When was the last time you cried? And, I don’t mean a little sniffle and quick, apologetic tears. I mean, when did you last HOWL? Sobbing your heart out with snot flying everywhere is a rare occurrence, I would imagine.
Do you EVER let yourself really wail? Or, are you a pro at smiling, keeping up appearances and pushing down your feelings with some sort of numbing agent like overworking, booze, box sets or doughnuts?!?
I love that scene from The Holiday when Cameron Diaz is trying desperately to cry and can’t. I get that sometimes. I just know a good cry would do me good, but I can’t seem to summon the tears. That was me for a long time and sometimes it still happens.
These days, I can cry pretty easily and I allow the tears – whether they be tears of rage, frustration, sadness, grief, happiness or gratitude. What I have come to learn throughout my journey of transformation and change is that tears heal.
Crying is an energetic release. Pent up emotion is literally given an opportunity to flow out from your body. It’s a super fast and efficient way to cleanse yourself of toxic emotions that if left within your body, can be stored in your cells and hamper your natural cell renewal which causes disease (read books by Deepak Chopra and Dr Candice Pert on those subjects for deeper insights and scientific proof).
In the case of tears of happiness and joy, recent scientific research (by lead author, Oriana Aragon, in a report published in the journal Psychological Science) suggests that those tears are a natural way of keeping emotional equilibrium in the body. It’s a way our body counteracts and balances out extremes of emotion.
Again, it’s physical maintenance – keeping us emotionally healthy which has a positive effect on our physical health.
1. It makes you feel physically and emotionally better. After a ‘good cry’ you will feel lighter and at ease rather than heavy and blocked.
2. Stress chemicals in your body are released through your tears meaning those toxins do not build up in your cells and ultimately cause disease.
3. When you push down your anger and sadness, you push down your joy & happiness because we can’t selectively mute emotions. If you desire to feel happier, you have got to allow yourself feelings of sadness when they come up.
If you find it hard to cry, here’s some ideas to get the tears flowing.
1. Watch a film that you know will make you cry. Whether it’s ‘Bambi’ or ‘The Notebook’ or your favourite chick-flick. A glass of wine could help too! When the tears come, allow them and enjoy a good howl.
2. Write in a journal. Write about how you are feeling. What are you angry or stressed about? What is upsetting you? Who is annoying you? Write about the situation and ask yourself how it’s making you feel. Write all your feelings down and I bet that as you get super honest with yourself, those feelings will bubble up and come out as tears. The key is to allow them.
3. Create time and space to feel. Half our problem these days is that we are so busy that we simply do not have the ‘time’ to process our emotions so we push them down and numb them out. Love yourself enough to take responsibility for your emotional health, knowing that it will have a huge impact on your physical and mental health. Notice when you are ‘numbing out’ and choose to create time to connect with your emotions and feel them. My new Tantrum Club classes are an opportunity for this too.
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