How holding down feelings can make you sick #2
The next few posts I`ll write a bit about how holding your feelings down can make you sick. This is the second post in this series, the last post was about what emotions are and why they are important. This post is about what happens in the body when feelings are getting held down.
Through different life experiences, upbringing or just trying to have a socially acceptable expression of our feeling, we sometimes push down the physical sensation of the feeling instead of feeling them.
For example: Let`s say I`m at work and I learn that someone close to me is sick. This makes me sad, but since I`m not able to cry at that moment I push the feeling away so I`ll be able to do my job. What the body does to push a feeling out of consciousness, is to activate the anxiety system. This anxiety activation covers up the physical sensation of the feeling.
Have you ever been in an emotional situation and suddenly gotten muscle tension in your neck? This is an example of anxiety (muscles tension) covering up the physical activation of your feelings. Another normal process is getting stomach symptoms when in emotionally stressful situations. This is also an example of how feelings are covered up by anxiety (stomach upset).
So when we push down feelings, they don`t go away (I mean what good signalling system stops signalling if you ignore it?) it just gets covered up by anxiety. Depending on how the activation in the anxiety system is, you`ll get different types of symptoms. The symptoms can range from muscle tension, stomach upset, rapid heartbeat, muscle pain, diarrhea, memory problems, memory loss, problems concentrating, dizziness and many more.
Again I`ll have to underscore that I`m talking about medically unexplained symptoms, that means symptoms without a medical cause. If you`re experiencing physical symptoms, you should always have them checked out by a doctor first.