If you don’t know how to cook something, you can easily look for a recipe that will teach you how. If you don’t know how to repair something that’s broken in your house, you can call a handyman to come fix it. But, there’s not an easy one-size-fits-all recipe guide to talking about your emotions. You can’t just call a plumber to come “unclog” your feelings.
There are a lot of factors that come into play when it comes to how comfortable you are talking about your feelings. A lot of it has to do with how you were raised, if you’re an introvert or extrovert, and how comfortable you are with feeling vulnerable. Talking about your feelings when you are going through recovery can be especially challenging because it’s easy to feel nervous about opening up about your past or how you feel at the moment.
For some people talking about their feelings is easy, but for others you couldn’t pay them to talk about how they feel. Talking about your emotions can be hard because it’s scary to feel vulnerable and sometimes discussing your inner thoughts about how you feel can bring up conflicts between you and another person. It’s easy for you or one of the hardest things you do, talking about your feelings is important for your relationships and well-being.
Here are 3 positive ways you can discuss your feelings:
- Weekly Check-In Talks With Your Partner
We all get busy juggling work, parent responsibilities, and just regular life duties like grocery shopping, working out, deciding what to eat for dinner every night (who ever would have guessed this would be such a task!?), that our emotions and feelings often get put on the back burner. Especially if you’ve been in a long relationship, it’s easy to get comfortable and not talk about how you feel. Having a weekly scheduled check-in with your loved one where you talk about how you both are feeling about life in general, about one another, and just about your overall happiness will bring you closer to one another. It might be uncomfortable having these conversations at first, but the more you do it the more you will look forward to it. Over time, having these open and honest talks about your emotions will strengthen your bond and lead to a deeper connection.
- Talk to a therapist
If there’s one thing everyone should try at least once in life, it’s therapy! Speaking to a third party, who has no personal connection to you, and who is trained to listen to your problems and give advice is
so good for your soul on many levels. First, it removes the fear of judgement that you may have when opening up to your family or friends. Also, anything you tell them is legally bound to their office unless you or anyone else is in danger. Which means you won’t have to worry about your Aunt Becky finding out about what you did last summer because she can’t keep a secret . One of the biggest benefits of speaking with a therapist is that they are certified, licensed professionals at giving life advice, so even though sometimes we might think our best friend’s opinion is always the best, she might be biased. A therapist can help you talk through all sorts of things like recovery, managing stress, mental illness, anxiety, happiness, etc. It might take a few appointments before you find a good therapist you’re comfortable with, but it’s worth the time and effort once you do.
- Acknowledge what you’re going through
Getting comfortable talking about your vulnerabilities is something that will pay off in the long run. Keeping all of your emotions pent up inside of you can lead to relapse, anxiety, depression and a superficial connection with those you care most about. Talking about your struggles openly can help you come to terms with what you’re going through. We are creatures of the world that are constantly in survival mode, so it’s okay to feel like you have to protect your emotions. But, it’s also okay to talk about them with those you trust most. Vocalizing your struggles can help you realize that how you’re feeling is okay, and it can help you come to terms with it. It’s easy to push your feelings under the rug and just forget about it. Opening up will allow you time to process your internal thoughts and give someone else a chance to support you.
Going through recovery is difficult. The more comfortable you are talking about your recovery journey and opening up about how you’re truly feeling will make your pathway to recovery a little easier. It may also improve your relationships along the way.