MonteH: Three Techniques to Express Your Emotions
In this update Monte suggests that one of difficulties people have in recovering is that they do not know how to “un-repress” their emotions. He gives three methods that we can use to learn how to express our emotions. I came away with two questions after reading this update. First, Monte suggests that people need to change their personality traits and stop being “goodist” or “perfectionist.” Is this necessary? Do people have to change their personality traits or can they just learn to recognize what is going on? My second question is what techniques have other people used to “un-repress” their emotions? How did you learn how to express your emotions that came up throughout the day?
Monte Hueftle Update – July 21
Emotions link our body and our mind! This is truth. TMS or tension/inner-stress induced pain are physical pain disorders that are caused by psychological factors. One of the key psychological factors in this disorder is repressed emotions.
Understanding repressed emotions and how to un-repress them is where a lot of people get stuck. First they get stuck in trying to find repressed emotions. Next people get stuck trying to feel or experience emotions. The bigger challenge though is that many of you are misinformed about the act of repression. Most people do not know how they repress emotional energy and thus are not able to experience them either.
- Get it out of your mind that you have to find your big, huge repressed emotions and then everything will be okay. This is a daily chronic pain disorder caused by our daily moment to moment chronic behaviors & thoughts.
- Stop intellectualizing/analyzing “what am I feeling” or “what am I suppose to be feeling” or “I don’t know what I am feeling”. Many people talk about their feelings, they discuss them with their therapist, attend workshops, and they share them with their message board/support groups, but they don’t experience them so they do not get rid of the pain and other symptoms in their body/life.
If you can understand and accept one thing from this update I hope it is this--TMS or tension induced pain is a chronic physical pain disorder that is caused by our daily moment to moment chronic thoughts and behavior patterns. These chronic patterns are doing two big, huge things. 1. They are generating inner tension. 2. They are repressing emotions.
If you are going to reverse this disorder, and you can, you must understand this. Chronic worry, being self-conscious, always pleasing others, trying to control everything, needing perfection and striving generates a tremendous amount of inner tension. These behaviors and the thoughts we are thinking when we are in these modes are also the repressing agent. Type “a” behavior patterns and your associated thoughts are repressing emotions! Most of us realize that excessively eating, working, drinking, shopping and exercising are common methods to avoid or repress emotions. What I want you to really recognize is that when you are in one of your dominant type “a” patterns/thoughts you are generating new inner tension and you are repressing emotional energy. You must understand this before you can move on and “feel” or “experience” your emotions.
Here are three different methods that you can use to experience or feel your emotions. There is a time and place to use each of these. These methods require you to be consciously aware. Awareness is where you must begin, however it is not enough to just be aware that you are creating inner tension or holding in your emotions. Listen to you your thoughts. We become so accustomed to thinking in certain patterns that we go on auto-pilot and become unconscious of our thoughts/patterns.
As you listen in on your thoughts and observe your behavior patterns write down your dominant type “a” patterns and what you say to yourself when in these modes. Make a note of when, how and where this happens and why. This will help you identify your unique patterns. Pay special attention to the “little or seemingly unimportant hurts” that you observe. Men especially will shrug off these “little” hurts as not that big of a deal, yet they seem to continue to pop up over and over! So be pretty anal about these “little” hurts that continue to pop up and investigate them. If you keep remembering situations from your past, especially those with unfinished business attached to them, you can be certain there are repressed emotions here. Investigate these situations and be prepared to feel the hurt or fear associated with it. It can be really beneficial to write these situations out versus just thinking and contemplating them. The easy way out is to just review it mentally. When you commit to writing it out it is much harder to deny the truth or meaning of the situation.
