By: Kamila Powell
In life, we experience things that bring us joy as well as things that bring us pain. We may hear people tell us to “Get over it” when we confide in them, or we try to force ourselves to get over how we’re feeling. But what does getting over it actually mean?
A few years ago, when my first long-term relationship ended, I was devastated. It wasn’t just a mutual break up. There was a significant amount of trauma and damage that had been done in the process of the relationship ending. It was the worst time in my life. Yet when I talked to my friends or my cousins, I would speak callously, telling them I had gotten over it. I told myself the same lie. I even remember sitting in the shower and crying, telling myself “You don’t care. You’re over this. Get over it!”
Spoiler alert: I wasn’t over it. I was dealing with a lot. Between picking up the pieces of my life, mourning the relationship I had invested years into and dealing with the feelings I had surrounding how it ended, it was okay that I didn’t instantly get over it. At the time, I didn’t see it that way. I was in so much pain the only thing I wanted to do was move on from it. What I didn’t know was, by pretending to be “over it” when I wasn’t, I was doing myself a huge disservice.
When we attempt to rush through our healing process, we usually wind up prolonging it. We fight how we feel not realizing this is a battle we are fated to lose because we’re ultimately at war with ourselves. It seems like we’re fighting feelings that we don’t need. The truth is, we need all of our feelings, even the ones that don’t feel good.
Feelings serve as our internal compass. They let us know what direction we should take. Whether it’s to continue on a path when something resonates with us and feels good or warns us when something isn’t right and we need change course. The thing is, we can’t decipher the information our feelings are giving us when we try to act like they aren’t there.
The best way to utilize our feelings and emotions is to be honest about them and allow them to exist without judgment. This is a lesson that’s taken years for me to learn, especially as a highly sensitive person. I always felt like my emotions were my weakness. It wasn’t until recently that I understood they are actually my strength.
After some crippling bouts of anxiety and major soul searching, I tried something different. I began to allow my feelings to come (and go), just observing them instead of judging myself for having them. By quieting that judgmental voice, I was able to determine why I had certain feelings, what contributed to them and how I could take steps to feel better and do better in my life. I noticed that I was getting through difficult ordeals much easier by not trying to make myself get over what happened prematurely. It also made the process of moving on a lot faster.
The transition from getting over it to getting through it didn’t happen overnight, though. Several things contributed to my ability to do this. For starters, it took time. I had to allow myself chances to get it wrong because I was essentially unlearning the only thing I knew when it came to engaging with my feelings.
I had to learn how to forgive myself when I reverted back to trying to rush my healing. Meditation was the biggest and most important tool that helped me to deal with my feelings in a healthy way. The consistent practice of sitting still, allowing my thoughts to come and consciously choosing which thoughts I wanted to stay made it much easier for me to take control of my thoughts and feelings.
What was amazing to me was that at first, it seemed so difficult but each time I chose to observe my feelings without judgment, it got easier and easier. It was so new to me. I felt like I had a superpower. And in a way, I did. I discovered that acknowledging my feelings led to me being able to unlock new levels of understanding, peace & potential.
Once I was able to make peace with what I was feeling and what was going on in my life, I knew I had gotten through it and that freed up my thoughts and my energy for me to focus on things that made me happy and fulfilled.
For this reason, I wanted to share my views on getting through our difficult times rather than trying to force ourselves to get over them. It may be challenging to confront your feelings honestly. It may take a few tries, However I believe this is a challenge that is worth taking on.
Written By: Kamila Powell (@Milas_Universe)