Dealing with my pain
is a terrifying process
I feel I could die.
© Orla Kenny
Emotional pain is hard to deal with. This is what drives people towards addictions. We want to numb it, suppress it, anything to get rid of it.
But, none of these things help us to heal, they just help us to cope. I am trying not to run from my emotional pain, but to just sit with it.
It’s not easy, but I think I am making progress. We will only heal when we are ready to face our pain.
Sometimes we need support to get to this place. This can be a counselor, support group, coach, or friend.
But, the best help we can get is from our higher power (God), but we first need to have a belief in a higher power who loves and cares for us.
Another good way to process our emotional pain is through writing. Us writers are blessed to have this tool at our disposal.
On my healing journey, most of my work was done through journaling. I attended workshops, support groups, healing services, and had one-to-one guidance, but the real work was done by me.
I had to participate in the process and make a commitment to my recovery.
I had to decide that I would love and care for myself every day.
Therapeutic Journaling for Beginners
If you are not a writer or you have never journaled before, here are a few simple steps to get you started:
- Get a large notepad. Small ones are not much use for this, as you need lots and lots of paper for those days when things flow. Use recycled paper if it makes you feel better, but the idea is to have enough paper so you can keep writing when emotions take a hold of you.
- Next, find a time and place where you will not be interrupted. It’s good to even block out time for this.
- Sit for a few minutes and get in touch with the most alive feeling in you. It could be anger, sadness, loneliness, or even be something more positive, like peace. Follow that feeling and start writing something like, “I feel angry because my mother told me”… or whatever your situation is.
- There will be times when you feel nothing. This may mean the emotion or feeling is subtle. It is more of a sensation. Try to get in touch with it before writing. It could even be something physical, such as feeling hot, or a headache or back pain. Pay attention to your body. Painful emotions often express themselves physically.
- Do not try to craft beautiful sentences. This is not for the public. The real way to journal is to let rip, say whatever you need to say. Don’t worry, you can throw it in the fire later, but you will find some gems in the midst of your rant. They may be worth looking at.
- Then, make it your own. Write to release tension and to understand yourself more. And there’s no need to edit as that will cause you to disconnect from the emotion.
One workbook that helped me to start journaling was “The Artists Way,” by Julia Cameron. It’s a wonderful book. I enjoyed it so much, I went through the 8-week process twice.
The book takes you on a creative, spiritual journey, so if that’s something you are interested in, I’d highly recommend this book.
Thank you for reading and thank you Diana C. for publishing my work.