How to start listening to what your emotions are telling you: 5 questions to dig deeper


In the busyness of our day to day lives, we are constantly feeling and labeling our emotions but often we are not taking the time to work out what is happening underneath it all. Without even knowing it, we start to sleep walk through life just going through the motions, not allowing ourselves to look deeper in case we were to open up a can of worms.

When you finally decide to stop and take the time to dig a little deeper, there is so much more to our stress that we need to understand in order to actually manage it.

The emotional roller coaster called life

Personally, I pushed myself to burn out before I started to really look at what was happening underneath it all, which was all inside me. I had started to become so angry, most of which I suppressed. I followed all the should dos in life and when I found I hadn’t reached the final goal of being happy I didn’t know what else to do but to continue pushing harder in the hope that at some point I would find this happiness you hear of.

When I finally stopped to see what my emotions were trying to tell me I found there was so much more to it then the stress I had labelled it as. For me it was a lot of suppressed emotions from my past, and it also had a lot to do with my beliefs towards myself. I didn’t believe that I was good enough or deserved happiness so I pushed myself to prove that I was.

The easy part is just labeling these emotions and saying, “I’m stressed” but the more we aren’t stopping to actually listen to our emotions, the louder they become and we start to feel overwhelmed by them. We have so many beliefs like “time heals all wounds” however the majority of the time we don’t deal with our feelings and instead suppress them.

This then leads to more negative thoughts and more negative feelings which starts a cycle. Many of us then can’t cope with it anymore which causes us to start numbing how we feel by drinking, shopping, watching too much television, anything just to switch off for a while and not have to think or feel.

Questions to ask yourself to dive deeper

In order to start listening to what your emotions are trying to tell you, you have to start actually acknowledging them and knowing that they are there. Instead of pushing them to one side whenever they come up, just acknowledge that you feel a certain way and when you have time then start to question why it is coming up for you.

Many of us don’t think we have time, but often we need to check if this is just an excuse your mind is telling you and make at least 10 minutes available in our day to just reflect and become more self aware. Become a third-party observer of your thoughts and emotions.

Here are 5 questions you can ask yourself in order to get started:

  • What is this feeling really bringing up / triggering in me?
  • If this feeling were able to talk, what would it be trying to tell me?  
  • Am I getting any kickbacks from feeling this way?
  • Which of my needs are going unmet that is making me feel this way?
  • What is making me react to this situation / circumstance and why?

If you find it difficult to go through these questions and think you may need more assistance with understanding your emotions, beliefs and thoughts then please feel free to get in touch with me on to organise a free Stress Awareness Session.

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