Editor's Note: Opening up to
feelings can open up vulnerabilities that many of us don't want to
expose to anyone, including those who are close to us. Others
have also hidden our feelings so deeply and refuse to acknowledge
Yet human feelings are part of the
human experience. As tough as it can be to have them, opening
up to our feelings at a conscious level can also be incredibly
The Fear of Feeling
Margaret Paul, Ph.D.
We desire to find the path to
peace, joy and freedom. We strive to feel lovable, worthy and
secure. We know that if we do our inner work and open to our
connection with Spirit, we will feel all of that. Yet we don't. We
put it off for days or weeks. We stay stuck in our misery or
numbness. Why? What are we so afraid of if we open to learning about
I have searched for many years for
the answer to this question. Over and over I would find myself out
of grace and joy and into anxiety and stress. Each time it was
because I failed to take care of myself in some way.
The problem is that all feelings
are in the same box. Pain is in the same box as joy. We cannot be
putting a lid on pain without putting a lid on joy as well.
What is the pain we are striving so
hard to avoid feeling? Most people feel a lot of pain. We feel
anxious, frightened, depressed, hurt. Since we are often in pain, it
doesn't seem to make sense that we are, at the same time as we are
feeling all this pain, also avoiding pain. Yet that is exactly what
we are doing.
As unhappy as we may be feeling, we
are avoiding pain that we believe is even greater than the pain we
I have discovered that there are
three feelings which most people want to avoid at all cost:
aloneness, loneliness and helplessness.
Aloneness is what we feel inside
when we are disconnected from a spiritual source of love. Loneliness
is what we feel when we cannot connect with another, either because
our heart is closed, their heart is closed, or both of our hearts
are closed. Helplessness is what we would feel if, when we want to
connect with another and his or her heart is closed, we accept that
there is nothing we can do to make them open their heart.
Helplessness is what we feel when we accept our lack of control over
When we were babies and small
children, we couldn't allow ourselves to feel these feelings. We
could not have handled them and may have died of despair. So we
learned many protections to avoid feeling these feelings.
The problem is that we still think
we will die if we feel these feelings, so we are still avoiding
them. We avoid connecting with God for fear God will not be there
and we will feel alone. We get angry, withdraw, eat, drink, take
drugs, watch TV, get busy, overwork and so on to avoid feeling the
pain of our loneliness and helplessness.
Yet loneliness in our society is
unavoidable. There are so many people who spend their lives with
their hearts closed to avoid their pain that it is impossible not to
be around people whose hearts are closed some of the time. If we
choose to avoid feeling our loneliness and helplessness, then we too
will close our heart. However, when we close our heart we close down
the joy too. Then we are stuck with the anxiety, fear, depression
and hurt that is endemic in our society.
will not die if you open to feeling your loneliness and
helplessness. It is even quite tolerable if you hold your lonely
Inner Child (your feeling self) while bringing through love from
Spirit, for then you are not alone in your loneliness. The
willingness to feel the pain of loneliness and helplessness opens
the door to joy, peace, and freedom. The more you open to spiritual
help in your loneliness, the more you are able to embrace the
privilege of this sacred journey of evolving your soul. There is
great joy in the journey, even when there is loneliness!
About The Author
Paul, Ph.D. is the best-selling author and co-author of eight books,
including "Do I Have To Give Up Me To Be Loved By You?"
and “Healing Your Aloneness.” She is the co-creator of the
powerful Inner Bonding healing process. Learn Inner Bonding now!
Visit her web site for a FREE Inner Bonding course: http://www.innerbonding.com
Phone sessions are available.