Do you have lingering experiences from the past that you have not dealt with and because so, are creating residue in your current experience? Those things that have happened that were/continue to be hard and uncomfortable? Things that, for a varietal of reasons, just didn’t completely pass through you to get cleared. Any? Solid, healthy memories are one thing. A reflection of a moment, interaction or event that you can reflect on and then it’s gone and on it’s merry way; not blocking you from your current reality. Emotionally processed memories don’t skew your view of the world and current way of seeing your life. They are just memories. Suppressed feelings that carry high emotional voltage DO create block and DO push us to see the world through foggy lenses. They have the ability to really change us.
I’m speaking to the events that have happened that come up every now and then that continue to feel icky and uncomfortable. Maybe they happened 10 years ago and maybe they happened last week. I'm speaking to the memories that continue to lurk around within us creating “ick.” Those thoughts and feelings that we have shoved deep down in hopes that they would, poof, disappear? It sounds super logical, when things don’t feel good, push them away, right?
Not such a good solution.
Here's the problem with slipping things under the carpet, if you will: Not too get too clinical but, this quote by Freud just nails what I’m getting too, “Whatever we repress gets expressed.” So, simply put, whatever we resist feeling in the moment doesn’t get the opportunity to pass through us. If it can’t pass through us, you guessed it, it stays blocked within us until we decide to release it. As the unresolved feelings stay within, we become less and less of who we truly are. The unfinished feelings act as weight within us that, literally, can weigh us down. It’s like having a hole in your jeans. A small little hole is no big deal, but as the hole gets larger and larger, it will start effecting your comfort level and how exposed you are. As you continue not to deal with the hole, it will eventually become so big that the jeans are unwearable. At that point, whether it be our jeans or emotional issues, the problem becomes too big to ignore. (Just for the record, ignoring things is rarely the answer.)
Our “holes” can be the result of painful, fearful or uncomfortable experiences that we never dealt with. Or maybe we really tried to deal with them, but they are still there. The worst! Experiences that hurt, sting, leave you confused, ashamed, you fill in the blank, all can clog us and create emotional residue within. It’s like mildew for the soul. The truth is that whatever life experience that you have lived that didn’t get fully digested, is still with you. It can be sitting softly on your shoulder, hardly noticed or it can feel like a ball and chain clamped to your ankle. Only you can possibly know what if feels like to BE with all of the experiences, feelings and emotions that you process and carry with you on an average day.
I suppose the question at this point is: What are you going to do with this unfinished, emotional stuff that is molding within? Are you going to work to rid yourself of thoughts, feelings and, ultimately perspectives that are not working for you anymore? I hope so. It’s a drag to carry it around when you don’t need it and it’s not serving you.
Ditch it. Clear the clutter.
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* The above image was taken by Amy Lynn Bjornson, San Diego photographer.