Monday, February 28, 2011

Feeling your unfelt emotions

One of the main reasons I use EFT with myself is to help me feel emotions I don't want to feel, emotions that are too painful to feel. I often tap for the courage to be able to feel certain emotions. I notice if I tap with even the slightest hint of resistance, or wanting whatever I'm feeling to be gone, the emotional charge doesn't budge, if anything it gets even stronger! If I keep my intention simple and allow the energy of the emotion to move and soften up, as much as it can in that moment, I feel huge relief and the energy of that emotion starts to circulate. The movement of energy nourishes us and feels good, energy in its natural state flows. It is we who stop, or have the ability to stop the flow of energy but we can also help our energy move again.

Antonio Damasio says ~ We experience because we have the ability to feel. Ivor Browne says ~ Trauma is unexperienced experience. We can safely conclude then that feeling our experiences will keep us healthy and keep our energies flowing. Many people flinch when they hear the word trauma, but if there is some thing or some one who still bothers you when you think about them now, the experience has been traumatic for you in some way, shape or form. Whenever we are faced with a threat (and that will be different for everyone depending on circumstances, your age, resources available to you and how you felt at the time) we have the ability to not feel it fully, in other words we can freeze the experience. But at some stage we will need to discharge this frozen experience/energy or tension builds up in our nervous system, and we'll start to see the effects on our health. Ivor Browne says until we can experience the experience, it remains as the 'frozen present' and therefore cannot be processed for long term memory storage. This helps explain why we can feel overwhelmed, anxious, depressed, worn out, like we're at the end of our tether as we try and try to get off the merry go round of a seemingly never ending cycle. We can feel ashamed that we're still upset, stuck, or can't move on, and maybe others are pressuring us to 'get over it' too.

Many of us have a list of 'good' emotions and most probably a much longer list of 'bad' emotions. Whenever we feel the 'bad' emotions, we want to move away from feeling them, it's a natural instinct to want to move away from anything that is causing you pain. But herein lies our healing. The reasons we determine certain emotions are 'bad' are many. We may even think we're 'bad' people for having them in the first place, so we'll disown those emotions and stuff them somewhere where the sun don't shine. A very common emotion on the 'bad' list is anger. Anger, when not felt, can turn to rage. Its main purpose is to protect us, to say No. It's a very powerful emotion and when repressed or suppressed, puts enormous pressure on us to keep going and pretend as if nothing is wrong.


Tapping the karate chop/side of hand point (small intestine meridian) is great for unfreezing our experiences and it also dissolves psychological reversal. The small intestine is where we assimilate what we digest, and that includes experiences as well as food. Tap continuously on the karate chop (or tap both sides together if you like) and just let loose on how you feel about the emotion of anger (or any emotion you find difficult to feel). It could go something like this:

I hate being angry
I'm a horrible person for feeling angry
I can't feel angry
It gets stuck
Because it's bad to feel angry
I'm bad to feel angry
I'm a bad person
And that feels horrible
I'm horrible
My anger is too powerful
It's too strong
I don't know how to feel it
It's not safe to express it
Others don't like it ... and so on.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Self love

These are some of my favourite quotes about liking, accepting and loving our self. Take the quote that resonates with you the most right now, for whatever reason, how does it make you feel? Tap on how it feels, tap on whether it feels true, not true, possible or not possible, the first time you felt that same way. The most important relationship we'll ever have is the one we have with our Self.


Your sacred space is where you can find yourself again and again ~ Joseph Campbell

Be yourself; everyone else is already taken ~ Oscar Wilde

Resolve to be thyself: and know, that he who finds himself, loses his misery ~ Matthew Arnold

Our first and last love is ... self-love ~ Christian Nevell Bovee

When you recover or discover something that nourishes your soul and brings joy, care enough about yourself to make room for it in your life ~ Jean Shinoda Bolen

Love yourself first and everything else falls into line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world ~ Lucille Ball

You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection ~ Buddha

He that falls in love with himself will have no rivals ~ Benjamin Franklin

If we really love ourselves, everything in our life works ~ Louise Hay

The ultimate lesson all of us have to learn is unconditional love, which includes not only others but ourselves as well ~ Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

What can we gain by sailing to the moon if we are not able to cross the abyss that separates us from ourselves? ~ Thomas Merton

It is of practical value to learn to like yourself. Since you must spend so much time with yourself you might as well get some satisfaction out of the relationship ~ Norman Vincent Peale

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

The Language of Emotion



This is an excellent piece by Karla McLaren on just how important a role emotions and empathy play in our life, you can find out more about her at http://karlamclaren.com/

We experience because we have the ability to feel ~ Antonio Damasio

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

The Power of Association

To associate with something means essentially to connect with it. By connecting to your feelings and experiences, you are implicitly accepting them and your self for having them. You are not denying or resisting, which is an extremely powerful way to say Yes to your self. Saying Yes and connecting to your self creates flow.

