This one exercise I found is so important, so critical to my life, that I decided to dedicate an entire post to it. I learned about it from Teal Swan’s “Healing the Emotional Body” video.
I’ll leave it to you to watch the video as there’s several steps involved. I don’t always do all the steps but what I actively do now, every day, is allow my emotions to come up.
What does that even mean? We’ve been taught to suppress our emotions. Even if you’re an emotional person and you feel that you don’t suppress your emotions, I can guarantee you that you have in the past, usually in childhood. Currently I’m spending hours a day doing this as I’ve done enough work to the point now where it wants to flood up constantly. I feel it wanting to come up and so I make it a point to actively stop resisting it. My emotions need my full attention; I lie down in bed and simply be with my body and feel and integrate each emotion as it floods up. Depending upon how much emotions you’ve suppressed or the amount of abuse you’ve endured, the feelings that you may get in your body can range from physical pain, stiffening, releasing, throbbing. You may feel emotions coming out of specific body parts. For me, lately, they’ve felt like physical pain (not unbearable at all but noticeable) numbness and electricity rising up. It is SO important to try not to resist when these emotions want to come up. I’ve found myself isolating quite a bit just because I need to be able to lay down and process them and allow them to come up, and that can be an awkward feeling when you’re in the presence of others. I’ve also caught myself resisting them or unconsciously trying to push them back down. Fortunately for me, I’ve reached a point in my healing process where they want to come up.
In the beginning, you will probably have a difficult time feeling your emotions. We have been trained to literally not feel them. And if you have borderline personality disorder, you are probably always caught in emotional loops due to not fully allowing and processing these emotions in a formal manner. The first time I tried this exercise, I did not even understand what “feeling my emotions” meant. And it quite literally means, laying down and telling your body and your inner child, “Eleni, I am here with you now.” “Emotions, I am here with you now. You are safe to show me yourself. I love you. I want to meet you.” Your emotions are sentient beings in and of themselves. When they’re rejected, they form a disease within your body of pain and suffering. After you ask your emotions to show themselves to you, you may feel resistance. You can also tell resistance, “resistance, I am here with you now.” Feel resistance fully. Once resistance is fully felt, you will automatically flow into another emotion. You will feel your body flowing from one emotion to the next and as you fully feel each emotion, thus honoring it, it will dissipate. This is how you heal the emotional body. You are peeling the layers of an onion. With each emotion that is peeled up, a new one presents itself for integration. You can imagine the emotion expanding outward, outward into your body, then the room, then the building, the city block, and so forth. This expands the emotion out of your body and allows it to release.
Alternatively, if you find yourself having trouble feeling the emotion, you can do a full-body scan and locate the body part that has tension or feels the heaviest, and sink into it. You can imagine yourself dropping into that body part, like you’re a tiny droplet getting consumed by that area of your body, the heaviness or the tension. You can imagine yourself pushing through walls within these parts of your body. Take a deep breath in and imagine yourself pushing through the sludge. Take care to notice or sense if you are ready to break through walls, Notice the colors of the body part or the emotions, and the textures. Sometimes the textures will feel raw and you should be mindful about pushing through borders that are not ready to be pushed through. I usually use this “pushing” technique when I get stuck, and when I visualize where I’m at in the body, I tend to see black goo and feel myself pushing through it into another room. As I do so I sink deeper into the heaviness. I may keep pushing through multiple “rooms” of black goo, going further and further into the heaviness.
There are various “cover emotions”. Numbness is a cover emotion for grief, and anger is a cover emotion for powerlessness or shame. You will have to feel the anger or the numbness first before you reach the underlying emotion, but you may find that once that integrates (allowing it to be felt fully), you are sinking into powerlessness, fear, shame or grief. If you feel anger, scream into your pillow as much as you can until you reach exhaustion (with breaks as needed). Alternatively, you can imagine yourself screaming in your mind’s eye (this does release some energy). You can also kick your legs and arms against your bed, or beat a pillow. Whatever you need to do to safely release this emotion. If you are able to go into shame, grief, or any of the heaviest emotions (shame is at the very base of the emotional triangle and has the heaviest vibration), stay with it! Feel proud of yourself if you can tap into shame and grief. I don’t frequently reach these emotions and you will see the most rapid evolution in your emotional well-being if you can completely feel these lower-vibrational emotions that anchor you down. Remember, in order to heal, we must fully feel every part of ourselves that wants to be expressed. This also goes for expressing happiness, joy, love and creativity. Everything is energy. It’s about moving and keeping energy flowing in every area of your life for optimal well-being, and never denying any part of ourselves. Free yourself by freeing your energy!
You’d be surprised at how deep some of these run. I’ve had moments where I tapped into deep shame at feeling ugly. I felt ugly as a child and recently felt the depth of that shame and was shocked at how deep it went. A great time to do this exercise is when you’re feeling triggered. Drop into your body and ask your inner child how it feels. You can vary who you’re “talking” to. Speak directly to your inner child, your body, your emotions, your heart. They will all LOVE to tell you how they’re feeling and how you can make them feel better! Hug your inner child and show her love. Ask her frequently what she needs. Ask your body and your emotions what they need. It is all about SELF LOVE.
If I could recommend any one thing for all humans to do (which is totally free!), I’d recommend developing a regular practice where you feel your emotions. If everyone did this every day, the world would be a much better place, and I feel this exercise is the key to the beginning of the new human that feels fully and no longer suppresses and medicates themselves out of their true feelings.