Hustle culture, where working hard without much rest is deemed the recipe for success. The chokehold it has on the collective is astounding, but that’s not the only killer. Society has taught, and continues to preach, that to remain ahead of the curve amidst getting ahead in life, one must learn to control their emotions in exchange of mental soundness. “Swallow your tears ridden with anger, sadness, resentment, so that you don’t compromise your chances of succeeding in life. Don’t feel, rationalize yourself, get to the bottom of your emotions so that we never feel such a way again.“ It’s almost as if we're being torn away from what makes us human; feeling.
There’s an ever growing misconception running rampant amongst the collective like Covid in the streets. The misconception of gaining mental soundness through mastering emotions, but in actuality, over analyzing in the namesake of growth can come to do more harm than good. Same as if one were to simply just “thug it out,” especially when thuggin‘ it out really comes down to not addressing the issue, but rather turning a blind eye to them; feeling as though they must do something entirely different all together as to not waste time crying over spilled milk. Whether it be for personal growth/healing or for the namesake of hustle motivation, in the end, we’re teaching ourselves to desensitize our inner emotions. We’re creating disconnect between the mind and body.
Oftentimes, like minded individuals (myself included) wanting to elevate and heal ourselves, do it through constant self analysis of our emotions when triggered by certain series of events. Though it does open doors to much bigger issues calling for healing, over analyzing your emotions every chance you get at the sign of instability will inadvertently lead to suppression; same as if you were to just push them aside and hustle the pain away. Now you’re back in a cycle, continuously going through the same motions, wondering why you still feel the way you do. You’ve found that trauma wound, recognized it, addressed it, but did you feel it?
Say you’ve had a terrible day despite having a decent week, and for some reason whatever happened on that terrible day has triggered you greatly. Essentially, you’re going to want to vent about it because openly talking about it feels better. However, this time around, because you’ve done a good healthy bit of healing and growing from that same previous trigger, you’re not as reactive and ready to jump in the deep end; you know ultimately how that emotion doesn’t define your whole existence/life circumstances. You know things will get better, but you still can’t help but feeling down and out, so you seek out advice only to be told that you need to fix something in you, but you know what you need to do already in order to heal.
In truth, what we need isn’t always a solution. What we need is to feel, feel everything we’re too scared to express. Hustle/Healing culture has such a way where too much of it can be a bad thing; sometimes it’s best to not always have your emotions figured out or to always be on go. Sometimes the best medicine is to just feel, to just rest; there is peace in just being. There is peace in surrendering to rest, surrendering to your emotions because in due time, your body will come to recollect it’s debt. What’s not felt later will come back up ten times harder than before if you had just given yourself that time to feel, to express.
Healing, a process in stabilizing our mental and physical bodies when unbalanced. To heal is to feel, acknowledge, release, and follow up with self care; doctor’s orders. Much like a wound on one's physical body, the brain sends out signals that travel down to the wound, letting us know through pain, or rather strong discomfort, that something is wrong. Once the pain is felt, our brain then signals our attention to the wound; congratulations, we’ve now established where the pain emulates from, so the next step in aiding in our bodies healing is to address and care for the wound with proper procedures. Much like how we must hold compassion and understanding of ourselves once we’ve identified where one’s pain stems from. When we’ve dressed the wound and done all that we know we could do, what’s left is to let your body run its natural course in healing. The wound didn’t heal right away, but the bleeding has subdued; you’ve cleaned it so that it doesn’t get infected and worsen, so now you must give the reins to your body, and let time pass on as it heals.
Much like physical wounds, mental wounds need just as much love and attention. Unsure of where to start? Well let’s start here, let’s go FAR:
Feel: Whether you’re upset, hurt, disappointed, overjoyed, but in most cases, experiencing the rather less enjoyable emotions; sit with them. No, don’t analyze them, just breath and let the motions wash over you briefly. Imagine your feelings as one large wave that crashes over you every once awhile at the beach; let it hit you. Pinky promise you’ll pop back up to the surface and not drown when you do.
Acknowledge: Now that you’ve given yourself time to feel, it’s okay to start gently peeling back the layers and addressing the wound. Be mindful, this isn’t time to critique, but rather implement the proper care and compassion you’d give a close friend if it were them in your shoes. During this time, you can now begin to dive within yourself. Remember, acknowledgement is to address what’s going on, as well as taking the necessary steps in nurturing your needs currently. Like soothing a baby, you’re soothing your inner child. Ask yourself aloud after a period of feeling, “What do I need right now?” “What is it that benefits my highest good right now?” If you’re not exactly sure what it is that makes you feel better, write down or even print out a list of activities and affirmations to choose from, and put them in a jar called “feel good.” The feel good jar will serve as your randomly selected lists of activities aiding in the foundation from point A of your feelings, to point B.
Release: You’ve allowed yourself time to feel, given yourself the proper attention you needed, and now it’s time to let go. Releasing emotions which no longer serve you. Now, it takes time admittedly to fully let go of the narrative you once fed to the emotions constantly arriving from triggered memories, but for the time being, let it go, let your mind rest and your heart sing, you’ve done the best you can within this present moment. It’s cheer up time, a pick me up in celebration of the foundation laid towards inner healing. To constantly think and mule over what you’ve given your best attempt at, is essentially purposely taking off the bandaid and picking at the scab. When we’re hurt, we’re supposed to heal and learn what to avoid, or better handle so that an old wound isn’t reopened needlessly, that’s not to say that it’ll possibly be reopened from another, but that’s where healing comes in, because next time around if there is one, we’ll make it through, no matter what, we’ve got all the necessary tools.
But before we tend to our wounds, let your motions fall; otherwise you’ll go mad in search of where it hurts.