Method #1 – Feeling your repressed emotions
When you are in a situation or place in life that you know you need to feel or experience an emotion that has been repressed, follow these guidelines. 1. Be present with your feeling and resist the urge to run away or put it aside. Welcome the feeling and don’t be afraid of experiencing it. 2. Close your eyes and be with whatever you are feeling and allow yourself to lose control if need be—cry, scream, etc. This is just you and the emotion so there is nothing to be embarrassed about. Focus on what you are feeling and not on what or who caused it! Your intention is to be with whatever you are feeling – hate, anger, rage, resentment, guilt. 3. You may need to speak the details of this situation and everything you are feeling to someone. Instead of hiding and being ashamed speak the truth in detail to someone. This can bring you a new perspective and closure. This process can take time. You may go through these steps multiple times over days and weeks and months to fully dissolve and release a repressed emotion. Accept and welcome your emotions and accept that this practice of feeling and releasing will take courage, discipline and persistence and may not happen over-night. You can successfully use Guided Imagery to help in this process. I have two powerful programs that can help you.
- TMS Imagery Audio – This includes Belleruth Naparstek’s “connect with feelings” imagery.
- Power – Healing – Energy – This program incorporates Caroline Myss’s emotional chakra practice to help identify & release repressed emotions.
Since this is a daily chronic pain disorder caused by our daily moment to moment chronic patterns and thoughts; you need a strategy that you can implement during your daily moment to moment life that allows you to effectively stop the act of repressing and allows you to experience emotional energy. This is your big, huge work. This is the transformational therapy that reverses this pain disorder! This process begins by identifying the dominant type “a” personality patterns that you habitually, chronically and unconsciously revert into. You challenge and change this repressing personality trait by recognizing that you are in the trait and then deliberately and consciously changing your old patterns/thoughts—This is your work!
For example you challenge your anger or people pleasing repressing patterns by allowing yourself to remain in your life situation and feel (experience) whatever is there. (You remain in your life experience), but you choose not to act out your anger or choose not to act out in your people pleasing mode. This is work. It takes practice and courage and the willingness to change. When you challenge these personality traits in this way you are changing or redirecting out of your old repressing acts (behavior patters and thoughts) so you effectively are not going into your old repression modes. You may think that nothing is really changing but everything is changing. When you choose not to go into your repressing act (people pleasing pattern, habitual worry or angry outburst) you have stopped the repression. When you remain in your life situation without the repression you are now allowing your emotional energy to move/flow/be open, versus having it held down. This is experiencing emotional energy in a way that transforms this pain disorder. The problem for some is you just can’t read about it and have it happen…You must change the way you are acting and change your thoughts while not going into the your old repressing patterns.
There is no other way to change or redirect out of your repressing acts and experience emotional energy in your moment to moment daily living, than by consciously choosing to act and think differently in those moments. You can not change this pain disorder without modifying your dominant personality traits/thoughts. I hope you are getting this. This is why re-reading about what TMS is--doesn’t always/usually work. Unless you are challenging and redirecting out of the ways you repress emotions on a moment to moment basis nothing is going to change.
Method #3 – Root Lock Practice
Root Lock, which is a perineum muscle contraction, capitalizes on the mind-body link. You may wonder how it is that a contraction of such a small area can have such profound effects on our entire body/mind/emotional systems. Root Lock is performed in much the same way as muscle relaxation therapy and bio-feedback techniques developed 40 years ago. To look at Root Lock as just a relaxation therapy though is wrong. The physical contraction and mindful breathing is merely the initial powerful means in which we communicate with our nervous system and emotional energy. In this practice the subconscious mind is stimulated so that repressed mental and emotional energy is allow to surface into our conscious awareness. The relaxation of tension in the body-mind allows our repressed energy to be released. When this release occurs, subconscious anxieties and tensions surface and can now be dealt with. The root lock practice is part of The Master Practice Program. This practice is detailed in the book and a guided imagery example is on the cd.
You can engage the root lock practice in a formal quiet setting, while driving your car, standing in line at the store or while stretching before a workout. Do not be afraid to practice root lock if you have lower pelvic challenges….this is one of the main areas root lock will help. If you have challenges doing the root lock while sitting, spread your legs a few feet and do it standing. You can also forward bend and really incorporate the breathing and the lock while stretching. If you do any type of stretching of your body, incorporate root lock to take the focus off of the physical stretch and make it more of an inner mindful practice.
Stay the course,
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