Spectrum of Emotions

 Hello, friends! It's time for another Mental Health Monday post, and I have to admit that this post couldn't have come at a better time for me.

In the past week I've had two very upsetting encounters with two very important people in my life. I'm not going to go into specific details, but just know that it has been emotionally exhausting and "wtf is wrong with me?" inducing.

Photo by Hillary Weiss
Photo by Hillary Weiss

All the emotions that had been bottled up deep inside of me finally reached the brim of my internal cup, and once I opened the flood gates, I found it damn near impossible to shove a cork back in there. I went for a ride on the same emotional roller coaster twice in one week.... At first I would seesaw between extreme rage and uncontrollable tears. Then I would eventually stop crying and just start feeling sorry for myself. After a few hours of moping around and eating chocolate and teetering just on the edge of relapsing into an emotional breakdown, I would suddenly snap out of it.

Maybe it was because of some hilarious conversation with a friend online. Maybe it was because of a particularly great song. Maybe it was from reading about someone's life who was infinitely worse than mine right now. Whatever it was, I went from zero to OK in less than 60 seconds.

Last week I had a lengthy coffee date and an extremely eye-opening conversation with my dear friend Stephen about how important this very cycle is. All too often we try to bury our emotions and pretend that everything's OK.

But...Everything doesn't have to be OK all the time. When we allow ourselves to be true to our feelings, we give ourselves the gift of inner acceptance and peace. Personally I find that when I'm trying to avoid dealing with my feelings about something, all aspects of my life suffer. I don't feel motivated or energized or social. I'm definitely not focused at work. I'm probably half assing things and secretly moping around in my head feeling sorry for myself and driving my subconscious crazy. I don't sleep well. I don't eat well. I don't want to get out of bed. I don't want to see my friends. I don't even WANT to feel better.

It's almost as though I'm punishing myself for having feelings. Which, when you really think about it, is the most ridiculous thing ever.... WHY ON EARTH WOULD I PUNISH MYSELF FOR MY OWN FEELINGS?

This time around I allowed myself to feel. I allowed myself to vent and rant and express my emotions. I cried. A lot. But eventually the tears stopped. And the anger subsided. And the hurt I felt so strongly faded out. And I felt OK. Not necessarily great, but OK. I felt ready to move on and do all the things I needed to do for me.

And then, when I realized that I had succumbed to feeling shitty, the gloomy cloud over my head only stayed for about a day before moving on, which is a whole lot better than the weeks I usually spend moping around and hating myself.

When we procrastinate dealing with things that make us angry or sad or scared or upset, we are really only inviting them to overstay their welcome. I'm taking a vow to be honest with myself and true to my feelings. I'm taking a vow to deal with things when they first pop into my life. I'm taking a vow to be a better friend to myself.

Listening, learning, living, and loving, xx Nikbear