Freedom from worry, anger, and resentment can be a way of life you just have to make a conscious choice. Sounds easy, right, wrong. It’s not easy because first you have to actually understand why you feel the way you do and really accept your feelings. When you try and push your feelings aside because they don’t fit in with the concept of who you want to be you actually de-value yourself. When you are feeling a certain way it is likely to be a trigger for an underlying issue that you have not dealt with. When you swallow your anger what you are subconsciously doing is saying to yourself your feelings don’t matter. Resentment and anger often walk together hand in hand. When you swallow your anger you then become resentful towards yourself and other people. Operating under the surface of consciousness is this operating program called the subconscious or unconscious. You can reprogram yourself but you need to acknowledge what you are really feeling. If your feelings don’t matter enough for you to acknowledge them they seethe beneath the surface and can manifest as physical pain symptoms, sore throat, stiff shoulders you get the point.
A little technique I learnt about in the late 1990s is journaling. Now to really get to the heart of what is going on for you try picking up a pen and paper and writing with your opposite hand, i.e. if right handed use your left hand. Set your questions down before you start using your dominant hand. You can ask yourself questions like do I have any unresolved anger that is interfering in my ability to be free? If you answer yes to this question you might like to try and narrow the anger down to specific details. When did I first start to feel this anger, where in my body am I storing it, who am I angry with? Don’t be surprised if some of the anger is directed at yourself for not valuing your own feelings.
Once you have identified your feelings you can then move onto expression techniques to help release the feeling. Give yourself permission to acknowledge your feelings as they arise. Remember validating your feelings is not the same as giving yourself permission to behave badly. Behaving badly is a whole other issue. When you do not validate your feelings they can manifest in toxic behaviour. Define what you really want and learn to express your feelings in healthy ways. Freedom is not the absence of anger but it is validating yourself to acknowledge your feelings as they arise and then release them in a safe and healthy way.
Life can sometimes be very difficult and it is during those times where it might be hard to actually be grateful for anything because all of your energy is being sucked into a vortex of out of control emotions trying to deal with the tough times. I firmly believe practicing gratitude every day is really beneficial in bringing a state of happiness into your daily life. So how can you genuinely be grateful when all you really think and feel at that point in time is how much crap or despair or anger or resentment or fear is in your present moment? That’s where it gets tough to practise gratitude. There may be something in your life to be grateful for, maybe you have a pet, food, transport, friends, and income or maybe you can look at a nice picture. There must be something you can be grateful for, but getting out of that head space of pain and suffering takes a little bit more than finding something to be grateful for, because let’s face it in the really dark moments, even when you have stuff you can be grateful for, truly feeling gratitude may be almost impossible.
During those times it can be really beneficial to use a different technique. Access your memory. Maybe you might like to try a seven day or ten day plan, where every day for that period you write a list. The list might include all the good things or times that you can remember. What this does is accesses the memory of the experience but more importantly the feelings can be induced and similar feel good chemistry can happen in your body to help bring you out of those dark feelings and help you actually feel gratitude in the present moment.
It works! Try it! If you are having a difficult time truly being grateful in your life right now this may be just be the technique that shifts your focus.
There are all types of options for cultivating a peaceful way of life. Most of us have probably heard about the benefits of practicing meditation to calm the mind. Meditation is beneficial and I recommend it. I personally meditate each day. Sometimes it’s not enough, it might take the edge off, but meditation does not address inner turmoil. Meditation provides a break and allows some time in ‘relaxation response’.
To really reach a state of feeling peaceful you need more than meditation. It’s important to explore the shadow side of yourself. It is within the shadow side that you can start to release those underlying emotions that cause unease or turmoil. Often as children we were discouraged, if not punished, for expressing the so called negative emotions. The suppressed emotions manifest years later with a wide spectrum of symptoms. People suffer from anxiety, anger, depression, lack of self-esteem, people pleasing, general uneasiness, insecurity, feeling unloved and a whole host of other issues. All these things sit in the shadow side of our personalities.
When you have not been taught to have a healthy respect and value for your own feelings: the feelings find a home in your shadow side and they manifest in toxic or unhealthy actions. Some people have immense rage simmering beneath the surface and they keep swallowing it until they let rip at the next unfortunate person in their path. Maybe they overeat, or run around after everybody and feel used and abused.
The point is to get in touch with your shadow side, don’t fear it: explore it. By having the courage to explore the unpleasant and destructive patterns that swirl beneath the surface you give yourself permission to let it go. Make a conscious choice about your behaviour, thoughts and feelings and to do this you need to understand the underlying processes that are running within the shadow side of yourself.
There are a lot of techniques that can help release toxic patterns and unconscious thought processes that are a barrier to being in a state of peace. Alternative health therapies like Kinesiology or EFT (tapping) can help to release old patterns of behaviour and bring about lasting change for a more peaceful and happy life.
Explore the shadow side and bring it into the light of conscious thought.
We all have difficult times in life but there are a lot of great times to help balance it out. Being aware of the natural cycle of life can help to develop a positive attitude.
Choose your perspective
I’m passionate about education and teaching people how to live happy and fulfilling lives. I believe the best way to create a peaceful and happy society is to start teaching children techniques that have traditionally been used by adults in the self-help industry to better their lives. If we start teaching children to be grateful and look for the positive experience in the bumpy path of childhood we can help bring about positive long term change in society.