E-motion is energy in motion. When suppressed and not in motion this energy can be experienced as sensation, such as, tension, an ache or pain. For example, a clenched jaw may be the sensation of withheld anger. Sadness may feel like a "lump" in your throat. In both of these examples the emotion is not flowing and causes discomfort to your body.
Most of us have developed habitual ways of responding to a particular emotion. This usually happens because you heard messages that thwarted the expression of a particular emotion. Maybe when you were angry you heard, "Don't give me any lip!" Or when tears welled up were told, "I'll give you something to cry about!"
Isn't it interesting that we use the expression, "welling up with tears"? Our language clearly indicates that crying helps us to become well. A number of Synergy clients have had sessions because they just wanted to cry. After so many years of holding back their tears they wanted the release that crying can often bring. Lauren*, a synergy client, made the connection between her held tears and a painful condition. This condition known as pericarditis, an inflammation of the thin sac-like membrane that surrounds the heart would fill with too much fluid causing great pressure and pain in her chest.
Expressing emotions is good for your health. When you have a "good" cry it is often followed by a deep sense of relief. Expressing your emotions doesn't mean blasting someone with your rage. Healthy expression means recognizing your emotions and using them to inform you. Tuning into your body and noticing your body's sensations and feelings can help you to identify your emotions; both ones that you are experiencing in the present or ones that you learned to bury in the past. Acknowledging your emotions and using them as a guide is a way to befriend your body and yourself.
How your emotions can inform you?
Grief lets you know about the loss of someone you have loved. Anger lets you know when your boundaries have been violated. Fear provides the knowledge of threat and the need for protection. Joy lets you know when you're on the right track.
Get to know how your emotions feel in your body. Take a moment right now. Breathe. Turn your focus to your body. Notice your sensations and feelings. What emotion are you experiencing? How can you use this information?
Here are some suggestions: If you're feeling content you may want to appreciate your life and the people in it. If you're angry allow yourself to protest. If you feeling heartache consider being compassionate and gentle with yourself. Most importantly attend to your emotions.
Your body and your emotions are beautifully woven into the fabric of your being. Befriending them by listening and responding to them can help you to understand yourself and feel better.
*The client's name has been change to protect her privacy.
With warmest wishes for your wellbeing,
The Rubenfeld Synergy Community
Visit our website: http://www.befriendyourbody.org
Our writer,Theresa Pettersen-Chu, is the president of the International Association of Rubenfeld Synergists with a private practice in Maplewood, NJ.