I get overwhelmed too, and it’s ok
Updated: Jul 20
We are no different
Things can feel too much for me at times
I laugh, get anxious, cry and rage
Because they are normal emotions and reactions to difficulty
There is maybe a difference in how I respond to this though
I have learnt (through trial and error) that external things and other people don’t make me feel better for long, if at all.
Sorry I know that it would be so much easier if we could rely on stuff and others to change our mood.
There are two ways I have learnt personally and professionally to be with strong emotions.
Firstly, is to hold myself in those emotions compassionately and without judgement and secondly is to bring my attention to and allow the emotions.
I’m not saying this is easy, but it is a game changer and something we can learn.
I recently had to sum up what I do as a therapist and I realised it comes back to the name of my blog, ‘Emotionally held’.
I emotionally hold others while they learn to emotionally hold themselves, because when we can do this, we can cope with some of the biggest challenges of our life and be there for ourselves in them.
Also just to bring an added level of real here, I don’t always do this, sometimes I numb out by eating ice cream or watching crap TV, and that’s ok too, we don’t need to do this 100% of the time but if we can do them most of the time it makes a huge difference.
So, what is emotionally holding ourselves?
It is allowing whatever emotions come up, whether we believe they are justified, fair, shameful or anything else. They are what we are feeling and so we honour them.
The thing that often gets in the way here is societies and our views of emotions, so notice them, notice if you feel anger/sadness/fear/jealousy and what comes up for you, are you ok with it? Or are you judging yourself or the emotion? Now work on letting that go (I give some further insight into this in my blog 'You don't need fixing'.
How do we notice and allow our emotions?
One way to be present with our emotions is this;
· Notice where in our bodies we feel the emotion
· If it had a colour what would it be?
· Can we notice what the emotion is, Sadness, Anger, Fear or anything else?
· Notice if we are tensing around, it or trying to resist it or push it away
· Soften to it and allow it to be there
· Notice how that alters the feeling
It may be that just being present with the emotion calms it considerably and allows you to explore it and understand what it is and why its there.
Maybe you allow yourself to have a cry or a rant now you are connected to the feeling, but remember, hold your self compassionately in that.
Taking this a step further would be processing the emotion and the best way I have found to do this is using EFT/Tapping, it is a little complicated to detail here in a blog, but put very simply it is a combination of acupressure and psychotherapy that helps to release our emotions, sound a bit weird? Honestly, I thought it was bull sh!t the first time I came across it but I now wouldn’t be without it in my personal life and as a therapist and I know many of my clients feel the same.
There are a lot of free resources out there to teach the very basics of tapping and I nearly always teach it in my 1-2-1 therapy sessions.
I would however like to share it with many more people and so I will be running some workshops in the new year to teach how to Emotionally hold yourself with EFT, these may be online and/or in person in Eastleigh, Hampshire depending on the locations of those interested.
I may also run some regular EFT/Tapping sessions afterwards to have a community where we can tap together on a regular basis.
If any of this is something you would like to hear more about, please drop me a note at email@example.com or through my Facebook page and I will keep you up to date and may also send you a survey so you can have your input into how they are run i.e, online/face to face, times of the day.
And as always I love to hear your thoughts and feedback so don't hesitate to get in touch.