“I’m fine” is something we say too often as a reflex even when we’re not in fact fine. It’s normal to want to keep things peaceful for your own sanity or the sanity of loved ones, but the deeper we bury our emotions the more we end up over-loading ourselves with emotional baggage that – surprise! – you don’t actually have to carry around. Over time that weight can become a huge burden, whether that manifests in obvious ways or as subconscious distress. It’s time to unpack.
Mandy Morris is the international best-selling author of Love…It’s How I Manifest, and creator of the Authentic Program Series, an online training program created to help individuals re-connect with their authentic selves. We love this excerpt from her book about releasing buried emotions so you can become your most authentic self.
I remember when I was in my late teens to early twenties, I was going through this really big block in being able to express myself and feel safe in showing my feelings. It was miserable, honestly, but my belief was that if I expressed myself and the pain I was experiencing fully, I would not receive love from the people in my life. I want to gift you with this crucial tool because it will be one of the most defining factors of your life for multiple reasons. It is learning, and then continuously having, the ability to live consciously. In a nutshell, this means that when you feel off emotionally or energetically, whether you know the reason or not, that you allow for yourself to become aware of it. We aren’t even getting into dealing with it yet, but just showing it some awareness. The absolute worst thing you can do to yourself is to bury or ignore feelings when they come up.
What Happens When You Bury Emotions?
Why? Emotions, feelings, and intuition are little compasses leading you to a fulfilling life, and to your truest version of you, where all the happiness and true desires lie. So, if you bury an emotion, a feeling or a “ping” of intuition that needed to be acknowledged, you condition yourself for a particular norm, like all things in life. The problem is, we are gifted with emotions, feelings, and intuition for a very important reason and purpose, and you ignoring them is like a slap in the face to the Universe. The Universe is simply a Xerox, and it’s going to send you copy after copy of what it best interprets that you want.
When you cling to something or don’t allow for it to flow through you, you literally cause a blockage of energy. Or when you think about or act upon something long enough you create a dense amount of energetic activity in one “spot.” Or when you consistently stress, you collect energy in parts of your body, and the immune system gets weaker, or diseases eventually show up, creating a psychosomatic response. When enough energy is put into any space, it either needs to be released or it will be made manifest as particles that are influenced by frequency (and yes, everything has a frequency; I think even plankton vibrate at a rate of around two cycles per second or something), which start moving really fast as they begin to change into denser matter and eventually . . . matter we can see.
So… in essence, thoughts can become things.
The Benefit of Un-Burying Emotions
Now, the next trick is knowing what you’re thinking on a non-conscious level, and make those thoughts conscious, and then… rewire them to an autoresponder that says, “I smell bullshit; replace thought or reaction to stimuli in this way.” But don’t worry, we have a chapter on how that works later. Manipulating the gray matter in the brain is one way, mindful meditation is another, exercising can work. Me? I like to live consciously.
We sometimes think that “burying our emotions” is a good thing. When some kind of emotion comes up—grief, anger, frustration or sadness—we just push it to the side thinking, “I’ll deal with this later.” We bury them somewhere in our subconscious mind. Instead of embracing these emotions, we tend to negate them. Your subconscious mind, however, tends to allow things to resurface over time, but if something has been buried for long enough, it’s going to come up in a weird way that at times will be difficult to even trace back. For example, in my late teens, I was in a relationship with someone whose full love I felt I didn’t have. Due to this, I never wanted to speak my mind and my frustrations and need for love because I didn’t want him to leave or cheat on me, so I kept it to myself. Slowly, I began just hating myself, stopped eating because I thought maybe he didn’t love me enough because I didn’t look good enough, and then stopped making friends, thinking maybe he would love me more if he saw how dedicated I was. It was a long and miserable relationship, and it wasn’t until I honored my feelings as they came up that I was able to begin saving myself. Imagine your boss flipping out on you at work. You suppress it, act like nothing happened. A few days later, the frustration has festered, but you’ve consciously forgotten all about the boss’s blowout, so the frustration builds up on a more unconscious level. Then, you go home one day and flip out on something your partner did to upset you. This whole scenario stemmed from a projection your boss put onto you; you carried that energy with you subconsciously, and it resurfaced in an ugly way.
When you live consciously, you remove the need for you to have out-of-control experiences in life, and it allows for you to be in a state of calmness and love within yourself, thus projecting outwardly into your world and bringing you even more of it. Learning how to embrace our emotions is a prerequisite in attaining authenticity. By being conscious of our emotions, we prevent negativity from settling inside of us. By acknowledging them, we give ourselves the power to transmute it. By holding the emotions by their horns, we take control of them instead of them taking control of us.
