I had the chance to visit Exposition of Leonard Cohen’s drawing and be witness of his multi talent and genius. His self-portrait “One of those days when the hat doesn’t help” remains forever etched in my memory. This title, so poetic, has become the synonym of days when I feel overwhelmed by events and difficult emotions, the days when nothing helps and nothing works.
Everyone has “When the hat doesn’t help” days when we feel fragile, defeated, disappointed, broken … lost. Absorbed by strong emotions, some of us react by trying to smother them as if you would close the lid on a boiling pot. We seek to bury ourselves in our movements of fear, sadness and anger.
We often strive to have only so-called positive emotions filled with joy. This ideal traps us and prevents us from seeing that the pain associated with the emotions of fear, anger and sadness invites us to take better care of ourselves. This pain forces us to take care of our life, our sensibilities and our desires.
And what if we allowed ourselves to be sad, broken and lost for a while …. Just for an evening or a day?
To feel and to recognize our true emotions helps us manage them and find the answers to our problems. Anxiety, embarrassment or anger can motivate us and help us tame change and move forward.
We can take a step back and ask ourselves: Why am I so upset this morning? What sort of behaviour or person makes me feel aggressive? Why am I so emotional? Where does this sadness come from?
The ideal is of course to be able to express your negative emotions to someone: a close person, a friend, a coach …
Understanding and identifying what is happening within you will allow you to step back from the discernment of showing your feelings … or not. And that’s a new topic to discuss.