For as long as I can recall I’ve kept myself busy. I’ve pottered and found tasks to complete, anything to distract and stimulate me rather than stop to feel and deal with what was really going on.
Even when matters blew up in my face and I had to face my feelings and emotions head on, I would cry and bemoan my fate to anyone who would listen, feeling sorry for myself and becoming a victim, and I would use this as a distraction rather than deal with the real issue. I felt life was unfair and blamed others around me for my fate. By not dealing with the issue, it would seem, ‘it’ got buried in my body.
As an example, my back gave way one day in boarding school when I was 10 years old and I was prescribed ‘bed rest’ for a few weeks. (My ‘backbone’ no longer supported me.) This weak back continued for many years after.
I can track this pattern of behaviour – distraction and burying – back to when I was placed into boarding school at the age of 10 and was very unhappy. Back in the 1960s counselling was unheard of. Feelings were denied by pupils and teachers alike. Although I felt very sad and expressed this by crying a lot, especially at the beginning of term when saying goodbye to my parents, or when I was allowed out of school for 3 precious days per term to visit them, I was often told I wasn’t feeling what I was feeling. I was told “You’re not really feeling sad” although I knew that I was feeling really sad and miserable, so I used to go off for long walks alone and cry. I would look out of the window in class, day-dreaming, but really hoping that the teacher would ask me what was wrong. I then repressed my expression because when I tried to articulate how I felt to adults, no-one listened or took me seriously. For example, when back in the boarding house I was requested to help out with the younger ones at bath and bed time. I was 10 years old and learned to suppress my feelings so I could present a ‘good face’ to the younger boarders.
The focus was on the system and getting things done by a certain time rather than considering how we pupils were feeling, as if that didn’t matter. I therefore felt I didn’t matter. Life was about “doing your duty”, regardless of how we felt or how our bodies were feeling. We just “got on with it”. Patterns of ‘doing’ became established, without care or regard for my true self. I learned to put everyone else first – to do nothing and just be with myself was called laziness.
I now know however, that stopping and resting is important: by stopping and connecting with myself first I know that I am of far more value to myself and then to those around me – I find I then bring all of me to a situation with a good heart, rather than resentfulness or other emotions. I now bring a rested, well-cared and well-nourished woman to a situation or task at hand and I can feel the huge difference this makes.
In my earlier years, politeness and being nice and kind were rewarded: showing who you truly were, warts and all, was ignored and punished. I thus learned to be a good, quiet, helpful young girl, rather than express myself and be the true me. The real me, the beautiful innocent sensitive child, got buried.
This laid a foundation for a lifetime of distracting myself – doing rather than feeling and being myself. As other unpleasant life events occurred, I would read books voraciously and watch TV or films as an escape, to take me away from truly feeling how I was. Later on I went to folk clubs, to listen and get carried away by the music. So the empty feelings of sadness were buried for a while. I didn’t trust or value myself and looked outside of me for acknowledgement and recognition, rather than accept and know who I truly was.
Being myself now means sensing what is right for me in every moment, listening to my body and not overriding it. I now know there is much more honesty in this way of being.
I had spent more than 25 years trying to sort out my issues using various complementary therapies, religions and spiritual modalities, but the issues were never truly healed, they just got buried deeper into my body. Although I gained some temporary relief at times, the issues always reared their heads again eventually. I was always trying to improve myself, not accepting who I was and not feeling good enough…. I was looking outside myself for answers. I knew there had to be more to life. There was always the hope that maybe the next workshop or counsellor would provide the magic answer and I would feel “better”.
Thanks to Universal Medicine I have come to recognise these old patterns of behaviour and have now come a long way to addressing them. I am unlocking those buried emotions, feeling them, then re-connecting to what is actually true – hence they are being truly healed this time. The reason I know this is things have begun to change for the first time in my life… truly change!
I am now taking responsibility for my life events and for how I respond to situations.
Finding Universal Medicine was like coming home.
Thanks to the support of Serge Benhayon and the Esoteric Practitioners in Universal Medicine, I have now healed many of my issues.
- I have obtained answers to many of the questions that I had been asking and now feel more joyful and loving.
- I am content with, and in my body, just being me.
- I am more fun to be with.
- I am learning to honour my feelings and not to ignore, avoid, or distract myself with busy-ness.
- I am learning to stay in the present moment, to accept and to love myself.
- I no longer override the fact that I do feel my feelings and can allow them and accept how important this is.
I now know that the true me was hiding underneath all the emotions and hurts from my past, buried deep inside. As I cleared away these layers of hurts I have become the loving and lovable woman I always was deep down, but had lost sight of.
You could say I am no longer a human do-ing, but have become a human be-ing.
By Sue Q – 64 years, Grandmother, Company Director, Volunteer, Somerset UK
824 thoughts on “Learning to Feel my Feelings: Human Beings, not Human Doings”
Many expectations are placed on us, how we have to behave, what we have to do, whether we are allowed to express, and so on…all impositions, rather than allowing us to be true to ourselves.
“I now know, however, that stopping and resting is important: by stopping and connecting with myself first I know that I am of far more value to myself and then to those around me ” Having learned more about rhythms and cycles since I wrote this blog I am deepening my relationship with stillness and repose. I know others who have done the same. Feeling the stillness within whilst carrying out everyday tasks brings greater service to others – more than mere function and the doing of things to just get through.
“I am now taking responsibility for my life events and for how I respond to situations.” And five years on How I live now has deepened and I take far more responsibility for my life – how I move, how I express and how I respond to people and situations. Reactions can still get me, but a vast difference to how I lived five years ago. We need to appreciate where we are now – as I know so many who have deepened their relationships with themselves and thus other people. Far less ‘self’ and individuality and more about what serves, thus what is needed.
