In this video, I share my personal experience of grappling with uncomfortable emotions, particularly the feelings of irritability and aggression that happen in the Autumn season of my period.
As a textbook “Nice Girl” – I talk about how I used to suppress these emotions and how it was not working for me, leading me closer to the breaking point.
However, through a conversation with my husband, I realized that this particular part of my cycle has qualities that I can embrace and be at peace with, instead of fighting against it.
This version of myself that comes out during this time is one that I am not comfortable with, but I am beginning my journey of accepting and even appreciating it.
If you’re someone who struggles with processing emotions like anger + irritability, this video may offer some insight and inspiration on how to embrace this part of yourself too!
So on Sunday morning I woke up and I was cranky as hell.
And at one point my husband was just sat next to me on his phone and I could feel myself getting more and more angry with him for being on his phone. Now for context, we were at my friend’s house and we had stayed the night after having a great time at a games night with some other friends as well. And it was 8 a.m. in the morning at this point, having only gone to bed at 2 a.m.
So I was probably not in the best state, right? I hadn’t had much sleep.
And I will also hang on a admit that I was probably at that time in my cycle where it is usual for me to feel irritable.
However, in this moment I was just getting more and more worked up with him.
But I suppressed my feelings. I kept it in.
I sat there silently, fuming about it, not wanting to cause a scene.
So we progressed with the morning and we eventually set off back home about 10 a.m.
It was about a two and a half hour drive home and in the car on the way back, I could still feel all these really spiky, angry, aggressive feelings within me.
And to be honest, I didn’t really understand why they were there, other than the fact that I was probably due on my period soon and so it kind of felt normal for me to be irritable.
But I didn’t know what to do with these emotions.
Fortunately, me and my husband have been together for long enough now where he can recognize my emotional patterns and he also knows how to help me through them and so he casually asked:
What’s going on in that brain of yours, Becky? I can hear it whirring!
And I proceeded to tell him how I was really grappling with this idea of when we have these uncomfortable emotions, ones that on necessarily shiny or considered polite to have, I don’t really know what to do with them.
Because part of me just wants to let it out. Part of me wants to have a full on tantrum and snap at him and make comments, but I know it’s self-defeating, right?
Because actually, what’s irritating me in that moment isn’t stuff that usually irritates me the rest of my monthly cycle, I’m usually pretty okay with it and it really doesn’t bother me.
So for me to make a big deal out of something in that moment, I know would escalate it and turn into something that it really doesn’t need to be.
However, my other method of trying to suppress them also was not working for me because it was just creating this real sense of anger and frustration and getting me closer to that point where I felt like I was going to snap.
I felt like I was going to break and just come out and explode.
And it’s really interesting because through the course of our conversation, which was fantastic (big props to my husband) what I really realized is that this particular part of my cycle, this particular part of my period when I get all irritable and aggressive, there are qualities about that that I know are powerful.
And instead of me trying to fight against what happens on a monthly basis, I really, really want to find a way to embrace it and to be at peace with it and accept that part of myself.
But I know that the version of me that comes out in that particular time is one that I am not comfortable with.
That version of Becky scares me, because so much of my life I have spent trying to keep the peace. Trying to keep everybody happy, trying not to upset people, trying not to create anger and avoid any sense of confrontation. And usually what that involves is me suppressing times when I’m irritable and me being the one to be like:
You know what? I’m just going to deal with this. Like, yeah, you’ve done something that’s maybe not great or it’s irritated me or made me feel a certain way, but it’s mine to deal with, so I’m just going to keep it to myself and process it through.
However, the Becky that I’m talking about, this version that I was experiencing on Sunday is not somebody who does that. She is somebody who holds that boundary and says:
“Excuse me, I’m not okay with that. Please, can you stop? This is how it’s making me feel.”
She is super upfront about it, and that terrifies me!
Because it’s something that I am not used to doing and so the results of that are really unknown for me, it feels like a really scary area to be in.
KEY STEP: ALOWING SPACE TO CREATE AWARENESS
And I’m just going to say now I had no awareness of what I’m talking about right now, this awareness of those behaviours and how she scares me and I’m not comfortable with her because the behaviours that she wants to go through with, are ones that directly go against the safety mechanisms that I’ve built.
I had no awareness about that until the conversation with my husband on Sunday, because it’s the first time I think I’ve really let myself experience these emotions and truly talk about them with somebody who was listening to me with a curiosity and an active listening position and letting me just speak and understand.
So yeah, I just want to say, although it might sound like: Oh, look, she knows what she’s talking about!” This is literally like, what? It’s Tuesday today. This is two days that I’ve had this awareness.
But hey, you know me, I like to bring things to you in the moment.
REFLECTION / Finding the gifts in the shadow
But the reason I’m sharing this story with you, the reason why I am coming on here and talking about my period with you is because it made me realise that there’s an aspect of me that has these incredible gifts.
