Self-understanding is the key.
Words have a huge power!
To demonstrate this, have a look at this very short (and powerful) video clip.
Words are not only powerful but vital in making sense of our experiences and calming down our brain and internal system, which has been demonstrated by neuroscience (e.g., Raz & Zysberg, 2014) and by Emotional Freedom Techniques.
If you name it, you tame it.
So, naming emotions & feelings associated with present & past events helps us make sense of how our past experiences have shaped our personal reality, why significant people related to us in the way they did, why we related/relate to others & ourselves in the way we did/do, and why generations after generations tend to repeat the same patterns of behaviour and relating.
So, creating a coherent narrative about our life helps us see life events in perspective, it moves us closer to understanding, acceptance, forgiveness and it gives us the courage to make changes.
If you wish to see a list of common emotions & feelings that might help you name what you are experiencing, please click here.
And bear in mind that ...
... we are story makers and story tellers.
And the story we tell ourselves about ourselves & the world is the story we live.
It is also important to bear in mind that there is nothing wrong with us. We think, feel, and behave in the way we do because of past conditioning and having to adapt to our environment in the best possible way. Our defence mechanisms, which I call either coping strategies, forms of adaptation, or protectors, exist only because at one point in time they were very useful for our survival - physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. The trouble is that we continue using the same strategies even though they no longer serve us. Understanding them is the first step to making changes.
Therapy helps us make sense of our life and our 'selves'.
I will end this post with a beautiful quote from W. Shakespeare (Hamlet):
There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.
Raz, S., & Zysberg, L. (2014). Emotional Intelligence : Current Evidence From Psychophysiological, Educational and Organizational Perspectives. Hauppauge, New York: Nova Science Publishers.