At some point we are choosing either to feel our feelings or do something else.
That “something else”: is it inspired? Is it a match to how you feel? Or is it a mismatch?
When your actions don’t match how you feel, that is both a sign and a cause of misalignment within you.
If I am feeling sad but I force myself to go do the dishes, I am reinforcing a pattern that doesn’t make sense. What kind of organism ignores internal feedback? What kind of system has feedback that goes nowhere?
If you take painkillers without addressing the underlying cause of the pain, expect consequences. Keeping yourself busy to silence your feelings is no different.
A healthy organism is sensitive to stimuli and responds to its own internal feedback. Humans are the most complex and evolved organisms in the known universe, and our stimuli and internal feedback are wide and deep and sometimes this can be overwhelming.
But health beckons us nonetheless. Even without thought of “consequences” we love the ideal of health and harmony and loving authentically from within our own nature. When hungry, eat. When tired, sleep.
We love the idea of living in balance with our own being, dancing to the exotic yet familiar melodies that seep into consciousness via the earth, the world around us, and our own intelligent bodies.
I am told that feeling our feelings is not a means to an end, it is a way of being. It isn’t a job to be done or a problem to solve. There are no guarantees that it will be over sooner or later or will quickly change from unpleasant to pleasant.
But what we will become is a being with the strength to embrace all of that. An organism strong and robust enough, yet sensitive and responsive enough to be fully itself in life. A being that contains the heat and cold of this universe in its extremes and doesn’t shy away from anything.
When we try to opt out of our own depth of experience, we end up in a shallow little pool of feeling and awareness – safe, but stagnant. The roar of the waterfalls and the violence of the rapids can be terrifying. The speed of the current can be dizzying. But this is who we are. If we feel it, it is part of who we are. And the authenticity and exhilaration we yearn for is inseparable from that.
So when the feelings come, don’t go do something else. Feel them. Become comfortable in the uncomfortable extremes and the strong signals within you. Trust where you are, and the value of what you feel, and that you are feeling it.