There is an infamous and invalid perception that spiritual people have transcended heavy emotions such as rage and anger. My response to that is, “We are all human. I am not impervious to the human condition. None of us are!”
Just like everyone else, I get angry and resentful and sometimes I have a hard time releasing heavy emotions because I’m stuck in the story and don’t recognize the patterns playing out in my life.
I recently had an experience where I was resentful and hurt. I was aware of the feelings, but they were so charged with emotion that I wasn’t able to bow and receive the gift of wisdom of that moment. With each passing day, the feelings grew more intense and irrational. I tried to keep it together by pushing the emotions down and pretending all was okay. But they needed to be released, and the usual tools didn’t provide any insights or relief.
At my emotional zenith, I started to notice how easily irritated I was.I would dish out little digs trying to relieve myself by dumping my frustrations on the people around me.
As all this was occurring, I observed myself and noticed holding on to this anger was constricting my energy and taking a physical toll on my body. My energy was low, I had digestive issues, and I broke out in a rash.
I knew I had to do something, so I wrote my story down. I wrote about the situation that triggered this occurrence; I included details and how I experienced it. I analyzed what I wrote to see what parts of the story I had been perceiving as facts that perhaps weren’t facts at all. I looked to see what assumptions I made about the other person regarding their intention and actions. I also placed myself in their shoes and found their efforts were not about me.
It was a huge emotional dump into my journal and although it only softened my emotional state, I was able to find the truth in my words. It wasn’t merely validating my feelings and actions; it was more profound than that.
The truth was, I didn’t feel like I was being seen and heard. I didn’t feel like my peers were supporting me.
My inner child was expressing herself by dishing out the little digs. It was her way of kicking and screaming for attention.
It was also the prompt I needed to do some inner child work and practice forgiveness.
I sat in quiet meditation and listened to my inner child allowing the pain of not feeling validated or feeling recognized as a worthy person to release and flow. Then, as the feelings subsided, I asked what I could do to help, and the answer was, “Help me forgive.”
I went into my toolbox and decided to use the forgiveness exercise below.
Start by visualizing yourself face to face with the person you want to forgive, looking deep into their eyes.
Repeat the following statements aloud until you feel the love flowing between the two of you before moving on to the following statement.
1. _______________ (name) I let go of my anger toward you for_____________ (event).
2. _______________ (name) I let go of my resentment toward you for (event).
3. _______________ (name) I forgive you for _______________ (event).
4. _______________ (name) Thank you for ______________ (the lesson of), I love you.
5. _______________ (name) I release you from any guilt you may have incurred for _______________ (event).
6. _______________ (name) I release you to move forward in your life in total and complete Love.
7. I am now moving forward in my life in total and complete Love.
8. I love you, may your soul be filled with love, light and laughter as you move forward.
After completing this exercise, I felt better. However, I started to feel pangs of guilt shoot through my tummy. I felt terrible for the way I acted and the words I said. I felt shame for sitting in the heavy emotions and allowing them to get the best of me.
So, I stood in front of the mirror, gazed into my own eyes, and repeated the exercise, invoking self-forgiveness and self-compassion. I reminded myself it isn’t always easy, but it is easy to make mistakes while I am caught up in emotion, and it will all be okay. Before I left, I looked deeply into my eyes and said, “I love you, and you are worthy.” I felt a shift and knew my inner child was smiling back at me.
Forgiveness, compassion, and love are not just for others—it is for YOU, too. It’s about the releasing and the expansion thus allowing the feeling of inner peace to enter. 🕊