Feeling Your Feelings: Ways To Set Your Soul Free

A photo of a sunset in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, a great scene for getting into a meditative state where feeling your feelings is easier.
Sunset on the water in Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Copyright © 2021 Lee Spirit

If feeling your feelings doesn’t sound all that fun to you because there’s something deep down you’d rather not feel, then you’re not alone! It’s completely natural for us to want to avoid, block, or push away our more negative feelings and emotions. Who wants those draining energies in our lives anyways? Sadly, negative feelings are running a bit rampant in today’s world. Unfortunately, avoiding them, blocking them, or pushing them away only brings them back with greater force. In order to let go of these negative energies, we must notice what we feel, acknowledge our feelings, and allow them to pass through us by really feeling them. When we let go, we set our souls free!

Why Feeling Your Feelings Is Addictive

Feelings are vibrations in our bodies, and when we become accustomed to these vibrations, we get ourselves into habitual patterns and tendencies that don’t serve us. In effect, our feelings can be addictive. We are addicted to a certain sadness because there is a comfortable familiarity with it. Even if we feel a brief moment of happiness, we quickly revert to the comfortable feeling of unhappiness.

If there are self-esteem issues underlying our addiction to feeling unhappy, perhaps we feel we don’t deserve to be happy. Maybe focusing on the negative seems more realistic. Have you felt joy in your life only to later be disappointed? Has there been a trauma or childhood experience of constant negativity? Then it has become the norm for you. Or maybe when you feel down in the dumps, it’s motivation for you to change.

The problem with addiction of any kind is that it can negatively affect our lives, relationships, and mental health. You may not allow yourself to feel happy, which can push others away. You may play the victim in every situation rather than taking control of your life. Resilience in tough times might be more difficult for you. Taking care of yourself and your basic needs may be harder. Also, we may become addicted to substances to relieve the pain we feel deep inside.

Releasing Addictions and Feeling Your Feelings in Healthier Ways

Don’t get me wrong. It’s not a bad thing to feel your feelings! In fact, it’s necessary to feel our feelings in order to move beyond addiction. Ideally, we want to move towards a healthy expression of our feelings. This includes both good feelings and bad feelings. We just don’t want to get too caught up in these habitual patterns and tendencies that do us more harm than good.

According to Michael Brown in his book, “The Presence Process”, we need to integrate our feelings unconditionally by feeling the pain and discomfort that are programmed into our subconscious from childhood. If we don’t become addicted to our negative feelings, we are conditioned to block out our anger, resentment, guilt, shame, and fear. We need to find balance in these and bring ourselves to a neutral space for the feelings to be properly integrated.

When we get into a neutral space, usually through a regular practice of meditation, we are choosing not to block out our emotions, and we are also choosing not to numb them with various substances, foods, or drinks. Running away from our feelings will not serve us. Rather, listening…Really listening to our feelings, accepting them for what they are is going to set our souls free.

Feeling bad all the time is generally not what we want. So try to accept what comes up for you – good and bad – and accept these feelings as being your teacher. Just like nature teaches us so many lessons in strength and resilience, our negative emotions can guide us to a better place. So when these feelings come, just honour them and say, “Hello darkness, my old friend…What are you here to teach me today?”

What To Do With Your Feelings When They Resurface

Feelings In the Body

Feelings typically resurface as pain or discomfort in the body. We feel this through meditation, and awareness of breath. It is here that we can access them, by noticing and acknowledging the feelings, and listening to the lessons our bodies are teaching us.

Attention Seeking

As Michael Brown notes in his book, we often seek the attention of another to relieve our pain and suffering. But when we do this, we fail to realize that everything we need is already within us. The attention of another will only provide temporary relief, whereas tending to our own suffering is the true way to set the souls free. In other words, no one can feel for us. We must feel our own discomfort by bringing it up into our conscious awareness.

Awareness Through Breath & Meditation

When we bring awareness to our true feelings through breath and meditation practice, we may stumble across many uncomfortable feelings. Allowing these feelings is key, as is loving ourselves unconditionally by not trying to fix anything. Without judgement of our feelings, we simply allow ourselves to feel what we feel with love, kindness, and attention towards ourselves. Notice that we are not trying change or heal anything, we are simply being with what is in the moment.

Feeling Your Feelings As They Shift

What happens next with a continued focus on what we are feeling in the body is that our feelings start to shift. The heaviness in the heart begins to feel lighter. The tension in the throat area loosens. Our shoulders release. There is a general softening throughout the body. That doesn’t mean it will be sustained forever. We just remain open to whatever arises, without being attached to any one outcome.

Ideally we want to set our hearts and souls free from suffering and bring more genuine joyfulness into our beings. But we must be patient in this process, and practice being our own witness with consistency.

Remember To Avoid Stories in the Mind

One thing to remember when being with the feelings in our bodies is to try not to get the mind involved! We are not our thoughts, meaning that what circulates through our minds every day is really just a story we tell ourselves about what we perceive is happening. Our minds make up stories that aren’t even necessarily true, always looking for answers in our thoughts. This can easily distort the truth about what’s really going on. We end up talking to ourselves and/or others harshly…Judging, criticizing, blaming.

Similarly, talking our feelings out with others can be helpful to relieve stress or gain a new perspective on things, but ultimately, it’s up to us to be with our feelings. We are the only experts of ourselves and our journeys, and much wisdom comes through witnessing the pain and discomfort we feel in our bodies.

Watching the changes and being the witness of our own transformation is truly healing. Notice how you feel, and then notice how you feel about how you feel! Remember, all feelings are valid, and all feelings are safe.

Trusting Your Intuitive Wisdom While Feeling Your Feelings

It’s great to confide in a trusted friend, or seek out counselling when your mental health may be suffering. But in the end, what matters in your healing is feeling your feelings. When we come into this neutral space of meditation, our bodies can teach us what needs healing, and the “why” of why we are feeling something resurfaces. We don’t think about it or talk about it, we feel it. The answers come to us through our own inner wisdom and knowing.

With practice, we can learn how to feel our feelings in our bodies, and allow them to pass through us until those feelings have changed. This is how we set our souls free. I welcome your comments through your journey. Sign up for a private account at the Login menu to leave a comment. Your private information will never be shared!

To assist you on your journey to well-being, I invite you to check out my Mindful Nature Meditation Music with Nature sounds. This will help you get into a meditative space where you can access what’s happening in your body! All the best on your journey!

Lee Spirit is an avid outdoors adventurer with a love for nature, photography, health & fitness, wellness, and spirituality. She helps those who suffer from anxiety & negative thinking to become healthier in mind-body-spirit. Her own personal journey has led her to the  study and practice of mindfulness, health, wellness, yoga, spirituality, sound healing, meditation, and personal development for over 20 years. Get mindfulness, meditation, and personal development tips in her Free Natural Mind Healing Report.

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