The Cure for What Ails Us
I have served on the volunteer event staff at a Tony Robbins event 10 times since 2011. At each of those events, I have worked at the products booth, advising participants on which of Tony’s wide range of audio programs is the best fit for their personal outcomes.
Over the years, I have engaged with hundreds of participants. I have had deep conversations with many of them.
Participants come to the products booth under the pretense of looking for the a product to help them maintain momentum after the event. Most want more than products. Like all potential “buyers,” or “prospects,” they have a pain that they want to heal. They want to be seen and heard.
The products booth is where I have honed my skill of listening between the lines; of hearing the truth that exists beneath the lies that we tell ourselves.
Through hundreds of conversations, many themes and patterns have emerged.
This is one of the big patterns:
People are in pain because they do not allow themselves to experience their emotions.
Our culture wants us to believe that we should aim to be happy. We learn early in life that feeling pain or sadness or anger or frustration is bad. Our culture conditions us that boys who cry are weak and that women who “get emotional” aren’t fit for leadership.
The imperative “don’t get emotional” is one of my pet peeves.
People who use this phrase typically mean: don’t get angry or sad or frustrated or certainly anything that evokes tears.
Consider how often you hear (or say) things like:
- why are you crying?
- there’s no reason to cry
- don’t be sad
- stop crying
- calm down
- keep a lid on it
- compose yourself
All of these fall into the grouping of “don’t get emotional.”
How did we even get here?
“Emotional” in its plainest meaning simply means “filled with emotion.” And emotions come in all flavors.
When did “emotional” become a stand in for angry and frustrated or crying?
Who would argue against displaying some of these emotions in the workplace:
Surely these are on the approved list, right?
People who instruct us not to “get emotional” really mean:
Don’t display emotions that I am uncomfortable with.
And because our culture trains us to keep our emotions out of public view, we learn to suppress our emotions. We learn to avoid feeling them.
America: the land of the free. Except when it comes to the freedom to feeling what you feel and express what you feel. Then, not really so free.
We learn how to numb our emotions. We escape through drugs, alcohol, food, television, books, the Internet, video games, activities, and work.
Busy has become the socially acceptable numbing agent of our modern life. Even as we complain about being busy, we chase it. Because busy keeps us from feeling whatever it is we don’t want to feel.
Here’s the problem:
The more we suppress what we don’t want to feel, the more pain we inflict on ourselves. Suppressing emotion doesn’t make it go away. It just lives inside us — an energetic tumor that grows larger with each passing day–until it becomes so big that we are forced to deal with it.
Sometimes it even becomes a physical tumor. Mind, body, emotions and spirit are all related.
So we live in the toxic environment of our own suppressed feelings until we become diseased. Or we numb out to supress the pain. Everyone is looking for a miracle cure.
Here’s the truth:
You cannot heal what you are unwilling to feel.
To truly heal from the wounds that shape your belief system and actions, you must be willing to look in the deepest, darkest corners of your emotions. You must be willing to allow the pain to surface. You must feel it, and be with it. Only then can you move past it and into the life you desire.
I help my clients uncover the hidden pains keeping them stuck so they can clear their path to healing and reclaim their lives. If this resonates, I would be honored to chat further to see how I can help you. You deserve it.