Cringing

I coached 27 women this week and almost every session lead to the same place:
Stay present, feel your feelings, love yourself through the process. 

If we were on video, I’m sure I would have seen them cringe.

Let’s look at that word, cringe. It means to shrink in fear, draw in or contract one’s muscles and recoil from distaste. 

So even the very idea of feeling feelings shuts them down and has them boarding up the doors and windows.

Why do we react this way to a normal human experience of having emotions? 

Because when we look to our past for clues on how that experience will be, we find lots of evidence that it was terrible. 

In that way their reaction makes sense. 

If the experience of going to the dentist included being taken into a back alley and having a lunatic with rusty pliers pulling teeth without anesthetic, you’d steer clear too. Your primitive brain would kick into high gear and have you avoiding at all costs.

When I suggest to them that maybe they’ve never actually allowed an emotion before and that what they are remembering is resistance, they open up a little. 

OK… they say. So what you’re saying is that maybe I haven’t learned this skill yet?” 

Yes, exactly. 

For those of us who eat instead of feel, we haven’t learned the skill of allowing emotions yet.

The very first step to acquiring that skill is being willing to openly try it again instead of cringing it away. 

Willingness is the way forward. 

 

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