Feeling Your Feelings in Therapy

Article by: Brianna Reineke, LPC, LCDC

July 1, 2016

This August, we celebrate National Wellness Month!

National Wellness Month is an opportunity for all of us to establish healthy habits, such as stress management and remaining present – both for ourselves and others. Establishing practices for self-care and wellbeing is essential to enhancing our quality of life, both as individuals and members of our community. Focusing on topics such as nutrition, sleep patterns, and exercise could all enhance your well-being. The benefits of self-care patterns and wellness often result from a range of simpler changes, as it takes 21 days to create a habit. It is important for you to feel comfortable with the change you create for yourself as well!

Events related to the COVID-19 pandemic of the last two years may make establishing self-care habits overwhelming or even make them feel like daunting tasks. Reframing these habits to fit your needs can help them to feel less challenging. For example, If you want to set a goal to “drink more water,” but struggle to drink water or do not like the taste, you might consider changing the goal to, “stay well hydrated.” This also might allow you more room to drink fruit juices, or some sports drinks if those appeal more to your tastebuds.

Charlotte Howard, a therapist at Deep Eddy Psychotherapy in Austin, TX, talks about why feeling your feelings is more than just a “woo-woo” technique; it actually allows us how to rewire the way neural webs in the brain fire, giving us the experience of healing.

 

Feelings Are The Access to Reality

Feelings have so much information in them. If you shut down your feelings, you really lose who you are. Feelings are the access to our experience of reality and we can’t throw out one part without throwing out the whole experience and all the richness.

The Therapy Cliche: What a Therapist Does

We need to feel the sadness in order to feel the joy. We don’t want to be shut down and, especially in therapy, a lot of my clients don’t want to go into their feelings. It’s such a cliche that you’re here in therapy and the therapist is asking you about what you feel, but uncovering those feelings actually lights up that part of the brain. We actually transform our brain.

Using Therapy to Change Brain Patterns in Austin, TX

Now, the current research can actually watch how the brain changes. We have neural webs that store certain dynamics and we can build new neural webs, but we would still regress back to the old pattern because they’re still there. We will continue to regress back to the old pattern until we can actually feel those old feelings and light up the “I’m bad” part of you, or whatever your painful internal dynamic is, and have a reparative experience at the same time.

Having a Reparative Experience with a Therapist in Your Area

That’s why talking about it, “Oh yeah, I think I’m bad,” is not really going to touch it. You have to be feeling, “I’m bad,” and then have a good, beautiful reparative experience with a therapist that shifts you to where you realize, “God, that’s not true, that was about my parents, that wasn’t about me,” and then those neural webs actually shift. To experience that shift, we have to get into the reality of who we really are and the feelings are what lights up those parts of the brain and allow them to heal.   

Feeling your feelings in therapy

Can Therapy Give You More Energy in Your Life?

Repression of feelings takes a lot of energy and I don’t think many people realize how shut down they become and how drained they are by all the work of being their false selves or holding back feelings or always vectoring energy away from that “closed room of the house.” Letting all of that out will help with anxiety and depression and free up so much energy.

Exploring Your Feelings through Therapy in Austin, TX

We would love to invite you to make a complimentary call to discuss some of your options and determine whether Deep Eddy Psychotherapy in Austin, TX is the right fit for you and your situation. Please contact us using the links below or in the sidebar and share this post or video if you found it to be valuable. Together we can create a world of well-being and joy.

Want to work with one of our Deep Eddy therapists?