When you’re feeling big feelings… WHAT TO DO
A moment in time from my motherhood
Are you feeling big feelings? I mean the big difficult ones like anger, sadness, jealousy, hopelessness. What do you do? What is your usual way of managing these? What if it makes things worse? What if there was a better way. A way that leaves you feeling so much better, lighter and more productive. Would you want to try it?
I think this share might help 🙂
Today I felt vulnerable. Why? There were a few triggers that tripped me into “I’ve stuffed things up. I’m not good enough”. It doesn’t really matter why or that I’m on a detox diet or that my bank balance is looking scary with all the bills lately. It could have been a number of triggers. The thing is I was having BIG FEELINGS. All my doubts and fears and insecurities were coming flooding up. I felt the grip of panic in my chest and my posture was heavy.
As I walked into the room where my boys were I could sense my old patterning wanting to come out, “I need you guys to pick up your act. This is not good enough. That’s not good enough!”. The old me would have launched into projection and blame. Making it their fault. I couldn’t bear to feel these big feelings. I had to do SOMETHING with them!
Instead this time I allowed myself to be vulnerable. One of them asked, “how are you Mum?” I replied, “I’m feeling sensitive and teary at the moment. I’m breathing through it. Thanks for asking”. He accepted this. He knows that I’ve learnt how to ‘parent myself’. This helps him too. It gives him permission to be vulnerable. It shows him tools for dealing with it. He gets to ‘know’ me better. We are closer because of it.
So how about you? Are you having big feelings? How are you managing them? Many mums ask me “what can I do when I feel so overwhelmed?”
There are a number of things that can help. The first most important step is to allow yourself to feel those feelings. Say it out loud “I feel overwhelmed. I sense it in my chest” or wherever it is. Check in with yourself. Ask, do I want to run from this feeling? Do I want to push it down? Instead, give yourself permission to stay with the painful feeling and just breathe. Allow the waves of it to wash through you. After a short while it will pass. Another feeling may arise. Breathe through that too. And another. Same thing. Ask your mind to stay out of the ‘story’ as thinking about it over and over can perpetuate the big feelings. You might like to say “thank you mind, but right now I’m feeling my feelings”. And then as all the difficult feelings pass through without resistance, you’ll begin to feel better. Lighter. Even though you still may have to deal with the ‘issue’ you won’t have to carry around the emotional heaviness. You can get on with your day. Maybe a little more quietly than usual.
Try this. I think it might help. If you find that you can’t ‘get on with your day’ you might find it helpful to ring an understanding friend. If these feelings have lasted two weeks or more then it’s best you get professional help. I’ve done this many times. A problem shared is truly a problem halved. What I DO KNOW professionally and personally is the importance of allowing ourselves to ‘feel the difficult feelings’. When we do that they’re less likely to ‘stick’ and manifest in other ways in our body as tightness, pain or even illnesses over the longterm.
Or by dulling your passion and zest for life!
Don’t settle for a life without the meaning and vitality you were born to experience and express!
That’s not ok. You deserve better.
I’d love to know any other ideas of how you deal with your BIG FEELINGS. Let me and other mothers know in the comments below. You never know who else it might help. Thankyou beautiful.