“Your feelings are valid and real. Do not let anyone denounce them just because they do not feel the same way. These feelings do not make you weak, or clingy, or overly emotional. They make you strong, brave, and beautiful. You are not merely made of stardust; you are the comet streaking through the sky on the way to do good and bright things.” – page 162, Pillow Talk, Courtney Peppernell
A couple of days ago, I was watching Instagram stories, and there was one in particular from the GirlBoss account that caught my attention. It was about trying to be positive, and confronting the negativity.
Since I’m someone who always tries to encourage, and look on the bright side of things, I figured reading the article would be beneficial to me. And it truly was. Because there are times when I’m encouraging a friend, or even trying to encourage myself, and simply trying to press positive thoughts into someone’s situation or negative thoughts isn’t good enough. Maybe it helps for like, a minute, but it doesn’t combat the negativity, the sadness, the anger, the hurt.
And this article suggested, not just bottling up the negativity, or trying to pile positive thinking on top of the negative emotions, but confronting the negative thoughts – acknowledging that, yes, this is how I’m feeling, and it’s okay. Some girls I talk to in one of the many group chats I’m in talked to me about how they listen to sad music when they’re sad because it somewhat helps, and I think that’s one good way to confront and acknowledge a negative emotion.
Of course, once we acknowledge the negative emotions, we need to confront them. We need to ask ourselves why we’re feeling this way, what can we do to solve an issue if there is one, and then make moves to move on from the negativity and into positivity.
I know that for me personally, one major thing that helps me squash negative thoughts is getting into the Word of God; reading His promises to His people tends to always bring me comfort. I honestly love reading the Psalms because David writes about all his emotions – praise, joy, happiness, sadness, anger, hurt, betrayal, etc. He acknowledges the emotions he feels, knowing that the Lord hears him, and knowing that He will always be with him through those emotions.
And so, I want to continue to feel and confront in 2018. To remember that my emotions, and the emotions of others are valid. To not just place a band-aid of positivity on top of negative emotions, and expect the feelings to dissipate immediately.
Evaluate yourself: are you good at acknowledging and confronting negative emotions, or do you need to work on it? What are some ways to help you move past your negative emotions after you’ve confronted them?