I’m an emotional person. I don’t necessarily project this in conversation (unless I’m angry….then you’d better run) but for those who know me, really know me, (and there are truly few) I can be read. I sob through all the holiday commercials about a long lost relative coming home at the eleventh hour. I can’t bear the pleas for help against abused animals, and a heart wrenching country ‘love gone wrong’ song will bring me to tears. Aside from that, I’m actually pretty tough.,,,,so,,,,I’m  normal, right?

That said, I do tend to express (often unwittingly) my inner most feelings when I write. We all need an outlet and I guess I tend to bear my sole….in print (or so people tell me) and for me it’s therapeutic. Maybe that’s why so many psychologists suggest patients keep journals. It’s a private place to vent your innermost feelings; a place without judgement or retribution….or is it? Turns out, it is not an anonymous venue because someone, somewhere, will read your thoughts and you have no control over how it will be interpreted, and that’s where the problems arise.

I think there are situations when we should keep our emotions to ourselves; keep your face without expression and hold your tongue (ok, I’d struggle with  holding my tongue….I’d have to bite it….what if I bleed to death?) if only to protect others. The benefit of this self-control is you do not subject yourself to any form of judgement or ridicule, and you spare the feelings of another. The down side of holding emotion in is that you might explode (as I would).  I believe I am destined to always be an outspoken, emotional person, which I hope portrays me as honest and forthright…..ok, maybe a little too honest and forthright, but at least you never have to question where I stand, and I would never aim to cause anyone pain or embarrassment.

There are many who ‘wear their emotions on their sleeve’, softies whose emotions are displayed in vivid facial expression and tone of voice. There’s nothing wrong with this but it can be a double edged sword. On one hand it projects you as sensitive and genuine, which is good. On the other it opens you up to people who might take advantage of your gentle nature.  (I am not one of the softies….at least not overtly)

I think we are all guilty at some time or another of saying something we perhaps shouldn’t (at least not out loud) but we are human, and it’s hard to hide emotion, much as we try. We each have our own perceptions of a situation and it’s in these differing perceptions where misunderstandings occur. My ‘take’ on a situation may differ from another’s, drastically enough that it causes conflict,,,, but maybe that conflict is good? It sparks much needed conversation; conversation that provides clarity, if only for you.

Maybe another’s interpretation of your actions is just what you need to help you deal with your own unconscious thoughts because they are seeing you clearly and without emotion, and that forces you to face your true demons. Failing that, you can hold it in, say nothing, and risk imploding.

Holding it in

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