“When we start to listen to our emotions, they show us what is truly important to us and they naturally move us to respond effectively to whatever situation is presenting itself. And then they dissolve and transform. Once we realize and experience this, we no longer fear our emotional pain. We can listen to the full range of our emotional experience and allow its wisdom to guide us.”
One of the things my clients often say to me is “I’m sick of this emotional pain – I don’t want to feel it any more!” One wise and inspired teacher of mine used to say:
“Pain is inevitable; Suffering is optional”.
Pain is one of the greatest teachers of life: physical pain tells us when something is out of alignment in our body. The same is true of emotional pain; it lets us know that something is out of alignment in our life. Emotional pain also tells us about what is truly important to us, what our most cherished values are. We don’t get upset about things that we don’t care about. On the other hand, our suffering is created by the negative interpretations that our mind gives to the pain we are experiencing.
In my last blog we outlined the important messages that our emotions bring us. We also showed the way in which the ego-mind is threatened by authentic emotions and often wants to suppress them or distract us from what they are trying to tell us.
What happens when we suppress our feelings because we don’t want to feel emotional pain?
Emotion is E-Motion = energy in motion. Emotions want to be acknowledged, felt and expressed. When this happens they very naturally move on without getting stuck. While there may be some temporary discomfort (pain), they do not become stuck and cause mental suffering. However, when we do not feel and express our emotions in a balanced way they will find expression in these ways:
- An overactive mind: The energy of our emotions drives our mind rather like wind driving a windmill and we find our mind spinning around and around, generally with thoughts that take on the ‘flavor’ of the emotions that we are suppressing.
- Physical symptoms: An enormous amount of the symptoms, and eventually illness, that we experience comes from stuck and unresolved emotions.
- Disproportionate or inappropriate behavior: despite our best efforts, our suppressed emotion seeps out in behaviors that we regret.
- Addiction: One of the great lures of any kind of addiction is the relief, albeit temporary, of the emotional pain that we experience.
- Depression: after long-term, consistent suppression of our emotional pain, our organism finally resorts to a kind of ‘flat-line’ emotional experience of life where we lose the ability to feel the full range of human emotion.
The answer is to learn to listen to our emotional pain…
When we simply feel and listen to our emotions, they show us what is truly important to us and they naturally move us to respond effectively to whatever situation is presenting itself. And then they dissolve and transform. Once we realize and experience this, we no longer fear our emotional pain. We can listen to the full range of our emotional experience and allow its wisdom to guide us.
If you’d like to learn how to listen to your authentic emotions rather than suppressing or distracting yourself from them, you can check out my upcoming Emotional Wisdom 6 week tele-class each Mon. from Nov 7th till Dec 12th. Find out more!
As an initiated Marakame or shaman in the indigenous Huichol tradition of Mexico, Prema Sheerin is a healer, spiritual counselor and teacher. Prema has worked with individuals, couples and groups for 25 years, supporting people to reveal the knowing of the heart, bring forth balance and healing, and find their path in the Divine play of life. She offers workshops internationally and has a traditional healing and life coaching practice in Asheville, North Carolina. Prema offers various programs for the Sacred Fire Community