Toxic positivity… I’ve come to realize this is a legitimate thing, and I’m guilty of it. Dismissing your (or someone else’s) feelings of overwhelm, sadness, loss, worry, doesn’t do the good you’re hoping it will. Phrases like, “Just keep your chin up, you’ll get over it, things can’t be that bad, it could be worse.” For me, it was more the guilt I’d experience for feeling upset or negative, and I would constantly try to put a happy spin on things. But, guess what? Life’s not all sunshine and rainbows and you’re going to feel negative, sad, worried, overwhelmed, defeated, and THAT’S ALL OK!! I’ve come to realize, you can feel all of those things AND still be grateful for the good, and happy with other things in your life. It’s not so cut and dry of you’re either 100% happy or 100% negative. There’s definitely a middle ground.
When we dismiss the sad or negative feelings, we’re telling ourselves it’s not OK to feel this way. Every person, literally, EVERY PERSON, is going to go through hard times and difficult situations. Yes, it’s important to keep in mind there’s always a light at the end of the tunnel, and to know these feelings and situations won’t last forever- but, in the meantime, know that how you’re feeling is valid. Give into it with a big cry if you need to, have a bitch sesh with a bestie, acknowledge how you’re feeling and then you can begin to let it go and move forward. Trying to talk yourself out of your feelings with the mantras we tell ourselves of, others have it worse, this really isn’t that big a deal, just keep positive- while all of those come from a good place, the underlying meaning is to bury how you’re feeling now, and pretend things aren’t affecting you to the degree that they really are.
So, I’m learning to embrace the sadness I feel sometimes. The negative emotions, the feelings and thoughts of worry and overwhelm. It sounds a little crazy in a sense… but in this journey of learning to love and be kinder to myself, I’m making the choice to accept all of my emotions. Good and bad. We’re only human after all. ❤