How does it make you feel?

The title of this post isn’t just something that therapists ask ad nauseum (although it does make me chuckle when it happens) — it’s something that we don’t often think about in the most literal terms when analyzing our emotions.

Generally, when someone asks how something makes us feel, we use adjectives such as sad, happy, angry, embarrassed, afraid, etc. We think in terms of broad emotional categories, the answers we’re used to giving in addition to saying our day was fine, our weekend was good, and our workload is busy.

But how do you really feel?

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What now?

I began sitting on the proverbial and literal couch, spilling my life story, my innermost thoughts and feelings, my fears and demons, in February of this year. When I started, I figured I would do this for about 6-8 months and then see where things were and either continue or cut back, knowing that it’s not something you can put a definitive timeline on. Because how can you put a timeline on self-discovery and resolution of everything that’s ever challenged you? It’s not like, “Get laundry done by Tuesday. Pay bills by Oct. 31. Call Grandma on Sunday.” Figuring out what’s “wrong” isn’t an item on the checklist, and neither is fixing the wrong.

Why? Because it’s not really about what’s wrong or right. And nor is there usually an easy solution to the things that actually bring you to a therapist/shrink/counselor/insert your medicine of choice here. It’s not a math problem that always has an answer, and it’s not a maze that has an opening and an exit. Well, it may be a maze, but there’s not always an exit.

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