What would happen if you could "feel the feelings and let them go?" Imagine sitting with whatever mood or feeling you were having, not in judgment, not in disgust, not in impatience. Imagine just feeling your feelings, and then seeing what happened to them. Might they lose their power over us? Might they become a familiar, comfortable presence?
What is the cost to you when you don't just feel your feelings? Are you denying an essential part of your humanity? Are you limiting your capacity for joy as well as suffering and doubt?
I gave counsel about this to my daughter this morning, and then it struck me that I should apply it to myself, too. I was in a bad mood, and instead of trying to cajole or understand or work my way out of it. I decided to just let it be. And, lo and behold, it let me be. I no longer feel out-of-sorts and crabby. I wrote this blog post. I accepted my mood, as part of accepting myself. I let my daughter know that I accepted her, no matter how she was feeling, and encouraged her to do the same for herself. I think I may be onto something.
Next time you are having a feeling, or someone close to you is having one, just let it be. Feel it for whatever it is and see what happens. I bet you will be pleasantly surprised, and on your way to becoming a fuller, deeper person, too.
Feel free to weigh in with your thoughts (and feelings) about this!