Do you feel as if your mental and emotional state is at a bit of unrest? The more you try to progress forward in life or overcame hurtful situations, you tend to only reach so far before reverting into that unsettling state. I ask this question because to get where we want to be in life; it may require you to face some things you may not be ready to reveal within. It may take digging deep into those unwarranted territories of our life, revealing past hurts, abandonment, failures, abuse, and more. These may be incidents that occurred as early as yesterday or 5, 15, or even 30 years ago. See, if a person neglects to address those areas or events, they tend to remain playing in the background of our lives. No matter how often we chose to suppress them, they eventually show up in other forms. You may see them play out in an unhealthy relationship (both personal and professional), poor health and wellness, finances, self-perception, and the list goes on and on.
Trust when I say I’m not preaching something, I have not to experience myself. I found myself in many unhealthy romantic relationships where the internal battle with myself was on-going. Knowing that the treatment I had experienced from my partners was far beyond anything I would suggest a friend or family member tolerate. Notice how I said partners-meaning I was continuously falling down the same rabbit hole, not learning or growing from the previous situation. This behavior continued until I became fed up with being unhappy. I was dissatisfied with the situation and disappointed with the person steering back at me in the mirror.
I realized I needed to do some self-healing, and it wasn’t easy. To begin the healing process, I had to address areas like childhood traumas, break-ups, and dysfunctional family relationships—all those things I chose to bury under the rug and never tackle.
Okay, I have awakened the dead (saying of speech, not literally), what do you do now? I needed to find a way to process this series of events healthily and productively. One thing I chose to do was write letters to those who I felt hurt or wronged me. I never sent the letter to those individuals, but I wrote down their actions and how it made me feel. Within the letter, I did not forget to address my role in each encounter and how it shaped my perception of myself. I then closed each letter with a statement of forgiveness to the offender and myself. Forgiving yourself is an essential part of the healing process. We tend to be extremely hard on ourselves, which leads to more negative thinking patterns.
Along the same lines as the letter, I would highly suggest taking time to journal. Journaling can be very therapeutic in many ways by allowing us the opportunity to express ourselves without judgment. There have been many times I found myself doing a journaling exercise, and while writing, there was a wave of emotions. They could be so overwhelming, as I was writing, tears are dropping onto the paper. This free form of therapy is sometimes overlooked or seems daunting. You may have already decided journaling is not for you, or may not know how to journal. Remember, personal journaling is free expression, so tackle it in any form you like, whether seeking out journaling prompts or freestyle. But to achieve the effect, you have to commit and write — similar to anything else in life. Journaling is not just for expressing negative emotions tied to unforeseen circumstances or when we are experiencing a season of trials, but to also celebrate those victorious moments.
So, I suggest trying 15 minutes a day of free journaling. Don’t worry about having a particular topic or theme. Just allow the pin to hit the paper without worrying about having complete sentences or being grammatically correct. Just write! Let your emotions and thought to take you where they may because this is your time and moment of release.
Lastly, please know that seeking outside help is okay. Self-discovery and self-healing is an in-depth process and may consist of releasing things that may be too heavy for us to do alone, and that is okay. There are various forms of help one can seek, whether you choose a therapist, a coach, a trusted confidant, or a spiritual advisor. Any of these individuals can provide support and guidance during this time.