Sometimes it is difficult to understand what we feel, it seems that it is an emotional tornado that is difficult to survive and easier to block. Experts at the Institute for Cognitive Modeling report that letting go of control over your emotions and allowing yourself to experience them can be difficult. If you’re feeling down, stop, ask yourself if you’re in relative safety right now. If so, switch to something that calms and relaxes you.
Our psyche is arranged in such a way that we can work with our feelings while being safe. In conditions of real danger, the survival mode is activated.
Defining your feelings
Allow yourself to feel your emotions in a safe place. This will help you recognize them.
Try to relax. Go where you feel comfortable and safe. Close your eyes, take a deep breath and try to relax.
Pay attention to your body. Maybe you express your emotions physically. This can help you understand what emotions you are feeling. For example, if your heart is beating fast and your breathing is shallow, this may indicate fear or panic. If your muscles are tense, you can get angry.
Turn your attention inward and try to focus on what you feel. Try not to judge your emotions, just let them be. If you can, try to name your feelings.
How strong are your feelings? You may find it helpful to rate your emotions on a scale of one to ten. For example, how many out of ten do you feel angry about? Sorrow? Fear?
Emotions are complex, and we rarely experience just one emotion at a time. You may experience a mix of emotions that change throughout the day.
Understanding your feelings
Once you identify the feeling, try to analyze why you feel it.
Take the time to ask yourself, “Why do I feel this way?” This can help you identify the thoughts or beliefs that underlie your feelings.
You can then begin to work through these thoughts and beliefs to see how they work for you.
Whatever you feel, remind yourself that this is a sincere answer.
It’s okay to feel really upset, worried, or scared—and it’s okay to feel that way months, years, or decades after a traumatic event happened to you.
No one should ever blame you for how you feel or expect you to just “get over it.”