Written by Karen D. Swim
Have you ever spent a day or two fighting off an illness? You feel sort of lousy but solider on at half speed not wanting to give in to being sick? Finally, you decide that it would be better to admit defeat and spend a day or two in bed. You realize that you could fight for a week and operate at reduced capacity or simply give in for a day or two and emerge recovered.
Sometimes holding back negative emotions is exactly like those days you waste pretending you’re not really sick. You exert your energy pretending that you’re not hurting, sad or angry – energy that could be directed at solving your problem.
There are times when bucking up is truly the smart thing to do, but at other times you really need to be kind enough to yourself to break down. In those times, to ignore what you feel can actually prevent you from taking positive action. So go ahead and cry, scream, rant, and eat a big fat bowl of ice-cream if that is what you need to get it out of your system. When you’re done, you can then focus completely on taking action to change your situation.
Are there times in your own life when you should have chosen to break down or vice versa? How do you decide when to cry “uncle” and when to tough it out?