Better Love All of You, Babe

I’m prone to headaches. Sometimes I get ones that stick around for days on end.

Funny thing is, when something makes me cry (which usually doesn’t take much for us sensitive Babes), the headache often goes away. Turns out, each headache was, in large part, a whole bunch of pent up emotions I’d ignored earlier in the week when they first showed up and tugged on my sleeve.

I know that I choose to stuff away these particular emotions for a reason. Sure, they aren’t the most fun or pretty feelings to have, but even more than that, I don’t want to admit I have them at all. Who wants to be a person who gets overwhelmed? Feels jealous? Lonely? Scared?

The thing is, those feelings themselves aren’t what really hurts us. It’s the meaning we assign to them that hurts the most, and makes us want to push those feelings way, way down and far, far away.

We decide that feeling overwhelmed means we’re weak. Feeling jealous means we’re evil. Feeling lonely means we’re unworthy. Feeling scared means we aren’t cut out for what we’re trying to do. And we don’t want any of that.

The good news is, if we can detach these meanings from the feelings, then the feelings can’t hurt us. Seriously. In fact, they make us better, bolder, and stronger than ever.

Because when you allow yourself to feel an emotion fully, it goes away.

For example, when we go ahead and let ourselves feel scared and admit to ourselves we’re scared, sure, it sucks for a little while, but then it passes. When we continually stuff it down, it becomes ongoing worry. Same with overwhelm, which in its repressed form might become chronic tension and exhaustion. Even jealousy will go away if we let ourselves feel it fully, but pushed down, it can form a little knot in our stomach and become this persistent, nagging belief that we’re not good enough.

Feel an emotion fully, and it goes away that much faster, so you can get back to rocking whatever it is you do in your day, and it also doesn’t have a chance to settle into you and stay there, so you can go through your life with a lot less weight on your shoulders (and fewer headaches!).

A lot of us are working on loving ourselves more. And when we consider what we love about ourselves, we always name our “positive” qualities and feelings. Our big hearts. Our optimism. Our generosity. Our courage.

Now, I am calling on all of us to love the parts of us that we don’t think are so “positive” as well. The fear. The jealousy. The loneliness. The stress. I’m calling on us to stop denying these parts of ourselves, and in turn, stop denying ourselves. To embrace these feelings, and in doing so, embrace all of who we are.

To your fabulous life,

Samantha

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