You feel pressured. You feel anxious. You feel now, at this very moment, people are waiting, and they expect something out of you. You don’t like the attention, you hate it in fact. You think it would be what you would want, then you get a taste of it, and now you want to be totally secluded, completely alone. You normally bottle everything up, and you’re well aware that isn’t good for you. Every now and then, your bottle overflows and it spills on the wrong people, such as friends or family. You say things you don’t mean, or maybe things you did mean, but were hurtful and did not need to be said. Well, now you’re embarrassed. You try and apologize to your friends, but they might not want to hear it, and you might lose that friend after a while if you don’t try to better yourself. You avoid speaking to your family, why? I’m not sure, you just feel better when you don’t talk. Talking is what got you in this hole, so maybe if you don’t speak for a couple of weeks things will fix themselves. It’s been weeks since you even called your family now, they miss you, they want to hear your voice. You’re convinced though that they don’t want anything to do with you right now. You’re sure this is the best way to deal with things. Suddenly, your friends, or maybe even family, tell you that you need to start talking about things. Why? Wouldn’t that just make it worse? Feelings and emotion seem so unnecessary, why would anyone want to hear about them? There are millions of people out there who have it so much worse and are so much happier than you are, so you feel as though how you feel is pretty irrelevant, and you need to keep it quiet. But it’s not just your own feelings, no it’s much worse now, you can’t hear about anyone’s feelings. You cringe at the sound of it. You don’t mean to be rude, but you can’t even sort your own thoughts out, why even try to understand someone else’s? What if they tell you about how they feel and you can relate to it? Then you feel reminded of the problems you avoid on a daily basis. You wish you could help others, but you can’t seem to even help yourself? Maybe you should try to, maybe your friends were right. You need to find the outlet.
Okay so, you make a list of possible outlets. Talking is the first one. You try to push through your own doubt and stubbornness and vent to a friend about what’s going on inside your head. Halfway through the conversation, you feel ridiculous and shut down. Okay, scratch that off the list. Then you try music. Who knows? Maybe you can write songs or poems and get the words out musically? How cool would that be? You sit down stare at the paper, and again, you feel absolutely ridiculous. It’s not for you. Scratch that. Okay, there’s more options, we’re not out of ideas yet. There’s always writing, that could work. You sit down in front of the laptop or journal, and you’re amazed. The words fly out of your hands, so much that sometimes your thoughts even seem rambled, going in every single direction. You feel it, how good it is to finally get it all out of your brain. You type or write for what feels like forever, then you finally sit back and look. Okay cool, that felt good, but now what? Keeping it to yourself seems wrong, seems counterproductive. Writing and keeping it hidden seems like simply talking to yourself, and that still feels bottled up. So, you decide to step a mile out of your comfort zone and put it online for others to see, maybe even share it around. You feel good at first, as though you had just accomplished something you never thought you could do before. You sit back and relax, for what feels like the first time in forever. An immense weight you’ve been carrying around is finally off of your shoulders.
Wait, no. Things don’t feel right. People are commenting, people are sharing, even messaging you. Some are shocked, no one saw this coming from you of all people. You’re getting attention. Okay fine, that’s fine no need to freak out really. But now you feel this weight. You feel pressured. All you can think about is how you wish no one had said anything, just read, and say nothing. But that’s not the normal thing to do, it’s not the healthy thing to do. That’s what put you here in the first place. Now you regret posting, you’re not sure why, but now you’re embarrassed. You want to disappear for a week. You’ve done it before, you can always do it again, you feel best alone. Wait, hold on. Your friends, your best friends are happy for you. More than once, you’re told to keep going, that it might be your best outlet, you need to have one. Well, maybe they’re right. You could always try one more time, right? You can’t quit on yourself now. You did the hardest part already, just simply getting out there was a challenge. Now you need to keep going. Your friends are supporting it, they even look forward to it, as well as your family. Well, that’s a different problem now. You feel pressured, like you’ll let everyone down. A disappointing second attempt of getting thoughts out of your head. Is there even such thing? You’re not sure, and you’re really not sure you want to find out. You want to scratch this entire option off the list, but after that you’re out of options, and part of you likes how the first attempt felt. So you try again.
Finding an outlet can be one of the most difficult things. Some attempt to people make music, some people try to write, or maybe even just let it out through actions. One of the hardest parts of finding an outlet is accepting that other people will recognize it. I for one hate letting people see my emotion, and dislike it when people have even the smallest idea of what’s going on inside my head. I would love to say I’m numb all the time, but that’s not the case for anyone. People feel something, people feel some sort of lust for something (or even someone in some cases). You need to get it out of your system, or your bottle will overflow, and spill on the wrong people. You’ll lose people you care about in some cases. If you can push through and find that outlet, you need to stick with it, it will help you better yourself tremendously. If you’re lucky, you’ll have amazing friends, friends that not only put up with you, but push you to keep going, to keep trying. An outlet is so extremely important to find, and can be so incredibly difficult to use for many. Stepping out of your comfort zone can be difficult, but sometimes, it’s necessary.