Recently, I was trying to ignore something that was on my mind and I was miserable. Something quite big. It was on my mind for a reason: because it was important to me. It’s extremely difficult, and painful, to ignore something that’s important to you. So why do we? Fear. We can pretend it’s not happening if we don’t talk about it. We can pretend that we’ll never have to deal with it. Sounds familiar?
This will happen if you don’t talk about it:
1. You can’t concentrate
The more you try to distract yourself, the worse it becomes. The only thing you can concentrate on is the one thing you don’t want to think about.
2. It stays on your mind
Because you know, deep down, that you want to and need to deal with it. Your unconscious mind knows, and it desperately wants the conscious mind to know. If you don’t listen, it’ll keep persisting.
3. You feel crap
You’re dwelling on it. You’re not taking any action. You’re pretending you don’t know what to do, but you know exactly what to do and aren’t doing it. Is it a massive surprise that you feel crap?
4. You overthink
You analyse everything. Did she mean this, or that? What were they really trying to say? What if he said this, but actually meant this?
5. You overthink overthinking
How meta. You think about why you’re analysing everything. It’s like Inception, but for thinking. Fun, right? Nope.
6. You torture yourself
You know exactly what to do but you don’t do it. This is, generally, a big cause of unhappiness. It’s like you’re teasing yourself. But not in the fun way.
7. You become stuck
You can’t move forward with your life because you don’t want to. All you really want to do is sort this damn problem out. Do yourself a favour and take some advice from Nike: just do it. What’s the best that could happen?
8. You let someone take your happiness away from you
This is something that I realised only after I’d written most of this article. If you’re problem is with a person, you’re giving them all the power. You allow them to take your happiness away from you. The craziest part of this? They probably have no idea, and they might not even care.
But when you finally do talk about it, this will happen:
1. You feel like a weight has been lifted
It’s an incredible feeling. It’s a cliché, but it’s a cliché for a reason. You really do feel lighter. It takes a lot of effort carrying something like that around, and to talk about it and therefore deal with it takes the burden away. Just try it.
2. You wonder why you ever waited
What was I waiting for? You realize that you could’ve saved yourself all this anger and frustration and sadness if you just got it over with. Ah. Next time, then…
3. Admitting something is never as bad as you thought it was going to be
Once it’s out there, it’s out there. You can’t take it back. You’ve said it and you’ve meant it. Rather than feeling trapped by your admission, you feel free. You think you’ll box yourself in, but you actually give yourself choice and inspiration and empowerment. It’s not always easy, but it is always worth it.
If you’re still not sure that talking about it is the right thing, let me leave you with these questions:
- What are you waiting for? (Be honest. If you say “nothing”, then you’re lying to yourself, because if that were true you would’ve done it already.)
- What would happen if you just admitted it?
- If you have had admitted it and have felt that massive weight lifted, what would you do then?
Featured photo credit: young girl and man playing with tin. outdoor shot via shutterstock.com