These gifts of critical thinking, discernment, fierceness, fiercely standing up for myself.
And yet I have been rejecting them and suppressing them because of conditioning.
Because of experiences in my early life which have told me that it’s not safe.
Because the way that culture tells women to be.
“Don’t be an angry woman. It’s not acceptable. It’s scary!”
So I had taken on that message myself and as a result was suppressing these incredibly powerful parts of who I am.
And again, the reason I wanted to talk about this with you is because I think that we as women…
(and probably men, but I’m a woman, so I can only really speak from my own experience!)
…I think that we do this all the frickin time!
We soften our spiky bits for fear of upsetting other people because we’ve been told that this is what enlightened, good, wholehearted, empathetic humans do.
But because of that, we also are then essentially self-censoring parts of ourselves that are powerful, that have something to say.
And so we’re probably only operating at about 50% of our capability when it comes to communicating, when it comes to expressing ourselves and being who we are in the world.
Because we are editing out the parts that we think that might make other people uncomfortable, which in turn feels like it’s going to make us uncomfortable.
And so I know for a fact if I am doing this in my life, I am 100% doing this in my content and in my business, too.
ZOOMING OUT / Can anger be good for business?
I’m only operating at 50% of my capacity for communication because I am only letting myself do it when I am in a space that feels socially and culturally acceptable as opposed to going:
You know what? There’s a real fierce warrior version of me that is passionate and fiery and to be honest, is going to be straight talking with you about helping you reach that next level, helping you see those blind spots potentially, that you’ve been shielded from.
So I wanted to bring this as a conversation to you because I wanted to invite you to maybe consider the aspects of your personality that you have been dampening down.
The parts of you that you think are maybe unreasonable or unlovable and understanding that within that, what are the other qualities that you might also be suppressing?
So if we take the emotion of irritation or anger: these are not emotions typically associated with women. It’s usually about softness, the feminine.
But what does the fierce woman look like? Who is that warrior?
Because in that anger, in that irritation, it’s where we can really understand what is it that we need to change, what is it that we are all passionate about?
Like, how can we think about actually using that emotion in service of the world?
Because if we’re angry about things, if we’re suppressing emotions, I always think if we’re feeling something, other people are feeling it too.
The human experience is a completely shared one and emotions are universal. And so by us, in our own individual states, editing and self-censoring, we are also doing a disservice to other people that are experiencing those same things.
And if you identify as someone who maybe wants to change the world in some way wherther big or small, or if you’re on a journey of personal development and you’re trying to ultimately be your best self and live your best life, part of that is accepting the aspects of you that are maybe deemed not so socially acceptable and trusting that it’s okay to be angry.
And just because you’re angry or irritable or feeling irritated about something, it doesn’t mean that you are then going to be irrational about it.
Because I think the part where we snap, the part where we say things in haste that we regret is because we’ve been suppressing emotions for so long that they burst our out.
Versus actually really feeling them in the moment and using that energy in that emotion to communicate what is in us without having to explode.
We can actually just channel it in a calm manner or a controlled manner. Just because we’re angry doesn’t mean we have to lose control. We can still be angry and focused.
And I know that this period of my cycle is a incredibly powerful one and so I am really going to be going on a journey for the rest of my life hahaha, I’m going to be experimenting with using these emotions that I feel and exploring and remaining curious about how I can actually embrace them and use them to be more expressive, be more of myself.
Because warrior Becky, angry Becky, irritable, fierce, doesn’t give a fuck Becky – she exists!
She has stuff to say. And the more that I silence her, the louder internally she’s going to get, the more she’s going to fight me to be released.
And the longer I suppress it, the stronger she’s going to get and it’s more likely to result in that explosion that maybe I would regret because there’d be things that I’d say that I actually don’t mean. Angry Becky is just desperate to be heard and at this point, she’ll say whatever she has to say to get attention!
So instead, how can I give her attention? How can I give her a voice before that point?
Because this version of Becky, she knows what she wants. She knows what’s good for us.
She is fierce about her desires and she’s not scared of admitting it.
So I want to love her just as much as I love the nice girl version of Becky. The fun, the playful, the friendly, the soft Becky. I want to embrace spiky Becky, just as much as that.
And this episode is an invitation for you to maybe consider these aspects of yourself that are spiky and maybe think about what are the qualities here that are incredibly powerful and useful, and how by embracing those aspects of myself, can I maybe harness that potential and create a ripple effect that is ten times more impactful than the ripple
effect that I’m already creating in the world?
I usually sign off by saying: go get creative, take messy action, and don’t forget to have fun with it.
And I still want to leave you with that close, but I also want to invite you to go get angry about things.
What does irritate you? Why are you angry? What is that frustration that’s building up inside you?
And maybe think about how can I actually embrace this aspect?
What are the gifts that are available to me if I move into this maybe more dark and scary and spiky version of myself?
What are the diamonds that are waiting to be mined?
Until next time, my friends.