“Madness does not have to be all collapse, it can also be progress.” R.D Laing
If we’ve learned one thing this past year, it’s to acknowledge our emotions and break the stigma that they should be “hidden” in our lives. What we didn’t know from the beginning of all this uncertainty was that when we do not let our emotions express, they do not let us be ourselves. And in reality, having forced ourselves to eliminate the unpleasant, anger, sadness, fear, anguish, rupture, helplessness and pain in general, more they persisted within us; manifesting even in our physical body.
In a reality like the one we live in, so incredibly complex and at the same time demanding, we fight to avoid discomfort. We try to be in control of ourselves and appear vulnerable, at the end, the only challenge is to normalize our emotions; to understand those emotions that speak to us, indicating very powerful messages. For example: anger shows us something that is valuable to us, which is being stepped on. Sadness appears when something that is important is ceasing naturally, because of the course of life and fear when something we want is at risk. And so on, we should begin to understand that all emotions are our deepest approach to our own selves.
We have to start understanding that we can’t longer be in the past, but neither in the future. Let us understand that the confinement was to make us realize that if we could neither fight nor flee from the threats of life, we looked for the exits within ourselves. During the lockdown, we became obsessed with something but the only thing we did not obsess over was being authentic. The challenge here is to be open, aware of everything that happens to us emotionally and how that changes the course of our lives, our plans, our couples, our careers. Even after all the changes, it is okay not to know which course to take.
The psychiatrist Ronald Laing considered that madness should not be classified as something clearly negative. Madness in a way, indicated a disguised malaise. We must be able to observe that emotions translate into our physical and mental confinement. What do we mean behind a scream, a hurtful phrase, a sarcasm? Probably our “inner child” wants to cry out desperately that he does not want to be abandoned, does not want to feel disapproved and insufficient.
Unconsciously, we do not understand that emotions are our teacher. They appear when we need them the most, but like all good students, they must always step away to demonstrate what they have learned. This is why we must be aware of showing what we feel and why we feel it. It is not possible to stay in a “childish” phase that camouflages emotions through wrong attitudes; We have to mature, explore and express. Emotions are our own, and if they are felt because they are real.
The confinement gave us emotional freedom, and to admit that it’s okay to be wrong. It also allowed us to discover who else we thought would be and to walk away. That who we least we imagined, stayed to challenge us, teach us and make us more vulnerable than ever. There is always a reason within an emotion, and that reason is not positive or negative, it just is.
The philosopher Jason Silva expressed that every situation that produces us “ecstasy” is accompanied by something sad too; since human beings always want “something more” and that “something more” of which we are never satisfied, always accompanies us with nostalgia and existentialism. We are afraid of the things we have not yet lost and expressing it terrifies us. Perhaps the disguise behind fear is to have an indifferent and unimportant attitude. The disguise behind anger is to act in revenge to indicate power, and of sadness is to distance yourself so that it doesn’t hurt so much.
Let’s discover what lies behind every emotion that arouses in us and if the only thing that prevents us from expressing ourselves emotionally is being hurt, let’s reevaluate where that hurt comes from or why. Let’s learn to understand that my actions should not depend on the response of another, if I express and do not have the reciprocity that I wanted, it is not a problem of who emits it, it is of whom did not know how to receive it. Let’s see vulnerability with different eyes, let’s see vulnerability as a synonym of courage. Let’s remove disguises and face our fears, sadness, and anger because only through emotion, we can connect with the other.
In the end, it is more sustainable than disguising ourselves.