Finding time for your feelings is a key stepping stone in the heart-based path to your time success.
Imagine that you are driving to your sister’s new house. She’s relocated, so this is unfamiliar territory for you. Now, imagine that you don’t have a map or GPS, and there are no street signs.
That’s, very literally, what it is like when we are trying to navigate our lives without knowing what we are feeling. It’s pretty much guaranteed that you’ll be exploring lots of dead-end streets and confusing cul-de-sacs!
So, Tip #1, when it comes to finding time for feelings, is learning to name them. This may sound very basic, but it can be a big challenge for many of us. It can also be a huge source of relief and will ultimately free up lots of energy for you.
To start, I suggest that you use a calendar or journal to make note of your feelings. Start by naming and recording one-a-day. Pay attention and try to answer the following 5 questions:
- What do I call this feeling?
- When did I become aware of it?
- What did it feel like in my body?
- What words or images come to mind about this feeling? Write down 3.
- What do I tell myself about this feeling? Have I changed what I call it?
The Power of Naming: Many of us grow up without much help around knowing what we are feeling. Without words, our feelings are more or less invisible to us, meaning that we are probably acting and reacting off of them, but without knowing it.
Ironically, we are also often very critical of some of our feelings. This means that you may experience powerful resistance to this naming process, especially relative to feelings that you might deem “negative.”
Work to be open and compassionate with yourself as you explore and identify your feelings. Remind yourself that there are no “bad” feelings – they simply are what they are. Once you are able to see them, you are able to make much more informed choices about how to respond to them.
Conversely, as long as they remain hidden, they affect your life powerfully, and often insidiously.
So are you ready to start to name your feelings and claim your power?
© Copyright 2011 Paula Eder, Ph.D.