Transform, transform, transform
Moving beyond is not bypassing
There is an idea in the personal growth community that we must feel, feel, feel. In fact it seems that we are just supposed to keep feeling our feelings for an indefinite amount of time and if we move past feeling than we must be bypassing something, in denial, or not really healing.
Now I want to back up a second here. Feeling emotions is a super important step in the healing process, which most people avoid like the plaque. Many people are scared of their emotions or don’t really know how to access their emotional body, while others are lost or merged with their emotions and even identify themselves as their emotions. I want to emphasize that while feeling your emotions is absolutely necessary in the healing journey it is not the final destination. And while a percentage of people are feeling emotions as they arise they are not actually feeling the deep pain underneath their emotions which is often connected to of how their life is not working in some way.
Some people have a relationship to their emotions that they are like this never ending pit from which they will never escape or move through while simultaneously believing that to actually move through would mean they are avoiding something. Let me tell you this, to never move through or beyond your emotions is to avoid life, not the other way around. If you stay stuck in emotions and never move through them you don’t get to live because you are so busy feeling your feelings (or if that’s not enough your projection of what you think other people are feeling), and complaining to yourself that you are so overwhelmed.
So I want to give you permission right now to move through feeling. To be ok with allowing emotion to pass through you rather than you staying stuck inside of it. The main reason we get stuck inside of our feelings is because we haven’t accepted them as they are (this goes for body sensations as well). We may be aware of them, we may even have acknowledged them, but we haven’t fully accepted them and so we stay in resistance (which is the experience of stuckness) all the while wondering if our emotions (or sensations) will ever shift so that we can feel better. This leaves us victim to and at the whim of our feeling states which isn’t a very powerful (or fun) place to hang out
The other side of feelings
Your powerful self
So what is on the other side of emotions you ask? A whole lot of powerful, creative play! To really harness the energy of your emotions you must take action in a new way. The purpose of emotions is to create momentum for you to engage in a new pattern or way of being in your life. Frequently I see people feel some aspect of their emotions, but then do, think or be nothing different in their life. This is what I call “emoting” or feeling emotion without taking new action. Yes emoting can feel good, and energy moves when you feel an emotion, but you must simultaneously use that freed up energy purposefully to do something different in your life.
So what does this look like? First to give you a location on the “healing” map this is the stage of early transformation. When you use emotion to take action you are beginning to transform. Transform means that you are transforming some aspect of yourself. Maybe you are reclaiming your inner freedom, or your joy, or vitality or physical health. No matter what aspect of yourself that you are transforming it all follows that same path. First you have to be fed up enough with the old way of doing yourself and see straight on that how you have been doing life has not been and is not working. It must be different. No longer can you go on trying to make it work this way. Its not working. When you get to this point of “its not working” you have typically felt tons of emotions, uncovered many layers of yourself, and have had many insights and revelations about how you have been protecting and defending yourself from pain. You also are beginning to see how you have managed and controlled your life to avoid feeling pain and discomfort which has prevented you from moving into what you desire (which is that aspect of self you reclaim through transformation). Get this, the avoidance of really deeply feeling your pain and how you are currently navigating your life in ways that are not working, is the biggest hinderance you have to transformation. Now that may seem contradictory to what I said on the previous page but its not. People are mostly looped in what I call “superficial emotions” which means emotions that still on top of deep pain. Once you feel the deep pain and discomfort that you have been avoiding there will be no other choice but to do you differently.
Once you have been able to access the deeper pain it doesn’t become all fairies and butterflies. You must now use your will to do you differently. You have to set down new patterns, create new habits, and think different thoughts daily that are aligned with what you want and that aspect of yourself that you are reclaiming. You need a lot of reminders to yourself throughout this process because those old patterns are easy to resurface. If your desire is simply to feel happy, you must consistently, several times a day, think happy thoughts and feel happy. Its not just going to organically happen. You must do it. Nothing and no one can do this for you. This is your will and your life. From this place you start to realize that you are in charge. You are the creator. You are the decider in your life. Always have been, always will be. Welcome to your power.
Dr. Amanda Hessel, Chiropractor, Network Spinal Analysis & Somato-Respiratory Integration, Boulder, Colorado