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Why Numbing Out Simply Doesn't Work

When we are going through stressful or challenging times, or we feel stuck or unfulfilled, whether we realise it consciously or not, sometimes our emotions can get the better of us. We think of painful emotions as a nuisance and as something to be avoided and think that painful emotions have no purpose, but in fact they are important.

Your physical body and physical pain and pleasure exist to prevent you damaging your body and to guide you towards well-being and health. So, just as your physical body is there to teach you about pain and to stop you damaging your body, your emotions are there to guide you to what is good, or what you want, and away from what is not good, on a deep level. Your emotions are like an inner guidance system directing you towards what your heart desires, those situations that are in alignment with your true being. They give you information about your situation, they are your feedback mechanism between you and the environment.

If we try to silence our emotions, or try to escape our reality by turning to unhealthy habits it can take us longer to move through the negative emotions. That bottle of wine, spending spree, bar of chocolate, packet of biscuits or the late night staying up binge watching television may feel good at the time, but we are only distracting ourselves from our real feelings and when the numbing out session is over, guess what, our problems will still be there. Some of our coping strategies are not bad things on their own, but when used as an escape from feeling our real emotions they can turn into real issues. If we are numbing out, we often feel even worse afterwards, because we feel guilt or shame, we have put off tasks we really should have been doing instead, not spending quality time with our loved ones and we can experience a come down, or we pay the consequences through a hangover, being over stimulated, lack of sleep, digestive problems and debt.

The problem with numbing is that we cannot choose the emotions we numb out. If we choose to numb, we may indeed numb our pain, feelings of unfulfillment, anger, fear, or boredom, but we also numb our feelings of love and joy. When we numb out one emotion, we numb out ALL of our emotions. We numb out our ability to really be with our loved ones, our ability to be productive, to be creative and we also numb out all of our positive emotions too. This can have a real knock on effect on our overall health and well-being.

“We cannot selectively numb emotions, when we numb the painful emotions, we also numb the positive emotions.”-Brene Brown

If we try and silence our emotions we can start to feel stuck in a loop, we spend time recovering trying to get back on track, or more time numbing out. This process can massively delay our lives. We are stopping ourselves from making positive changes in our lives and our mental, physical, emotional and spiritual health can be impacted.

So, next time you reach for your cigarettes or that tub of chocolate ice-cream, ask yourself, what are you REALLY hungry for? What are you REALLY craving? What is it you need to fill that hole inside? Sit with your emotions and check in with how you are feeling. Tap into your inner guidance system. What needs to CHANGE in order for you to feel better and to be able to deal with your emotions in a more positive and healthy way.

When we stop numbing out it is so much easier to tap into our intuition, to connect with our soul and to ascertain our true hearts desires. We gain energy, self-esteem, well-being and empowerment. Start listening and paying attention to the voice within. What is it trying to tell you? Where is your inner sat nav trying to lead you? What are you putting off or running away from? What needs to come up so that you can release it in a healthy way? Our inner voice inside of us will never go away.

There isn't enough chocolate in the world to drown out our inner voice and our innate wisdom. It is there to guide us.

When we are true to ourselves, honour our emotions, whether good or bad and start being true to ourselves, our emotions can be a little easier to deal with. When we ride the wave instead of trying to go against it and we make our emotional, physical and mental well-being our number one priority, we can start to get back on track and into healthier and more positive habits.