Journaling-in-depth allows us the opportunity to listen to our untended parts, to begin to nourish them, to help them feel their ways through their feelings.
Journaling-in-depth allows us to bring into awareness the often less than conscious shaping influences from societal, cultural and familial messages, to begin to challenge their truths and their relevance to our lives.
Journaling-in-depth allows us to begin separating our authentic inner voice from the internalized chorus of these external messages.
The Impact of Outside Voices
We are all, to some greater or lesser degree, affected by living in a crazy-making, toobusy, out-of-balance world where the cultural trance of more, bigger, faster, do-it yesterday sets the bar for what makes us feel worthy. Media images of success and beauty bombard us daily, liminally and subliminally, with idealized and photoshopped standards against which we are encouraged to measure ourselves. Inevitably, our merely human selves fall short of these impossible standards. It’s a world that is feelings-phobic, particularly averse to any emotions of the so-called dark or shadow sort (namely, anything other than joy or bliss.) Is it any wonder that even those of us fortunate enough to have had fairly positive parenting in our families of origin frequently find ourselves dealing with the sense that we’re either not enough or too much to be considered worthwhile or lovable.
We may hide our sadness or depression in order not to be seen as a “downer,” a pariah. We may feel ashamed or guilty about the slightest bit of anger or rage – it’s so not what nice girls should feel or else it’s so “unevolved.” And, particularly poisonously, some currently popular New Age flap would have us believe that letting ourselves feel any so called negative emotions will only attract more of the same. Therefore, this framing insists, we should avoid such at all costs. Never mind that stuffing them can wreak havoc in our bodies and psyches!