I’ve been thinking about a recent conversation I had with a friend of mine, whose separating from a loved one. Her one statement spoken in anger and despair “I’ll never be able to trust and be friends with my husband again”, is what’s inspired me to write this article.
When someone is going through a difficult phase such as separation, it’s not just their health and wellbeing that is affected but also of those around them. So how easy is it in reality to forgive someone who has been selfish and let you down maybe once or in some cases repeatedly. One goes though a whole array of emotions from loss of trust, helplessness, despair to fear, anger and hate. Things only become more difficult and go out of hand when one lets these feelings govern every aspect of their life.
We experience two Basic Emotions In Life – Love and Fear. All other emotions are variations of these two emotions. Thoughts and behavior come from either a place of love, or fear. Anxiety, anger, control, sadness, depression, inadequacy, confusion, hurt, lonely, guilt, shame, these are all fear-based emotions. Emotions such as joy, happiness, caring, trust, compassion, truth, contentment, satisfaction, these are love-based emotions.
The degree of intensity of both types of emotions varies from being mild, moderate and strong. The emotion that underpins anger is fear. So in this case anger, at a milder form will show up as dismay and despair, at a moderate intensity an individual may feel offended and exasperated, at a stronger intensity it will lead to rage or HATE. All these emotions stem from FEAR of loss and the resulting behaviour is distancing yourself from the other individual as a way of protecting yourself from the cycle of further hurt and pain.
On a physical level, Emotions directly affect the way our body works. Fear-based emotions stimulate the release of a different set of chemicals as compared to love-based emotions. If the fear-based emotions are long-term or chronic they damage the chemical and immune system of our bodies. Fewer white blood cells are produced by the body, which reduces one’s immunity and leads to illnesses. Apart from grieving the loss of a loved one, if you’re experiencing stress due to other issues in life, your body is bound to suffer even more. When we have an experience that we find painful or difficult, and are either unable to cope with the pain, or just afraid of it, we often dismiss this emotion by resorting to irregular behaviour patterns such as under/over working or eating, excessive smoking, drinking, exercising, or just pretend it’s not happened, thus resulting in poor eating habits, problems with sleeping, restlessness, dramatic weight gain or loss, lethargy or low energy, and various other manifestations.
When we do this to consciously avoid feeling the emotion and it results in what is called as repressed, suppressed or buried emotions. Emotions that are buried for a long period are the ones that normally cause physical illness. They inhibit the free flow of energy in our body as these negative emotions affect our muscles, ligaments, stomach, midriff and aura.
People are afraid to really feel their feelings, afraid of losing control, afraid of crying openly incase they come across as being seen as weak. I just want to say, It’s ok not be ok. The most helpful thing you can do is to acknowledge the grief and allow yourself to face the painful emotions. Expressing the emotion helps you bring it out of your system rather than suppress it and let it eat you internally.
I know it’s hard to be concerned about yourself physically when you’re hurt so badly emotionally, but good nutrition, exercise and proper rest, can considerably decrease the potential for illness to develop because it displaces and releases the tension brought on by the stress of grief.
External Distractions such as a new house, a new job, a new partner, a holiday none of these things can change how you feel. The only person who can change the way you feel is YOU. One needs to understand we take our feelings with us wherever we go unless and until we change the thoughts that lead to those feelings.
My reply to my friend was “It is possible to trust and be friends again, provided you forgive from the heart and not the head . When you live your life from a place of hatred or hurt you are doing yourself further damage by furthering your self away from who you really are, because Who you really are is quite the opposite of hate, it is love . There can either be love or fear, both cannot co-exist”.
The best way to release the feeling of hurt IS TO FORGIVE, you cannot turn back the clock, but what you can do, is decide how you want to live your life from now on. By looking at things from a different perspective and being more understanding of the state of mind of the individual and other possible reasons that led them to behave in a certain manner, will aid forgiving from the heart. Remember you are not forgiving the crime or the act of the individual, you are only letting go of the pain and the hurt you’ve been feeling. And it takes great inner strength and courage to do that.
You’re only a thought away to letting go of all the hurt and pain. Our health is innate, thereby releasing the emotion of sadness and hurt through forgiveness from the heart will help you return to your natural wholeness, your true self, a BEING of Peace and Love. When you start living your life from that place, it will be possible to trust and be friends again.
The power of forgiveness is the biggest gift you give yourself and others and is the first step towards experiencing your wholeness .
Take good care of yourself and please feel free to share your thoughts and views.
Love and Respect