The aspect of self awareness, knowing what we feel and think, requires taking time to reflect and contemplate. That too is a life skill that is under developed in our fast paced society. Thinking about anything deeply or asking ourselves how our experiences have impacted us, takes precious time. It’s also difficult to do reflective thinking when we have unmet needs or are experiencing stress. The idea of being still and really getting in touch with our stuff, which is so important for grounding and our mental health, seems unattainable for many of us. As a result, a lot of us feel the stress on our shoulders of unexpressed thoughts and feelings that we don’t even know how to articulate. In other words we don’t know why we are depressed and anxious, so we seek to deal with these emotions by taking antidepressants and other medications. These may be necessary and useful, but these will never resolve the buried emotional issues that underly the anxiety and depression.
It does take courage to face and talk about the underling issues, to put words to unexpressed thoughts and feelings, to name the things that trouble us, and to work at unresolved issues and relationships. When we start moving in this direction we are taking steps towards healing.
If you are working at this you have my affirmation and encouragement. Good for you! If on the other hand you find yourself trying to hold it all in and feeling like you are coming unglued, maybe it’s time for a change.