Last updated on April 3rd, 2019 at 12:45 am

We wish our lives away. From the time we’re born to the time we pass into the next world, we’re in a constant state wishing away the future—”Can’t wait until I can shave… get my licence… make money and move out… for the baby to start walking… until the kids are out of the house… for the weekend… to retire… until I die.”

Our capacity to be with ourselves—our emotions, experiences and truths—is grossly hindered when we fail to explore the energy behind not only what lifts us up, but also what keeps us down. We tend to quest mostly towards happiness and the discovery of what could be. This journey is incomplete, however, without the courage to investigate the wisdom available to us when we explore all aspects of our lives, including where we silently suffer or grieve for healing and change.

Diving deep into the depths of an emotion when it’s present, enables greater richness in life—even when being with it is painful and uncomfortable.

Get a grip on yourself

The life story you’ve accepted to believe as your truth only scratches the surface of who you really are. Throughout your life, you’ve created boundaries by which to live this life. This has included consciously and unconsciously filtering in or out people, experiences, emotions and opportunities that don’t fit with your belief system. Believing this potentially incomplete story of who you are based on how you’ve interpreted your past experiences can define your future path.

Indications not to be ignored

A clear indication that there’s more to explore for yourself, are those times when you’ve sat with feelings of uncertainty, judgment and/or your version of sadness. It’s a time when your subconscious battles your conscious. While one looks to maintain your comfort and current safety zones, the other guides you towards deeper awareness of your true self—good, bad and ugly. This is your mind, soul and spirit attempting to show you something of meaning.

Charting the unfamiliar

To be in a better relationship with yourself and your emotional state, you must be willing to become the explorer—fully accepting that what may be uncovered will leave you forever changed.

Expect your capability for greater self-love, compassion and acceptance to develop unlike ever before. Be mindful of the process, however, as these outcomes may come at an initial cost. Your journey may create deeper confusion and complexity in the beginning. It’s in those moments that your level of resilience, commitment and trust will be tested. When we’re at our most uncomfortable state is when we tend to pull away from creating the change we knowingly or unknowingly went looking for. However, it’s in this most vulnerable place that the greatest insights appear. Trust that something of value will be revealed.

Start through listening and observing your behaviour and actions. Notice how you identify yourself in your world, compartmentalizing you versus others. What patterns do you notice? What is true or false about the information you internalize from these patterns? How does life respond to you? What is the primary emotion present? What is fueling this feeling?

Now stay. Continue to explore whether this is the time and/or place where you might traditionally disconnect from your uncomfortable experience and therefore your ability to create change.

Integrating new levels of awareness

Consider the various learning opportunities waiting for you with every emotion you feel in any given moment. As you become more able to germinate these seeds of awareness, you’ll energetically sense the opportunities for deep personal growth and transformation. For when you do, you allow your consciousness to align with the fact that you’re falling out of affinity with your old patterns of thinking and being. This includes how you might respond to life experiences and face unfamiliar emotions.

Don’t struggle in trying to make sense of it all. Emotions are not like an easy puzzle. All the pieces may not fit nicely together—now or ever. That’s the point. It’s about gaining strength from the depths within and of what could be. It’s the fertile space that one must be willing to create for themselves at all costs.

Read more on this topic in THE BACKPACK: Learning to unpack emotional baggage»

Sophie Turner is a professional coach, mentor, facilitator, social entrepreneur and creator of the Marquee Personality Profile and founder of The Conversation Project, inspiring action for conscious living.
image: Confrontation. The struggle between light and darkness via Shutterstock
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