What if I get into painful emotions that I can't handle by myself?

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If pain, shame, fear, sadness, or grief is coming up, if you feel like crying, your heart is pounding, your stomach is upset, or you are seeing upsetting images, it is helpful to soothe yourself. Understand that each painful emotion, body sensation, or image as coming from a child part of you—an inner child who was wounded when you were young. 

Take a moment to separate from this child part so you can be in a calm, caring place inside. If you need help getting there, click here.

Take a moment to open your heart to this child inside of you. You may see an image of this inner child or feel him or her in your body, or just have a sense of the child. Be the compassionate, nurturing parent that this wounded inner child needs right now. With a warm-caring attitude, listen to his or her pain. Imagine holding this child in your arms. Let the child know that you are there for him or her. Give this inner child the love he or she needs. And give the child whatever else he or she may need.
  • Acceptance: “I accept you just the way you are.” 
  • Validation: “You are a good person.” 
  • Encouragement: “You can do it.” 
  • Support: “I am standing behind you 100%.” 
  • Appreciation: “You are very precious to me.” 
This will keep you from being overwhelmed by the pain that is coming up, and it may even help to heal that wound in you. 

To listen to a guided meditation for nurturing this wounded inner child (about 12 minutes), click here

You can also soothe yourself in healthy ways: Consider taking a bubble bath, a quiet walk in the woods, listening to relaxing music, meditating, or talking with a friend.

If you are at work, here are some soothing suggestions:
  • Take a break, usually changing your environment in any way can help.
  • If you are sitting, stand. If you are at your desk, get up and move around.
  • A cup of tea, a few minutes in a private in the bathroom can make a big difference.
  • If you are with people, see if you can have a few minutes alone.
  • If alone, make come contact with a co-worker.
  • Three cleansing breaths will restart your system. Breath in 4 counts, hold 4 counts, out 4 counts, stay empty 4 counts.
If none of these approaches help, and the pain that is coming up is a problem, then you may need additional help instead of or along with Self-Therapy Journey.

It might be helpful for you to work on Self-Therapy Journey with someone to provide emotional support.Click here to learn how to do that.

It is also possible that you should be working with a psychotherapist on your issues rather than using STJ. Click here to help determine this.

You might also consider looking into 
IFS. Click IFS Resources.

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