I do a lot of my spiritual life coaching research by watching TV Series.
I love observing unhealthy, damaged characters grow through the seasons and it’s so satisfying when I see them find their happy ending. Although staged, life on TV is a heightened representation of reality. It brings out nuances of people’s personalities that would remain unnoticed in real life.
In every single show I watch, I have noticed that crying is frowned upon. In the same way, real, negative human emotions are brushed under the carpet in an attempt to ‘clear the air’. Of course, as the unexpressed negativity builds up, the character eventually explodes into a tantrum and we get the drama we signed up for. Despite TV heightening the experience, the specific issue is pretty damn accurate.
How many times have you been told that ‘big girls don’t cry’? And have you noticed how uncomfortable people around you get when you share something vulnerable with them? The bottom line is, we perceive negativity as something negative (an oxymoron, but true!), but when handled with care, it’s the most positive thing that can happen to us.
All a negative emotion wants is to be heard. Once it is heard, it completely loses its power.
I always applaud people when they cry and I encourage them to do it more often. I even invented processes to encourage crying because I understand how negative emotions really work. I want you to visualise a negative emotion being a glassful of water. The more you suppress the expression of that emotion, the more the glass fills up until eventually it overfills and you get the explosive tantrum you’re familiar with from TV (and real life for that matter!) On the other hand, when you feel, talk about and cry out the negative emotion, you consciously empty the glass.
But here’s the catch.
Once you empty that glass, you’re faced with a choice: You can either choose to move up the emotional scale to a more positive emotion, or you can go back and refill the glass by telling the same old story. It is this slippery slope that most people are afraid of and opt instead choose denial, but when you know what you’re doing with your negative emotions, there’s nothing to fear.
My Crying Technique
With this understanding in mind, you can go on and cry your heart out to a good friend or two. It’s always a good idea to only do so with a few people who genuinely care about you and avoid oversharing with strangers and acquaintances that won’t understand what you’re doing, or where you’re coming from.
If you choose to do this alone, then my crying technique is a safe, powerful way to go about it. All that you’ll need is a mirror and your willingness to be real with yourself:
Look into your eyes in the mirror for ten minutes. This may sound fickle and simplistic, but it’s harder than it sounds. In the first few minutes your ego will mock the entire process and urge you to give up. Eventually, its power will dissipate and its walls will crumble, and you’ll be able to access your soul. And then all hell will break loose!
The few minutes after you’ve cried your heart out are the most important in moving up the emotional scale. Instead of ending the session feeling defeated, choose to see the positive side. Turn your strife into tenacity, find the blessing behind the obstacle and literally talk yourself into a better-feeling state. This will be surprisingly easy to do because having cried the past negative emotion out, you’ve exhausted its power and you’ll naturally gravitate towards a more positive one.
To learn more about George visit www.georgelizos.com
Spiritual Life Coach and the author of Be The Guru: A Step-by-Step Guide to Becoming Your Own Spiritual Teacher. He runs a successful spiritual blog sharing tools to becoming your own spiritual teacher, and features interviews with leading spiritual experts. To learn more about George visit www.georgelizos.com.