Although life is made up of moments that are pleasurable and moments that are painful, it doesn’t mean that someone is able to accept each side. There are going to be people who do everything they can to embrace pleasure and avoid pain, and, there are going to be others who renounce pleasure and end up experiencing a life of pain.
When someone chooses the first option, they are going to do everything they can to feel good, and, when it comes to the second option, one is going to do everything they can to feel bad. However, while one option may appear to be better than the other, neither option is going to allow them to be in balance.
Out of Balance
If one avoids pain and does everything they can to experience pleasure, they are going to stop themselves from experiencing their ‘negative’ emotions. Yet, these emotions are not just going to disappear; they can end up being stuck in one’s body.
Alternatively, if one ends up feeling down all the time and stops themselves from experiencing pleasure, they are going to stop themselves from experiencing ‘positive’ emotions. In this case, it could be said that they are stuck in their pain.
The Common Approach
It is often said that ‘life is too short to be unhappy’ and that one shouldn’t ‘take life too seriously’. And if one is into self-development, they may be have been told to do everything they can to ‘feel good’ or to just ‘let go’ of the past.
If one was to allow these sayings to define their outlook, it can cause them to form a negative relationship with pain. And as a result of this outlook, it will be normal for them to believe that they don’t need to face their pain.
One can then come to believe that they always need to feel good, and that there is no need for them to feel bad. And when one is surrounded by people who have the same outlook, it is going to make it harder for them to face how they feel.
Having the need to fit in is part of being human, and, because of how strong this need is, it can cause one to ignore their inner guidance. Pleasing others can then take precedence over one’s need to listen to themselves.
When one experiences loss, for instance, they can end up experiencing extreme pain. Ideally, one will embrace how they feel and allow themselves to grieve, and through undertaking this process, they will be able to move through their pain.
What this will mean is that while one is embracing their pain, they are not going to end up being stuck in it. And in order for them to move through their pain, it may be important for them to be able to cry.
This is not to say that this is a fixed process, as it will be different for everyone. But the main thing is that one surrenders to this process, and allows themselves to listen to their body.
However, if one feels the need to always look strong or to always be happy, it can stop them from being able to cry. The pain can then end up staying within them, and although time will pass, certain consequences may arise.
Men and Women
While this is a process that applies to both men and women, it is often women who are able to embrace it. On one hand, women are often more in touch with how they feel, and, on the other, there is less pressure on them to hide how they feel.
Men, on the other hand, are often out of touch with how they feel, and, there is more pressure on them to look strong. Fortunately, this is something that is gradually beginning to change, and men are starting to see that they don’t need to be ashamed of their emotions.
When someone is unable to cry after they experience lose, they may find that they are unable to let go, and it may also be a challenge for them to be present. They may end up having anger problems, and this is because the anger will be there to stop them from having to face how they feel.
As time passes, one may start to feel down and depressed, and lose interest in the things they used to enjoy. It may also stop them from being able to start a new relationship.
And while it could be said that each of the symptoms above are a normal part of the grieving process; if one doesn’t allow themselves to grieve, these symptoms can become a way of life. Each loss that they experience can then build on the other, and this can make it ever harder for them to be in balance.
If one is unable to cry, it could be a sign that they don’t feel safe doing it, and if they don’t feel comfortable crying, it may also mean that they are out of touch with their emotions. So it is going to be important for them to connect with how they feel, and to realise that it is safe for them to do so.
To achieve this, one may need to work with a therapist or some kind of support group, and they may need to make a few relational changes. For if they have been disconnected from how they feel, the people they surround themselves with may be the same, and this can stop them from getting the support that they need to embrace their emotional self.
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Oliver J R Cooper
Oliver JR Cooper
Author of 26 books, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.