Growing up I have always been an emotional person. My moods tend to fluctuate throughout the day and I have a short fuse. Moreover, whenever I go through a mood swing, I never know how to explain what I’m feeling, because most of the time, it’s nothing. When I start to feel too much, I shut off my emotions. This is an ability I’ve learned to do over time, but it also affects my relationships.
I push people away. I get angry quickly, but the anger quickly fades after. I get overwhelmed and stressed. I have anxiety about everything that could ever possibly happen when most of the time nothing ever happens. But through experiencing all these emotions, I quickly burn out. I get exhausted just from trying to balance out my emotions and thoughts. The easiest solution to all the emotions is just to turn them off.
I know I’m not the only one who decides being numb is better than feeling everything. But while I’m inside my head, I don’t realize the impact I have on the people around me, who I have personal relationships with. I often forget how lucky I am to have a support group.
If you’re a person who can easily turn off emotions, you’re not alone.
When people ask why you’re being so quiet or distant and you just don’t know how to put your words together to explain what you’re feeling, you’re not alone.
When you jump from euphoria to silence, you’re not alone.
When you feel all the emotions at once, you’re not alone.
And when you get overwhelmed and just want to cry, you’re not alone.
Shutting off your emotions is an easy way to cope, because you don’t have to deal with the racing thoughts going through your head. But when you shut off your emotions, both good and bad, you shut off your connection with the world. You shut off your ability to feel the good emotions that your friends, family, significant other make you feel. You shut off your ability to express yourself.
Feeling your emotions, and expressing the way you are feeling is natural and healthy. You find a way to cope by going numb, when really all that is doing is delaying the feeling. You can listen to the sad songs, the happy songs, or even the silence. In the end, you are still going to be you, every emotion at once, and all your thoughts dancing across your mind.
Being you is a gift, and turning off your emotions is like turning off yourself. It’s hard to remind yourself that feeling emotions are a good thing, because all those emotions are overwhelming. It’s easier to turn off your thoughts and go into autopilot mode. But when you’re in autopilot mode, you miss the beauty of the life you have.
“Emotions, in my experience, aren't covered by single words. I don't believe in "sadness," "joy," or "regret." Maybe the best proof that the language is patriarchal is that it oversimplifies feeling. I'd like to have at my disposal complicated hybrid emotions, Germanic train-car constructions like, say, "the happiness that attends disaster." Or: "the disappointment of sleeping with one's fantasy." I'd like to show how "intimations of mortality brought on by aging family members" connects with "the hatred of mirrors that begins in middle age." I'd like to have a word for "the sadness inspired by failing restaurants" as well as for "the excitement of getting a room with a minibar." I've never had the right words to describe my life, and now that I've entered my story, I need them more than ever. ” - Jeffrey Eugenides