Do you struggle with honoring and embracing your emotions?
I know I do, as do many of us.
I also find it challenging to acknowledge that my feelings matter just as much as anyone else’s. While I don’t tend to hold back from sharing my feelings, opinions, and desires, I have learned from other people that I can talk too much in situations.
And what’s underneath all of this?
The deep fear that my feelings and desires aren’t as important as other people’s.
It has been humbling to come to this realization about myself. It has also made me understand how important it is to live my life knowing that what I feel is just as important as anyone else.
I used to think that honoring our feelings was selfish, self-absorbed, and even arrogant…it’s not.
All feelings matter. It is about being true to ourselves, honest with how we feel and what we want, and willing to engage in authentic conversations with other people, especially when we don’t feel or want the same things they do.
Why Do Some Of Us Doubt That Our Feelings Matter?
It’s hard for some of us to acknowledge that our feelings do, in fact, matter for several reasons.
We worry about what other people think about us. We fear that others will not like, approve, or understand us.
Some of us don’t value ourselves in an authentic enough way to understand that our feelings matter, too. Many of us believe that we don’t deserve certain things, making us uncomfortable feeling and expressing certain emotions.
In addition to this, we’re often taught to put other people’s needs and feelings above our own. We’re not taught healthy ways to honor our feelings, making us believe that our feelings don’t matter.
But they do.
Always Honor Yourself and How You Truly Feel
When we don’t honor ourselves, our feelings, and our beliefs, we:
- Discount ourselves in a painful and damaging way
- Create separation between other people and us
- Don’t value ourselves
- Struggle expressing ourselves
- Believe that our feelings don’t matter
Five Ways to Embrace Your Feelings
Here are five tips on how to embrace, enhance, and honor your feelings.
1. Quit the Judging
Stop being so hard on yourself. Self-judgment suppresses your true feelings, which has so many negative consequences on you and those around you. Just be you and celebrate who you are.
2. Allow Yourself to Feel
All human emotions have value. Even the ones we consider “bad” can benefit us if we allow ourselves to feel them authentically. Allowing ourselves to feel these emotions can help us move through things in our lives that serve us and our relationships.
3. Be Real
Be true about what you want and get in touch with your true feelings. Be honest with yourself, be kind to yourself, and remember that you are enough.
4. Let Go
Many of us like to attach ourselves to our story. Getting stuck in your story takes you out of the emotional experience, and puts you in the past, not the present. By simply feeling our emotions and moving through them, we can overcome almost anything.
5. Get Support
Most of us don’t get the emotional training that we need to feel and express our emotions in a healthy and productive way. When we have emotional support, we can move through the ups and downs of life much more effectively, and we remember that we don’t have to do it alone. It is not only okay, but necessary, for us to ask for and receive help.
I have written five books about the importance of trust, authenticity, appreciation, and more. In addition, I deliver keynotes and seminars (both in-person and virtually) to empower people, leaders, and teams to grow, connect, and perform their best. Finally, as an expert in teamwork, leadership, and emotional intelligence, I teach techniques that allow people and organizations to be more authentic and effective. Find out more about how I can help you and your team achieve your goals today. You can also listen to my podcast here.
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This article was published on June 28, 2012, and updated for 2021.