The Art of Emotional Allowance

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The Art of Emotional Allowance

By Sahmia Parks

We live in a world where being expressive about our feelings is viewed as being weak. It’s mocked, shunned, and even frowned upon. “Oh you’re being too emotional,” “stop crying all the time,” and “Suck it up” are all things children hear at some point when it comes to expressing themselves. As a result, it creates emotionless and emotionally unavailable adults. In more recent times, it’s becoming less accepted to express yourself as evidenced by the rise of suicides in our nation.

Personally speaking, I dove into my past to find where my habits in regards to lack of emotional allowance originated. When I was younger, I was very expressive about my feelings but whenever an emotion that I did not want to feel showed itself, I would automatically shut myself off from feeling it until it disappeared. This habit followed me into adulthood where I’ve experienced mental breakdowns due to holding on to anxiety, sadness, grudges, and hate. My habit of holding on to things hindered me in times of need. 

It took a tragedy to hit in my early twenties for me to finally open up and acknowledge emotions head-on. After being sexually assaulted, I sought therapy as a way to open up about the feelings I was having. It was the first time I identified with certain emotions. I was encouraged to explore more feelings and learn how to navigate through them. I found writing as well as photography to be my productive vice to process what I was feeling. As a result of me finding my constructive process to address my emotions, I created a book.

Emotional Allowance is having the ability to open up, express yourself freely, truly feel your feelings and explore why you feel them. What triggers you? Why does it trigger you? When you truly allow yourself to explore your feelings, you have the ability to find the lesson in it to move past it gracefully.

Artists use their respective mediums as an outlet whether it's painting, making music, dancing, or playing a sport. Having a productive outlet to process and assist in moving through emotions allows for the energy of it to be transmuted.

So, how will you acknowledge your feelings and push through them this month?