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More Than: Sara of Active Girl

March 8, 2010
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Hi there! My name is Sara (ActiveGal) and Heather asked me to talk about something relating to healthy living (outside of exercise and good eats). I thought and thought over my topic, and finally it came to me: emotions.

Over the past 23 years of my life I have pretty much been an emotional mess. I was overly sensitive, overly cautious, and I was always trying to please somebody other than myself. I was a wreck. I know most people would say that all girls are emotional, and in some ways this is true, but I have never been average in this department.

I grew up in a great family, had a pretty typical life, and I really had no idea what caused the start to my downward spiral. I secluded myself, I was socially awkward, I blamed myself for everyone’s problems, and I was undoubtedly depressed. OK, stop. I know you didn’t come here to read something depressing so let’s switch it up a bit.

I am going on 24 years old, and I have JUST now figured out how to handle my emotions in a healthy a positive manner. Is it okay to be emotional? Yes. Is it okay to express your emotions? Yes.

It is NOT healthy to hold all your emotions inside or to take everything that happens each day personally and to heart. Extremes are never good, and just like what anything else everything in moderation I had to learn what it meant to truly express healthy emotions.

The first step in controlling and understanding your emotions is figuring out the cause. Every emotion stems from somewhere and beneath all the tears, frustrations, and anger there is a root of those feelings. I remember one day crying my eyes out because my boyfriend had suggested I begin to look for another job. I literally cried over this for an hour straight. Was I upset at him for telling me I should try to find something else? No. I couldn’t understand where all the tears were coming from. After I calmed down I realized I wasn’t crying because of what he said- I was upset because I took that to mean that he didn’t respect the work and time I had put into my job. Crazy? Yes! 🙂

I would like to break here to thank him very much for putting up with all my crazy emotions over the past 5 years!

I knew that I had to make a change. This wasn’t healthy. I had so many emotions coming at me at once that I would literally make myself sick. I couldn’t focus or even have constructive conversations with anyone because I was out of control; my emotions were out of control.

The second step is recognizing that your emotions can hurt others. I may have not been directly hurting others, but I know my parents, friends, and boyfriend have all suffered because there has been nothing for them to do. I had to realize that it was unhealthy.

I know that this isn’t supposed to be about exercise, but I have found that it is one of the greatest problem solvers. Running allows me to vent my frustrations, accomplish my goals, and clear my head each and everyday.

Lastly, I talked to someone. It is sometimes easier to express to a neutral third party than to keep going like you are. It helped to have someone point out to me what I was doing. There is no shame in seeking help from counselors, physiatrists, or any other type doctor. As they say, you are the keeper of your own destiny.

sara

To read more about Sara visit her blog. You can also read Sara’s thoughts in 140-characters or less by following her twitter feed.

Sara’s posts are uber-informative; full of information, tips, and tricks for any Active Gal (or guy). You can read a few of Heather’s favorite recent posts of Sara’s here, here, here, here, here and here.

You won’t want to miss all the great resources on ActiveGal.

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