and healed and loved. What we really need is to give ourselves permission to feel our feelings and be validated for feeling our way… we don’t need healing, we need feeling!
Feel your feelings, know yourself!