Here I will focus on how emotional pain can be a powerful tool for transformation through the release of held energy. We often block feeling our emotions because we feel that we will die from them. The emotions are not real as they cannot kill you. Instead, they block us from our greatest potential.
While not religious, I do feel there are nuggets of truth in scripture. I love the 23rd Psalm for it’s reference to this process of walking through the Valley of the Shadows of Death. Fear no evil.
Imagine a series of springs that are coiled. These represent the areas where we do not want to feel something and we push it down, cocking the spring. Suppressing the spring’s natural desire to be open, we use our vital energy to maintain this out of fear, maintaining the status quo, not wanting to feel, guilt, shame, etc. The fully cocked spring also invokes a potential energy to be experienced in the release of the spring.
Where do these “springs” come from?
When we tell ourselves that we don’t have time for something, cannot deal with something and are not fully present when an event unfolds, we store the energy of what we chose not to fully experience.
So what do I do to release the spring?
This energy must be accessed fully to allow the release of the energy. Once we stop suppressing the spring’s release, the spring opens and our energy can be increased exponentially. The release of energy is in two ways: by no longer diverting energy to suppression and by the kinetic energy released when un-cocking the spring.
So I still don’t know what I need to do here…
We begin by being fully in our bodies. We have a tendency to pull our energy up and out when we experience something we do not want to fully feel (I feel this contributes to physical pain, that’s for another day). To be in our bodies, we feel as many things as we can. Feel the surfaces where we are supported. Feel the clothes on our skin. Feel the air. Feel the back of our bodies, into our toes, heels. Feel!
Once fully present in our bodies, we can more easily walk through the shadows of our pain. Sitting and allowing whatever emotions to be, continuing to breathe and crying freely when called to. Avoid wiping away the tears, allowing the by-products of our pain to be, we free it that much more (yes, let the snot flow, too). We know we are complete when we feel an all pervasive sense of peace and calm.
My sadness/anger is a bottomless pit, how am I going to survive this?
Know that there is only so much energy that can be released at a time. Give trust to the parts of ourselves that know how much we can handle. When walking through it, we often feel overwhelmed. Consider the rise and fall of a wave. The wave cannot stay up for forever.
The challenge becomes that the peak is often when we most want to run away from the pain, again suppressing the spring. Please stay with it. Successful Navy SEALs state that they survived BUD/S training by knowing that the torture could not last forever (they were required to have meal breaks, after all).
As part of natural childbirth training, I slowly counted to ten during the hardest contractions. This was effective during both of my long labors. Knowing that the peak could not last forever, even though at times it felt that it would, kept me from freaking out and kept me present. The same concept of a peak followed by a fall rings true for emotional pain. It cannot peak forever.
What do I do then?
After the release of the emotional spring, we have more energy available to us to use as we wish. This is a slowly building process. I find that the bigger the spring I tackle, the more energy that becomes available. Being gentle and allowing the process is part of allowing that increases our energy.
This process is something that needs to be consistently applied for the best results. Being more present in our daily lives prevents the accumulation of more springs.
With each iteration, we build strength and fortitude as well as confidence to walk with less fear of the shadows. At some point, we even begin to look forward to the challenge. Take heed, however, this may take some time. For now, I recommend consistent application of this process to anything that ails you. Allow the emotions to flow. This allows for greater flow of creativity and your vital energy.
Personally, I have found that I require less sleep overall. After a significant release of shame regarding my sexuality, I have experienced a wellspring of both energy and creativity (more another day on why sexual suppression can block creativity. Hint: it’s related to the second or Sacral Chakra).
Consistent meditation can also help. I am working on writing up the meditation process I have personally found to be the easiest and most efficient way to release my springs – in a way that rarely brings me to tears, nor to my knees in fear.
Go forth and feel. The emotions are not real, they cannot kill you. Instead, they block you from your greatest potential.