Search your feelings

What is it that you’re not feeling?

What is it that you’re not allowing yourself to feel?

Could it be the key to something greater inside yourself?

A sense of connection?

A realization of your own needs?

Can a feeling give you insight into a story that you’ve been telling yourself? Something that is neither true or false? An interpretation about the world that you can change, if you so choose?

Could it be an opportunity for a kind-hearted embrace of your own pain and suffering?

Could it be a chance to practice self-compassion?

Could it be a sign that it’s time to upgrade your thinking?

Could it be a chance to make a new decision?

Whatever it is, you might now be avoiding that feeling—wanting it to go away.

You might be distracting yourself with YouTube videos; endless scroll apps like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Reddit; overeating; overdrinking; pornography; TV shows and binging; video games; or any other escape.

These distractions might give you temporary relief.

At first, they will give you dopamine. They will make your brain’s reward system light up.

They will, until they don’t anymore.

And your feelings will still be there.

Maybe they’ll be the same as they were before. Maybe they’ll be stronger.

Maybe time will have passed and things gotten worse in some way.

Opportunities you once had might be gone.

Tick tock, the clock keeps moving.

Your life is passing by.

The feeling of not feeling can become your new default.

You can get used to being in the dark. You can get used to being disconnected.

You might start to think from your head. Disconnected from your feelings, you become indecisive. Decisions become exceedingly hard to make. There is never a perfect solution. The inner spark that makes you say “YES!” is gone.

Not gone but covered. Deep within the layers of diversions.

You’re afraid of feeling. You want to be in control. You don’t want to feel that way. You don’t want to feel at all.

Maybe you see it as a personal weakness to have certain feelings.

“I shouldn’t be sad.”
“I shouldn’t be upset.”
“I shouldn’t get angry.”
“I shouldn’t feel unhappy.”

But your feelings are there. They exist, beneath the surface.

They might be buried deep but they haven’t left you.

They will be telling you something: a story about the world, a way that you’ve interpreted things.

Are you listening?

Will you accept what is: the fact that you feel this way?

Do you realize that your feelings could be based on a false and unhelpful interpretation of the world?

That, on their own, they are neither good nor bad?

Shame
Hate
Anger
Profound sadness
Grief
Disgust

All of these feelings and more, as unpleasant as they may seem, are but vibrations in the body based on thoughts in the mind.

Yet what if they could lead to a new, constructive decision?

What if those thoughts, on their own, were optional?

What if your feelings are actually based on false beliefs?

What if you could forgive yourself for holding onto any beliefs that aren’t working for you and let them go?

What if you could say, over and over again…

“I forgive myself for buying into the false belief that ________.”

(Fill in the blank.)

…and mean it?

What then?

Could a new and more helpful belief take its place?

So I ask you:

What are you not willing to feel?

What are you holding onto?

What false beliefs might you have bought into?

And knowing this, can you hold yourself with compassion, make a new decision or choose a new thought (if necessary), and forgive yourself for waiting this long to do so?