Owning Your Feelings and Building Resilience

Owning Your Feelings: Mental Health Awareness Month- Tools to Thrive

Written by Kristen Reese; Associate Director of Rediscovering You

There is a Japanese proverb that states, “Fall seven times and stand up eight.”  The first time I heard the saying, it resonated with me. I have always been a resilient person.  I’ve been knocked down by life or lost sight of a goal more times than I can count (definitely more than seven).  Each time I had to dig deep within my heart, and each time I learned something new about myself. One day I realized the lessons were the whole point of the struggle I just endured.

So, how do you become more resilient?  The first step, for me at least, was acknowledging and accepting my own feelings.  Those would range from frustration, dejection, to betrayal. I didn’t want to “feel” any of these things.  If I did, it was just “poor me”. The thing is- it’s okay to feel those things. The key is to not linger in the feelings.  When I let myself be frustrated about something for a couple days, it opened up space on the third day to then think about the next steps I wanted to take. I let go of the frustration, and focused on what I could control.  I stood up!

For Mental Health Awareness Month, Mental Health America has shared some “Tools to Thrive” on their website.  Check out the ones specific to “Owning Your Feelings” at www.mhanation.org/owning-your-feelings. (Spoiler: A few of my favorites include: Don’t ignore how you’re feeling; build your emotional vocabulary; and consider the strength of your feelings.)

Feel free to drop us a comment about how you “own your feelings”.  We can all learn from each other.

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