In some cases, suppressing emotions can be useful, perhaps even essential. In the case of severe injury, the body goes into shock. This blocks the sensations of pain and numbs the consciousness so the body can recover. Suppressing pain can also be good for children who are subjected to abuse—whether physical, sexual, or emotional. In such cases, stuffing emotions down is an act of mercy, and is the first step in healing.
Early in life we learn to ignore emotions, brush them aside, or stuff them deep inside and move on. Unfortunately, continuously stuffing emotions down results in the stifling of life. While the symptoms will vary from person to person, suppressing emotions can result in mental health issues, relationship problems, and physical disease.
Stuffing Emotions Down Results in Disease & Dysfunction
When we suppress emotions, the energy from the emotion doesn’t disappear. It may subside, but it settles deep within. If you stuff your emotions down often enough you become completely congested. Think of a wide river that rushes wildly. If you visit it every day and throw in a few large stones, in the course of a lifetime the river will become sluggish and clogged, and it will diminish. The same can happen to your emotional energy.
As we allow suppressed emotions to clog up, our emotional energy is diminished and this interferes with the design of our body. It can reduce the efficiency of our mind, shorten our lifespan, and compromise our immune system.
Stuffing emotions down isn’t a simple process. It requires us to contract our muscles with force, engage in mental denial, and stifle our breath. Excessive force may be required when an emotion is particularly strong. This requires a severe expenditure of energy. As we age it becomes more difficult to keep these emotions suppressed, because more energy is being used to keep them down. This wears us down, resulting in exhaustion. Such fatigue undermines our immune system.
Stuffing Emotions Down Leaves Us Less Able
People who habitually stuff their emotions down are like deer frozen in the headlights. They don’t heal from sadness because they have never resolved their feelings. People who suppress emotions can remain in a permanent state of grief. Those who repress anger can forever feel as though they are victims.
Every emotion that we have is important. Emotions offer us the force we need to act decisively and think creatively. The more we suppress our emotions, the less successful we will be in life.
Stuffing Emotions Down Disconnects Us From The World
Your energy field extends around you and makes it possible to connect with the environment and with others. Positive emotions, like trust, love, intimacy, empathy, and compassion, flow between people who can connect to each other. Your energy is affected by stuffing your emotions down. This causes you to withdraw and disconnect from others. This disconnect can take a toll. People who fail to connect with others are the most likely people to inflict pain on others.
The modern world is teeming with people who have been taught to suppress their emotions. They stumble through life with serious struggles, completely unaware that they are hiding from their emotions. They struggle to enjoy life the way they everyone else enjoying it.
If you’re guilty of suppressing your emotions, it isn’t too late to take steps to unblock your energies. If you don’t, you will find yourself more susceptible to illness and will struggle with your personal relationships. What’s even more unfortunate is that this habit will spill over to the children you have and the cycle will continue.