I used to avoid and block sadness using any technique possible. Drinking, taking pills, and any form of escapism. I was afraid of it. What I feared most was my anticipation of pain which I thought I couldn’t handle.
There is a positive side of sadness. Sadness can be a time of reflection, evaluation, of stepping back to weigh in what’s wrong.
Sadness allows us to become more aware of the good things in life. It allows us to compare, to become more humble and appreciative of others. By feeling our pain we become more sensitive towards others. There is no night without day, no heat without cold, no sadness without happiness. Life is full of contrasts that allow us to tell one from the other.
In an article on psychology today entitled The benefit of sadness they state that suppressing unpleasant feelings because of being afraid of pain, normally only leads to greater pain in the future, either as a result of the measures we take to avoid feeling it initially (e.g., drug use), or as a result of it bursting one day when cumulative losses haven’t been properly grieved. They seem to pile up and can no longer be restrained. There is a high cost of blocking out legitimate sadness instead of allowing yourself to feel it. Once you do allow it, it takes its own course and eventually subsides.
Allow yourself to feel. Accept every feeling without going into a panic. Tomorrow or the day after the fog will burn off and the sun will shine again, at least for a while.
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