Fear of Feeling?

Have you ever consumed yourself with a work project when you felt sad? Or turned to something sweet or salty when experiencing anxiety?  Admittedly, both of those distraction choices fit me. I sometimes resist my feelings, particularly the ones without a positive vibe. However, when I avoid a feeling rather than face it, I simply delay the inevitable. Whether it is five minutes or five years later, unresolved pain often resurfaces. It is as though I am sometimes afraid to actually feel, yet often find release when I do. 

Have you ever felt better after a good cry? Or been relieved after describing the sensation of the big lump in your throat during a frustrating moment? Identifying a feeling and experiencing the feeling takes its power away. If you are here, you have survived hard things in life. You may choose to be afraid of your feelings or face them.  

Are feelings that important in mediation and conflict resolution? Feelings certainly play a role in conflict. Feelings are neither right nor wrong. You get to feel whatever you feel. However, your feelings are not facts. They are your feelings, which others may or may not share. Being able to identify feelings helps get to the underlying need and begin to create ideas for resolution.  

Life brings opportunities to experience both positive and negative emotions. Avoiding or delaying a feeling only tends to give it more power. Are you paying attention to your feelings, and allowing yourself space to feel? 

A civil and family mediator, peace builder, and educator, Sherry Ann Bruckner lives in Alexandria, Minnesota. Visit brucknermediation.com/services to learn more or call Sherry at (320) 808-3212 for help to transform conflict and create peace.

As always, be gentle with you. Be gentle with all. Be the peace.