The Beauty of A More Connected Life
When you are connected to your emotions, it’s a beautiful thing! It allows you to have greater clarity, be more present, at peace, and experience joy!
The problem is that we live in a world of hurry, pressures, and distractions that make tuning into your emotions tough.
Being emotionally disconnected is like attempting to drive on the freeway while simultaneously reading a book (or texting). There’s no time to keep tabs on the dashboard or notice your surroundings. Keep that up for any length of time and it will eventually lead to disaster.
Your feelings provide necessary information in the same way a car’s dashboard does. Recently on a trip to see my daughter, a light popped up on my car dashboard that I didn’t recognize. It was a bit unsettling, so rather than continue on, I pulled off the freeway to figure out what it meant. Turns out my tires needed air. Because I wasn’t too far away, I continued on and my son-in-law kindly filled them up with air for me after I arrive. Thankfully, everything turned out fine.
However, if I had ignored what the light on my dashboard was trying to communicate to me it could have been dangerous! When tire pressure is low it increases the additional friction causing the tires to overheat. That not only wears your tires out, but it could result in tread separation, or potentially cause a blowout. That’s the kind of excitement I don’t need in my life!
Have you been racing through life and missing out on the valuable information that your emotions are attempting to convey to you?
Perhaps you’ve experienced some painful emotions – emotions that have left a mark. As a result, you’ve been ignoring your feelings in an effort to bypass additional pain.
Or maybe fear has you powering through life in an effort to become what you think you need to be, and in the process, you’ve simply gotten out of the habit of checking-in with yourself.
Perhaps you were never taught growing up how to process and tend to your emotions.
Maybe it’s a little of all of the above.
Disconnected From Your Feelings?
Whatever the reason you’ve dismissed your emotions, I encourage you to make the effort to reconnect with your feelings. If you remain disconnected, you’ll limit your capacity to successfully work and authentically connect with others. And your ability to feel will be hindered as well. It would be nice if it was possible to selectively feel – to savor all the good feelings and ignore all the bad, but feelings don’t work that way. When you resist feeling the painful feelings, it keeps you from enjoying the positive ones too like peace, joy, and love.
The only way to get more connected is to go through the emotions – face them head on, process what they are revealing, and determine where to go from there. If you’ve experienced trauma in your life, I encourage you to seek out the help of a qualified counselor to guide you through the process.
What are the signs that you’ve disconnected from your feelings? Some describe it as feeling…
- On auto pilot
- Going through the motions
- Like the “living dead”
- Lack of meaning
- Perpetually uncertain or indecisive
- Void of energy and/or motivation
The First Step
No one wants to feel like that! That’s why it’s important for you to make a conscious effort to reconnect to your feelings. In order to do that, you must first…
- Slow down
- Push through the discomfort
- And make space to explore
That sounds easy, but it’s hard to reconnect to your feelings with the demands of life tugging at you! However, not processing your feelings is slowing you down more than you think!
Reconnecting to your emotions doesn’t happen overnight, but it’s worth the effort I promise! Here are some positive ways to help you enjoy a more connected life! Never mind the order, just start where it makes the most sense to you!
1. Make Space
Processing your emotions takes space – it doesn’t happen on the run. If your schedule is filled to the brim, processing won’t happen. After a while, the emotions you’ve been ignoring build up and come out in unwanted ways like a balloon that’s filled beyond capacity.
Exploring what’s behind your packed schedule, what’s driving the flurry of activity, is a great place to start. Are you keeping yourself occupied to avoid facing unwanted emotions? What role is fear playing in running you ragged? How are you really feeling about life?
Establish a rhythm of checking in with yourself. I recently started journaling at the beginning of my work day in an effort to take more time to process my thoughts and feelings in addition to my prayer journaling during my time with God. I’ve been surprised at what a difference it’s made. I feel more focused and energized and I like that!
Pay attention to those uneasy feelings that pop up in the course of your day. Don’t be afraid to pause and take the time to investigate what you’re feeling. It will serve you well.
2. Be Active
Regular exercise is a fantastic way to connect to and care for your body! Not only will it energize you, it will help you build strength, stamina, and flexibility too! Just getting started? Take walks or hikes. Being outdoors is yet another way to help you reconnect! YouTube is brimming with work outs of all types. Enjoy working out more when you do it with others? Find a buddy!
Being physically active will do good things for you emotionally!
I believe God made us in His image and He is an amazing creator! And there are so many different ways to create! Whether you are a writer, painter, musician, doodler extraordinaire, teacher, or something else, there are ways to do it creatively!
Here’s the bonus: the more you connected you become, the more capacity you will have to create!
We were made for relationship. It’s one of the many reasons the isolation during the pandemic has been so unhealthy! You don’t have to know a thousand people, but it is important to regularly connect with a few people who really know you. People who allow you to share honestly about how you are feeling.
Deep down we all want to connect and belong!
5. Set Goals
Start small! What’s something you really want? To begin exercising, reaching out to a friend or family member daily, or to spend quality time with God each day? Take responsibility for creating the life you want to live.
Seeing your progress has a way of reconnecting you.
6. Do What You Love
Part of the reason you lose touch with yourself is that you allow the demands of life to squeeze out the activities you really love doing. Don’t underestimate the positive impact those activities have. Not only will they make your heart happy, they energize you too! I call those kinds of activities my “♥ thing” and activities like reading, crafting, painting, connecting with friends or family, and more all fit that category. It’s so important to me to not neglect doing what I love that I track whether or not I engaged in my “♥ thing” every day!
7. Savor Silence
Silence can be uncomfortable. And it’s also healing – a place to breathe, meditate, and reflect. It’s an opportunity to get reacquainted with yourself. It’s the perfect time to journal (explore self-discovery journals on Amazon), take delight in the simple blessings all around you, and let yourself feel, really feel!
A connected life is a life where you are in touch with your feelings. It’s a life where there is space to process and tune into your emotions. You don’t allow your feelings to go unattended or build up leaving you free to enjoy a full range of emotions, the capacity to handle work and life, with greater motivation and zest for life! That’s a beautiful thing!
How is being disconnected from your feelings hurting you?