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Do You Avoid Your Emotions?

Do You Avoid Your Emotions?

Emotions are a natural part of human life. If we are working towards a healthy relationship with ourselves, it is essential that we learn to embrace them. Most of us from an early age have learnt that certain emotions are “bad” or inappropriate: maybe we were told not to cry, or never to get angry. But by denying these feelings, we don’t rid ourselves of them: when an emotion is ignored, it stagnates with us, building up and contributing to the accumulated charge of repressed feelings. With time, these emotions become distorted: anger becomes hatred or resentment, eventually exploding in fits of rage and violence; sadness becomes depression.

We only need look at a child to see how natural emotions are. Children get angry and sad with spontaneous ease, yet they have an innate ability to find joy and entertainment everywhere; the world for them is a magical place, and where as adults we would only find boredom, they are capable of discovering wonderment. This is precisely because they don’t deny any aspect of their emotional spectrum. They embrace all of its hues without judgement, as natural parts of the human experience. As a result, when anger comes, it is intense, but short lived: five minutes later, they have completely forgotten what they were angry about, absorbed in the excitement of a new moment, the next discovery.

Sometimes, when we are on the spiritual path, we apply the same “shoulds” and “shouldn’ts” of our childhood conditioning to our process of growth: we try to box ourselves into an image of the “good” boy or girl – an image that is not so far removed from the expectations placed upon us by our parents and our society. The quest for unconditional love becomes a way of behaving: we try to emulate the actions of love and compassion, without first becoming those experiences. This eventually leads to more resentment and frustration, for how can you embrace another in their perfection if you still see yourself as imperfect? How can you be compassionate if you do not know yourself? In trying to break free from the confines of our past limitations, we jump into a new box, sometimes even more rigid than the one before.

In order to experience our divinity, we must first embrace our humanity. In order to love unconditionally, we must first discover our own perfection. Embrace your anger, embrace your sadness: it is not through denial that you will be free of them, but through acceptance. By allowing yourself to feel the accumulated charge, you free up space within yourself. Space to be, space to love, space to discover who you truly are.

Isha Judd will be touring Europe in April 2010, presenting her latest book and movie, Why Walk When You Can Fly? which explain her system for self-love and the expansion of consciousness. Learn more at www.whywalkwhenyoucanfly.com

Read more: Guidance, Health, Inspiration, Love, Mental Wellness, Relationships, Spirit

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Isha Judd

Isha Judd is an internationally renowned spiritual teacher and author; her latest book and movie, Why Walk When You Can Fly? explain her system for self-love and the expansion of consciousness.

99 comments

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9:13PM PDT on May 30, 2011

beautiful

10:08AM PDT on May 3, 2011

I just realized that if something happens that irritates me and I think the Facet...Thank Love For My Human Experience...it makes me laugh LOL... because it sounds crazy...but before now.. I resisted the Facet...but laughing gives me the space to let go of the feeling in my body and the space to work through it... Thanks again ISHA :))

11:05AM PDT on Apr 30, 2011

Sometimes I avoid my emotions to avoid offending others or making myself look unmanly, immature or low class which is what my mother taught me about how men look when they show emotion, especially negative emotion. In a sense she thinksmen shoud look and act stoic no matter what. Needless to say I'm trying to evolve from that backwards way of thinking. There's nothing wrong with showing emotion. Like the article said: "
But by denying these feelings, we don’t rid ourselves of them: when an emotion is ignored, it stagnates with us, building up and contributing to the accumulated charge of repressed feelings. With time, these emotions become distorted: anger becomes hatred or resentment, eventually exploding in fits of rage and violence; sadness becomes depression." I have suffered with bouts of be-olic and living with depression an frustration as a result of distorted unexpressed, unvisited emotions and I can tell you it's unhealthy and destructive. Thanks so much for this article!

12:37AM PDT on Jun 20, 2010

Thank you for sharing.

9:12PM PDT on May 18, 2010

I do avoid my emotions sometimes primarily because at times it may not be suitable for the situation. So I just keep it to myself and be hurt than be able to hurt others.Thanks!

6:47PM PDT on Apr 24, 2010

sometimes, i hide my emotions because my friends are not paying attention to me. even though i share my feelings with them, they are not going to give me any advice. then, i won't share my feelings with anybody. that's really tiring!

2:31AM PDT on Apr 22, 2010

i have problems with my parents and ive tried to talk to them but it was getting me nowhere. it got to the stage my children would not visit them because they were always being hurt emotionally as my parents favour one set of granchildren over another. when we tried to tell them how hurt we felt we were accused of creating drama and my son was told to toughen up in an extremely nasty way(he was 5 at the time). it got to the stage where i had to make a choice mine and my childrens happiness or living with the hurt. i no longer contact my parents and have asked them to stop contacting me till they are ready to treat us with respect i had to change my number as they kept calling accusing me of being selfish and useless etc etc. but i have found that even though it hurt to cut them out our life we are happier and dont get angry and frustrated at them now i just feel pity for my parents they have missed out on a great gift the love of 2 beautiful loving intelligent children so even though it was hard. paying attention to my familys emotions has been good for us. the main problem with my parents i think is that ive encouraged my children to be open to there emotions while the rest of my family repress them and they arent happy with there lives

2:29PM PDT on Apr 13, 2010

Now what do you think would have happened if someone had overheard my remark in the last post, feared an argument, and come out with the standard cliche: 'Just ignore it!'

You've guessed....more of the same abuse...

But what became of me because I learned to stand up for myself? Since I could defend myself against people who hurt me, I no longer felt nervous about meeting people. I am now such a cheerful friendly extrovert that people can grasp the fact I was shy until I learned to defend myself if necessary! That means I've been able to make a lot of people very much happier than I would have done if I'd been repressed and too inhibited to 'make a fuss!' And they've made me happier too!

2:17PM PDT on Apr 13, 2010

The second story. My brother and I were brought up to repress emotions. He was the 'good' boy who could manage it; I was the 'silly' girl who couldn't.

I struggled long and hard with the issue of how to go from feeling foul to feeling nothing! In those days I was timid and shy, and used to try and appease angry people. MIstake! They thought it was a sign they could walk all over me and it hurt!

I wondered if I would fare better if I plucked up courage to stand up for myself. This was difficult, but worth a try.

There was a woman at work whose attitude was: 'Huh! Rosemary! Treat her like a football! Take your bad temper out on her!'

This was at the time when a certain famous soap first hit the TV screens. One day the woman started on me and I'd had enough!

I said, quietly but firmly: 'You're a proper Ena Sharples, aren't you!'

That was the end of it. I felt instantly better and I never had another hard word out of her! That day I learned a life lesson!

2:01PM PDT on Apr 13, 2010

I've thought of two examples to show what I mean.

First, my brother represses all emotions. My niece, his daughter, had three children by a partner who left her for another woman, and was consequently hurt and lonely. Myself, I am happy being single, but I understood her need for a new partner.

Eventually she fell in love, and her children accepted the new boyfriend as a father figure. I was with them on holiday when she went to ring him up and came back with the devastating news that he had committed suicide!

So she had grief on three fronts.
1, For the man himself.
2, The loneliness and desperation was likely to return.
3, She felt her love wasn't enough to make him want to live. What an awful kind of rejection!

My brother - to me.

'It's terrible the way she's let herself go to pieces over this man!'

Me - Give her time! It's only been a fornight!

Him - 'Exactly! A whole fortnight!

Yes, he did say that, and I ended up ringing the Samaritans myself!

Repress too many feelings, and that is how cold and unfeeling you may become!

Need I add that he never seems happy, no matter how much money he has?

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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