how to validate your own feelings
Personal Growth

How to validate your own feelings

I have always struggled with how to navigate my emotions. I tend to put myself down and say that I am being dramatic or that my feelings aren’t valid.

Over the years, I realized how harmful this has been to my well-being. It has manifested a lot of negativity in my life.

When you invalidate your own feelings, you start to feel a little crazy. You begin to think that you aren’t thinking or acting correctly, and that everyone else is judging you.

The reality is this: every person is a human with human feelings. We are allowed to feel a range of emotions, and we are allowed to react and cope to life’s struggles in our own ways.

If you find yourself questioning your feelings, I have a few suggestions that have helped me through my mental battles and brought me on a path to validating my own feelings.

Write down your feelings

With the age of technology, it doesn’t always sound appealing to get out a notebook and pen to write things down. For a while, I didn’t even have a notebook!

If you don’t have one, I would suggest getting yourself a cute notebook where you can jot down all of your feelings.

Don’t hold back – no one is going to see this. This is just for you, so that you can vent all of your thoughts and emotions. Anything that comes to mind, add it in there. You can organize it any way you want, but I would suggest adding the date on the page.

It’s helpful for me to go back and read old thoughts I wrote down awhile back and realize that many of the things I worried about ended up okay in the end. It also makes me proud of myself for overcoming certain challenges. Sometimes I even feel sorry for my old self.

When you write down your feelings, you remind yourself that they are real and they are valid. These are your honest, true thoughts, and you deserve to feel comfortable with your emotions. Getting it out there should release some weight off of our shoulders, since it will allow you to avoid bottling up your feelings. If you bottle them up for too long, they may all come out at once in an unwanted way.

Remember not to argue with yourself

This has always been hard for me. My mind can become a war zone when I am feeling difficult emotions, especially if I am dealing with a hardship. I can be so mean to myself.

After I was diagnosed with CVID, I kept going back and forth in my mind. I felt so sad and angry, but I made myself feel like those emotions were too much – this wasn’t that bad, I shouldn’t be so down about it. I said that it could be a lot worse. But even thought it could be worse, it doesn’t mean that my situation wasn’t hard.

Even though I have a chronic illness, I tell myself that everything is fine and that I am being dramatic, even when I am actually sick. I ask myself if the illness is even real. It is 100% real and I have been diagnosed by doctors, but there is always a part of me that wants to resist and undermine my physical feelings. I can go deep down a rabbit hole where I feel like I have been over-exaggerating or imagining things.

Whatever you are dealing with, make sure to stop arguing with yourself. Be kind to yourself. Show yourself grace and love.

give yourself grace

On this journey, I have been able to let myself relax. If I feel tired, I will lay down, and if I feel sick, I will take medicine, go to the doctor, and relieve myself of responsibilities if needed.

It is okay to choose yourself – in fact, you need to!

If you catch yourself arguing in your mind, take a minute, breathe, and let the emotions just be.

Tell your feelings to a therapist

I was really lucky that my university had free therapy while I was a student there. Therapy is an amazing way to talk about your feelings without holding back. It is nice to talk to someone who doesn’t know you. They can help you work through your feelings, and you might even start talking about things that you have never really said out loud.

If you’re looking for a therapist that takes insurance, check out this article from WebMD.

It’s easy to brush off the idea of going to therapy because it seems like an extra thing on a to-do list as well as an extra expense, but it can do wonders for your mental health, especially if you are going through a difficult season of your life.

I love this article about therapy: Reasons to See a Therapist

If you’ve never tried therapy before, check it out!

Your feelings are always valid

If you’re in a mental war, just remember that your feelings are valid. It is okay to be angry, sad, nervous, anxious, happy, or calm. Each person is unique in their response to life, and there is no right way to feel. You don’t have to be correct or appeasing to others.

At the end of the day, you are the one that lives in your own mind. Make sure that your mind is a comfortable place to be, and if it’s not, don’t hesitate to either reach out to friends and family or mental health professionals! People love you and they care about you, and we are all out here trying to figure out life.

This is a journey, and there will be good days and bad days. Don’t put pressure on yourself to be perfect. You can let the bad days be bad, and let tomorrow be a new day.

let the bad days be bad and let tomorrow be a new day

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