Growing up, many of us were taught that it is only okay to display the "good emotions", especially when in the presence of others. You know the emotions that are fun to be around such as happiness, excitement and joy! The challenging emotions such as anger, anxiety and frustration are meant to be kept inside and are for us and only us to see. However, the thing about emotions is whether they are positive or negative when we keep them inside they act like a kinked hose inside our bodies. As the pressure continues to build that kink or emotion eventually BURSTS! For some people that burst can display itself as a verbal or physical outburst, self harm or even suicide!
So, how do we unkink the hose? According to Jim Dethmer in his book "The 15 Commitments of Conscious Leadership" you start by first identifying the feeling. What feeling are you experiencing right now? Now there is a difference between a feeling and a fact and the most common feelings are anger, fear, sadness and joy. If the words "that or like" follow the words "I feel" then you are not expressing a feeling but a fact. You must first identify the feeling!
Now you must locate where in your body that feeling is coming from. For example, "fear often manifests as a sensation in the belly (like butterflies in your stomach), whereas anger appears in your back, shoulders, neck and jaw, as well as down the arms to the hands...we typically experience sadness as a sensation in the heart area, the front of the throat, face and eyes...joy however is often experience as a rising effervescent sensation in the core of the body or up the spine."
Once you are able to identify the emotion, locate the kink inside of your body you must now find a sound that expresses your experience. This is an important part of releasing the emotion or kink. For example, cats hiss, dogs bark and babies cry. Find the sound that matches your emotional state of being.
Finally, you must take a deep breath, locate the kink, vocalize the expression and allow the emotion to completely run its course through your body until it releases and returns back to a state of homeostasis. It is not until your body reaches a stage of neutrality that you can truly look at the cause of the kink with unbiased eyes and take action towards creating a change for the future.
The important lesson to be learned is that emotions are okay but kinked hoses are not. It doesn't matter what your age is or the circumstance we all at times will have kinked hoses. What is important is that we learn how to identify our kinks and work towards releasing them so that the pressure doesn't build up to a point where it bursts.
My challenge for you this week is to take a look inside and locate your kinks then work through the process of identifying your feeling, locating it in your body, attaching a sound and allowing it to vibrate through your body. Once you have clarity in vision, re-assess what changes, conversations or actions need to be worked on to prevent future kinks in your hose.