As I wrote in the blog – “The focus was on the system and getting things done by a certain time rather than considering how we pupils were feeling, as if that didn’t matter” Systems put profits and the system itself before people. We see this in education and hospital systems – are they truly set up for people, despite these two ostensibly being in caring roles? I think not.
Much focus has been placed on getting things done in our lives; that pressure was placed on myself and can still creep into my life today, ‘Patterns of ‘doing’ became established, without care or regard for my true self.’
Yes. Yet when we focus on being, not doing, its amazing how many things can get done. Space, rather than time!
What I can feel is how we try to fix our being by doing, as if doing would compensate for where being is not (good) enough, but truth is that we have always been enough from the word go, and it has been impossible to even contemplate that for many of us, as we have done everything we can to just not be.
Fixing things doesn’t work. I tried that for many years. However observing what doesn’t feel true – whether in oneself or another, can bring understanding. When we want to fix we have judged. Just being ourselves – without any trying – a much more joyfull place to be in.
This is Great what you have shared Sue, as a generation sweeping things under the carpet or rug was a way of existing. We were shown the ‘out of sight out of mind’ type attitude but the reality is everything comes with an energy and now we are starting to understand the Responsibility we have to air the rugs and lift the lid of our buried issues so we can heal from re-connecting to our Soul-full-essences.
I have a friend who went to boarding school roughly at your age and she had a very similar experience – often sharing that she would look outside the window to daydream and pretend life was a different way. Are boarding schools really beneficial for children’s development? Yep, they may be classed as very educational & many parents send their children to other countries thinking they are doing them a favour for their future – but what kind of people come out of these institutions? Is it common that people feel resentful and hurt by the experience? Or are they content and happy with the way they have been supported to grow up and are now contributing members of society?
Different experiences I would say, having met some who loved their time there and others who detested it. I would say that you have to toughen up in order to survive – probably even more so for boys. Then its sink or swim. Being sensitive -as all children are – wasn’t acknowledged back then. It may be different nowadays. I made a conscious decision not to send my children away.
That makes sense, many people make decisions about their parenting styles based on their experience as children.
Beautiful to reveal to yourself and to everyone the truth of who you are.
As human beings we really don’t know how to respond well to ourselves when we feel hurt or emotional. I know growing up children weren’t considered capable of adult emotions or necessarily knowing what they felt if they were sad, etc, but it was expected if you fell over to be upset because it was physical. I’ve also seen in nursing homes the tendency to medicalise emotions, instead of supporting the person in other ways. In human life we seem to want to also distance ourselves from upsets and hurts, and especially not show these in public, even though we are all experiencing them regularly. We would do so much better to be open, accepting, and conversant with each other about our emotions and hurts to learn and to heal.
Yes we don’t want to feel the hurts and upsets felt by others because we haven’t dealt with our own hurts. Let’s start dealing with our own hurts first. Then we may be capable of supporting others. For those in the caring professions this has to be a no-brainer. Is it dealt with in modern day trainings I wonder?
When we clear away the layers of hurts we uncover the diamond within shining brightly just waiting to be rediscovered.
I can really appreciate after reading your blog Sue how important it is just for us all to talk about the issues and hurts that come up for us in our day to day life or shadow us from the past. Hurts and issues that we can otherwise bury if we don’t resolve them and learn to let them go. We should therefore never ever underestimate the potential of how supportive, nourishing and healing our conversations with each other can be.
Yes, its so important tp express how we feel especially if we have been discouraged form doing so for most of our lives. Its not about indulging or wallowing – just simply expressing from our body. We can support each other, as you say Suse.
Burying our hurts is not a good idea, they have to come out at some point, and they can really affect our health and well-being.
We learn to shut down our feelings very early on if we are not being met for who we are. By shutting down our feelings we first have to ignore our body and harden it to not feel, this could have damaging effects on us both emotionally and physically if we continue to live in a shutdown mode for the rest of our life.
So true. Learning how to express from the body can take a while to relearn after so many years of burying. But it is so freeing to do so. Universal Medicine and the various esoteric modalities support us hugely with this.
Overriding and shutting down our feelings is disregarding to ourselves.
There is so much to feel and to be aware of, it is great to read the journey of you returning to this.
To me it’s actually quite hateful what we impose on our children, when they are denied their feelings and are totally disregarded because they are just children. Is it any wonder that as adults we become so hard and disregarding towards ourselves and others and so perpetuate the cycle all over again.
I think being supported to be more truly in touch with our feelings can help us to genuinely process them rather than suppress what’s there and by truly processing them it can free us up to actually be more productive…
I can so relate to this Sue.. that pattern of blaming the world and making ourselves feel the victim, which at the time, feels totally justifiable, but later we can see how we set this up for ourselves: we don’t feel met by others around us, feel hurt, withdraw and then blame the world for not understanding us even though we are the ones choosing not to express. If we don’t deal with those issues then we end up perpetuating that dismissiveness, that withdrawal reaction, and it affects all of our relationships. Being willing to see and take responsibility for our own part in relationships, for how we have created hurts and issues, is what liberates us.
It is always important to look at our part in any situation, and to take responsibility for that.
I love your word play here Sue – we undoubtedly still have to “do” human life and of course give it 100%, but as human beings – our being or the quality of our being must always be of primary importance.
Yes for sure the doing aspect is still essential and by taking care of the quality of our being we can bring that quality into all we do and truly give it 100% as you say.
Yes it’s the quality in the ‘doing’ that’s important. Anything else is pure functionality.
The quality we do things in is always paramount.