By Jennifer Robinson, MSW, RSW
Emotions are a very important component of our lives.
We feel different emotions throughout every single day, they influence our thoughts our behaviors, and ultimately determine our decisions. Emotions can be very helpful, they can help us to identify how we feel about a situation, a person, or a thought, however at times they can also be harmful if we don’t know how to express them in healthy ways.
These tips can help you to be more in tune with your emotions;
A few healthy ways to express emotions:
Talk about it: The first thing that comes to mind when we are feeling upset is to talk to someone. We are constantly encouraged to reach out for help or to turn to a trusted person to express how you are feeling and there are very good reasons for this. Talking about how you feel can allow you to make sense of your thoughts and emotions and if you are talking to someone in your support system, it helps you feel validated and supported. You can talk to a friend, family member, co-worker or therapist.
However, if talking about feelings and emotions is something unfamiliar to a person, it can be quite a struggle. This is why it is important to know that there are other ways to express emotions other than talking. You can:
Write about it: Journaling can help you make sense of your emotions because it can assist you in organizing your thoughts to pinpoint exactly what it is that you are feeling. It is also a form of emotional release, allowing you to remove whatever it is that is causing you distress from your mind, and relay it onto a piece of paper. It can allow you to move on from emotions that may be holding you back, to refocus back to the present moment and to feel a sense of relief. Journaling can also allow you to trigger an emotional release such as tears, which may actually be very helpful in the moment.
Exercise it out: Exercise can be another healthy form of emotional expression, it allows you to take ownership for how you are feeling and release it in a healthy way. When you are exerting physical energy, you are releasing pent up emotions from your body. Exercise can help you process your life through movement.
Get creative: Art and creativity can also be a healthy way for individuals to express their emotions and experiences. It is a unique way to let out how you feel, to make sense of your emotions and communicate through something other than words. Expressing emotions creatively can be through drawing, coloring, making music etc.
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