The Ocean refuses no river ~ Sheila Chandra

Connecting to a feeling or experience does not have to mean identifying with that experience or feeling. In actuality, the connection offers you an opportunity to discover what beliefs you are holding, about your self, others and life as a result of certain experiences, which is priceless. Connecting to your truth as it stands right now in this moment, not as how you want it to be in the future and not as how you wanted it to be in the past, is the ultimate act of acceptance and an acknowledgement of your humanity. It is this act of self acceptance which allows you to change.

What you don't deny, hide or disown, in other words, what you can fully associate with, won't be projected onto others or yourself, so your relationships will be more harmonious, particularly the relationship you have with your self.

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Anxiety

Hurt is the most basic negative (or uncomfortable) emotion we can feel, as Deepak Chopra, states in his book, Ageless Body, Timeless Mind. When we don't know or have never learned how to be with, feel and express our hurt, it will build up. When we're full up and can't take any more which can often be precipitated by a life crisis, our buried hurt and pain starts to leak and its effects are often felt as anxiety and depression. States like anxiety and depression are secondary formations once we learned not to feel or express our hurt in the moment. Our body wants to release hurt the moment it occurs but we humans have the power to suspend and freeze painful experiences. Only thing is, we often later forget to feel them or don't want to feel them, just because they were so painful the first time round. So the frozen experiences stay trapped in our nervous system as undischarged stress. Because anxiety is a state of many many experiences of unfelt pain, it overrides the natural release mechanism of the body and mind, so it can and very often does lead to overwhelm.

The effects of anxiety are acutely felt in the body, anxiety can make us feel like we want to climb out of our skin, and go somewhere where the pain doesn't exist or where we can't feel it. Because we can't physically step out of our skins, we'll find all sorts of creative ways to help us numb and sedate our pain while we're in our bodies. Food helps us do it, especially carbohydrates and sweets, cigarettes will do it as will dissociating, racing thoughts will do it in an attempt to regain some control, alcohol, drugs, watching television, anything and everything that you can use to distract yourself from that frozen ball of pain humming away in your nervous system.

This is why using the body, its felt sense and sensations is so effective in helping us to release undischarged stress and hurt that has become anxiety.

Try using these set up statements and reminder phrases, keep going until you feel a shift/release and make sure to customise it for you, locate body sensations, see if they move or change as you tap. Set an intention of helping this frozen energy move, not to try and 'get rid of' the pain or hurt. You know from experience that resisting your hurt only makes it worse. You can't release what you're resisting. Listen and tap along

Even though I don't want to be in my body, where all the hurt is, that's the way it is for now

Even though this pain is humming away in my nervous system waiting to erupt, I acknowledge it's there

Even though I just can't feel this pain, it's too painful, maybe I can feel some of it

Top of the Head: These anxious feelings
Eyebrow: They are so hard to live with
Side of Eye: I’d love some peace
Under Eye: From this
Under Nose: I just don’t feel safe
Under Chin: Or in control
Collar Bone: I feel overwhelmed
Under Arm: I have to distract myself from that

Top of the Head: I keep thinking
Eyebrow: That I should be over this!
Side of Eye: But I can’t release this anxiety
Under Eye: Or overwhelm
Under Nose: And that makes me feel ...
Under Chin: What’s wrong with me?
Collar Bone: I’m exhausted
Under Arm: I feel . . .

Top of the Head: Maybe I'll release the pain instead
Eyebrow: The pain that makes up this anxiety
Side of Eye: And tap
Under Eye: On all this pain
Under Nose: This frozen unfelt pain
Under Chin: And hurt
Collar Bone: I never wanted to feel that hurt
Under Arm: And I still don't

Top of the Head: I want to feel safe and comfortable in my own body
Eyebrow: I don’t want to keep running away
Side of Eye: From these feelings
Under Eye: And me
Under Nose: And my body
Under Chin: Breathing helps me feel my body
Collar Bone: Breathing helps calm me
Under Arm: And brings me back into my body

Top of the Head: Where I choose to feel safe
Eyebrow: And protected
Side of Eye: I choose to inhabit my body fully
Under Eye: And completely
Under Nose: And feel good
Under Chin: And light
Collar Bone: And joyous
Under Arm: And just be me!!