My Dad has said to me a few times that as he gets older he finds himself bursting with emotion. What he was talking about was, when he was watching T.V. he would burst into tears at whatever it was he was watching.
Now, I hear you. You’re thinking, “Yeah, many people burst into tears if they are watching something on TV or in a movie.” My Dad, on the other hand, had for many years buried his emotions. Well, he buried the emotions that elicited tears. Why? Well, because crying is not manly. Men don’t cry.
My Dad depicts himself as Rambo. He is a tough man who protects his family. He is a survivor. He cannot cry. Crying is for wimps, he would say. So, years later, when I’m in my 20’s he is telling me about all this emotion that keeps rearing its ugly head. He doesn’t understand and quite frankly, neither did I.
Now, years later, almost 20, I’ve done my own soul searching, self-development and have learned a few things. I also started to experience these outbursts of tears. I would cry at the drop of a hat as an ambulance would drive by me. Or I’d be watching a show that I didn’t think was particularly sad, only to find myself hiding my tears from my husband.
What was going on? Well, I was reacting and responding to gestalts. “What are those?” my daughter would say? A gestalt is a collection of memories linked together or grouped together around a certain subject.
Essentially, when I would see an ambulance drive by, I would be triggered or reminded of a past event that upsets me, and I would start crying. It's not always tears that appear. It could be any emotion. For me and my Dad who have felt the need to arm ourselves taking our emotions hiding and shielding them with heavy armor as if our emotions were in a vault, like Fort Knox.
How many people out there shield their emotions to protect themselves from getting hurt? Some of us easily learn from a significant emotional event. While others take a more drastic approach swinging the pendulum in the opposite direction. For me, armouring up and placing my emotions in a vault was a strategy used to protect myself from emotional pain. Now tell me, who doesn’t do that? Protect themselves from emotional pain, that is. We all have something we do or don’t do to guard ourselves, protect us from being hurt again.
Fortunately, I have learned some new strategies and have gained resources over the years to assist me in managing my emotions in a positive manner. I no longer shove my emotions in a Rubbermaid container or vault and bury them 6 feet underground. It wasn’t easy, but learning healthy emotional management has given me a new light. A new lease on life, a new perspective. The best part is, that I can stop coming home angry, projecting all of my unresolved stuff onto the people I love.
As for my Dad, some say, you can’t teach an old dog new tricks. I believe, it depends on if the old dog is willing to learn!
I’m Coach Jackie Thomas.
I also happen to be a Nurse in the Healthcare field. I’ve been a PSW as well.
I’m a wife and mom who loves her family. But, sometimes, after a “bad day” or dealing with some intense trauma, I was triggered and brought it home to my kids and spouse. It wasn’t working.
At the height of my burnout, I went looking for solutions. Anything to make me feel better again. To love my career again. To reignite my passion again.
I found evolved NLP. The combination of science meets spiritual resonated with me. The work is founded in practices of forgiveness and healing on a cellular level for lasting true change.
To rebound, rebuild, and repair from days of trauma, disease, and stress.
To reclaim our passion to serve.
To love our career and our lives - at the same time.
These tools gave me my life back.
They can do the same for you.