Two women talking about problems at home
Two women talking about problems at home

Dos and Don’ts: Talking About Your Feelings

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Feelings allow someone to express their deepest emotions. As a result, a person can experience the joys and sorrows of life, as well as its ups and downs. Additionally, such feelings help people form relationships, make important life decisions and recognize reactions. But talking about your feelings is never an easy task.

Understanding feelings and being able to talk about them are integral parts of being human. Being open can significantly impact your life because feelings and emotions help shape your identity.

Expressing your feelings means you’re exposing parts of yourself to others. It’s a state of being vulnerable, which a lot of people perceive as a sign of weakness, although this isn’t really the case. It may be talking about your struggles as a teenager or challenges with adulthood. But it doesn’t have to be difficult if you know the dos and don’ts of talking about your feelings.

Why is it Important to Talk About Your Feelings?

It’s important to note that it’s never a sign of weakness if people talk about how they feel; if there is one thing, it’s a sign of strength. Talking about your emotions with a dependable friend or a counselor helps you feel stronger physically and emotionally.

Moreover, putting feelings into words can attenuate a person’s emotional experiences. It feels validating, and it’s good for your mental health. In reality, there are more benefits to opening up about your feelings than keeping them to yourself.

It’s important not to suppress feelings because it can lead to anxiety, sadness, headaches, and high blood pressure, according to Dr. Edmund Bourne, author of “The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook.” According to Bourne, a person’s symptoms may disappear entirely if they recognize and express their emotions.

What to Do When You Want to Talk About Your Feelings?

If you decide to talk about your feelings, there are things that you need to do for it to be a productive one. These include the following:

  1. Know and Understand How You Feel

Before you talk about your feelings to others, you must know and understand them yourself first. It’s equally important to acknowledge and embrace your feelings. When you embrace yourself wholeheartedly, you’ll feel less guilt and shame. After accepting your feelings for what they are, you can express yourself boldly as fear or self-imposed judgment are no longer holding you back.

  1. Find a Safe Environment

The best place to express your emotions is somewhere that makes you feel lovely. It can be a familiar place, like your home — a private place where you can be yourself with a trusted individual. It can also be a public place, like an area at the park where you feel at ease, and there are few people.

Any talk can be difficult in a tense, boisterous, or otherwise uncomfortable setting—especially one that’s too personal. Being in a place where you feel comfortable will undoubtedly relieve some of the pressure.

  1. Choose the Right Person

Choosing who you open up to is utterly  crucial as it can make or break you. Even with friends, you can’t be too sure. So it’s essential to be a good judge of character when choosing who you want to open up your feelings to.

People who don’t have anyone close to them opt to open up to mental health professionals, clergymen, and counselors. These are people who can professionally help you manage those feelings and offer unbiased advice.

What Not to Do When You Want to Talk About Your Feelings

If you decide to talk about your feelings, there are also things that you need to avoid.

  1. Don’t Downplay Your Feelings

Your feelings are important, no matter how big or small they may seem. Being able to express your feelings as they are is also essential. People may sometimes be limited in how they can express themselves since most communications these days are done via text or chat. But it’s necessary to go the lengths to have a one-on-one talk with a trusted friend, so you can express your feelings appropriately.

  1. Don’t Demand Something from the Listener

If you’re expressing your feelings to someone, you shouldn’t expect them to feel the same way you do, whether it be a happy or bad feeling. The listeners can always empathize with you as they listen, but it shouldn’t be a requirement.

It’s also essential not to demand reciprocation. You expressing your feelings doesn’t mean that the person you open up should also tell their feelings to you. It’s just not right. All they have to do is to listen as they should, and if they have something to say or express, all’s well and good.

It’s Normal to Talk About Your Feelings
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Some people may have learned to hide and deny their innate emotions since childhood. It’s been taught to keep feelings in, especially if they’re unpleasant or make people wrong. As a result, people learn to dismiss or deny that they exist. Unfortunately, it underestimates the strength of human emotions that articulating them in any way becomes a struggle.

Talking about your feelings is a healthy way of getting it out of your system so that it can’t bother you anymore. It’s an emotional and a mental release at the same time. Allowing yourself to experience and express your feelings can make you feel lighter and more closely connected to others.

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