The Power of Emotional Self-Expression and Self-Reflection

gain self-awareness & self-love with spiritual counseling & coachingThe path of self-awareness is not a highway. It is a long, slow process of uncovering and emerging; of discovering and nurturing; of expressing and releasing. In our rush to get where we think we want to get, we forget that our purpose here is to experience the world in human form and then also become aware of our experience.

This is how Infinite Consciousness expands. This is also why we have the inherent drive to express who we are and how we perceive the world. If the need for self-expression gets obstructed or suppressed, a fundamental aspect of ourselves becomes stunted and we suffer as a result: we lose our voice and sense of self.

I am not just talking about expressing our opinions and ideas with others, which involves our logical mind to communicate and does not necessarily require any self-exploration. I am pointing out a much deeper truth about what makes us human: the need to put in words what brews inside as abstract, unclear, and disordered emotional energy.

It is in the expression of our emotional wounds that we can discover and discriminate between who we believe we are and who we truly are: between the conditioned persona who acts and reacts according to an unconscious self-programming, and the sensitive, perceptive, and conscious being that hides behind it and holds all sorts of contradictions, emotions, desires, and aspirations—both positive and negative.

Let Your “Mess” Become Your Message

It takes much courage and determination to look at the aspects that we consider negative, those that made us feel “bad” or ashamed at some point, especially when we were kids, or those that still make us feel inadequate now. These are our “personality flaws” or personal experiences and emotions that we try to hide from others, and most of the time from ourselves as well.

However, they can become our greatest assets when we shift our perspective, and allow our “mess” to become “our message.” If we don’t give ourselves the opportunity and space to freely express what’s been hindering our growth, it remains an amorphous mass of confusing and contradictory energy that maintains us stunted and perpetuates a painful reality.

When I was studying homeopathy, I took a seminar where the group was split in pairs and we had to talk to each other about something we had never talked to anyone about: we were to share a secret or an experience that we had not felt free or safe enough to express openly.

As I was expressing my “secret,” my fellow student’s reaction was one of surprise. She was astonished that my experience had such an emotional charge for me. Similarly, when it was my turn to listen to what the other student had to share, I was also surprised that she could be so ashamed of her “secret” because in my eyes what she was expressing was just a normal, human reaction to her experience. I felt compassion for her as she was opening up, and I’m sure that she felt compassion for me too when I was talking about my past.

Had we been able to (in a parallel universe), we would have probably exchanged those life experiences and “secrets” to help each other release the emotional charge they held. I understand now that on an subtle level, this simple exercise actually helped everyone involved because it gave us all the experience of a different, more compassionate perspective on the shame or embarrassment we individually felt.

Release Your Internal Critic

We tend to be quite hard and judgmental with ourselves because as we grow up, we create a self-image with an internal critic that conveys the voice of those we have invested with authority—our parents or caretakers, teachers, siblings, and so on. This is a voice that we have completely internalized, so it sounds as if it were our own and permeates our thoughts. It not only makes us our harshest critics, but it also resonates with anyone we give authority to: our spouses, bosses, partners, opinionated friends, doctors, experts, and anyone who unconsciously reminds us of the authorities from childhood.

This is a voice that disempowers and holds us back every time we want to express who we truly are and how we feel. It stands between us and the world, and redirects the energy of our feelings toward the rational mind, where they get overpowered. It’s the voice of our self-consciousness and low self-esteem. And the more we pay attention to it, the stronger it becomes, to the point where it can completely drown our own. When this happens, we disconnect from our inner compass and lose our footing in the world.

Have you experienced situations where you’ve felt that what you have shared about yourself was later used against you? Or maybe that it’s not even worth trying because it seems that nobody understands what you’re saying, as if you were speaking a different language? Well, the truth is that you are speaking a different language—one that does not match your mental, conscious language because it is a secret emotional language .

This language comes from a wounded place and is non-verbal: it is the emotional energy behind your attitude, your words, your expectations, and your actions. Yet it carries enough energy to drive your internal message and reflect in your reality the wounds that created it, through your relationships and interactions with others.

It comes from the same wounded place that makes you establish relationships with people who are not listening to what you have to say or use your own words to hurt you. It’s a language that holds seeds of powerlessness and leaves you feeling small and insignificant. It’s practically like having an invisible sign on your forehead that reads, “I am worthless (disempower me),” “I need to be useful (use me),” “I am insignificant (take me for granted),” or “I am bad (punish me).” You get the idea…

Regain the Power of Emotional Self-Expression

This wound-based energy makes you verbal and creative potential lack conviction, clarity, and power because it blocks your true voice, preventing it from coming through and expressing who you are and what you want. So it’s crucial to overturn this energy by letting it out and expressing what it’s holding on to—be it fear, shame, guilt, or a distorted self-image. Only then can you utilize it for a more positive, creative, and loving manifestation of life.

I could not stress enough how important verbal expression is for self-growth. I’ve heard people complain about psychotherapy because they believe it’s just a waste of time to talk about your problems, and I agree that it can be on some level if it keeps you on the victim role (and your therapist doesn’t kick you out of it), but once you add the spiritual dimension to what you are drawing into your awareness, the perspective on your behavior and your life experiences changes dramatically because the “victim” quickly dissolves.

It is no coincidence that many cultures have found methods of emotional purification to purge suppressed or hidden emotions—from the Aristotelian catharsis of dramatic identification to the almost mandatory confession of Christianity, or the collective prayer and weeping of death rituals to accept a loss and help bring emotional closure. They all help us pull back the emotional energy that painful experiences suck out of us.

More importantly, it is the ability to self-reflect and express our perception with words that separates us from all other living creatures and the pack mentality. Words allow us to understand how we feel and how we perceive and create our reality out of the amorphous, disorganized energy that brews inside us. If simply left to the ruling of the ego-mind, it creates more of the same-old-same that we have been experiencing in our life (and possibly through many lifetimes), but once our awareness takes charge, it becomes the creative fuel with which we can transform our world.

Isn’t it time for you to express what’s brewing inside you, regain your power, and utilize all your energy—both conscious and unconscious—to shape up the life you desire? Contact me now to establish the sacred space that will allow you to explore all of who you are and heal your emotional wounds. Start embracing life to the fullest today and paving the way to a much brighter tomorrow!

© 2013 Yol Swan. All rights reserved.

 

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