Hey guys, welcome back! I had to take a couple weeks off to handle some medical issues. I had a mystery infection that no one could figure out. But after three doc appointments, a visit to urgent care, and a day in the ER, I was finally properly diagnosed and properly medicated. I’m feeling much better now and I am intensely grateful for how it feels to NOT have an infection in your body. I took a couple weeks off of podcasting and social media to heal and recuperate – cause that shit was intense! But I’m back now and I’m excited for today’s topic.

I was initially planning on focusing on communication today but I’m going to save that for next week because I am in a raw place with my emotions and I thought sharing how I handle that might be helpful.

Currently, I am experiencing sadness and disappointment in my relationship. And the way I see it, I have two options. I either lean into my feelings and walk through them… or I push them down which ultimately will lead me to either having a break down or acting out over them.

And these are your two choices as well. Your feelings are information. They are here to tell you what’s going on with you. And they live in your body. Your thoughts are in your head but the feelings that those thought create are housed in your body. That’s why feelings have the ability to put us into fight/flight mode. Because they are visceral.

So if you constantly feel like you’re a pressure cooker about to boil over, you are not processing your emotions. The answer to gaining control over your emotions is to feel them. I know, it’s not what you want to hear but this podcast is for the woman who wants truth.

So how do you feel your feelings? I mean if you have decades of practicing not feeling them then that’s quite a shift. The answer is to embrace them and lean into them. But what does that even mean?

Before I get into the technical piece of this process, I want to tell you that step one is deciding that you’re willing. You need to be willing to feel the discomfort of some of the more difficult emotions. That, my friend, is a decision.

I have decided that I want to be in touch with myself. That I want to know myself deeply. That I want to have the option of expressing myself vulnerably to my partner – which can only happen if I know what’s going on with me. And it’s my feelings that give me that information.

In other words, I have decided that I am willing to feel this kind of discomfort instead of the discomfort of stifling my feelings. I’m just choosing my hard. They’re both hard. Feeling my feeling is hard. Stifling my feelings is hard too.

Even right now as I sit on my porch typing out this podcast script, I am taking breaks to feel my sadness. I’m tuning into where I feel it in my body, I cry a little here and there, and I allow the discomfort to come to the surface. It’s cleansing, it’s natural, it’s as it should be. If it’s true for me then it’s ok. And I know from experience that because I am tending to the hard feelings so intentionally right now at 7am, that the rest of my day will feel much lighter. Because the sadness and disappointemtn will lessen as I turn my intention to them.

And that’s all they want; these feelings. They want me to honor them and give them some attention. I often compare feelings to toddlers. A toddler is relentless. He will say mom mom mom until you answer. My little one will even come over to me and turn my head towards him.

Now if I am dead set on not hearing him, on not dealing with him… then I will ignore him or yell at him or turn away from him. And guess what happens? He only gets more persistent.

But what happens when I stop what I’m doing to turn towards him? He asks me a simple question… like can I have a cheese stick? Or will you play with me? And as soon as I just give him what he wants or tend to his request, he chills out.

That’s your feelings too. They have a question for you. They have a message for you. They are here to tell you something. Perhaps you are accepting something in your life that you shouldn’t. Or perhaps you aren’t quite open to something good that’s right in front of you.

Maybe your anger wants you to know that you need to speak your truth. Maybe your sadness wants you to know that you’re longing for something you are ignoring. Maybe your hurt wants you to know that you need to engage in some healing. Whatever it is, your body keeps the score. If you don’t tune into your emotions, then you don’t know yourself.

Ok so how the hell do you process your emotions if you never have before? Well there are a million techniques out there but I like using the acronym PQRST. So what I do, both personally and with my clients, is I take a few deep breaths and visualize locking up my brain with a key and sinking into my body… where my feelings live.

Once I’m settled into the practice, I identify the emotions that feels strongest for me in that moment. For me right now, it’s disappointment. Then I use the acronym.

P stands for Place. Where in my body do I feel the disappointment? I tend to feel all my emotions in my belly. This is where most of your hormones live. So a lot of people feel their emotions in their belly but I think I do even more than others cause I rarely feel them anywhere else. However, you may be feeling your difficult emotions in your face, your throat, your shoulders, or anywhere else. So locate the Place.

Q stands for quality. What is the quality of the sensation and vibration that your feeling is creating in your body? Is it hot? Cold? Warm? Does it feel smooth or jagged? What color is the feeling? Does it sit heavy or move around? Really feel it. If you had to draw your feeling on a piece of paper, what would it look like?

So for me right now my disappointment does flips in my middle abdomen, it’s gray and cloudy and has a warm temperature.

R stands for radiate. This is just checking in to see if the sensation radiates to any other areas of your body or if it stays in one place. I’m noticing right now that my disappointment radiates into my throat.

S stands for sit with it. This is my favorite part. Giving myself the permission and the space to honor my experience. At first, you will start with like 15 seconds and then work your way up. When you are sitting with it, your brain will go nuts. That’s totally normal. Just visualize turning that key again and locking up the brain and come back to your body. Intentionally bring your focus back to the sensation of the disappointment or whatever feeing.

I sat with my sadness and disappointment for a while last night and again this morning. It feels cleansing. I’m not comfortable but this discomfort feels so much more productive than the discomfort of trying to stay busy and not feel it. And again, I’ve done this before so I already know that I’m going to feel better the rest of the day because I took this time.

And finally, T stands for telling me. What is my feeling telling me? I know it sounds super woo woo but if you really focus and get into this process, you can ask your feeling what it wants you to know and many times you will hear an answer.

I asked my disappointment what it wants me to know and what I’m learning is that I need more. I need more in my relationship and that’s totally ok. My disappointment is teaching me what my desires are and what makes me comfortable when it comes to a relationship. By honoring the disappointment, I am learning this truth about myself.

If I was to continue to stifle the disappointment, I might act like I’m ok when I’m not, giving my partner the impression that nothing needs to change. Or I might lash out at some point either through anger or through passive aggressive actions. But I decided I don’t want to be that woman. That’s simply not who I want to be.

I want to be a woman who does the work to be in touch with herself and then communicates it. The communication part is a whole nothing beast that I will tackle next week. But how can you communicate authentically and vulnerably if you don’t even know what’s going on with you? This is step one.

And I’m giving this to you in real time, my friends. I’m more than happy to be vulnerable while I process emotions if it inspires you to do the same. Even the cover art for this episode is a picture of me right now in my feels. You’re welcome.

I have a video of myself taking you through this technique piece by piece. It’s part of my paid program btu I will send you that one video for free if you email me and tell me you want to learn how to process your emotions. My email is Elana@nullpartnershipaligned.com so hit me up if you’re legit ready to start processing your emotions but you just need a structured system for doing so.

I just want to end by telling you that feeling your feelings is the ONLY way to be emotionally healthy. There is no other way. Pushing them down, ignoring them, distracting yourself from them… all that stuff leads to dysfunction and disconnect in marriage. And that’s when your emotions control you.

By carving out the time to feel them in the way I outlined in this episode, you then gain control over them. So, do yourself a favor and choose the hard that moves you towards inner peace and more connection.