People who bury their emotions think that negation is the shortcut to peace of mind. Wrong! I get it—confronting emotions seems so much more painful. This is the reason why we refuse to deal with them. It’s like being confronted by a dark and scary figure. We can’t look at it straight in the eyes, much less embrace it. We think our best defense is to run away, but that is an impossible task when it comes to emotion. In my Authentic Manifestation 30-Day Program, I talk about how deeply emotion controls our reality, and even when we say we want things, like money or relationships, we actually desire an emotional state. Realizing that emotions play a vital role in our reality helps us in knowing how to handle them more carefully.
So take a look; here are some of the manifestations of buried emotions:
+ Waking up in a bad mood for no apparent reason.
+ Sudden outburst to our spouse or people we live with
+ Recurring feelings of self-hate and frustration
+ Feelings of deep sadness
+ When you say, “I’m okay. I’m fine,” even if you’re not feeling good about something.
+ When you can’t say what you truly feel to a person for fear of being rejected, ridiculed, or judged
+ When you take refuge in over self-indulgence (eating, drinking, drugs) during emotional lows
+ When you snap at people for the pettiest of reasons
+When you give too many excuses for the people who hurt you that you become a victim
I promise you, it’s impossible to bury emotions. They can’t be destroyed by negation.When you think you are burying the negative emotions, you are actually planting a seed—a seed that is then watered with negligence—and it eventually resurfaces in an ugly and unpredictable way. It must instead be processed and transmuted.
6 Techniques To Unpack Buried Emotions
Here are practical techniques for how to consciously embrace emotion:
Start an emotion journal. Each day, journal the emotions that you’ve been through. This will enable you to acknowledge in writing the feelings and sentiments of the day. I write every day and sometimes multiple times a day; it really works for me to see how many different emotions I may go through and decide why I experienced the ones I did.
Transmute your emotion. When your emotion comes, go to a private place where you can be alone for a while. Close your eyes and breathe slowly. Breathe deeply. Feel life going through you until your whole body is relaxed and your mind is clear. Revisit the emotion. Elevate it until it has no more power over you. Dry that negative emotion with a visualization that makes sense for you. When I feel an emotion is stuck in me, I imagine a vacuum literally sucking the dark smoke out of whatever part of my body is feeling affected.
Do emotional checks. Set your mobile phone alarms with three hour intervals. Once the alarm sounds off, check yourself and your emotional state. We tend to get stuck in negative cycles, so cutting into them allows for conscious awareness to be brought in. If you find you’re already in an awesome state, give it some gratitude and vibe on!
Pour out to a coach or a trusted confidante. Talk to a person who you truly trust, a person who accepts and loves you for who you are. It’s important that this is someone you trust well. Tell him or her your raw emotion. Let it out. But be careful not to turn it into a victim party.
Focus on the emotion. Don’t pass any judgment on the person or people who you may feel caused you that emotional harm.
Write and burn. Write that emotion and the issues related to it on paper. Read it out loud. Then, burn it.Watch it turn to ashes. This ritual helps in creating a closure to an emotional burden.
A Few Final Reflections
We embrace not only the negative emotions but the positive, as well. There are people who negate positive and happy emotions. These are the people who frown when they should be smiling; who cry when they should be celebrating; who stoop down when they should be walking with their chins up. Some people are afraid to be happy.
Being authentic means embracing our vulnerability. Emotions are neither good nor bad. It is what it is. The 72,000 emotional receptacles all over our bodies dictate how we feel or react in varying life situations. We can only control our reactions to them. Consciously embrace your emotions and start living an authentic life.
Say A Prayer
Grant me the courage to face and embrace my emotions. Emotions are gifts. They manifest my power to feel and create. May I see emotions not as frightening giants that are bent on stepping on me but as opportunities of growth, self-knowledge, and expansion.
Love this. Thank you
Great article. I read another that said basically that tuning into your emotions is good for anxiety. Pushing away emotion is not good for your health.
The point of there is no good or bad emotion.
Acknowledge it and let it pass. We’re all human and can not think happy thoughts all the time.
The quest of happiness is making us unhappy
Great article, I will continue to follow, finding myself is important at this point.
I cant wait to learn more. Self improvement is life long in my eyes. To live in the now is difficult yet gets easier the more you learn to focus on whats infront of you. Cant wait for more.
I have found that sitting quietly with the hurt and fear, the darkness that I often feel helps me to feel stronger . That works for me. I’ve been through a lot since childhood and it’s affected and is still affecting my life but I love my quiet space where I come face to face with the darkened and I literally find myself going down a tunnel through it until I get to the end of it at least for a good period of time before I have to deal with another set of emotions again. All I can say it’s made me stronger.