One on the things I hear a lot from people who have been in therapy before is ‘I’ve dealt with that already’.
Yet they talk about if for a minute and get visibly upset. Would you like to know how you can be sure you’ve dealt with something? It is simple. When you think about and really step into that old memory and you find it does not hurt any longer. That is how you know it’s dealt with.
Not thinking about it, pushing the memory away, or pretending it’s not painful means it’s still stored in a way that can pressure your emotions and create stress and anxiety.
It’s the thing that you really don’t want to look at that’s most likely to be holding you back. It’s kind of obvious. If it hurts so much you won’t even look at it or talk about it then you know for certain that there is a lot of hurt locked in there. Your mind is trying to avoid it, but that keeps it ticking and pressuring your systems.
It’s a bit like when a bill comes in and you can’t deal with it, so you don’t even open it. You just put it to one side so it’s not in your face all day, but yet you know it’s there and on a lower level it keeps bothering you and adds to your stress until you do deal with it.
We can keep torturing ourselves for years to avoid a bad feeling now. How long do you want to feel bad? That’s how long you should bury or avoid the real issue.
If you know something is hurting but you’re pushing it down like that, then congratulations! You know how to make your life better. You just need to deal with that issue, and things can be better. Find a method that discharges the locked-in emotion. If your mind re-evaluates pain properly, then it can simply fade. Look for a win, not just a band-aid.
Too many of us (myself included for too long) just accept things as ‘how my life is’, but which can change for the better. Pick the goal that will let you enjoy life the most and seek ways to achieve that.
Change is easier than you think