‘Sometimes I don’t know exactly how to navigate what I’m feeling. I don’t know if what I’m feeling is real or right or how to go around it. I feel several things about one thing and it’s a vortex and I get stuck in it.’ Sonali Dev, A Distant Heart
Feelings and emotions are like the sea, at any given moment they can be calm, then with very little warning get triggered, and like a tidal wave become an unstoppable force of destruction.
Navigate your life through choices
Emotions are strongly connected to memory and experiences and are linked to the way you felt at the time of that experience. If not resolved they will turn into emotional triggers and grow in power. Addressing them is the beginning of healing, but just merely addressing them is not the same as overcoming them. We prefer to bury, deny, ignore, minimize and/or suppress them. We even pretend that we don’t feel the pain. The hard part of recovery is feeling the pain, getting to the root, discovering the truth and forgiving the people who caused the pain, including ourselves. This is what is known as ‘The Road Less Traveled.’ Don’t navigate your life through feelings and emotions. Navigate your life through choices.
God has given you a free will to choose, don’t give it away
Feelings and emotions that control your life will render you powerless to exercise your free will to choose. When the pain gets triggered it instantly gets activated and projects its feelings of hurt on to the people who trigger you. Feelings such as fear, anger, guilt, shame, bitterness, resentment, hatred and so on. These feelings and more, if given authority, will control your ability to thrive in life and take away your freedom to choose. God has given you a free will to choose, never allow your feelings and emotions the power to take that freedom away.
Experiencing feelings and emotions are a way of life
Understanding the way you feel is a good thing but having those feelings and emotions navigate your life isn’t. In fact, they will destroy your quality of life if you allow them to. Overreacting to hurtful feelings and emotions is not healthy and neither is suppressing them. Either extreme will cause you to turn to harmful coping skills, like alcohol, drugs, food, sex, performance, busyness etc. Not dealing with your feelings and emotions will create in you an extreme personality which will make you vulnerable to taking on an addictive personality. You will easily become addicted to wanting to be accepted, approved, affirmed, and/or addicted to love. Experiencing feelings and emotions are a way of life. You must manage them or they will manage you.
Master your emotions
‘To avoid the burn of acting out during emotional upsurge, take a few simple steps to calm your heightened spirit and quiet your uneasy mind. When the moment has passed, you’ll be grateful you were able to be the master of your emotions.’ Dr. Carmen Harra
Discover the root of the pain and allow God’s Word to set you free. Use the power of God’s Word to heal your wounds and you will be able to master your emotions; emotions such as rage, envy, jealousy, resentment, bitterness, fear, anxiety, depression etc. These negative emotions in time will grow in power, slowly conditioning the mind to function on these negative feelings and will overtake your free will to chose other wise. Don’t allow hurtful emotions to take control. If you do, they will arise whenever triggered.
Cry out to Jesus
When I hit rock bottom I cried out to Jesus and He answered me with open arms. It was through this complete brokenness that I allowed His unconditional love into my heart which propelled me into recovery. I now realize I could have never overcome on my own. It was through my brokenness that I now am totally dependent on God. I am now passionately dedicated and committed to following Him.
In the beginning of my journey to wholeness and freedom I journaled every day. I grieved my losses. I sought Biblical counseling and a mentor. I read a few inspirational books. I had a few close friends that I could share my feelings and thoughts with. I joined a healthy, safe Biblical support group and spent a whole lot of time on my knees praying. I know the power of community, transparency, vulnerability, grieving, humility and prayer and I will never isolate again.
My brokenness led me to a deeper faith in Christ Jesus and now I allow Him the power to navigate my way through life. When you truly believe in Jesus you also believe in His power of forgiveness which leads to healing. Never allow your feelings and emotions the power to navigate your journey through life. Cry out to Jesus for He has a plan for you (Jeremiah 29:11). Allow the illumination of His light the power to lead your path.
“Exactly as I planned, it will happen. Following my blueprints, it will take shape. I will shatter the Assyrian who trespasses my land and stomp him into the dirt on my mountains. I will ban his taking and making of slaves and lift the weight of oppression from all shoulders.” This is the plan. Planned for the whole earth, And this is the hand that will do it, reaching into every nation. God-of-the-Angel-Armies has planned it. Who could ever cancel such plans? His is the hand that’s reached out. Who could brush it aside?” (Isaiah 14:24-27 The Message).