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All The Feels

An Exploration of Feelings pt.2

By Leah EllaPublished 11 months ago 4 min read
All The Feels
Photo by Seiji Seiji on Unsplash

What if there was a control button that allowed you to monitor the level of your feelings at any given time, would you use it?

I was in a support group a couple of days ago and the host asked, “what is your level of anxiety today?” Towards the end of the group, another person expressed their gratitude and said, “I’m sure all of us with higher levels at the beginning, now are feeling lower levels of anxiety after sharing.” He was right; I was at an 8 out of 10 at the beginning and a 4 at the end.

Today, I’m wondering just how much control we have over what we feel at any given moment and while I’m learning that there are ways to feel less anxious for instance, without those “tools” we may be at the mercy of our feelings.

I don’t get it… I’ve never been this emotional mess in my entire life. As much as I try to make sense of it, I’m realizing that to feel isn’t to think, yet, our thinking does affect the intensity and duration of our emotions.

I’ve been in therapy for the past two months and I remember one of the first things the MHC said to me is to, “not take things personally.” There could be a million reasons why a person did something that caused you to feel a certain way or even react based on that feeling, that have absolutely nothing to do with you.

Each individual has their whole lives on their shoulders and so it can feel like a dangerous place when said individual is your whole life. It happens a lot in love and relationships where you are longing for closeness and connection and instead of receiving it, you maybe get breadcrumbs and distance, the opposite of what you desire to receive from this person. You may even consider it as patience, being a virtue, so you wait with anticipation for the day they will feel the same way that you do.

Every rejection feels painful, some more overwhelmingly so than others… You don’t know what to do with your bottled up emotions that you’ve been feeding, so now they are full grown problems. Your body is tense, there is a knot in your shoulder, you can’t sleep, you can’t relax because you’re waiting to feel the love that seems to be getting further and further away as time progresses. You’re left feeling hopeless; There is nothing that you can do to change this persons feelings for you.

They won’t respond to your earnest, heartfelt text messages; They’ve left you on read. Now you’re wondering, “what’s wrong with me?” Does anyone believe in love anymore? You’re thinking back to your childhood… Your parents fought all the time, they eventually divorced and you can’t help but wonder if it just isn’t in the cards for you… Why won’t anyone fight for me? Why am I the only one willing to make sacrifices for love? You cry yourself to sleep. You wake up crying, you feel alone.

We’ve all been there but then we start examining our feelings. We start learning attachment styles, love languages, communication styles, emotional intelligence… We begin understanding ourselves a little more than we did at the beginning of this relationship… We start to realize that we are not compatible with the person we are so desperately trying to connect with. Emotional intimacy is uncomfortable for them, so they dismiss you and avoid any communication of feelings. They act like they don’t want to be responsible for your feelings. Your love is suffocating to them, they freeze up or take flight or even fight with you. They are not able to empathize with your feelings and they may just lack the “know-how” to comfort or reassure you of their actual feelings for you.

As I said before, or as my therapist said, they have their whole lives on their shoulders… You aren’t the first person they weren’t able to show their feelings to. They may not even be aware of how to feel as deeply as you do. In this moment of self-discovery, you’re faced with a choice… Do I learn how to communicate in a way that they will respond to? Does my tone become less emotional and more logical? Do I ask more questions for clarity instead of assuming the worst of their silence? Do they need more time to process when I’m a nervous wreck needing a response right away? How much of myself am I willing to change to accommodate this person in my life? Do they want to make these changes with me for the sake of our relationship?

Maybe you realize that you don’t have what it takes… What it takes hurts too much… Your need to be consoled and them not being able to meet that need has you at a crossroads. Maybe you suggest therapy? If you had that button, what level of emotions would you be feeling at this present time? Is it the same as it was prior to learning what you have now? Maybe it is that simple. Maybe we are more in control of our feelings than we have realized… Maybe, just maybe, what we feed our emotions can cause us to make decisions that either continue to hurt us or begin to heal us.

Maybe nothing is actually wrong with wanting a connection and loving someone. Maybe we have always tried to love an emotionally unavailable person. Maybe we are so used to desiring the unattainable or attracting our opposites, that now we realize feelings won’t change attachment styles or love languages, communication styles or build emotional intelligence, so we choose a different approach. We choose to learn the truth about our feelings… Our feelings can be our biggest teachers, so what are yours teaching you about yourself?


About the Creator

Leah Ella

Caribbean-American(she/her)+Actor+Life Coach student.

Welcome! Get to know me here:

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    Leah EllaWritten by Leah Ella

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