It is a common trait to hold onto our emotions, we all supress our feelings for many reasons, like being scared or fearful, not wanting to upset, feeling shame or guilt, believing that what is said is true even if they know it’s not, to name a few. But is burying emotions any good for us? In a word NO. Holding onto deep emotions only means we are stuffing it somewhere in our bodies. It has to go somewhere so if we do not release them, then we bury them and over time these layers of emotions compress and potential cause bigger outbursts.
Studies have shown that by keeping our emotions in, we are delaying the process and it will materialise through different, stronger emotions, behaviourally or through illness. In her book ‘Heal your Body,’ Louise Hay explains how our beliefs and ideas about ourselves are often the cause of emotional problems and physical ailments.
Below are some tips to help children (and adults) to express how they are feeling safely and coherently so they don’t internalise their thoughts, particularly about themselves.
1. Imagine that you are surrounded in a clear bubble of protection. The outer layer of the bubble will only let love, goodness and kindness through. It blocks any horrible thoughts and words so you do not receive them, instead they change them into positive thoughts and words and sends them back to the person saying or thinking them. This way, you both feel better.
2. If you need to say something important, carry your favourite toy (I had a teddy, my boys have a monkey, a doggy or a teddy). Whisper to them that you need their help and they will arm you with courage and loving support.
3. Using a crystal to boost confidence (carnelian or orange crystals), clear talking (blue lace agate or other blue crystals) or to surround you with love (rose quartz, cherry quartz or any pink or green crystal) will help. Try different ones to see which works best for you. Clear quartz, citrine and amethysts are also perfect crystals to choose. Hold them in your palms or carry them in your pocket.
4. Surround yourself with a colour, red for strength, blue for communication and calmness, purple for truth, white for protection, green for generosity, yellow for courage and happiness etc. It isn’t really about what I say the colour means but more about how the colour makes you feel. Breathe the colour in through your nose and send it all around your body. Now you are ready!
5. If you are finding it hard still to express how you feel, draw a picture with speech bubbles, sing a song (singing works for people with stammers), or write a note/letter explaining everything you wish to say but can’t.
6. Be like an animal and borrow their character. Brave and courageous like a lion, strong as a gorilla, good at communicating like a dolphin or blue whale, clear talking like a canary, speak your truth like a peacock, problem solve like a shark, have confidence like a tiger and stand up for yourself like a badger or otter. Just imagine the chosen animal by your side, sharing his traits or imagine you have become the animal for the time you need to deal with your emotions.
7. Using affirmations will help enormously; ‘I can speak clearly and honestly about my feelings.’ or ‘Speaking my truth will make me feel better.’ or ‘People will listen to my feelings and be able to help me.’ – make up some of your own.
Which any ones they choose, know that it is good to say how you feel, to be honest and to say the truth, you may even surprise yourself how good it feels and other people’s reactions may not be as bad as you had originally thought. Remember, holding back and allowing those thoughts and feelings to grow only makes it harder to say later.
Good Luck x
P.s – Parents, it has taken great courage and strength for our children to speak up, lets listen to how they feel and what they want to say. It is our job to guide them through their emotions and remember, children express their emotions by watching us, it is up to us be good role models.