The tears not shed, the sadness not vented

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Joe Dispenza
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The tears not shed, the sadness not vented

Last update: July 15, 2015

Emotional repression is something we have all experienced, some more, some less. Sometimes, it is even a behavior that we acquire during the education phase, which is instilled in us as children, through the repetition of phrases such as "Don't cry, grown-ups are strong and never show their tears".

It is possible that, from that moment on, we began to hole up in small corners of solitude in which to let off steam, in which to let out that cry of pain: it is necessary and healthy, if we want to find peace, unload the suffering and move on.



However, there are those who not only avoid the emotional outburst, but even choose not to see and hear nothing because of the education received or the personality. Failures are forcibly accepted every morning by getting out of bed; betrayals are forgotten e sadness masked with a smile and with other cathartic activities that allow you to stretch your face.

Emotional repression is the exact opposite of understanding. A person who hides emotions refuses to understand the intricate emotional web that defines her personality; in reality, admitting one's frailties teaches us to be strong: it is a contrast between understanding and knowledge and between denial and weakness.

Emotional repression: a step towards the abyss

"Emotional repression" literally means, the act of containing or moderating one's impulses, instincts, passions or feelings. It is hiding something inside one's heart and silencing it so that it is not seen not only by others, but also by oneself. Because? It is often difficult to understand why: psychologists talk about educational models, social, psychological and biological processes.



However, the term "emotional understanding" represents the antithesis of all that has been said so far: it refers to that dimension that enhances closeness and empathy with others and with one's own interiority. The most useful and valuable knowledge we can have is emotional knowledge.

At this point, the question we will rightly ask ourselves is “Why choose to stifle sadness? Why does emotional repression seem more useful to us? "

  1. It is a defense mechanism: if we do not react in the face of someone else's betrayal and we decide to turn the page as soon as possible without reflecting on our feelings, we avoid recognizing that someone else has hurt us; therefore, the pain will seem more bearable.
  2. It is a self-protection strategy: if we hide sadness and pain, we do not give others the impression of being victims. Showing our emotional pain means showing us vulnerable, out of control of the situation, characteristics that not everyone is willing to accept and manage.
  3. Emotional unawareness: It may seem strange, but there are people who, for one reason or another, have never been exposed to suffering, failure or disappointment. Just think, for example, of many of today's young people, educated in a culture in which their every need is met; in this way, they develop a very low resistance to frustration. If, in the future, they experience a loss or a disappointment in love, the most likely thing is that they will feel disoriented and blocked; in this situation, they will opt for denial and emotional repression.

The tears that are not shed today will be irremediable empty tomorrow. The sadness not vented pushes us every day more towards the edge of an abyss, into which it is easy to fall due to illness or trauma.



How can we cope with sadness and disappointments?

Be aware that happiness does not have a guaranteed duration. Acceptance of the present, with all its shades of gray, is a way to experience emotions in an integral and balanced way. Sadness must be accepted as a stage in life that allows us to grow.


Sometimes, people own one strong ability to distinguish one's own reality from the external one. They let themselves be carried away by the flow of daily events, by work, by moments of leisure, by routine, without realizing that they are almost “automatons”.

The reason? This happens when one detaches oneself from one's emotions, from one's interiority, masked by a false well-being. This causes fatigue, migraine, stiff neck and back painpains that we try to relieve with analgesics, without understanding that they are symptoms of other problems. These are the tangible signs of unhappiness, those tears not shed when there was a need, a denied and unmanaged sadness that now makes us prisoners of ourselves.


Never leave for tomorrow the tears you can shed today: anger must be vented, suffering must be expressed in tears, failures must be analyzed and accepted, not hidden. Emotional understanding is a form of liberation that should be practiced on a daily basis.

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