Stop Stuffing Your Feelings

If you’re prone to stuffing your feelings when you are in pain, I hope this article will help you out. Because when you stuff your emotions, you wind up not being able to be the person, partner, or parent that you could be. When you can learn to be true to your emotions, to feel them and learn how to process and release them in healthy ways, you’ll feel much more peace and joy.

I used to stuff my feelings all the way since I was a child. It caused me to withdraw into my own little world and not be available for others. It caused me to shut down on some levels. It caused me to never really be authentic in any of my relationships. I just kept my mask on as if all was well. It also caused me to never really learn how to deal with my emotions. 

Feelings are not bad

Let me explain that feelings are not bad. Emotions that we feel are not bad. They’re very normal reactions to life. In fact, God made us spiritual beings that have an emotional state. I really feel as if God wants us to know that we can go to Him first with our feelings. Instead of stuffing them, we can cry out to the Creator letting him know exactly how we feel.

{Here’s a great article on the downsides of emotional intelligence}

You can’t really look at the Bible without seeing the characters crying out to God in their pain and distress and in their joy and celebration. Take a look at the book of Job, as Job went through immense suffering and he wasn’t afraid to go to the Lord laying it all out on the table.

Take a look at Job 10, for example. He says,

“I can’t stand my life. I hate it! I’m putting it all out on the table. All the bitterness of my life! I’m holding nothing back! He says, “So what’s this all about anyway God? This compulsion to dig up some dirt? To find some skeleton in my closet? You know good and well I’m not guilty! You also know no one can help me.”

Then, after Job’s friends try to comfort him, he says to them in chapter 13,

“I’m taking my case straight to God Almighty! I’ve had it with you! I’m going directly to God. You graffiti my life with lies! You’re a bunch of pompous quacks! I wish you’d shut your mouth! Silence is your only claim to wisdom.” 

Job went straight to God. He didn’t understand what was going on and he wasn’t about to stuff his feelings -that’s for sure. If you look at Psalms, you can see David pouring his heart out too.

There’s nothing wrong with getting your feelings out to the Lord. And sometimes is absolutely necessary to share your feelings with others. If your spouse says something to upset or hurt you, yes, it is absolutely necessary that you address that in a peaceful way instead of stuffing your feelings. If your child does something that makes you angry, it is alright to address that with your child in a calm and peaceful way. You do not have to lash out in anger at your child, but you can sit down and have a conversation.

People need to learn how to have peaceful conversations with each other when feelings rise. You don’t have to stuff every emotion. Learn how to share in a respectable and peaceful way.

Practice letting emotions out

I understand this may be new to you. Letting people know how you feel can be scary. When I first started learning how to handle conflict in a relationship, I would literally be shaking. I would stutter my words out, but I kept trying and I got better at it. You may have feelings that you stuffed ever since you were a child and those feelings may be eating you alive. I really feel for you because that is not God’s best for your life. You may want to consider a season of counseling. I believe everyone by the time they’re 30 needs a bout of counseling to deal with various issues that have occurred throughout their life. 

I can think of one of my children who has a tough time letting her emotions out. She stuffs them and feels like she has to do everything on her own. It’s tough for her to reach out for help. My heart breaks for her because there are people in her life who really care and could help her learn how to share those feelings to process them and heal them. My prayer is that one day she will make a decision to reach out for help and that she will go to God with her feelings. That she will allow God in.

To live life is to encounter suffering. To encounter pain. I know that’s not wonderful to hear, but it’s reality. We are here to encounter and experience IT ALL.

Now, there are various ways to deal with pain. Each person may benefit from a different method. Some opt for counselling, some read books, some share with a trusted friend, some go to God, some meditate, some pray and so on. If you have a tough time opening up about your feelings, go to God first.

If you never deal with those emotions that keep coming up for your attention…you’ll never cross that bridge to feel emotional wholeness. So, hey, cross the bridge, ok? It’s alright!

Be honest with God ask him to reveal to you your next step for learning how to process and heal that pain. It’s a journey and it’s progress were after. A great first step is to sit quietly with God and be honest with him. Share openly what’s going on in your heart.

Dominica Applegate
Written by: Dominica Applegate

Dominica Applegate is an author, writer, and transpersonal spiritual teacher. Her teachings have helped millions of people experience emotional healing, relationship repair, and spiritual awakening. Earning her BA in Psychology and MA in Counseling, she worked 12 years in the mental health field before diving full-time into writing.

She runs Rediscovering Sacredness, an online portal that offers inspiration, essays, resources, and tools to help heal inner pain and experience more peace and joy.

Her books include:

Into The Wild Shadow Work Journal
Healing After a Breakup: A 50 Day Devotional & Guided Inner Work Journal
Goodbye Codependency: A 40-Day Devotional to Boost Self-Care
The Pain, It Shapes Her World {Poetry}