Have you ever wrestled with conflicting feelings, like feeling hopeful yet fearful? Or feeling like you want to keep on living but you’re also very exhausted?
Have you ever been taken over by overwhelming emotions? And then you tried to suppress them with your mind because feeling too much can be scary, or worse, wrong. Maybe you felt like you had so much to be grateful for so you don’t have a good reason to be sad.
Or maybe feeling too much joy felt scary because it’s an emotion that doesn’t come around that often. Or you might have tried to hold on to that joy so tight, it slipped away.
And you might have fought your sadness so often, yet it remained, like a shadow that keeps following you. In this case, it’s called depression, and it’s not just sadness that you can push away. It’s an illness that alters your brain.
These are some examples of the deeper emotional layers of our human existence. They lie deeper because they’re difficult, messy, and sometimes don’t make any sense.
They also lie deeper because they cannot be easily discussed in society and with others. You can’t just walk around telling people about how confused you are, or how you fight daily battles within your mind. And that makes sense, people do not have to dive as deep as you may have to understand you. It’s not their problem after all.
Though what often happens is that we learn to suppress our deep emotions out of fear. There is no perfect manual for how to navigate turbulent emotional waters.
Yes there is therapy, medicine, and other forms of professional treatment but it’s important to acknowledge that this remains unavailable for many people across the globe. People also experience professional assistance in a variety of ways. This is not to undermine therapy or medicine. It can be immensely helpful to be able to receive professional help when your emotions become troubling or you’re struggling with mental health disorders.
However, there remains much uncertainty for many of us around our inner worlds, which can cause pain and make our emotions look scary, like a dark cave that we are afraid to explore.