What is your definition of emotional freedom?
Many years ago, before I was coping with cancer, I tended to think that emotional freedom is all about feeling a sense of balance and contentment all the time.
Whenever I was "meeting" within my self these big strong feelings of sadness, anger, fears, jealousy etc', I didn't feel comfortable about them and was aiming to go back to my "happy state", again.
Something didn't feel right...
Something in me knew that I am not really allowing myself to feel. To acknowledge the "rainbow" of my feelings, to respect all what is arising with in me...To listen...To be attentive...
It is almost like having a big big meal and just rushing through it, trying to reach the desert... : )
Something in me knew that I am not allowing myself to "digest" life...
I kept on asking the question again and again and again what to do with my big feelings?
How to approach them? How to relate to them? How to attend what they want to show me without being and feeling overwhelmed by them????
For years I kept on exploring the term "sitting with your feelings".
WHAT DOES IT MEAN SITTING WITH MY FEELINGS?????
When cancer had struck my life, I didn't have where to run anymore...
I couldn't keep on running from theses strong feelings that I had experience. There was no other way for me, if I wanted to keep my sanity...
Slowly and with lots of exploration, I understood what you do when you "sit with your feelings".
I have asked myself - what do I do when I am sitting with a friend???
When I feel that I am really meeting someone?
I came to the understanding that it is a lot about the DIALOG, the CONVERSATION that I am allowing and being open to.
This understanding was really profound for me. APPROACHING MY OWN FEELINGS LIKE I AM APPROACHING, FRIENDS,CLIENTS AND LOVED ONES!!!!
Having a DIALOG with them, a CONVERSATION with them, allowing them to be, acknowledging them, asking them what they need for me and more than that agreeing to be present with them, to feel them, to love them...
Today, both in my own life and with my clients I have many ways to that.
It always starts with the acknowledgment, with noticing, with an inner agreement to STOP and acknowledge what I feel, or what my clients feel.
If it is not clear, I will explore it. I will be open to raise within myself a dialog, a question "what do I feel now? I will name it "I feel sad, scared, angry etc'. Or I might even say " I can notice that I am feeling sad". And than I will continue this dialog. How does it FEEL? How does it feel in my body? where do I feel it? How do I feel it? I am "making friends" with sadness, with sorrow, with fear, with shame...
I have learned to have a CONVERSATION, a DIALOG with my feelings...
You might be surprised but, they answer back ... Always! Truly they do!!!!!!!!
I found that when I become open to notice, acknowledge and have a dialog with my feelings, they always respond back! If I am open to this idea, my feelings as strong as they might be "open themselves" with me and for me and they "answer" back.
If I am open to have a dialog with them, "they" are open to have a dialog with me.
As I practice it more, I am learning more and more to listen.
If I feel that this inner conversation is not enough, I will take some time and I will use writing to have this dialog with my feelings.
Writing can reveal even more things, again when I open myself to the dialog, when I am curious, when I am allowing myself to feel and explore.
There are so many other creative ways to have a dialog with our feelings that I am using in my private life and also with my clients.
What are your ways of having a dialog with your feelings?
What helps you to "sit with your feelings"? To be attentive to your feelings? To honor them???
Blessing to all of you and much love.
Iris Bar - Narrative Counselor