“Just be positive!”
This is great, but what about when you're in deep pain?
What about when your heart is breaking into a million pieces because your child has cancer?
What about when your veins are pumping fury and rage because your lover left you?
What about when your belly is ill because your company is doing layoffs and rent is due?
What about those very real emotions?
Is there room for Anger and Grief in Happiness?
Positive psychology often gets dinged because people think it's “positive thinking.”
Positive psychology is the scientific study of HUMAN flourishing, and it's VERY human to feel Anger, Rage, Sadness, Grief, Worry, and more!
These emotions give us information.
They tell us something we're desiring or needing.
They make us act. Anger makes us fight back, Grief makes us protect ourselves.
So we need to feel these feelings to heal.
However, most of us are hanging onto them for too long.
One woman I know has been (understandably) angry about her husband's infidelity for 12 years, even though they're divorced. It's ruined her self-esteem and has made her physically sick. He's having a grand ol' time remarried while she feels bitter, cold and ill. I don't blame her – I'd probably do the same thing. But is it serving her?
Stress emotions were only meant to be in our bodies for 90 seconds in order to produce cortisol and adrenaline, but we're hanging on to Anger and Grief and Worry for YEARS and over time, those healthy short-term hormones because long-term disease.
We have to move the emotion through.
But the world hasn't made it safe to Rage. Angry women are called Nasty Bitches.
The world hasn't made it safe to Grieve either. Sad women are called Emotional Depressives who need medication.
So we bottle it up, put on our happy face and pretend.
But that's when it starts showing up in the body as Dis-Ease – Disease!!
It shows up as weight, as shingles, as anxiety, as depression, as heart attacks and more.
So we need to MOVE the emotion THROUGH us.
Literally scream it out of our lungs!
Cry it out of our eyes!
Shake our bodies free.
I just did this on Sunday. I've shared my fertility journey with you, so first, Happy Mother's Day to all of you moms! And, as you can imagine that Mother's Day was hard for me. I would have been 9 months pregnant right now, ready to welcome my little one. So on Sunday morning, I went into a private room and moved the pain through my body. I screamed and stomped my rage, allowing myself a temper tantrum like a 2 year old. Then I danced slowly to a sad song, allowing myself to grieve my tears. Then I talked to a couple of Soul Sisters to move it through. Then I journaled my desires and tapped into my truth that I am a Goddess of Creation. I birth dreams – my own and my clients'. On Mother's Day, one of my clients who wants to start a wellness business led her first meditaiton class. Another told me she's planning her first art show! I birth dreams. I'm also birthing a book with my agent. I am birthing a new movement to teach healers the science of women's happiness. So I planted a garden – roses and tomatoes and cucumbers and herbs – to BIRTH creation! I then soaked in a warm bath and finished the night dancing about my fertile gorgeous healthy body!
I moved it through!
I share this story with you not for your sympathy, but to share how to work with these very human emotions.
You too have permission to feel it all.
My most recent podcast teaches you how to do this.
It will teach you how to work with anger, sadness, and any “dark” emotion you feel. When we embrace and love our WHOLE selves – our light and dark sides – our fiery sensuality and pure compassion – our intuition and our action – then we are our happiest, best, most purposeful selves!
Enjoy the episode, and please post how you work with painful emotions here on my blog.
With so much love!